The Hulk, Dead In A Ditch

When Jean-Claude Juncker seemingly insulted Theresa May, by allegedly stating she was nebulous (which he didn’t), she made a beeline for Juncker, confronted him right there and then, and settled the issue.

Xavier Bettel empty-chairing Boris Johnson (source: The Independent)

When Xavier Bettel seemingly insulted Boris Johnson yesterday, by refusing to move a press conference to a more tranquil setting, BoJo made a beeline for the exit, not once looking back.

Continue reading The Hulk, Dead In A Ditch

Turf War

Poor Czechs. They can’t even have a proper senior political turf war without those pesky Slovenians beating them to it. Imagine being in charge of Czechia’s foreign policy, seething over another one of your president’s solo trips to badlands and mulling a response, only to see your counterpart in Ljubljana do the exact same fucking thing, an hour earlier.

Miro beating Tomáš by an hour and half

This is broadly what happened to Czech FM Tomáš Petříček while he was looking for ways to undo the damage president Miloš Zeman did during his visit to Belgrade where he said that he will push for de-recognition of Kosovo by Czechia. However, Zeman wasn’t the only president of a Central European country facing pushback from his foreign minister that day. Cue Borut Pahor. Obviously.

Continue reading Turf War

Commissioner of Last Resort (part deux)

There is little doubt that Janez Lenarčič will be a very good European Commissioner for Crisis Management. There is even less doubt that Slovenian prime minister Marjan Šarec does not – to use a popular phrase – give a flying flamingo about which portfolio Commission president Ursula von der Leyen in the end assigned to Lenarčič.

VLD launching her Commission (source)

In fact, it seems that rather than seeing them as missteps, PM Šarec decided his recent EU-related faux pas were in fact great successes and were to be repeated rather than avoided. Talk about learning the wrong lesson…

Continue reading Commissioner of Last Resort (part deux)

Commissioner of Last Resort

Janez Lenačič, the (current?) Slovenian nominee for commissioner in the upcoming European Commission, had his first hearing in the Slovenian parliament yesterday. As the nomination process is wholly within the government purview, the parliamentary hearing is mostly a dog-and-pony show, intended to appease the grandstanding urges of MPs. Nevertheless, the non-binding vote finally brought to an end to the latest case study in how not to manage human resources.

Marjan Šarec (left) and Janez Lenarčič (source)

To say that the entire episode was a shitshow deluxe would be a bit of an understatement. It is incredibly ironic how PM Marjan Šarec was ever so vocal about the bizarre spectacle of shambolic commissioner nomination Muddy Hollows endured in 2014 and yet ended up pretty much in the same place Alenka Bratušek and later Miro Cerar ended up in five years ago.

Continue reading Commissioner of Last Resort

Wizzaren’t

If you’re travelling alone, a delayed flight to Brussels can be a fun thing. Especially if you run into a few journo friends and it all turns into an impromptu Oktoberfest.

But the brew gets really stale really fast when you’ve been dumped in the north of France in the middle of the night. Which is exactly what happened to yours truly three weeks ago. I have thoughts.

Continue reading Wizzaren’t