While EU Council president Donald Tusk (pictured) is preparing the anniversary of the Treaty of Rome Summit (25.03.2017), focusing of the ‘unity’ message of EU27 in post-Brexit era, the argument over his own re-appointment ignoring Polish government’s protest, remains open, poisoning the historic event.
Although the Summit is informal, the open confrontation with Poland over re-appointment of Tusk is a toxic issue, that would be impossible to play down or brush off. The EU diplomacy showed poor judgment when suggested Prime minister Beata Szydlo (53) would have no choise but submit to the will the fellow EU members, openly imposing Tusk – an active political opponent of her incumbent government. Szydlo, the miner’s daughter, showed a remarkable capacity to withstand punch, and audacity to retaliate, rejecting to sign the Council conclusions. If this pattern is chosen as a long-term strategy, it will mean, as long as Tusk chairs the EU meetings, Poland will continue to obstruct the outcome, not honoring a legal status to its decisions. This conflict over Tusk might not hinder the upcoming ‘informal’ Summit in Rome legally, but it will certainly harm its image politically.
While preparing the Declaration of the Summit in Rome, calling for ‘unity’ as a universal remedy from all kind of problems Europeans suffer, Tusk’s controversial chairmanship, weakens the message a priori. “Taken individually, we would be sidelined by global dynamics. Standing together is our best chance to influence them, and to defend our common interests and values … Our Union is undivided and indivisible,” – Tusk’s draft declaration calls, making this words to haunt him like a bitter irony.
Being ‘an apple of discord’ between Poland and the rest of the EU, Tusk himself is a at most eloquent physical evidence of the profound crisis of the EU, and a symbol of strife and decline.
The draft, dated March 16 and prepared by the contraversial chairman of EU summits Donald Tusk, will pass by all the capitals next week before being endorsed in Rome on the 25th of March.
Anna van Densky