Looking back: evaluation of the French EU-Presidency’s results

The Ger­man eval­u­a­tion of the French EU-Pres­i­den­cy ranges from “extreme­ly successful”[1] or “breath­less Presidency”[2], to a rather strong crit­i­cism about the lack of a Fran­co-Ger­man coop­er­a­tion. Most observers under­line that the orig­i­nal­ly planned pri­or­i­ties could pre­dom­i­nant­ly not be dealt with – apart from the Ener­gy and Cli­mate Pack­age. Issues like the future of the CAP and the planned defense union[3], were either not dis­cussed in Germany[4] or of minor con­cern. Thus, unex­pect­ed events, such as the Geor­gian war and the glob­al finan­cial cri­sis, strong­ly attract­ed the atten­tion of the French and then EU-Pres­i­dent. Thus, the “polit­i­cal” French EU-Pres­i­den­cy that was announced by Nico­las Sarkozy final­ly became more rel­e­vant than it was to be expected:[5] With­out the insti­tu­tion­al set­ting of the pend­ing future of the Lis­bon Treaty, which des­ig­nates a per­ma­nent Pres­i­dent for the Euro­pean Coun­cil, the EU in these times of cri­sis was in need of polit­i­cal lead­er­ship. Then EU-Pres­i­dent Nico­las Sarkozy knew how to step into this blank posi­tion – a “stroke of luck”[6] as sev­er­al politicians[7] and Ger­man news­pa­pers concluded.

The sub­se­quent gen­er­al eval­u­a­tion of the French EU-Pres­i­den­cy by Ger­man politi­cians as well as sci­en­tists main­ly focused on the role of Pres­i­dent Sarkozy him­self, as he was inter­pret­ed as being the main fig­ure of 2008’s sec­ond term. Sarkozy addi­tion­al­ly was esti­mat­ed being a wel­come change to his pre­de­ces­sor in office,[8] Jacques Chirac, who proved to be rather unded­i­cat­ed to solv­ing Euro­pean mat­ters, after the French ref­er­en­dum on the Euro­pean Con­sti­tu­tion­al Treaty had failed in 2005. Although Sarkozy, com­pared to Chirac, slight­ly mod­i­fied some of the typ­i­cal ele­ments of French Euro­pean pol­i­cy (i.e. the for­mer mod­er­ate esteem for the Euro­pean Par­lia­ment that now was demon­stra­tive­ly raised) he also stuck to a cou­ple of well-known French patterns,[9] such as, for instance, the dis­ap­proval of the posi­tion of Cen­tral-East­ern Euro­pean mem­ber states in some impor­tant con­texts: among these rank the Pol­ish-Russ­ian rela­tion­ship in times of the Geor­gian cri­sis, mar­gin­al con­sul­ta­tion in mat­ters of cli­mate pol­i­cy of those mem­ber states with car­bon-based industries,[10] and open crit­i­cism of the upcom­ing Czech EU-Presidency.[11]

The fact that the French Pres­i­dent had trou­bles in hand­ing over the lead­ing role to the Czech Prime Min­is­ter, Mirek Topolánek, became obvi­ous in Jan­u­ary 2009, when Sarkozy – although no longer lead­ing the EU – trav­elled to Israel and Syr­ia in order to medi­ate in times of cri­sis. It seemed as if he aimed to pre­vent the change by either assum­ing the chair of the Eurogroup or, which is shown by this exam­ple of diplo­mat­ic trav­el­ling, by large­ly inter­pret­ing his respon­si­bil­i­ties in the con­text of the French Mediter­ranean Union (MU) Co-Pres­i­den­cy. This behav­iour was gen­er­al­ly not endorsed by Ger­man actors. The Ger­man Frank­furter All­ge­meine Zeitung, how­ev­er, com­pli­ment­ed the “cre­ative interpretation”[12] of France’s MU Co-Pres­i­den­cy as being an inter­est­ing strat­e­gy of pro­long­ing the French lead­ing role.

The achievements of the French EU-Presidency seen by German actors

Towards the end of the French EU-Pres­i­den­cy a Ger­man Par­lia­men­tar­i­an debate revealed the sat­is­fac­tion with the French lead­ing capa­bil­i­ties by most of Par­lia­ment mem­bers con­cerned with Euro­pean matters.[13] It becomes obvi­ous that its main achieve­ments are rather linked to cri­sis man­age­ment than to the ful­fil­ment of the set pres­i­den­cy agenda.[14] Though, polit­i­cal actors stress the impor­tance of the Ener­gy and Cli­mate Package:[15] Accord­ing to them, the Euro­pean com­pro­mise of Decem­ber 2008 paves the way for the Copen­hagen sum­mit in Decem­ber 2009 and for the EU being a role mod­el in cli­mate policy.[16]

In sum, the Ener­gy and Cli­mate Pack­age agree­ment is the out­put that is esti­mat­ed the high­est by Ger­man actors. How­ev­er, sci­en­tist give cause to con­cern that treat­ing this issue was not direct­ly linked to French desires but rather to exter­nal neces­si­ties, like the post-Kyoto-nego­ti­a­tions and the pres­sure to come to a con­clu­sion before Euro­pean Par­lia­ment elec­tions in sum­mer 2009.[17] Beside the com­ple­tion of the Ener­gy and Cli­mate Pack­age some observers find fault with the lack of ambi­tious objec­tives in the field of ener­gy secu­ri­ty and sup­ply, some­thing that now the Czech EU-Pres­i­den­cy will have to cope with. The start of the Rus­so-Ukrain­ian gas cri­sis showed that the French EU-Pres­i­den­cy did neglect these issues. Accord­ing to Fis­ch­er, French actors could have pre­vent­ed Europe from suf­fer­ing that severe­ly from the effects of the gas dis­pute if they would have had a more fore­sight­ed view on ener­gy secu­ri­ty issues in the con­text of Rus­sia-Ukraine relations.[18]

The failures of the French EU-Presidency seen by German actors

Apart from a rather pos­i­tive eval­u­a­tion of the French cri­sis man­age­ment, that also pos­i­tive­ly redounds upon the gen­er­al action capa­bil­i­ty of the EU itself, some observers nev­er­the­less crit­i­cise that Sarkozy’s action­ist behav­iour can not hide the miss­ing long-term results of the six months peri­od in 2008. In addi­tion, Ger­man observers eval­u­ate the lack of Fran­co-Ger­man as well as gen­er­al con­sul­ta­tion between Sarkozy and his EU-part­ners as anoth­er neg­a­tive out­come. Espe­cial­ly because of his vivid and ad-hoc reac­tions, that were admit­ted­ly need­ed, the French Pres­i­dent was not able to search for a com­pro­mise among all 27 in every case. Quite the reverse, the ten­sions between Paris and Berlin were not only attrib­uted to the French admin­is­tra­tion but also to the Merkel gov­ern­ment. It was crit­i­cised by the Ger­man oppo­si­tion par­ties FDP and the Greens for its block­ade pol­i­cy dur­ing the finan­cial cri­sis mean­while Sarkozy pro­mot­ed a Euro­pean com­mon solu­tion to the finan­cial crisis.[19]

Eco­nom­ic and finan­cial poli­cies gen­er­al­ly remained a con­tentious issue between France and Ger­many dur­ing the six-month EU-Presidency:[20] Start­ing with dis­sent due to the French ques­tion­ing of the Euro­pean Cen­tral Bank’s inde­pen­dence, which is in con­trast one of the main Ger­man con­cerns, and end­ing with dis­agree­ments about the old French idea of an eco­nom­ic gov­ern­ment, an incen­tive which too has not been wel­comed by Ger­man gov­ern­ments for years.[21]

Although not hav­ing been in French respon­si­bil­i­ty, Ger­man actors espe­cial­ly deplored the unfavourable start of the French EU-Pres­i­den­cy: the unfin­ished rat­i­fi­ca­tion process of the Lis­bon Treaty due to the failed Irish ref­er­en­dum. They, how­ev­er, still hope for a suc­cess of a sec­ond peti­tion for a ref­er­en­dum in Ire­land and expect it to take place ear­ly enough to let the Treaty enter into force before the end of 2009.[22] Regard­ing the agree­ment on the future of the Lis­bon Treaty of Decem­ber 2008, Ger­man politi­cians main­ly crit­i­cise the French sug­ges­tion that would make the reduc­tion of Euro­pean Com­mis­sion­ers improbable.[23] Con­cern­ing the role of the Euro­pean insti­tu­tions, the Ger­man media inter­est­ing­ly observes the following:[24] Dur­ing the French EU-Pres­i­den­cy the influ­ence of the Euro­pean Com­mis­sion was reduced, owing to the strong lead­er­ship of Sarkozy him­self, then being the Pres­i­dent of the Euro­pean Coun­cil, in times of polit­i­cal crisis.[25] Mean­while the promi­nence of the mem­bers of the Euro­pean Par­lia­ment was, from a French point of view, unusu­al­ly aug­ment­ed by two speech­es of Sarkozy at this ple­nary and by hon­ourably invit­ing some of its mem­bers to Paris.

Apart from eco­nom­ic gov­er­nance and the Lis­bon Treaty’s uncer­tain future, the third issue that left a bit­ter taste to Ger­man actors was the French approach of a MU – when it was thought of becom­ing an inde­pen­dent insti­tu­tion from the EU, and serv­ing in the first place the deep­en­ing of French for­eign pol­i­cy vis-a-vis the African con­ti­nent and the Mid­dle East.[26] The Fran­co-Ger­man dis­sent about this idea exem­plar­i­ly shows the gen­er­al diver­gence between the part­ner coun­tries regard­ing EU-enlarge­ment and neigh­bour­hood pol­i­cy. Where­as the French admin­is­tra­tion geo­graph­i­cal­ly focus­es on the Mediter­ranean neigh­bour­hood of the EU, Ger­man polit­i­cal actors rather aim at inte­grat­ing the Cen­tral-East­ern coun­tries in the instru­ments of Euro­pean Neigh­bour­hood Pol­i­cy (ENP). Thus, Sarkozy’s project of a MU was, in times of its first con­cep­tion, crit­i­cal­ly eval­u­at­ed by Ger­man politicians.[27] Only after a com­pro­mise was reached, that includ­ed not only the South­ern but all EU mem­ber states in this new coop­er­a­tion among Mediter­ranean coun­tries (to be for­mal­ly deter­mined the pro­long­ing and deep­en­ing of the already exist­ing Barcelona Process), the Ger­man gov­ern­ment agreed with the plans to fos­ter this Union. Nonethe­less, to Ger­man politi­cians and sci­en­tists the future prospects of the MU remain blurry.

The future bal­anced ori­en­ta­tion of the ENP – the MU on the one side and the Swedish-Pol­ish pro­pos­al for an East­ern Part­ner­ship on the oth­er – is not only in the inter­est of France and Ger­many but also in the inter­est of oth­er EU-mem­ber states. The sec­ond half of 2008 yet has proved that this bi-lat­er­al agree­ment among the two part­ners is not the only nec­es­sary core with­in the EU but increased con­sul­ta­tion with oth­er EU-mem­ber states will be grow­ing­ly need­ed in addi­tion. Thus, Ger­man news­pa­pers abun­dant­ly treat­ed the ques­tion why the coop­er­a­tion between the two coun­try lead­ers Sarkozy and Merkel seemed to be that dif­fi­cult dur­ing the French EU-Pres­i­den­cy: Was it rather due to the French administration’s desire to rather act uni­lat­er­al­ly or in coop­er­a­tion with dif­fer­ing EU-part­ners, i.e. with the British gov­ern­ment in finan­cial mat­ters, or was it due to the diver­gences between the French and Ger­man admin­is­tra­tion in the con­text of polit­i­cal style – the delib­er­ate Merkel gov­ern­ment against the admin­is­tra­tion of “speedy Sarko”[28]?

Nev­er­the­less, dur­ing the French Pres­i­den­cy, the con­tin­u­ous pat­tern of Fran­co-Ger­man coop­er­a­tion – from cri­sis to con­cil­i­a­tion and com­mon man­age­ment – led to the fol­low­ing results that were pos­i­tive­ly under­lined by Ger­man politi­cians: a com­mon arti­cle of Merkel and Sarkozy about Euro­pean eco­nom­ic pol­i­cy in a Ger­man and French news­pa­per (Frank­furter All­ge­meine Zeitung and Le Figaro respec­tive­ly), con­crete plans for a Fran­co-Ger­man bat­tal­ion in Provence or Alsace, as well as the men­tioned com­pro­mise on the design of the MU.

Although the French EU-Pres­i­den­cy is esti­mat­ed to have had a pos­i­tive effect on inter­na­tion­al role and action capability,[29] it is doubt­ed by Ger­man sci­en­tists and jour­nal­ists whether the “breath­less Presidency”[30] head­ed by the “wind machine”[31] Sarkozy, fol­low­ing a ‘zig-zag-pat­tern’ by touch­ing sev­er­al issues, will have long-last­ing results.[32] As the Sued­deutsche Zeitung sar­cas­ti­cal­ly puts it: “180 days of Nico­las Sarkozy are more than sufficient”[33]. Ger­man offi­cials, in any case, seem to feel relieved to turn the page to a more prag­mat­ic Czech EU-Pres­i­den­cy that is sup­posed to deal with less port­fo­lios simultaneously.

Looking ahead: expectations of the Czech EU-Presidency agenda

Ger­man observers orig­i­nal­ly expect­ed a rather solemn Czech EU-Pres­i­den­cy. Owing to the Gaza con­flict and the Russ­ian-Ukrain­ian gas cri­sis at the begin­ning of the year 2009 these expec­ta­tions were not reached. Apart from the neces­si­ty to also be a cri­sis man­ag­er, the Czech gov­ern­ment will nonethe­less be less occu­pied than its French pre­de­ces­sor: Due to the approach­ing Euro­pean Par­lia­ment elec­tions no more leg­isla­tive mea­sures are to be antic­i­pat­ed. In addi­tion, Ger­man offi­cials under­line that the French EU-Pres­i­den­cy was scyth­ing sev­er­al fields such as cli­mate, migra­tion and defence pol­i­cy so that there will be only lit­tle room for manoeu­vre for the Czech responsibles.[34] Ger­man observers addi­tion­al­ly point out that the agree­ment on the Ener­gy and Cli­mate Pack­age was more like­ly under French than under Czech lead­er­ship. As the Czech Repub­lic joined a coali­tion of Cen­tral-Euro­pean EU-mem­ber states that were rather crit­i­cal about the mech­a­nism to achieve the Ener­gy and Cli­mate goals under the head­ing 20–20-20 any medi­a­tor posi­tion would have been more dif­fi­cult to them.[35]

Owing to the Czech gov­ern­ment, alter­ation and the oppo­si­tion of the euro-hos­tile Pres­i­dent Vaclav Klaus, Ger­man observers also con­sid­er the domes­tic pres­sure a seri­ous obsta­cle to a Czech EU-Pres­i­den­cy capa­ble of acting.[36] If these inter­nal uncer­tain­ties remain, the Czech gov­ern­ment is expect­ed to be lapped over by oth­er EU-actors in times when a quick­ly react­ing EU-Pres­i­den­cy would be need­ed (just as Sarkozy act­ed, for instance, in the con­text of the Gaza con­flict). More­over, regard­ing the man­age­ment of any eco­nom­ic con­cerns in times of the finan­cial cri­sis, the fact that the Czech Repub­lic is no mem­ber of the Euro­zone could become a “stum­bling block” to any Czech medi­a­tion in this field says Michael Roth, mem­ber of the SPD-fac­tion of the Bundestag.[37]

On the con­trary, some Ger­man actors esti­mate that a smoother Czech EU-Pres­i­den­cy is a nec­es­sary change to the stress­ful last six months of the French pre­de­ces­sors that urged the Ger­man gov­ern­ment to quick­ly react on sev­er­al and dif­fer­ent Euro­pean port­fo­lios in a short series of time. Gen­er­al­ly, the major­i­ty of Ger­man media and polit­i­cal actors expects a less lead­ing capa­bil­i­ty of the Czech than of the French EU-Pres­i­den­cy due to its struc­tur­al conditions:[38] A small mem­ber state with less skilled staff and less expe­ri­ence in Euro­pean nego­ti­a­tions is expect­ed to be less capa­ble of hold­ing all the nec­es­sary bi-lat­er­al con­sul­ta­tion that is need­ed before com­pro­mis­es at the (Euro­pean) Coun­cil can be reached.[39]

With regard to the Czech EU-Pres­i­den­cy pro­gram, the Ger­man gov­ern­ment espe­cial­ly appre­ci­ates the focus of the Czech Pres­i­den­cy on the East­ern dimen­sion of the ENP as well as the announced bal­anc­ing of transat­lantic rela­tions in times of the new admin­is­tra­tion and EU-Russ­ian relations.[40]

 

 

 

[1] Accord­ing to con­fer­ence dis­cus­sion: „Drei E´s für Europa — EU-Brief­ing zur tschechis­chen Rat­spräsi­dentschaft“, 16 Jan­u­ary 2009, Embassy of the Czech Repub­lic, Berlin.
[2] Cf. Busse, Niko­las: Die Atem­lospräsi­dentschaft, in: Frank­furter All­ge­meine Zeitung, 15 Decem­ber 2008.
[3] Cf. Beer, Ange­li­ka, MEP: Ade Elysée!, 8 Jan­u­ary 2009, avail­able at: www.angelika-beer.de (last accessed: 20 Jan­u­ary 2009).
[4] Cf. Insti­tut für Europäis­che Poli­tik (ed.): EU-27 Watch, No. 7, Sep­tem­ber 2008, Berlin, avail­able at: http://www.eu-consent.net/content.asp?contentid=522, pp. 85–93.
[5] Cf. Von Randow, Gero: Danke, Sarko!, in: Die Zeit, 4 Decem­ber 2008.
[6] Cf. ibid. and e.g. Schiltz, Christoph B.: Sarkozy son­nt sich im Schlus­sap­plaus als EU-Rat­spräsi­dent, in: Die Welt, 30 Decem­ber 2008.
[7] Cf. e.g. mem­ber of the Euro­pean Par­lia­ment Sil­vana Koch-Merin: Sarko for­ev­er, 16 Decem­ber 2008, avail­able at: http://www.koch-mehrin.de/medial_blog_edit.php?id=381 (last accessed: 20 Decem­ber 2008).
[8] Cf. State­ment by EP mem­ber Mar­tin Schulz (SPE): Rosen für Sarkozy – und Dor­nen wegen der Wirtschaft­skrise, 18 Decem­ber 2009, avail­able at: http://www.martin-schulz,info (last accessed: 20 Decem­ber 2008).
[9] Cf. Koop­mann, Mar­tin: Wider­sprüch­liche Sig­nale, Franzö­sis­che Europa-Poli­tik zu Beginn der Paris­er EU-Rat­spräsi­dentschaft, in: DGAP Analyse Frankre­ich, Juli 2008.
[10] Cf. Von Randow, Gero: Danke, Sarko!, in: Die Zeit, 4 Decem­ber 2008.
[11] Cf. Busse, Niko­las: Die Atem­lospräsi­dentschaft, in: Frank­furter All­ge­meine Zeitung, 15 Decem­ber 2008.
[12] Busse, Niko­las: Der Hans­dampf ver­mit­telt weit­er, Frank­furter All­ge­meine Zeitung, 3 Jan­u­ary 2009, p. 6.
[13] Cf. Deutsch­er Bun­destag: Stenografis­ch­er Bericht, 193. Sitzung, Ple­narpro­tokoll 16/193, 4 Decem­ber 2008.
[14] Cf. e.g. state­ment by For­eign Min­is­ter Frank-Wal­ter Stein­meier, in: Deutsch­er Bun­destag, Stenografis­ch­er Bericht, 196. Sitzung, 18 Decem­ber 2008, p. 21128; Wöß, Christoph: Über Europa Frankre­ich aus den Augen ver­loren, in: tagesschau.de Kom­men­tar, 19 Decem­ber 2009.
[15] Cf. e.g. state­ment by MP Michael Stüb­gen (CDU/CSU), in: Deutsch­er Bun­destag, Stenografis­ch­er Bericht, 196. Sitzung, 18 Decem­ber 2008, p. 21133f.
[16] Cf. e.g. state­ment by MP Katha­ri­na Reiche (CDU/CSU, MP), in: Deutsch­er Bun­destag, Stenografis­ch­er Bericht, 193. Sitzung, 4 Decem­ber 2008, p. 20691; state­ment by Ulrich Kel­ber (SPD), in: Deutsch­er Bun­destag, Stenografis­ch­er Bericht, 196. Sitzung, 18 Decem­ber 2008, p. 21143.
[17] Cf. speech of Sev­erin Fis­ch­er at the con­fer­ence “The Euro­pean Union 2020 on focus”, Rep­re­sen­ta­tion of the Euro­pean Com­mis­sion in Berlin, 22 Jan­u­ary 2009.
[18] Cf. ebd.
[19] Cf. e.g. dpa release: Stein­meier lobt Frankre­ichs EU-Präsi­dentschaft, 18 Decem­ber 2008, avail­able at: eu-inof.de/dpa-europaticker/143707.html (last accessed: 20 Decem­ber 2008).
[20] The only fac­tion of the Ger­man Par­lia­ment that open­ly sup­ports the French pro­pos­al of an Euro­pean eco­nom­ic gov­ern­ment is the left par­ty (cf. e.g. state­ment by Oskar Lafontaine, in: Deutsch­er Bun­destag, Stenografis­ch­er Bericht, 196. Sitzung, 18 Decem­ber 2008, p. 21136.
[21] Cf. e.g. state­ment by MP Thomas Sil­ber­horn (CDU/CSU), in: Deutsch­er Bun­destag, Stenografis­ch­er Bericht, 193. Sitzung, 4 Decem­ber 2008, p. 20698; state­ment by MP Angel­i­ca Schwall-Düren (SPD), in: Deutsch­er Bun­destag, Stenografis­ch­er Bericht, 196. Sitzung, 18 Decem­ber 2008, p. 21138; Gero von Randow: Danke, Sarko!, in: Die Zeit, 4 Decem­ber 2008 and Christophe Strassel: Eine Wirtschaft­sregierung für Europa: franzö­sis­che Utopie oder europäis­che Notwendigkeit?, Frankre­ich-Analyse, edit­ed by Friedrich-Ebert fon­da­tion Paris, Jan­u­ar 2009.
[22] Accord­ing to a Ger­man Offi­cial at the Ger­man chan­cellery, Berlin, 15 Jan­u­ary 2009.
[23] Cf. e.g. state­ment by mem­ber of the Euro­pean Par­lia­ment Jo Leinen, accord­ing to press state­ment by the Euro­pean Par­lia­ment: Bilanz des franzö­sis­chen Ratsvor­sitzes, 16 Decem­ber 2008; state­ment by MP Markus Lön­ing (FDP), in: Deutsch­er Bun­destag, Stenografis­ch­er Bericht, 196. Sitzung, 18 Decem­ber 2008, p. 21142; state­ment by MP Michael Roth (SPD), in: Deutsch­er Bun­destag, Stenografis­ch­er Bericht, 196. Sitzung, 18 Decem­ber 2008, p. 21148.
[24] Cf. e.g. Gam­melin, Christoph: Großes Solo vor dem Schlus­sakko­rd, in: Sued­deutsche Zeitung, 19 Decem­ber 2008; Berschens, Ruth: „Sie haben sich als Pro-Europäer geoutet“, in: Han­dels­blatt, 16 Decem­ber 2008.
[25] Cf. e.g. Niko­lai, Hans-Her­mann: Der bewegte Mann: Sarkozy möchte Antreiber der EU bleiben, in: EU-info Deutsch­land, 30 Decem­ber 2008, avail­able at: www.eu-info.de/dpa-europaticker/144024.html; Heinen, Nico­laus: Tschechiens Rat­spräsi­dentschaft: Weniger Glam­our, mehr Kon­ti­nu­ität, in: Deutsche Bank research, 5 Jan­u­ary 2009, avail­able at: http://www.dbresearch.de/PROD/DBR_INTERNET_DE-PROD/PROD0000000000235985.xhtml (last accessed: 20 Jan­u­ary 2009).
[26] Cf. Insti­tut für Europäis­che Poli­tik (ed.): EU-27 Watch, No. 7, Sep­tem­ber 2008, Berlin, avail­able at: http://www.eu-consent.net/content.asp?contentid=522, pp. 85–93.
[27] Cf. ebd.
[28] Lehnartz, Sascha: Die Wind­mas­chine Sarkozy hat der EU gut getan, in: Die Welt, 29 Decem­ber 2008.
[29] Cf. e.g. press release of the Euro­pean Parliament’s EPP group, by Nas­sauer, Hart­mut: Eini­gun­gen in erster Lesung, Selb­stkasteiung des Par­la­ments, 16 Decem­ber 2008.
[30] Busse, Niko­las: Die Atem­lospräsi­dentschaft, in: Frank­furter All­ge­meine Zeitung, 15 Decem­ber 2008.
[31] Lehnartz, Sascha: Die Wind­mas­chine Sarkozy hat der EU gut getan, in: Die Welt, 29 Decem­ber 2008.
[32] Cf. con­fer­ence dis­cus­sions („The Euro­pean Union 2020 on focus“, Berlin, 22 Jan­u­ary 2009; „The French Pres­i­den­cy: A Trans­form­ing Moment for the Euro­pean Union?“, CERI-Sci­ence Po, Paris, 4–5 Feb­ru­ary 2009) and Von Randow, Gero: : Danke, Sarko!, in: Die Zeit, 4 Decem­ber 2008.
[33] Kröncke, Gerd: Zurück in den eige­nen Garten, in: Sued­deutsche Zeitung, 31 Decem­ber 2008, p. 3.
[34] Accord­ing to con­fer­ence dis­cus­sion: „Drei E´s für Europa — EU-Brief­ing zur tschechis­chen Rat­spräsi­dentschaft“, 16 Jan­u­ary 2009, Embassy of the Czech Repub­lic, Berlin.
[35] Cf. speech of Sev­erin Fis­ch­er at the con­fer­ence “The Euro­pean Union 2020 on focus”, Rep­re­sen­ta­tion of the Euro­pean Com­mis­sion in Berlin, 22 Jan­u­ary 2009.
[36] Cf. con­fer­ence dis­cus­sion “The Euro­pean Union 2020 on focus”, Rep­re­sen­ta­tion of the Euro­pean Com­mis­sion in Berlin, 22 Jan­u­ary 2009.
[37] Cf. speech of Michael Roth at the con­fer­ence “The Euro­pean Union 2020 on focus”, Rep­re­sen­ta­tion of the Euro­pean Com­mis­sion in Berlin, 22 Jan­u­ary 2009.
[38] Cf. Busse, Niko­las: Der Hans­dampf ver­mit­telt weit­er, FAZ, 3 Jan­u­ary 2009, p. 6; Kröncke, Gerd: Zurück in den eige­nen Garten, in: Sued­deutsche Zeitung, 31 Decem­ber 2008, p. 3.
[39] Cf. speech of Daniela Schwarz­er and and Michael Roth at the con­fer­ence “The Euro­pean Union 2020 on focus”, Rep­re­sen­ta­tion of the Euro­pean Com­mis­sion in Berlin, 22 Jan­u­ary 2009.
[40] Cf. e.g. state­ment by Angel­i­ca Schwall-Düren (SPD), in: Deutsch­er Bun­destag, Stenografis­ch­er Bericht, 193. Sitzung, 4 Decem­ber 2008, p. 20690; state­ment by Rain­der Steen­block (Green par­ty), in: Deutsch­er Bun­destag, Stenografis­ch­er Bericht, 196. Sitzung, 18 Decem­ber 2008, p. 21145.