In Egypt, a government and a democratically elected president were driven out by the army. Leaders of a party that holds the majority of votes, Justice and Freedom, are in prison, often without charge. Their televisions and newspapers were forced to close by the authorities.
The judiciary system that wage a war against the President right after his election, today is condecendent to the army. People who protest are slaughtered by snipers in the street. Who lost the election yesterday is now back like al-Baradey, the man of the Americans.
The international funds, on which the government Morsi had played his hopes of survival, arrived only the day after the coup d’etat. Instead of condemning the coup d’etat, Western countries and international organizations today indulge, asking for new elections, supporting the army and their allies.
Elections requested while the Muslim Brotherhood is jail, in the shade of the wagons and under the pressure of a noisy square incited and radicalized by the secularism of poverty, but not awared of the alliance with the fundamentalist Salafi an-Nur. The lesson learned is very dangerous: violence and army are means for solving political differences, when you need it.
Westerners are always ready to impart little lesson in democracy, they know how to look the other way, when the flowing blood belongs to independent political movements. All this is not written in any of the solemn declarations of the EU, but it is clear that this is what we do when someone we do not like arrives in the government.
Algeria docet, like Hamas. Consequences of this kind of behavior can be dramatic. The double standard on issues of foreign policy is very dangerous.
If the violence coming from non-state groups is acceptable, like in Egypt or in Syria, if the weapons and the army are a tool of political struggle to overturn governments we do not like, then we must seriously ask ourselves how these behaviors will be understood by millions of foreigners who are in Europe. The whole European political doctrine is put in danger by this ambiguous behavior. The European security is particularly in danger, while America is very far from the epicenter of the earthquake.
Freedom of expression and privacy are the cornerstones of the relationship between citizens and state in European democracies. This does not mean that the intelligence and security agencies should not collect information on citizens. Indeed, it is their institutional role to do so.
But in the framework of the law, with the necessary permissions and within their jurisdiction. Then comes Mr. Snowden. And it turns out that all Western intelligence agencies use the media infrastructure, from internet to phones, to collect metadata on billions of people around the world, violating every law and standards.
We learned that large private companies with clouds collecting 95% of the world’s information, have a hidden back door that organisations such as the American NSA can access whenever they want. But since there is no end to the worst, this story became grotesque when in order to catch Mr. Snowden, some European countries violate all international laws and conventions blocking in Vienna a flight of a head of state and searching his plane.
The European states’ piracy, a new chapter. Where is the law in these very serious facts? There is simply none. Only the force, blackmail and political pressure to stop people like Snowden seem to count. We always fall for it: from the illegal kidnappings and torture against terrorists to Guantanamo and Abu Ghraib. It is always the same history: good reasons that always result in violations of the law. We end up in the wrong, despite having many reasons.
Finally, the painful chapter of double standards on the fight against tax havens. A real world crusade was set in motion to ensure high tax revenue to the states that always want more money. But the legitimate fight against tax havens comes to the point of making espionage against other sovereign countries’ banks, buy private and confidential data, bribing officials and then use these data acquired through corruption in order to pursue (rightly) who detain illegal money abroad.
Mr. Snowden has to be extradited at any cost, because it spied to defend his ideas, but Mr. Falciani, who spied for money, can not be extradited from Spain, where he can enjoy the millions of Euros he stole. Swiss bank officials that helped the tax evaders are at risk of jail for the U.S. investigation (right), but Germany refused legal aid to Swiss officials for those German Laender employees who have stolen data to Swiss banks and did ??industrial espionage against Switzerland.
Double standards, as usual. In the meantime the NGO Transparency International underlines that those countries embracing the flag of public morality are the first that help heavens at home, such Delaware, protecting their big banks by national law to attract illegal billions in their internal or Caribbean tax havens, thus contributing to create tax hells everywhere else. To what extent an action against tax havens and banks that did not start that from your own home can be credible?
Again, the double standard is likely to become a mere national struggle for the conquest of very heavy flows of financial resources worldwide. Money and power, as always.
Policy zig-zag of many Western leaders does not help those who believe in the founding principles of the rule of law, as enshrined in our European Union Charter.
Day after day it becomes clearer that the world policy compass is based on nations’ interests. Different interests, where legitimacy is given by the sovereign power. There is nothing scandalous in this. It has been so for hundreds of years.
You just have to have the courage to be realistic. The credibility of our political doctrines, foundation of the European Union is on the table.
But above all, we need to understand the real interests for weak countries like Italy and southern Europe. We might understand that our allies are not always our best of friends. And not just because they are spying on us.