Gavin Hewitt, the BBC’s new man in Brussels, has started blogging on his new job.
He points out the contrast with his last big assignment – the Obama campaign:
For all that, as I set out as Europe editor, I detect uncertainty. Last year, I covered the Obama campaign. It was marked by its confidence and boldness – by the overpowering sense of the tide of history changing. The sense of purpose in Europe, at first sight, seems less clear.
The first comments on the article are interesting responses to his post, for example:
Those of us who followed your blogs on the US do remember that you were very much taken by America’s delusional “can do” positivism, but, for all the “confidence and boldness” of the Obama campaign, what exactly has changed since that election?
The EU is definitely on the edge of change, but the real change of a mature polity. Europe already has its universal health services, and few countries’ police and security services are answering to charges of torture. Sadly, some European countries are mired in wars (of America’s making), but at least none is rattling sabres with the desire to start a new one. The EU can, and does, focus on other priorities.