Performance to date of the High Representative for the European Union, Catherine Ashton, was good, but without political charisma. Rumour had it that she was the perfect High Representative, one that did not eclipse the personalities of some foreign ministers of EU member countries. Now it is again up to the European socialists, who have the right to propose the next High Representative for the European Union. In this context, the proposal for Federica Mogherini is nice - but maybe Europe can do better.
British Prime Minister David Cameron has already nominated Jonathan Hill as the British representative for one of the European Commissioner posts. The proposal leaves room for interpretation. Even the recently re-appointed European Parliament President Martin Schulz said that this is "radical anti-European". So, most likely, the proposal for Hill will not be accepted. While we are referring to the UK, we can see the government gradually waking up after the UKIP victory in the European elections (May 2014). Combined with the recent reshuffle of the Cabinet, this confirms the need of new ideas for the British national election in May 2015.
Next year the UK will hold national elections, with a huge stake. Conservatives already promise that in the event of winning the election, they will hold a referendum regarding the exit of the UK from the EU. To be honest, the British Labour party muddies the water as well; the European elections confirmed that if they want to win national elections they still have a long way to go.
It's paradoxical, but the key to unlocking the European Union for the next five years is the British political class. There is a moment of opportunity, the turning point; the British politicians can show courage.
The winning solution would be the following nomination of the UK for the future European Commissioner: David Miliband. Yes, Miliband is a Labour member, in opposition at the moment, with his brother leading the British left. But all stakeholders would benefit. First, Britain will have no problem to get the post of High Representative for the European Union, because everyone's happy with Miliband in Brussels. This will ensure that the Europeans will notice that the EU really wants to play a global role. David Miliband has already led British diplomacy and therefore has political and practical experience and will have its say. Also, do not forget that Britain is a strategic ally of the U.S., so what better pair might there be in tackling Russia? David Miliband must however understand that by this manoeuvre he will not become the next British prime minister, even if his brother loses the elections in May 2015.
Of course you say, this is all well and good, but what will the conservatives say, in particular British Prime Minister David Cameron? Cameron will probably lose the elections in May 2015, and this decision will not influence this. But David Cameron has a chance to show the Brits, the Europeans, the Americans, and the rest of the world that he is a politician who believes in values above politics games. What would Margaret Thatcher think about this problem?
Dan LUCA / Brussels
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