By Dr. Tsilla Hershco, BESA
Coronavirus in Italy image via Pixabay
EXECUTIVE SUMMARY: The coronavirus pandemic has exposed many of the EU’s inherent weaknesses, from its total unpreparedness for the crisis, to the open borders that expedited the spread of the disease, to the lack of solidarity reflected in member states’ refusal to help Italy in the initial critical phase of the pandemic. The union cooperates well in non-crisis situations, but its complacency, lumbering bureaucracy, and sluggish decision-making processes hamper its ability to respond to urgent developments.
The coronavirus epidemic has exposed the EU’s gravest flaws. It failed to make plans for state cooperation to combat an epidemic, should one arise. The Union’s open border policy in accordance with the Schengen Agreement, which it considers its cardinal achievement, has turned out to be a major hindrance to the effort to contain the virus. The Union refused to suspend the Schengen Agreement even as the virus rapidly picked up momentum and minimized the dangers of the pandemic to the general public, missteps with grave human costs. Read more…