At no point in modern European history have the people of Ukraine occupied as important a role in European geopolitical developments as they do today. Although not yet immediately apparent, the 2014 overthrow of President Viktor Yanukovych and the political and economic transformation will have greater geopolitical consequences than European policy makers often assume. If Ukraine’s transformation fails, its example will deliver a shattering blow to those calling for increased liberalization in remaining illiberal states across Eastern Europe.
Retired Army Colonel Fitz Fitzpatrick discusses the European Union’s Common Foreign and Security Policy and Common Security and Defense Policy and the EU’s efforts to address crises in Libya, Ukraine and Syria. He argues that the EU has struggled to establish foreign and defense policies that are independent from the United States, and only an existential crisis will push the EU to fulfill its potential as an actor on the world stage.
What stance should the European Union take on Catalan secession and membership for separatist regions of member states? SAIS student Emily Ashby explores the legal rationale and precedents for Catalonia’s secession under Spanish national law, European law, and international law. She argues that both the weak legal case and the political nature of the EU membership process constrain the EU’s policy options.