EU

This is a follow up ‘Brentry: How New Zealand Coped’, setting out some of the challenges which face New Zealand today.

The strategic view that Britain needs to be in the EU remains universal among New Zealand strategists. However the Leaves did not vote geopolitically but on domestic considerations including, apparently, resentment of immigration and of the unequal gains from trade. New Zealand has little alternative but to accept the direction the Brits are taking, albeit with regret.

Turkey's President Erdogan is hell bent on revenge against those who tried to oust him in the country's latest military coup. The round-up of suspects and the crack down on human and civil rights is nothing short of staggering….and concerning.

Turkey’s fifth military coup d’etat was crushed only hours after it began, but the ramifications of those hours of miscalculated actions are immense for Turkey, the region and the wider world.

The rule of strongman Recep Tayyip Erdogan has consistently, worryingly, been more akin to that of an autocrat than a democratically elected President.

It is unclear why anyone is voting for Britain leaving the EU nor, in many cases, why they are voting for remain. What are the possible alternatives? How is Britain or New Zealand to function in an increasingly globalised world?

As I put up this column, the Brits are about to vote on Brexit – whether Britain should withdraw from the European Union. We do not know what the outcome will be, for the opinion surveys are all over the place; in any case turnout may be crucial. In 1975 a similar referendum taken a couple of years after Britain joined went two to one for ‘stay’.

Within possibly just hours the fate of Greece could be known. Either way - in or out of the EU - the population of this crippled country faces only more hardship. Some players are more to blame than others, but none is exempt.    

Will she go or will she stay?

She, being Greece. Her travel plans being a ‘staycation’ within the EU, or a ‘Grexit’ back(wards) to the drachma.

We need to distinguish the sovereign state from the people it governs, and the other political institutions between. 

Things are moving so fast in the financial negotiations between Greece and the Troika (European Central Bank, European Union, and the International Monetary Fund) that there is little point in my trying to comment on them. But there is a structural issue which most commentaries overlook.