Atlantic Update 2/24/11


Russian Prime Minister Putin lambastes the EU over its energy policy.


French foreign policy fiasco may end in government reshuffle (Reuters)

Criticism in France over a series of foreign policy blunders is hurting at President Nicolas Sarkozy’s already bruised popularity ratings and nudging him toward yet another cabinet shake-up.

Putin puts foot down in Brussels over EU gas law (France24)

Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin slammed the EU in its Brussels home Thursday over new European laws banning Russian giant Gazprom from also owning gas pipelines — while also taking his own tack on Libya.

‘Europe Must Issue a Credible Threat to Libya’ (Der Spiegel)

What future awaits Libya? Several Western leaders hope it is one without dictator Moammar Gadhafi. But the unpredictable autocrat is still clinging to power in Tripoli even as he has lost control of several other cities. German commentators argue it may be time for a European intervention.

Russia plans $650bn defence spend up to 2020 (BBC News)

Eight nuclear submarines, 600 jets and 1,000 helicopters feature in plans to renew Russia’s military by 2020, priced at 19tn roubles (£400bn; $650bn).

Germany shores up defenses against Internet attacks (Deutsche Welle)

Germany has launched a security strategy to better protect the country from Internet attacks. Security threats and espionage on the Internet are on the rise. Governments and the economy are the targets.

EU’s Richest and Poorest Regions (The Wall Street Journal)

Which of the European Union’s 271 official regions are the richest and which the poorest in terms of what their populations can buy? In data for 2008 released today, Eurostat uses purchasing power parity calculations to show Inner London, followed by Luxembourg and Brussels, are the most prosperous regions, and Severozapaden in Bulgaria the poorest. The poorest eight regions are either in Bulgaria or Hungary.


Ireland’s politics on the brink of a seismic shift (Ben Fox, EUobserver)

As polling day arrives (25 February) in Ireland there is certainty about only one thing – Fianna Fail, the party of Eamon De Valera, which has governed for 61 of the last 79 years, is going to suffer the worst electoral defeat in its history.

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