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Thread: Brussels threatens to block Trump’s EU ambassador

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    Brussels threatens to block Trump’s EU ambassador


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    Gianni Pittella argued for “blocking the appointment of [Ted] Malloch” | Frederick Florin/AFP via Getty Images
    Brussels threatens to block Trump’s EU ambassador
    If the US president picks Ted Malloch as his man in Brussels, Europe could say No.
    By QUENTIN ARIÈS 2/2/17, 7:51 PM CET Updated 2/2/17, 10:12 PM CET
    Donald Trump’s reported favorite for EU ambassador is already facing headwind in Brussels, with some officials keen to teach the American president a lesson over a potential diplomat they say is anything but diplomatic.

    Ted Malloch, an economist with ties to the president’s inner circle, has raised eyebrows by comparing the EU to the Soviet Union (which he claims to have helped bring down,) saying that the bloc needs “taming.” He has also spoken disparagingly of Jean-Claude Juncker, suggesting the European Commission president “was a very adequate mayor, I think, of some city in Luxembourg and maybe he should go back and do that again.”

    On Thursday, the liberal leader in the European Parliament, Guy Verhofstadt, and the leader of the European People’s Party, Manfred Weber, sent a letter to Juncker and European Council President Donald Tusk saying that Malloch should not be granted credentials, citing his “outrageous malevolence against the values that define this European Union.”

    “We are strongly convinced that people seeing as their mission to disrupt or dissolve the European Union should not be accredited as official representatives to the EU,” the letter said.

    Gianni Pittella, president of the Socialists and Democrats group in the European Parliament, argued in a plenary speech Wednesday for “blocking the appointment of Malloch” for his “delirious” statements. He later told POLITICO that Malloch is “not welcome here” and called on the EU to “send him back home.”

    “In general, you send an ambassador to build constructive relationships — not saying you should be tamed” — Senior EU official
    Privately, EU diplomats agree that Malloch would not be a suitable choice for the job.

    “We still do not know what to do with the new U.S. administration,” said one top EU official. “In general, you send an ambassador to build constructive relationships — not saying you should be tamed.”

    While it would be highly unusual for the EU to try to block an appointee, it is not impossible, though it wouldn’t be up to MEPs as it is the European Commission and Tusk that issue credentials to an ambassador.

    Protocol and process

    Anthony Gardner, the outgoing U.S. ambassador, left his post in Brussels on January 20, going out in a blaze with a warning to Trump not to botch the transatlantic alliance.

    Adam Shub, the deputy head of the U.S. mission to the EU, has served as the acting ambassador since. If everything goes smoothly, the new U.S. ambassador is likely to be in Brussels at the earliest in June.

    But it could take longer.

    Malloch has not yet been picked officially and any candidate will have to be vetted in the U.S. first — a process that includes FBI background checks and scrutiny of financial interests and former public statements before the candidate goes before the U.S. Senate for a confirmation hearing.

    Then, to get the ambassador appointed to the EU, Washington has to send the person’s resumé to the European Commission’s protocol service which makes an assessment in consultation with the office of EU foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini — a procedure that usually takes about eight weeks.

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    EU capitals then have a month to oppose the request and unanimous consent is required for the credentials to be issued. Usually, any concerns are dealt with privately before the person has been officially announced and there is no record of the EU ever denying a request.

    “I would not be surprised if some member states are going to oppose him,” said Jean De Ruyt, a former Belgian ambassador to the EU, who argued that, rather than go through the process of publicly refusing him after the fact, it would be better for the Commission to hint to Washington early on that Malloch is an unacceptable choice.

    One official said it would be unique for an ambassador to be refused on account of something that the person had said.

    For any country or state, “it is very rare to refuse credentials” for diplomats, the official said. “Usually, they are only refused for convicted felons.”

    In 2015, the Vatican refused to accept the credentials of a French diplomat, Laurent Stefanini, who is gay. After a nine-month stand-off with the Holy See, Paris gave up.

    “If Donald Trump nominates someone who said publicly he wanted to destroy the European Union … it does not portend the best relationship” — Tereza Novotna, EU foreign policy expert at ULB
    Without credentials, the ambassador will be an ambassador in name only and have no privileged access to top EU officials, meetings or institutions and no diplomatic privileges such as tax exemptions.

    If the EU refuses to grant credentials to a candidate, another name can be put forward or the post can be left vacant, with a more junior diplomat in charge of the embassy.

    For now, though, the Trump administration hasn’t made an official pick or made a request for credentials.

    “So let’s take a step at a time,” said one EU official.

    But Tereza Novotna, an EU foreign policy expert and a researcher at the Université Libre de Bruxelles, said early resistance may be better.

    “EU countries may need to weigh the pros and cons of the right time to protest,” she said. “If you don’t start at the beginning [of the process] then it will be harder to reject anyone later,” she said, adding: “If Donald Trump nominates someone who said publicly he wanted to destroy the European Union … it does not portend the best relationship.”

    Maïa de La Baume and Tara Palmeri contributed to this story
    http://www.politico.eu/article/how-e...k-ted-malloch/
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    Sadly, the countries of Europe will have to consider the USA a potential aggressor for the next 4 years. I really hope this is a blip and not a permanent re-orientation of alliances.

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    Senior Contributor Toby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zara View Post
    Sadly, the countries of Europe will have to consider the USA a potential aggressor for the next 4 years. I really hope this is a blip and not a permanent re-orientation of alliances.
    RAOFLAO..........Thats a laughable statement, Europes very existance is courtesy of the US..... Where did you learn your history or even your present day reality....??????????????????????????????????????

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    Quote Originally Posted by zara View Post
    Sadly, the countries of Europe will have to consider the USA a potential aggressor for the next 4 years. I really hope this is a blip and not a permanent re-orientation of alliances.
    Your problem is not Trump. Your problem is that large numbers of citizens in those European countries are seeing EU as the aggressor.

    There are reasons why we have so many layers of checks and balances, the "vestige" of the electoral college, the "disfunctional" house and Senate. Your Eurocrats are encountering all of them but burying their head in the sand hoping reality will go away. At this rate Trump will be the least of their problems.

    As one famous American investor said about how his business empire collapsed: first slowly, then quickly.
    Last edited by citanon; 04 Feb 17, at 03:20.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Toby View Post
    RAOFLAO..........Thats a laughable statement, Europes very existance is courtesy of the US..... Where did you learn your history or even your present day reality....??????????????????????????????????????
    Surely some qualification is needed here? Was Rome's existence courtesy of the native American tribes?

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    Present day Europe owes it's existence to America....not that hard to understand .Romes existence courtesy of Northern American tribes???? Mines a large one if you're pouring
    Last edited by Toby; 04 Feb 17, at 09:53.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Toby View Post
    RAOFLAO..........Thats a laughable statement, Europes very existance is courtesy of the US..... Where did you learn your history or even your present day reality....??????????????????????????????????????
    Thats precisly my point - since the end of world war 2 the US has been the underwriter of European stability and peace through Nato and its support for the EU.
    Now Trump, Bannon and Putin threaten to turn that support on it's head.

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    Senior Contributor Toby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zara View Post
    Thats precisly my point - since the end of world war 2 the US has been the underwriter of European stability and peace through Nato and its support for the EU.
    Zara behave!... you actually fed us a line straight from the EU propaganda machine.

    Now Trump, Bannon and Putin threaten to turn that support on it's head.
    and the complacency of Europes NATO members is not a factor?

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    Quote Originally Posted by zara View Post
    Thats precisly my point - since the end of world war 2 the US has been the underwriter of European stability and peace through Nato and its support for the EU.
    Now Trump, Bannon and Putin threaten to turn that support on it's head.
    Guess what, Americans got tired to pay for your freedom, while you spend on trivial things, like EU bureaucrats. Why would they foot the bill?
    No such thing as a good tax - Churchill

    To make mistakes is human. To blame someone else for your mistake, is strategic.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Doktor View Post
    Guess what, Americans got tired to pay for your freedom, while you spend on trivial things, like EU bureaucrats. Why would they foot the bill?
    Sure, but that doesn't change the fact that the White house and the Kremlin want to break up our union.

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    tankie Military Professional tankie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zara View Post
    Sure, but that doesn't change the fact that the White house and the Kremlin want to break up our union.
    So do 17.5 million UK residents who want to break away from "your" union of corruption . And we are .


    Trust gets you killed, love gets you hurt, and being REAL gets you hated.

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    Quote Originally Posted by tankie View Post
    So do 17.5 million UK residents who want to break away from "your" union of corruption . And we are .
    And in doing so you may well break up 'our' British union. I've often wondered how many of the 17 million wish for the total destruction of the EU, not satisfied with British succession alone.

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    Senior Contributor Doktor's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by zara View Post
    Sure, but that doesn't change the fact that the White house and the Kremlin want to break up our union.
    Because of the facts stated above. Just like 30+% of the population in the EU.
    No such thing as a good tax - Churchill

    To make mistakes is human. To blame someone else for your mistake, is strategic.

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    It's official. Leavers are thick.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-38762034

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    Senior Contributor Toby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marko View Post
    It's official. Leavers are thick.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-politics-38762034
    I use to respect the BBC...increasingly I realise where their loyalties lie

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