Pope Francis’s call for peace

Last Updated on Thursday, 14 March, 2024 at 10:04 am by Andre Camilleri

This week, I was browsing the internet and suddenly I came across an article about the Holy Father. Plainly, the article was quoting Pope Francis who called for a solution to end the war in Ukraine and to find a peace agreement by those who master the courage to think of their people bearing the interest of a white flag in the negotiations.

In an interview, Pope Francis was asked whether the negotiations would technically legitimise the stronger party, indirectly referring to Russia. However, Pope Francis is a scholar, and unlike the former defence minister of Germany and current President of the European Commission, he replied eloquently. Let’s leave the President of the European Parliament out of it for a minute. Pope Francis replied that the narrative of legitimising the stronger party is just one interpretation. The Holy Father believes that the stronger party is the one who is able to see the situation clearly, who thinks of the people and who has the courage to carry a white flag to negotiate. The white flag means, seeing the humanitarian side, and calling for a truce. Also, Pope Francis said that peace negotiations, and agreements are today possible with the help of the international powers.

However, Foreign Minister Dmytro Kuleba, wrote a message on the social media platform X reading that the strong person in any dispute stands on the side of good. Well, we all agree and there are no disputes about this. Foreign Minister Kuleba said that Ukraine’s flag is a yellow and blue one by which they live, die, and prevail, and there is no other flag. Indeed, I fully concur with the Holy Father’s statement. This is exactly what I have been trying to say for the past two years. In the past, the EU had the credibility and the ability to broker peace agreements. Back in 2012, in a unanimous decision by the Norwegian Nobel Committee, the Nobel Peace Prize was awarded to the European Union. It was awarded to the European Union for its contribution to the advancement of peace and reconciliation, democracy, and human rights in Europe. However, fast forward 10 years and everything collapsed. Alas, since the appointments of the current President of the European Commission everything was disbanded.

Certainly, we cannot have a former defence minister heading the European Commission. In her last statement in Strasbourg the President of the European Commission said that Europe has been living under the illusion that peace is permanent. Surely, not until Ursula von der Leyen came into the picture. We all remember Ursula’s churlish behaviour at the State of the Union speech in 2022 and in tandem touring Baku ingratiating Ilham Aliyev as a reliable partner. The president of the EU commission’s sheer incompetence in diplomacy is actually frightening. Ursula von der Leyen is quite pushy. Her pushy behaviour weakened the EU’s diplomatic leverage. The High Representative was indirectly sacked from his post in February 2022. He went AWOL. And please stop the narrative that we are here criticising the West. We are criticising Ursula von der Leyen, and the authors of such a big mess in Europe. Now I understand why Josep Borrell was chosen for the post. They wanted someone weak with a beta male personality, so he is easily overshadowed. 

Just look at the narratives here. Pope Francis is appealing for the help of international powers to broker a peace agreement, while on the other hand Ursula von der Leyen is saying that Europeans were living under an illusion that peace is permanent. Hadn’t Ursula von der Leyen disrupted all the diplomatic channels, the EU would have been a possible international power to broker a peace agreement. Sincerely, when back in October 2023, I said that the rare scene of President von der Leyen and President Metsola, along each other shaking hands and posing for photos in Israel reminded me of the siblings Sheila and Kelly, in one of the Japanese cartoon’s episode Occhi di Gatto, surely, I was not joking. The chaos and the mess we witnessed in the past three years, when it comes to foreign policy, shows utter dilettantism.

The President of the European Commission is not interested in the people, nor in white flags, and neither in peace negotiations. The former German defence minister is only interested in industrialising the sector for her country’s own benefit, and individual interest to secure a second term. Else, the only explanation we can find is the one that we are still in search of. Meanwhile, it seems that in the coming weeks, the European Commission will present its European Defence Industrial Strategy, as well as the European Defence Industrial Programme. However, it is important to accentuate that the EU Budget cannot finance lethal equipment. The Treaty is clear. The EIB restricts lending for weapons and the financial architecture is also connected to EU budget guarantees. Please note that any guarantees from the EU budget to finance lethal equipment is not in line with the Treaty of Lisbon. They have an army of people and legal experts to circumvent the Treaty. However, remember that the last Financial Regulation Revision of the EU was negotiated under my remit in 2017, especially the new chapter capturing the budget guarantees. However, I suggest to genuine European Lawyers out there to look into the technicalities. The new Financial Regulation Revision mustn’t legitimise the guarantees for lethal equipment because the guarantees are still recoded under the EU Budget’s balance sheet. Furthermore, the EU Commission might propose a VAT exemption to member states’ consortia jointly procuring in Europe.

In the meantime, banks are being pressured to screen clients for ESG. Indeed, regulators are asking banks to disclose the practices under the SFDR and how banks exclude companies trading in arms. However, bear in mind, always, that what the EU Commission is proposing here is surely untoward. It is indeed a travesty of the EUs’ inception and raison d’etre. When I said that they all went loopy when it comes to the EU’s foundations I was not joking. And if the President of the European Parliament believes that the EU was founded for peace, please come back to Professor Andrew Azzopardi’s programme, and repeat it. While at it, please do say that what is happening is utterly going in the opposite direction.

Lastly, I promise you that this is the penultimate article about the war in Ukraine, the CFSP and CSDP of the EU, and what is actually happening within the realm of defence and offence in Europe. Certainly, I have other topic to focus on during my campaign. By now you must have understood the implications of what is being proposed by the EPP. However, thank you for always sending your good feedback. Sincerely appreciated! 

- Advertisement -