The political struggle in the European Parliament over Polish judicial reforms demonstrates worrying flaws in the EU’s system and highlights how the behavior of the Polish opposition is setting a dangerous precedent for other countries.
As a Croat, I observed with confusion, sadness and worry a meeting in the European Parliament during which Polish opposition MEPs and intellectuals urged their compatriots from other states to apply pressure to the democratically-chosen government in Poland.
I am shocked by what that “total opposition” is capable of to regain power in Poland. I am shocked by their readiness to use any method possible for their own political benefit, all hidden under the guise of “caring for democracy”.
This strategy by the opposition will not be good for Poland in the long-term, as they are pursuing a strategy based on looking for allies outside their own country to further a political conflict concerning their own citizens.
It was also shocking to see how politicians from other countries are so ready to interfere in the internal issues of other states. Spanish socialist Juan Fernando Lopez was so eager to topple the Polish government that opposition Polish MEP Radosław Sikorski actually had to calm him down.
The fight PiS is leading in terms of judicial reforms is a fight which should interest every EU citizen who has different views on sovereignty than in Brussels.
Overall, the EU’s direction is not a good one. It is a political system which assigns so much power to a Spanish politician of whom I know nothing of and to whom I gave no political legitimacy. The Spanish socialist mentioned above is only one example, but when he represents a long line of Brussels-based politicians who can make decisions which can so profoundly affect me as a Croat, then I do not see any such system having a bright future.
The EU has produced an agenda which abuses national sovereignty for political games. Its fight with Poland’s Law and Justice party (PiS) over judicial reforms is a fight which should interest every EU citizen who has different views on sovereignty than those held in Brussels.
If this fight is lost today due to pressure from Brussels, it will be a much more difficult fight for our own issues tomorrow.
This is not about taking a position concerning the judicial reforms in Poland. It is about the importance of defending the principle that nations and citizens have a fundamental right to decide the future of their countries and determine their own internal affairs, which is a right that could be lost if we don’t push the EU to change its ways.
Title image: Former Polish FM Radosław Sikorski and Wojciech Sadurski, both opposition MEPs of Civic Platform, debating with others MEPs about how to attack the Polish government on Thursday in the European Parliament (source: TVP).