I hate to say I told you so, but, I told you so. On March 14, 2004, I shared some thoughts with AI readers regarding the coming elections in Spain, and their repercussions on the War on Terrorism. My premise was a simple one: “Whichever way Spain goes, so will the world”.
The last four days in Europe were pivotal for my prediction. There was a 25 nation vote across EU members. Spain’s Socialist Party did extremely well, not only in local issues, but they also experienced victories in the European Parliament vote.
Blair (UK) and Berlusconi (Italy) took a beating. The ruling parties in The Netherlands and Portugal, who supported the War in Iraq, also suffered poundings. Results are still sketchy in the Czech Republic and Poland. However, Czech Prime Minister Vladimir Spidla stated : “The anti-integration parties won”.
Overall, center-right parties won, taking between 247 and 277 seats in the 732-member European Parliament, according to preliminary projections. The center-left group, which includes lawmakers from British Prime Minister Tony Blair’s Labour Party and Schroeder’s Social Democrats, finished second — with an expected 189 to 209 seats.
The 44.6 percent turnout was the lowest ever in a European Parliament election, and just 28.7 percent voted in the 10 newest states.
It is interesting to watch the European political dynamics. Europe is such a fractured continent, it’s hard to imagine unity. Perhaps “Europe” and “Union” is an oxy-moron. In the long term, I think Europe will not be satisified with Unity. However, in the short term, the people of Europe will continue to undermine the War on Terrorism, and you can take that to the Swiss Banks.