Is US re­ally EU’s close friend?

The Pyongyang Times - - The Pyongyang Times - By Han Jong Chol PT

At present, the fo­cus of in­ter­na­tional at­ten­tion is the Rus­sia vis­its by US Sec­re­tary of State Kerry and his of­fi­cials.

World me­dia had a field day over the con­fab be­tween Kerry and Rus­sian Pres­i­dent Putin in Sochi, de­scrib­ing it as can­did, ef­fi­cient and friendly.

Many coun­tries see the US’ abrupt ap­proach to Rus­sia as an about-face, ex­press­ing their sur­prise, as it has set even its al­lies on Rus­sia over the Ukrainian cri­sis.

But the EU might have ex­pe­ri­enced a feel­ing of be­trayal by a “close friend”, be­yond sur­prise.

As is known, the EU has im­posed sanc­tions on Rus­sia since April 2013 on the call of the US, sus­tain­ing the eco­nomic losses of 21 to 40 bil­lion eu­ros. The pro­tracted sanc­tions have also caused po­lit­i­cal losses, es­ca­lat­ing dis­cord among the EU mem­ber na­tions and im­pair­ing its unity in ac­tion.

It has also been re­vealed that the US is gain­ing profit from trade with Rus­sia, while egging the EU on to break with the coun­try.

This tells that the US re­gards the EU as only a means to an end. There is an­other story. A Ger­man news­pa­per has re­cently re­ported that the Ger­man in­tel­li­gence agency has bugged lead­ing Euro­pean al­lies and EU or­gans since 2008 at the re­quest of the US.

Ac­cord­ing to the re­port, the wire­tap was made af­ter the then chief of the fed­eral chan­cel­lor’s of­fice, who is now fed­eral min­is­ter of in­te­rior, was asked by the US na­tional se­cu­rity agency to of­fer in­for­ma­tion about friendly na­tions and busi­nesses. As a re­sult, the US has kept abreast of the de­vel­op­ments of the Euro­pean air in­dus­try and other ma­jor busi­nesses and has been familiar with tele­phone con­ver­sa­tions be­tween Euro­pean states­per­sons.

The dis­clo­sure of the scan­dal has led to fric­tion be­tween Ger­many and other Euro­pean coun­tries and among the Ger­mans them­selves.

The pres­i­dent of the Euro­pean Com­mis­sion de­manded the Ger­man au­thor­i­ties cor­rectly probe into the case, while the Ger­man op­po­si­tion is cen­sur­ing the gov­ern­ment for hav­ing cheated the par­lia­ment and urg­ing it to sub­mit de­tailed i nfor­ma­tion in­clud­ing that of the pur­pose of bug­ging and a re­lated roll to the in­ves­ti­ga­tion com­mit­tee of the fed­eral as­sem­bly as early as pos­si­ble.

The vic­tim of this in­ci­dent is also the EU.

Kerry’s Rus­sia visit and the wire­tap scan­dal have only served to evoke the EU mem­ber states’ dis­con­tent with the US.

An anti-war demon­stra­tion in Ja­pan.

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