Mircea Vasilescu

Earlier this year, Eurozine partner Dilema Veche was almost dragged down with the rest of a failing Romanian print sector. But thanks to original journalism, inventive strategy and an independent attitude, the journal looks like pulling through all the stronger, says editor Mircea Vasilescu.

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In Romania, the National Council for the Study of the Securitate Archives has been rendered toothless by political interference and its moral authority drained, writes Mircea Vasilescu. Meanwhile, former communist functionaries, in new democratic guise, still purport to be protecting “national interest”.

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17 November 2008

Fragile new Europe

Despite talk of a “unified European plan” to combat recession, the motto among EU member states seems to be “each to his own”. The financial crisis is reimposing the divide between eastern and western Europe, writes Mircea Vasilescu.

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When the financial crisis made clear the extent of western banks’ involvement in eastern Europe, concerns surfaced about the effects on western economies, re-awakening perceptions of the East as unruly and unpredictable. In the East, meanwhile, suspicions were reinforced that the West was interested in the new EU member states only insofar as they provided an opportunity to expand existing markets. What are the ethical and political implications of a globalized economy in general, and of western companies’ expansion in eastern Europe in particular? What does the European integration project really mean, not only economically but also at a social and cultural level? Romanian economist Daniel Daianu met Austrian author Robert Misik in Bucharest to discuss whether the failure of existing political and economic structures has opened up a new-old East-West divide. Moderated by Mircea Vasilescu, editor of Dilema veche and Carl Henrik Fredriksson of Eurozine.

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