Romania and the European Union. How the weak vanquished the strong

Author (Person)
Publication Date 2009
ISBN 978-0-7190-7743-2 (Hbk)
Content Type

According to Tom Gallagher, Romania’s predatory rulers, the heirs of the sinister communist dictator Ceauşescu, have inflicted a humiliating defeat on the European Union. He argues convincingly that Brussels was tricked into offering full membership to this Balkan country in return for substantial reforms which its rulers now refuse to carry out. This book unmasks the failure of the EU to match its visionary promises of transforming Romania with the shabby reality. Benefiting from access to internal reports and leading figures involved in a decade of negotiations, it shows how Eurocrats were outwitted by unscrupulous local politicians who turned the EU’s multi-level decision-making processes into a laughing-stock. The EU’s famous ‘soft power’ turned out to be a mirage, as it was unable to summon up the willpower to insist that this key Balkan state embraced its standards of behaviour in the political and economic realms.

The book unravels policy failures in the areas of justice, administrative and agricultural reform and shows how Romania moved backwards politically during the years of negotiations. It is an invaluable book for academics and students who need to know about the practice, as well as the theory, of eastern enlargement, and will be an effective tool for policy-makers, businessmen and others involved with Romania.

1. The EU discovers Romania
2. Crafty natives lead the Eurocrats astray
3. The futility of EU funding
4. Labour of Sisyphus: administrative reform in Romania
5. Justice clings to its chains: 1989–2004
6. NATO, the EU and Romania’s strategy of duplicity
7. The EU at its most incoherent: April–December 2004
8. The EU regains and loses the initiative: 2005–7
9. Corruption and anti-corruption
10. The expiry of reform after 2007

[Paperback version available in 2016].

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