Global Recap: Poland causes tensions in EU, China and Taiwan’s relations tense


Michael Crimmins, News reporter

There is no shortage of newsworthy topics here in the United States. At times it is easy to get lost in it all, but equally crucial things happen all over the world. They can shed light on political relationships, on humanitarian issues and can keep you up to date on global events.

 These headlines are complex in nature, and this column is merely an overview of the topic. It is highly encouraged to follow the links to the stories provided and read the story in its entirety. Here is a quick look at some global events that made the news last week.

Poland ruled its laws take precedence over EU laws

On Thursday, Poland’s Constitutional Tribunal decided that certain key articles of an EU treaty were incompatible with Polish law, undermining a key aspect holding the European Union together, according to a BBC article.

Also, according to the article, both the French and German foreign ministers have rebuked Poland for their decision.

The minsters claimed the EU relies on “complete and unconditional adherence to common values and rules,” and this was “not simply a moral commitment. It is also a legal commitment”.

Poland’s position that national laws trump EU laws has made some fear an exit of Poland’s from the Union calling it a ‘Polexit.’ Though the Polish prime minister dismissed such an idea.

More than 100,000 people protested Sunday in Warsaw fearing a potential Polexit, according to a Reuters article.

The EU Commision is already withholding approval on Poland’s COVID recovery plan that could give them access to millions of Euros, according to Reuters. The Commission is considering other measures but it seems unlikely that any more actions will be taken.

Relations strain as China performs military drills across from Taiwan

China performed military exercises on the beach in the province directly across the ocean from Taiwan, according to a Reuters article.

Taiwan declared their independence after the communists took control in China in 1949. However, China does not recognize their independence, but rather as a breakaway province, according to the article.

The exercise included a small number of troops including ‘shock’ troops, sappers and boat specialists, according to Reuters.

Chinese President Xi Jinping vowed to reunify Taiwan. According to a BBC article, China has not ruled out the use of force in their effort to “reunify.” 

Taiwan has denounced China’s coercive tactics, and said it will defend itself if attacked, Reuters reports.

According to some estimates featured in the BBC article, if China wanted to, they could be capable of a full scale invasion of the island by 2025. 

North Korean dictator vows to make “invincible” army

Dictator Kim Jong Un inspected several missiles capable of attacking the U.S. mainland, according to AP News.

In his comments after the inspection he vowed to create an “invincible” army to withstand the hostilities of the U.S.

“The U.S. has frequently signaled it’s not hostile to our state, but there is no action-based evidence to make us believe that they are not hostile,” Kim said Monday, according to the official Korean Central News Agency. “The U.S. is continuing to create tensions in the region with its wrong judgments and actions.”

The dictator also called the U.S. a source of continued instability in his address, according to AP.

Though, during his public address he said the missiles were only for defensive purposes and not to spark war, BBC reports.

“We are not discussing war with anyone, but rather to prevent war itself and to literally increase war deterrence for the protection of national sovereignty,” he said according to the article.

President Biden has repeatedly said he was willing to talk to North Korean officials, according to BBC.

ISIS Finance Chief captured by Iraqi Forces

In a statement on Monday, Iraq’s prime minister announced that Sami Jasim, deputy of the former ISIS leader, had been captured, according to a CNN article.

The prime minister did not disclose the location, time or date of Jasim’s arrest. 

“While our [Iraqi Security Forces] heroes focused on securing the elections, their [Iraqi National Intelligence Service] colleagues were conducting a complex external operation to capture Sami Jasim, who was in charge of Daesh finance, and a deputy of Abu Bakr Al-Baghdadi,” the prime minister said. 

Jasim had been working with ISIS since 2015, according to CNN. In 2016 he was reported as having been killed by a joint operation by U.S. special forces, but in 2019 the U.S. put a bounty on Jasim hinting at his survival.

“He is involved in the day to day operations of ISIS in Syria and Iraq, so strategically and tactically, this is a significant capture for the Iraqis,” Hassan, author and editor in chief of New Lines Magazine, told Reuters.

He also called Jasim instrumental in managing finances of the terrorist organization.

News reporter Michael Crimmins can be reached at [email protected]. Follow him on Twitter @michael_crimm