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There’s much jostling for the limelight as the EU’s new leaders bid to make their presence felt

By Manneken Pis   February 2010

Though it may seem obvious, the EU is learning that having many leaders is not the same thing as having strong leadership. The Lisbon treaty brought two new players onto the stage: Herman van Rompuy, the Belgian ex-premier appointed president of the council of ministers, which represents the EU member states, and our very own Catherine Ashton, the bloc’s new foreign policy supremo. These two figures were always intended to perform alongside the commission president, José Manuel Barroso. But they were expected to replace—rather than compete with—the top brass of the EU’s six-month rotating presidency, which has now passed to…

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