Geography Reference
In-Depth Information
self-made category “Europe” and from membership of the EU. So, to the world the EU
shows a Janus-face, one face of development aid and humanitarian assistance and an-
other of a security-obsessed economic and cultural comfort zone. And both faces are
related, especially in the ENP, for the aid to the neighbours is quid pro quo. The EU is
transparent in its aims; it promises neighbours to develop and become more democratic
and economically strong (measured by the EU with “European standards”) in order to
help protect the EU from what is often defined as spill-over threats from imagined un-
stable neighbouring countries, by which largely irregular immigration and terrorism is
meant. EU values are “exported” in exchange for monetary assistance and the promise
of the vague terminology of a “stake” in the internal market. Increasingly, the imagined
buffer states of the EU are also being asked or ordered, again in exchange for develop-
ment aid, to tighten their border control for the sake of the EU. In addition, the EU is
subsiding anti-migration campaigns in the neighbouring countries. In other words, apart
from the erection of a tighter border control at the external borders of the EU itself, the
control is, as will be shown below, outsourced to its neighbours in what the EU calls
a “new global approach to border management” and “global approach to migration.”
So the EU is not merely defending its borders; it is expanding its perimeter. This in-
clusionary-exclusionary mechanism—and thereby attack on the dignity of others bey-
ond self-defined borders, so significant for the ontology of any b/ordering and othering
process—has explicitly, via immigration and security control, and also implicitly, via
neighbourhood policies, become an essential feature within the rebordering process of
the EU. Most clearly perhaps, this can be testified by the increasingly machine-like bor-
dering of certain categories of migrants to which I now turn.
The Border Machine
Apart from the interesting and rich debates on how the imperial external border of
Europe should best be understood, there is a still marginal but growing academic debate
on the degree of moral (in)justice of the increasingly fierce external border regime that
coincides with the development of extraterritorial European civilisational politics. Over
recent years, the EU has been deploying a rapidly increasing active global engagement
with regard to the battle against irregular migration, terrorism, and the proliferation of
weapons of mass destruction and the fulfilment of international law as well as the effort
to prevent conflicts. The geopolitical objectives range from fighting transnational crime
and terrorism to nourishing local cultural ties across the external border. Gradually, the
EU's external border regime is transforming into a digital and selective border machine
(see also Walters 2002, 2006). It seems that the neoliberal logic of maximum efficiency
is also transferred to the logic and rationale of the border control, which is illustratively
termed bordermanagement (seevanHoutumandBoedeltje 2009).Thisbordermachine
Search WWH ::

Custom Search