As a result of turmoil in parts of the German society on the appointment of Karl Theodor zu Guttenberg for her “No Diconnect Strategy” Neelie Kroes issued another statement in her blog in German and English language.
She eloquently defends his selection as her personal choice and explains the rationale. A German MEP from the Greens, Jan-P. Albrecht, additionally sent a bunch of nasty parliamentary questions to the Kroes office.
My invitation to Karl-Theodor to help me take this work forward is my choice, and it’s about how we can help people who struggle without the most basic rights you can think of. In the past I’ve worked personally with him, and I know he is capable of coming up with and delivering excellent ideas. I also know that we need someone with his international outlook and contacts to help us push these issues forward: someone who understands the highly relevant security and foreign affairs world. This does not preclude other people and ideas from being involved; far from it, I want to build grass-roots coalitions and capacities.
I regret how much the controversy around the representative Zu Guttenberg overshadows his important tasks given by the European Commissioner, namely to support connectivity and safe infrastructure for bloggers abroad. How important that is we learned in the 2nd phase of the UN World Summit on the Information Society in Tunesia when visiting NGO representatives and journalists were intimidated by the host nation, even during the preparatory sessions in Berlin at Humboldt University. I wondered why our German government did not provide any technical assistance services to non-governmental organizations. Their work in Tunesia largely depended on their ability to make use of advanced communication technologies.
Neelie Kroes raises the issue Zu Guttenberg would be able to cast light into the overlooked scene:
There are individuals who are so brave and resourceful, and organisations doing great work. This invitation does not diminish their achievement in any way; nor should it inhibit their work. Part of Karl-Theodor’s role will be to reach out to those people, to ensure that their work gets the proper support and recognition. And so I hope those people are able to share their ideas and experiences.