Will Solana Retire in October? — What Holly Thinks

Photo credit: Council of the EU

Javier Solana’s term as EU foreign policy chief is set to end in October. Most people don’t even know who this powerful man is, let alone care if his term comes to an end.

But for those of us who have been following the theory that the 70th Week of Daniel began on Jan. 1, 2007 – when Solana’s new European Neighbourhood Policy went into force – his looming retirement is of utmost interest. If he, indeed, retires in October, then that could mean we’ve been barking up the wrong tree.

But will he retire?

Many in the media have assumed that he will, throwing around several names as his possible successor. See them here. Not only is Solana’s term set to end in October, but, at age 66, he’s getting up there in years.

Yet, the media thought the same thing back in 2004, when his first term was set to expire. But in July 2004, Solana was appointed for a second five-year term as secretary general of the Council of the EU and EU high representative for the common foreign and security policy. Since then, rumors that he would retire even before his term ended in 2009 never materialized. Read about them here.

Besides the possibility that Solana’s term could be extended again in October, there’s also the possibility that – should the Treaty of Lisbon be ratified – he will be appointed the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy. He was originally slated for a similar position under the EU Constitution, which failed to be ratified. Now it’s unclear whether he will seek this new office. Solana has not publicly stated one way or another.

So, for now, all we can do is wait and see if Solana quietly fades from the scene in October, or if he somehow manages to stick around — again.

Stay tuned.

— Holly Pivec
6/24/09