As untransparent trialogue proceeds and European Commission is demanding more and more restriction, it uses more and more pressuring rhetorics. According to them, the Parliament should « get out of its blockade mentality » and « not compromise on security of citizens ». Of course, anyone who knows more that what the Commission says knows that it is the Commission who uses this mess for its political purposes, and moreover, that it’s the Commission who is responsible for endangering citizens for many years.
TWO KIND OF MEASURES
There are two kind of measures, packed together as one deal – which is exactly what Commission wants.
First are measures which really ARE necessary for our security. If you want to know which these are, just remember tragic events that led to Firearms Directive revision. Bataclan massacre, committed with illegally possessed, fully automatic military assault rifles bought on the black market in Brussels. Charlie Hebdo massacre, committed with poorly deactivated and illegally repaired firearms. That’s just a tip of iceberg: according to police forces from many Member States, former warzones and poorly dectivated firearms are main sources of crime guns across the Europe.
This is serious security breach. It is security breach so serious that even in currently valid Directive from 2008 is written that
« The Commission shall, acting in accordance with the procedure referred to in Article 13a(2) of the Directive, issue common guidelines on deactivation standards and techniques to ensure that deactivated firearms are rendered irreversibly inoperable. »
That is LEGALLY BINDING DUTY that the Commission had to fulfill. They issued those guidelines – on Nov. 18 2015, four days after Paris attacks. For seven years, Commission’s negligence and laziness allowed this branch of black market flourish. It took massacre of 130 peple to make Commission bureaucrats to do their job.
So yes, there ARE measures which are meaningful, even necessary. Deactivation standards which prevent illegal reactivation. Technical standards for alarm weapons to prevent their illegal conversion for live ammunition. Better overlook over movement of firearms across states. These measures are necessary for EU security. We know it. The Parliament knows it. And most importantly, the Commission knows it.
COVER-UP OF THEIR ASSES
That’s why the Commission lumped it together with its agenda, meant to cover them from responsibility of their outrageous negligence. When years of ignoring legal duties end in such a disaster, they need to « do something », to divert an attention from fact that for seven years, they did nothing. People might start asking questions like « why the hell are we paying them? ». They desperately need someone to blame, then screw him and show his head on pike as proof that they are protectors of the people, not good-for-nothings whose incompetence brought this mess in first place.
Of course, it’s not terrorists’ or organised crime head which they want on that pike. I mean, that would work nice, but it would be too difficult and arduous for a bureaucrat who needs just a show. Fortunately for the Commission, there are better and safer targets for shifting blame: legal firearms owners. Just pick up firearms which look most scary, call them « most dangerous » and demand their ban.
« ALL OR NOTHING »
It is an excellent piece of political trickery from the Commission to lump necessary measures and political agenda together. If the European Parliament approves necessary measures, it will also give the Commission their political trophy; if Parliament refuses proposal that infringes on citizens rights for political purposes, the Commission can scream about « European Parliament refusing to approve measures that are necessary for security of the people ». Either way, the Commission wins at expense of citizens.
Of course, the Commission could also drop its agenda in order to allow necessary measures to pass. If the Commission would drop restrictions on legal firearms, possessed by law-abiding citizens, measures thatare really necessary for security, like deactivation standards and better evidence of firearms, could be passed already.
But for bureaucrats, their agenda is more important than people’s security, and it’s more probable that pigs shall fly before this changes.