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Sometime I wonder if I should study one semester abroad. Some of my classmates are considering the same and now where United States is out of the question due to problems with getting our work accredited. Denmark doesn’t accredit work done in U.S. school due to too much difference in their standards. Most Danes regard time spend abroad as a waste of time. That’s why our government has done a lot to minimize the use of gap years and in fact the number of students going abroad have lowered.

But inside Europe there should be options. In Denmark it is rather normal for students from both Norway and Sweden coming here and studying. Due to a wish from our government to create an international student environment students from countries within the European Economic Area can study here for free and in fact they adjusted our grade scales some years ago so foreign students can compete with ours. A Danish student with top grades will often loose out to a foreign student with poor grades and while the student environment is international, the foreign students are generally looked upon as moochers.

Even here at Knightsbridge University a lot of students come from countries in Africa but of course we actually never see them as the University is for long-distance students. Our University has a long tradition of providing education for public servants from a lot of countries down there.

Anyhow I wanted to see Italy and try out a semester until ….

…. I learned about the Amanda Knox case.

I was quite shocked when I learned that old wounds had sent a young woman 26 years behind bars. Knox’s grandmother is from Germany. She is from the United States. She represent everything that Italians dislike.

We are still a lot who can remember how their Prime minister raised an old issue with a German member of the European Parliament. When it became public that her grandmother was from Germany it was clear that her high presence is a red cloth in front of the lynch mob pretending to be a jury.

Then she is from the United States. The verdict could not have been handed down at a worse time. Some Italians believe that the United States have insulted Italy not one time, but three times:

  1. Italy didn’t allow the special forces to arrest the terrorists in connection with the Achille Lauro high-jacking. Some are angry that the United States dared to have the standoff on Italian soil.
  2. The Americans did shoot an Italian spy by mistake. Some state that it wasn’t an accident.
  3. 23 CIA agents were convicted of illegal abduction just months ago. They have not been extradited from the United States to Italy yet, so most believe that Amanda Knox had to pay for the American unwillingness to have justice done.

So the show trial against Amanda Knox is a symptom demonstrating that the risk of getting convicted for invented crimes.

Well I am a Dane. What could I risk if I entered Italy? Is there any kind of bad blood between our countries? This answer has to be answered with a Yes. Along with the rest of the countries in the European Union we whipped them into place to accept our 4 points of interests we wanted them to accept in relationship with the Maastricht Treaty. They never forgot how they were forced to kneel down and kiss our shoes.

The there is the present war in Afghanistan. Three nations have soldiers where the action is ongoing. Denmark, United Kingdom and the United States.

The rest of the countries involved in the Afghanistan campaign is sitting up in Kabul drinking beers. The Italians have not seen the enemy but there is a simple explanation why. They have simply paid the terrorists off.

But we have recently used harsh words towards the so-called soldiers. It could be held against me if I traveled to Italy to study.

I could live by the code of conducts applying to students studying abroad, but the Amanda Knox conviction really really too much. No real evidence was presented and they convicted her regardless of that.

It is not a standard we should expect from an European country.

I am shocked mildly stated.

So I will never travel abroad. It is too dangerous