Richard North, 13/10/2012  

Zeit 371-eys.jpg

With a headline like that from Die Zeit, the story is irresistible. Writer Ludwig Green refers to a prediction that there would be at least 500 comments within two days, with 99 percent negative.  But, he notes, it was wrong – the number of comments was an under-estimate, although the trend was spot on.

Nevertheless, he avers, the utter contempt that is currently associated with the European idea is totally inappropriate. "Europe" has by no means failed, he says.

There, any thought of dialogue ends. Green writes of "Europe" – to us a continent, a geographical entity. We discuss the European Union, a malign system of government which has usurped the "European idea" - if there is such a thing.

Green also writes of Europe as "an island of the blessed, peace, freedom, democracy and prosperity in the world". We would argue that, in Europe as a whole, conditions are very different between countries. Where these attributes prevail, they have been achieved in spite of, not because of, the European Union.

But on this issue, there is no honest debate. As long as advocates of European political integration hide behind the label "Europe", and refuse to discuss the reality of the anti-democratic construct that is the European Union, there can be no dialogue.

Sadly, these people do not seem to realise that, if dialogue is excluded, the end game is violence. The contempt Green is experiencing is only the intermediate stage.


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