The French Ambassador to the United Kingdom, M. Maurice Gourdault-Montagne, has declared to the Financial Times that, as regards European defence, the EU, and in particular France and Great Britain, have not to create new institutions, but to show the capability to intervene in specific operations. “It is not the point of having a European army or navy”, the Ambassador declared, but simply to put together the (technical, human and financial) means to be military credible, on the of the Franco-British cooperation relaunched a few years ago with the Saint Malo agreement (his FT interview
As regards the financial crisis, according to Finland’s foreign minister Alexander Stubb “the European countries are more united today than one year ago” and have shown that they can play a pivotal role to reform the International institutions (his FT interview
According to M. Gourdalt-Montagne and to Mr. Stubb it seems that everything is going in the right direction to promote a more effective European role at the world level. What a wonderful Europe!
But is it true?
As regards the military aspects how will react the European countries when the new US administration will ask them to put into effect the requests President Obama advanced during his electoral travel through Europe: “It’s time to strengthen Nato by asking more of our allies”? They are already getting a little nervous about the prospect of direct talks between Iran and the new administration of Barack Obama, which will put in a corner the European diplomacy.
As regards the economic and financial crisis, we can quote few lines of an FT article: “..not everything is rosy in the eurozone. As is shown by the increasing spreads between the yields on government bonds of Greece, Italy and other countries over those of Germany, financial markets do not treat the area as a single entity. Investors are well aware that the EU, unlike the US, is not a federal state and has no central fiscal mechanism to transfer funds from a stable, prosperous country to a country in trouble” (November 20, Stumbling to stability, by Tony Barber).
So, that’s the problem: EU is not a federal State. Should we wait for the Financial Times to let the people know this unconvenient truth? Couldn’t we say anyhing about how to build such a State and which countries (national governments, political classes) have the main responsibility to take the initiative to build it? What about an idea ... (see the APPEAL TO EUROPE’S SIX FOUNDER MEMBERS
FOR A EUROPEAN FEDERAL STATE