- 26 Jun 2007 21:18
In short, no.
If you look at those leaders whose names you listed off, what are the two things that make them stand out? First, they were dictators. Second, they failed.
I don't think a federal Europe is natural, necessary or wanted. Different cultures have evolved in different ways throughout Europe for a reason. No matter how hard a central polity tries, it can't trammel over hundreds, even thousands of years of history and tradition. The Soviet Union surely proved that.
It's not necessary because all this talk about common foreign policies and Europe's role in the world is nonsense. What effective foreign policy can the EU demonstrate? The fact is European countries see the world in different ways. Britain is an island nation and consequently was removed from much of the infighting over the years, and was able to look at the world beyond in a far more sustainable way. France is very patriotic to the point of being protectionist, and puts its interests first - and fair enough. The Eastern European nations are fearful of Russian dominance and want to be welcomed by Europe, but they've fought long and hard for their independence and culture - they don't want to move from one uniformed centralist state to another.
And it's not wanted because I think most people want their country's independence. They value it, they value the identity it gives them. We naturally incline to that with which we share characteristics, and the nation-state is the highest interpretation of that (in the twenty first century).
So no, I don't think the EU, as it stands, is tenable. It's too messed up, too misguided, too weak and yet at the same time too ambitious.
Economic Left/Right: -7.50
Social Libertarian/Authoritarian: -3.33