Thomas Mayer on the EU in need 2

Thomas Mayer on the EU in need

ZThe wake of NATO was "keeping the Russians out, the Americans inside and the Germans ashore," said the British Hastings Ismay in 1949, before becoming the first Secretary General of the organization. At that time, Britain considered itself on an equal footing with the Americans and had little interest in uniting Europe, which pushed France to "keep the Germans in its own way" and "stay at home". summit "on the European continent. Half a century later, unfortunately, we must realize that British European policy has failed completely. After the ruin of the British economy by socialist experiments, the country joined in 1973 in the hope of economic salvation of the European Economic Community.

Under Margaret Thatcher, the British government pursued the project of a single common market in the 1980s. In 1990, Britain had even joined the European monetary system. From then on, the situation deteriorated: in 1992, the pound sterling escaped from the monetary system, the country remained away from the euro and the should soon leave the European Union. Ismail's expectations vis-à-vis NATO have also disappeared: the Russians return to Europe via Ukraine and Turkey, the United States of Donald Trump abandon their partners of the 39; alliance in case of emergency and Germany caused a military disorder. Shards where you look.

But Britain is not alone. With the revival of Russia 's aggressiveness, the unreliability of Americans and the military inability of Germany, French European politics has an open flank on the outside.

In addition, the French economy lacks international competitiveness, the country is highly indebted, the European Monetary Union's preferred French project is still fragile and the nationalist parties are also developing in France. With Ursula von der Leyen and Christine Lagarde, President Emmanuel Macron has installed supporters of French politics in European power centers. But this will not be enough to stabilize the European project. The European Union is crumbling everywhere. A restart would be necessary.

The most urgent need would be to set up a European defense community to effectively protect its external borders against illegal immigration and to face the new threat posed by Russia. Border protection can hardly be permanently outsourced to Turkey and Libya. And no later than since the US government sold its Kurdish arms brothers in the fight against "Islamic State" to the Turkish ruler Erdogan, everyone should realize that Europe alone must ensure his defense.