Ed Driscoll

To Dream The Impossible Dream

Interesting take on the whole EU project by Peter Burnet from April of this year:

Mark Steyn once wrote that the European Achilles heel is the “big idea”, meaning abstract, ideological goals that come to grip the intellectual and political elites and are pursued singlemindedly without any reference to the popular will, local culture, human nature or even decency. Most of these have promised the Holy Grail of European unity, and while the modern secular statism embodied in the EU is obviously to be preferred over the brutalities of a Hitler or Napoleon, they have more in common that one might think. Here is an excerpt from the diaries of a Canadian diplomat in London during the Blitz that recorded his thoughts after a meeting with a liberal, anti-Nazi Hungarian diplomat:

I can see that despite his hatred of the Nazis Tony is half-fascinated by the idea of a united European bloc by whatever means achieved. Some Europeans may be tempted to think that if the small sovereign state entities can be broken down and Europe united it is worth the price of temporary Hitler domination, because Hitler will not last forever, and after he is gone it will be as impossible to reconstruct the Europe of small states as it was to reconstruct feudal Europe after the fall of Napoleon.

The spiritual and cultural sterility of the EU project, and the realization that it can never be democratic or responsive to popular opinion, is gradually dawning on a heretofore inarticulate European public (notably on the left) and awakening both worthy local and national prides and unworthy ancient animosities. Immigration controversies and the recent spate of soccer violence may show what is bubbling just below the surface, but the defection of privileged French farmers threatens a coup de grace. If the constitution fails in France, it is very hard to see how the European political elites, who have bet the farm on an ever-expanding EU for three generations, will have any coherent leadership to offer for many years.

Update: “Britain And France Planned ‘Merger In 1950s.'”