EUROPEAN NEWS



Bad for Germany and Europe

2017-09-30

The outcome of the elections for the German Bundestag last Sunday looks bad for Germany and Europe. To begin with  Europe: the brilliant and most hopeful speech of President Emmanuel Macron needs a strong and pro-European Germany for carrying out his proposals. See my next entry. Angela Merkel and her CDU/CSU lost heavily in the elections, despite the fact that the CDU/CSU remains the larger group in parliament.

Why? 

The first reason is a lesson from history: Angela Merkel should not have run for the fourth time. Leaders in democracy who overstay their term, are bound to show signs of fatigue. More of the same after 12 years no longer convinces. The second one is the tendency of parties like the CDU in the center, to lean over to the populist argument, hoping so to diminish the attraction of the polulist parties. It happened in the U.K. and in the Netherlands. Result is more and smaller parties in Parliament. Nobody except Emmanuel Macron learned the lesson  that populism can best be challenged by a clear European vision.The third reason became manifest when comparing the voting patterns: Germany is still deeply divided between the former East and West of the Cold War. Finally, the problem with Germany in Europe is complete lack of solidarity during the manifold crises during Merkel's tenure in office. Her leadership was of the muddling through type rather than solidarity of the strongest member with the weaker ones in the EU. See my European Unification into the Twenty First Century, Vol. IV of "Footprints of the Twentieth Century." published in third edition earlier this month.


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Frans A.M. Alting von Geusau

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Footprints of the 20th Century

Footprints of the 20th Century - Third Edition

Description

The peaceful collapse of the Soviet totalitarian, communist system has been a watershed of historic proportions in Europe and the world. In 1989, unexpectedly, Communism and the Cold War were behind us, they were bad and should be forgotten. The immediate post-1989 world presented itself as a new era of organised forgetting, as neither East nor West were interested in examining the prolonged period of acquiescence in absurdities.

European Unification into the Twenty First Century

Footprints of the 20th Century - Third Edition

Description

The story of European Unification is fascinating. In 1950, two sworn enemies – France and Germany – decide to seek reconciliation and European federal unity. As a first step, they created the European Coal and Steel Community together with Italy and the Benelux countries. The fathers of this new Europe were visionary persons. Does today`s student or scholar still know who Robert Schuman, Konrad Adenauer, Alcide de Gasperi or Willem Beyen were and what they stood for?