TOWARDS A EUROPE ROOTED IN PEACE AND FREEDOM
Article 5a of the European Constitution
Twenty years ago Europe was still divided between a Capitalist West and a Communist East. In those days, a materialistic elite exploited and oppressed the peoples of Communist Europe in so-called Peoples’ Republics. In fact, these were tyrannical dictatorships and ecological disaster zones. Capitalist Europe, on the other hand, was under the control of other materialistic elites. They ensured relative prosperity in an exclusive customs union called the ‘European Community’.
As soon as the Soviet Union and its Eastern bloc had gone bankrupt, both financially and spiritually, the European Community proclaimed that it would turn itself into a Union, the ‘European Union’. Since the dramatic events following the fall of the Berlin Wall and the break-up of the Soviet Union, including the peaceful disintegration of Czechoslovakia and the violent disintegration of Yugoslavia, some have optimistically predicted that this European Union would one day absorb the whole of Europe. Indeed, this Union has recently absorbed the former Catholic and Protestant countries of ex-Communist Eastern and Central Europe: Poland, Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Hungary, Slovenia, Czechia and Slovakia.
It was thought that this expanded Union could resist globalization, the movement taking control of the rest of the world, through establishing a deeper Union with its own written Constitution. With the results of recent referenda in France and Holland, which rejected the elite’s European Constitution, even the dreamers now know that this is not the case. The elite of the European Union can neither wall their Union off from the rest of Europe, let alone from the rest of the world, nor from the peoples that they control.
The Constitution which the unelected European elite had proposed and intended to impose, in most countries without referenda at all, would have been yet another step to creating a European Union Empire. ‘Member states shall exercise their competence to the extent that the EU ceases to exercise, or chooses no longer to exercise, its competence’. ‘The Union shall provide itself with the means necessary to carry through its policies and pursue its objectives’, read menacingly Articles 11 and 52 of the failed European Constitution. This centralized, neo-papal Union would have been a repeat of the pagan Roman Empire, the brutal Carolingian Empire, the medieval Roman Catholic Empire, the military Napoleonic Empire, whose downfall 190 years ago we celebrate today, and the racist Hitlerian Empire.
Such a new, non-military European Union Empire, with a President and a single government, cannot be built without tyranny and coercion. Even a loose Community of the Sovereign Peoples of Europe could only be built on what the countries of Europe have in common. This has to be more than a mere geographical proximity, more than a mere trading arrangement, but much less than the nearly 400 pages of unreadable bureaucratese of the Constitution.
Hence, for instance, the popular revolt throughout Europe against the possibility that Turkey might one day become an EU member. Turkey may be geographically near Europe, and would perhaps be a good trading partner, but the rest of Europe has nothing else in common with it. Indeed, Turkey’s only claim to be geographically European at all is in the part of Greece that it invaded and has occupied for centuries, and in the part of Cyprus that it invaded and has occupied for decades.
The fault lines of Europe are too apparent for any united European Union Empire and single government to exist. The peoples of Europe do not want such an Empire, as is witnessed to by the popular dislike of the single currency, the inflationary ‘euro’. It was only imposed for political reasons by the European ruling class. Indeed, three of the richest Western European countries, Iceland, Norway, and in the heart of Western Europe, Switzerland, refuse even to join the European Union. They do not wish to become poor – for the European Union is a very costly operation. (We will not mention here details of how the largest country, Greenland, left the European Community altogether).
Furthermore, a fringe of the present European Union consists of peoples whose motivations for membership are highly dubious and highly sceptical. For instance, there are the Scandinavian countries, or Cyprus and Greece, or the United Kingdom. There people refer to ‘going to Europe’, when they go on holiday to France, twenty-one miles distant through the bankrupt Channel Tunnel. For them, as for many Eastern Europeans, ‘Europe’ at best is somewhere that has never existed, at worst it is a foreign enemy which always brings trouble. Finally, a whole range of ex-Communist countries in Europe, including by far the largest, Russia, want to have nothing to do with the European Union. Their peoples are tired of corrupt ‘Unions’ and corrupt oligarchs, whatever their foreign ideology may be called.
True, the vast majority of European citizens are naturally pro-European. However, they are also increasingly anti-European Union. In such a situation it would seem logical to abandon the unpopular ideologies and theoretical fantasies of the European Union elite, the new aristocrats of the European ruling class. Instead, it would be more useful to find out what exactly the peoples of Europe actually want from their relations with other European countries – by asking them – something that has never been done as such. Then, a cost-effective international organization to administer their wishes could be established. In other words, instead of working top-down, why not work from the grassroots up? We could go from a Union of European Elites to an Alliance of Free European Peoples, towards a Peoples’ Europe.
We would suggest that the peoples of present member countries of the European Union, and also those of European countries which are not EU members, should be consulted to decide such a question. Popular answers from the peoples of Europe might perhaps be based on peace and freedom. Though difficult to predict, these might for example include: establishing peace in Europe, keeping national freedom, permitting free trade, having free movement of citizens with passports, for work and study in different countries, giving European citizens the freedom to set up companies and organizations and own homes in any European country, subject to the freedom for national laws to register, regulate and tax them within reason.
At the moment all these things exist only in part. Thus, peace in Europe is relative, and has only been ensured over the last sixty years because of the US-run NATO. The European Union is quite unable to ensure peace in Europe, as was and is seen in ex-Yugoslavia. National freedom, or sovereignty, has been much reduced in all member-countries. External free trade does not exist, because the European Union is by definition a customs union. And although progress has been made with regard to the free movement of citizens, this too is only partial. This partialness is also true of the freedom to set up companies or own homes in different countries of Europe. As regards the freedom to pass national laws, increasingly Europeans are victims of the EU straitjacket of tyrannical bureaucratic regulation.
On a deeper level, there is the question of religion, ignored by the atheistic ruling class of the European Union. True, Western Europe is in a state of profound dechristianization and repaganization and has forgotten its Apostle, whose feast it is today. However, Eastern Europe, perhaps especially Poland, Slovakia, Hungary and Russia, is in a state of rechristianization. The fact is that, whatever the state of religious practice in Europe today, the underlying culture of all of Europe is Christianity. This is despite the existence of small immigrant groups, and the descendants of Turkish invaders and their apostate converts in the Balkans. The foolish and stubborn refusal to accept the Christian roots of Europe by the EU elite is in fact a rejection of the spiritual and cultural reality of Europe.
We suggest that we should accept that, apart from geographical proximity, the only things that the peoples of Europe have in common are their spiritual and cultural roots in the Christian Faith. If we do not accept this, then Europe will never exist as anything more than a fantasy in a billion-pound Brussels office-block, or as a page in the atlas. If we do not accept this, the peace and freedom, which the peoples of Europe really want, will have no reality. For it is peace and freedom that were gifts to the peoples of Europe, not from corrupt European elites, either in the past or in the present, but gifts from the Living Christ, the Very Person Whom the European Union ruling class so reject in their Dead Constitution.