Monday, 23 April 2007

French presidential elections must call halt to Iron Chancellor Merkel's plans

On 16 April 2007, the European Foundation issued the following statement ahead of the French presidential elections:

‘It is time for France in its presidential elections to call a halt to Iron Chancellor Merkel’s pursuit of a German Europe’, says leading Eurorealist think tank

It is clear from recent developments in the German EU Presidency (and from discussions over the past few weeks held by the European Foundation in Berlin, Prague, Brussels and Paris) that Germany’s Iron Chancellor, Angela Merkel, is attempting to impose a vision of a German Europe. This month’s European Journal includes two German analysts who condemn the bold path of post-war Germany in her forceful pursuit of a Europe-wide Constitution for the European Union Member States. The prospect of such an aggressive pursuit of radical European integration must be met with a democratic response to the German Question.

In this month’s European Journal, Bill Cash, MP and Chairman of the European Foundation, responds to the German Question by suggesting that since Germany’s troubled post-war and post Cold war reunification objectives have been aggressively pursued through an intensive European integration framework, now is the time – with popular consent and beginning with the French elections – to renegotiate the treaties which were originally founded on what is now an anachronistic Franco-German partnership and to pledge democratic national referendums on all existing treaties.

Horst Teubert, Editor of Informationen zur deutschen Aussenpolitik (Information on German Foreign Policy), also warns of a country driven towards political “hegemony and dominance” on the back of its EU vision, given that Berlin’s promise to provide resolution on its EU presidency campaign on ‘Energy, Terror, Migration’ will only offer a strengthened Germano-Russian energy market, a strong European Constitution supporting Berlin’s own continued national rearmament and military strength, a German-US policy in Kosovo propelled against the wishes of other European Member States, and a devastating prospect of the growth of the country’s extreme right nationalists.

Dr. Michael Efler of Mehr Demokratie in Berlin proposes in his article – in similar vein to recent comments made by former German President, Roman Herzog – that the German push for the Constitution has continued to reinforce a largely undemocratic European Union.

The terms of the Franco-German partnership have let down the French economy – with high unemployment, instability, and tensions at dangerous levels – and have now been rendered obsolete. On the eve of the French presidential elections – with French leadership contenders criticising President of the European Central Bank, Jean-Claude Trichet, the euro and the entire integration process – it is time for the French electorate to stand on its own feet and re-evaluate the European issue. This can be achieved by going back to Charles de Gaulle’s idea of a ‘Europe of nations’ – better understood as a simpler and freer association of the nation states. By re-evaluating the Franco-German partnership – a now obsolete agreement built upon the prevention of war – the French electorate are in the position to remedy the French problem and open way to a new Europe of associated (not absorbed) nation states.

After all, without radical change, the present evolution of the EU would lead to a German Europe. In response to this predicament, the institutions and treaties reasoned under the terms of the Franco-German partnership ought to be unravelled and renegotiated to support a simpler and freer association of nation states with referendums on all existing treaties. That is the only approach in the best long-term interests of France, Germany, UK and all other EU Member States.

Bill Cash MP, Chairman of the European Foundation, said:
“As other German commentators indicate in this month’s edition of The European Journal, Germany’s Iron Chancellor, Angela Merkel, is attempting to impose a vision of a German Europe. The treaties initiated by Germany and France in post-1945 Europe, and now Merkel’s pledge for the EU Constitution, are in desperate need of renegotiation in order to support a simpler and freer association of nation states. We need national referendums on all the existing treaties.”

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