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The European Union is Dead but Does Not Yet Know It

  • The truth is that there is no "Union".

  • The coronavirus now has put the European Union and its comfort zone face-to-face with all its weaknesses, decadence and cowardice.

  • Another merciless battle Italy fought with the EU was for protective face-masks. France adopted a policy of requisitioning them; Germany banned their export. Those unilateral decisions undermined a much-touted EU principle: the free movement of goods in the single market.

  • As L'Express exposed, France seized four million masks belonging to a Swedish company and that had been intended, in part, for Italy and Spain. 

  •  When Italy and Greece were overwhelmed by migrants from the Middle East and Africa, the EU countries refused to take their "share" of migrants. Lacking a policy to stop the flow of mass immigration, Europe decided to leave the southern countries to their fate.

The new coronavirus appears to be tearing apart the fragile framework of the European Union.

"Europe" said the former Commission chief and a EU godfather, Jacques Delors, "is in "mortal danger".

If citizens feel themselves abandoned at the heart of the pandemic, said Former French Prime Minister Manuel Valls, the EU could "collapse".

The EU objective was evidently supposed to be an "ever closer union". But now, if the EU does not show solidarity and strength at a time of global crisis, what is the EU's purpose? Its ideological supporters have a mantra: each new problem must be solved by more Europe. "Europe is our future, we have no other", Germany's former Foreign Minister Hans-Dietrich Genscher once said.
Although these are important and dramatic statements, each time it is as if something even more important and dramatic needs to happen to shake people awake, as if the European Union is never actually seen as dying.
Sadly, these high-flown phrases seem to shrivel into empty slogans.

The truth is that there is no "Union". There is a conglomerate of European states trying to take advantage of some rules called "the union". In times of crisis, old European divisions always seem to reopen -- and crises are part of the old continent, possibly its epitaph.

The coronavirus now has put the European Union and its comfort zone face-to-face with all its weaknesses, decadence and cowardice.

In the face of Italy's pandemic catastrophe, the European Union showed only impotence and indifference. European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen even "apologized" to Italy and acknowledged that the EU had failed to respond well to the Covid-19 pandemic.

When Italy called for solidarity from its European neighbors, they declined. Even the former President of the European Parliament, Antonio Tajani, spoke of a "cowardly Europe". The pro-EU Italian newspaper, La Repubblica, called it bluntly, "Ugly Europe". It seems that 70% of Italians believe Germany is trying to "strangle" them.

Because of the coronavirus, Europe's Schengen Area of passport-free travel inside the EU -- one of the two pillars of EU dogma (the other being the euro) -- was suspended in a hurry and internal borders closed without coordinated action. 

During the the first two weeks of March, nine countries closed their borders; followed by the partial closure of Germany's borders. The EU then announced the closure of its external borders for 30 days.

Read Complete Editorial Here:
Gatestone Institute
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