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Manuel Ochsenreiter is the director of German Center for Eurasian Studies and Editor in Chief of the German news magazine ZUERST!
OPINION

A historical chance for Europe – and most probably the last one

The Koblenz convention of the “Movement for a Europe of Nations and Freedom” was a starting signal.

Published: January 23, 2017, 1:50 pm

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    No birth comes without birth pangs. Prior to the huge Koblenz convention held by the “Movement for a Europe of Nations and Freedom” (ENF), the liberal mainstream media in Germany was attacking the press policy of the organisers, especially German MEP Marcus Pretzell. Because the organisers had decided to blacklist some notorious anti-right journalists and media outlets, not allowing them to attend the conference, crocodile tears of the excluded journalists flooded German mainstream media for many days – but the AfD party didn’t change its stance and kept the blacklist despite harsh criticism.

    The ENF is the most influential and powerful pan-European group of patriots and sovereignists. The spotlight in Koblenz was on Marcus Pretzell (AfD, Germany), Frauke Petry (AfD), Marine Le Pen (Front National, France), Matteo Salvini (Lega Nord, Italy), Geert Wilders (PVV, Netherlands) and Harald Vilimsky (FPÖ, Austria). All the messages were clear: The Brussels Frankenstein monster called the “European Union” is the enemy, illegal mass migration has be to stopped, European values and our diverse national identities have to be defended.

    But the ENF-convention in Koblenz was also the stage for other, less well known politicians from the Euroskeptic sphere such as MEP Laurentiu Rebega from Romania, who delivered an important speech. Rebega understands that fighting the common enemy is only one side of the coin. He also spoke about how this “New Europe” should take shape. How will the different European nation states organise their relations? How will we negotiate conflicts? There is no doubt that there are different national interests, also within Europe.

    Rebega said in his speech:

    “Each and every country has to make its own choices based on its values, its own history and its own particular interests. All within a Europe of Nations where we all belong.

    We need a Europe of traditions and authentic freedom, a Europe with a multipolar policy that respects the idea of stability and security shared by all Member States.

    The reform has to be initiated from the bottom to the top, starting from the will of the people and the communities in Europe and not the other way around, from hidden groups of interests that take decisions behind closed doors.

    Laurentiu Rebega.

    We want a Europe of national states that cooperate with each other based on those principles. I believe that Europe cannot be strong if its components are weak. Let’s strengthen the states and then Europe will be strong.”

    Why is it so important to have a vision of what happens the “day after” Brussels is no longer the centre of a supranational organisation called “EU”? What happens the day Angela Merkel is no longer chancellor anymore, and even – let us be optimistic – when AfD leader Frauke Petry becomes German chancellor? Germany will still be the dominating industrial and economic power in Europe. Other European countries such as France might see a threat in that fact. We shouldn’t forget why the European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC) – the “ancestor” of today’s EU – was created in the early 1950’s: to keep an eye and control on the German steel and coal industry. The ECSC was first proposed by French foreign minister Robert Schuman on 9 May 1950 as a way to prevent further wars between France and Germany.

    All European patriots and sovereignists are today fighting the Brussels superstate. Of course that struggle unites all European patriots. But what will happen after Brussels is yet again only the capital of Belgium? It will still be the headquarters of NATO. What will the “New Europe” do about that? Will we have a “European Army” with or without the American hegemon? Will we replace the US extra-territorial power by the part-European power Russia?

    And what will the “New Europe” do when it has regained control over its borders and enabled a functioning and well organised defence system against illegal mass migration? Will it still be a destabilising power in Africa and the Middle East? Or will the “New Europe” make a geopolitical U-turn and stop funding and supporting terrorism, as the EU does in Syria or Libya today? Will the “New Europe” cooperate with the Syrian government to develop a solid plan for a good and peaceful repatriation of Syrian refugees in Europe? Will the “New Europe” immediately lift the sanctions and embargos against Syria – for many Syrians the real reason to run away from their country? These are important questions: Because sooner or later a “New Europe” with an “EU” foreign policy agenda will have to realise that fences and walls won’t be enough against a constantly rising migration pressure.

    And – this is also important – what about Ukraine? There is still a war raging in Donbass. Will the “New Europe” give a clear signal to Kiev to stop its aggression against civilians in Donbass? Will the “New Europe”, as a geopolitical pole, act as a power for peace in support of sovereignty and independence for the Donbass people?

    Will the “New Europe” develop from the transatlanticist useful idiot (EU) to a geopolitical pole of strong power? How will we define our common European interest when it comes to the other geopolitical poles? And how will we balance the different inner-European interests? How will we act in order to prevent extra territorial powers and globalist NGO’s from taking advantage of the diversity of different national interests on our continent?

    All these questions are of importance. There will be only one chance for a complete “re-boot” of Europe. If we fail, the cause is lost. Why? Because time is running out for our continent. There won’t be time to for long-term transitions, long debates about reforms or a slow dismantling of the EU bureaucracy. We already need the concepts of the “New Europe” now, the new “operating system” after we formatted the European hard drive.

    Koblenz was a starting signal. Now we all have to run as fast as we can. It is a historical chance for Europe – and most probably the very last one.

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    • damask_rose

      This is the first article I have read that is asking the all important questions about a New Europe and what it will look like – and how it needs to be.
      Thankyou.

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