The Myth of Europe

Foreign Policy Magazine has just published a long-form article I wrote called the Myth of Europe:

http://www.foreignpolicy.com/articles/2012/01/03/the_myth_of_europe

It argues that underlying the EU’s political and economic crisis is a profound identity crisis faced by a people who don’t know what Europe is, where it ends, what it stands for and against, what direction it is heading in and what common ties link European nationals to their neighbours. In short, after over 60 years of EU integration we remain wedded to our regional and national identities and simply don’t feel ‘European’ enough to offer trust and solidarity to ailing states like Greece. In short, we have succeeded in building a European Union without Europeans.

The article has sparked some strong reactions. Here’s one of them:

This vile little guy, Gareth Harding, seems to enjoy spreading panic just as the EU is fighting a sort of “financial Battle of Britain” fight. I am generally very much in favor of free speech but this sort of hateful propaganda should perhaps be curbed until the immediate danger has passed. It is absolutely not my desire to force Dutch, Poles, Italians, Brits or Germans to be “Europeans” but how they want the EU to work, and how much union they want, is an important decision that should not be forced out of their hands by panic and fear. This Harding is nothing but a vile little jackel snapping at what he thinks is a corpse but I think is anything but. If he’s American, revoke his visa and send him home. Otherwise, intern his little ass to prevent panic from spreading and letting people know that trying to induce complete collapse and chaos to Europe, and then the global economy, is not acceptable in the middle of a dangerous crisis.

If the euro or EU collapses, now you know who to blame!

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