Interesting article in defence of the emerging European security project, or what they prefer to call a “renewed Europe”, by the president of the European Council (Van Rompuy) and the rotating president (Zapatero).
The key tasks that Van Rompuy and Zapatero identify are;
1) The full implementation of the Lisbon Treaty.
2) Increased economic integration. This is highlighted as a key task given the context of the economic crisis. It’s a very diplomatic decision to refrain from discussing the massive debts occurred by some countries, notably Greece, and the resultant economic instability that this has caused. Further economic integration will have its own problems to negotiate.
3) Take up a more prominent position within the international political order, presumably as a counter-balance to the US and China.
The development of the EU is an interesting and difficult process which we need to analyse. This will require a delicate negotiation between the twin poles of anti-EU chauvinism, as seen with the NO2EU European election group here in the UK, and uncritical, idealistic support for the EU project as clearly demonstrated by Antonio Negri
‘The (European) constitution is a means of fighting Empire, this new globalised capitalist society. Europe has the chance of being a barrier against the pense unique of economic unilateralism: capitalist, conservative, reactionary. But Europe can also construct a counter-power against American unilateralism, its imperial domination, its crusade in Iraq to dominate petrol. The United States has understood this well, and has, since the 1950s, fought like a madman against European construction.’
Antonio Negri, liberation magazine, 13th May 2005.
It’s really important that the radical left begin discussing the issue of Europe, how we deal with it and what it means for social movements that occupy its territorial space. As a start it’s clear that this process is neither completely good nor completely bad but is entwined in the contradictions of social organisation within the capitalist mode of production.
Over the next week or so I’ll be trying to collate some articles that have already been produced discussing radical approaches to Europe.