Saturday, December 10, 2011

Europe Seethes

The current anger in Europe -- supposedly because of the United Kingdom's veto of an atrocious economic austerity plan advanced by Germany with the support of Mrs. Merkel's French poodle -- is at the boiling point.

Although the target of the Europeans' anger -- though not all Europeans -- is the United Kingdom, the true cause of Europe's angst seems to be the rise of Germany's hegemony over continental Europe and the economic austerity it wishes to force on all European Union countries.

The BBC-UK online reports that United States Army General and chairman of the U.S. Joint Chiefs of Staff, Martin Dempsey, has expressed concern about "the potential for civil unrest" as the euro crisis continues to develop.  Speaking before the Atlantic Council, a Washington think-tank, General Dempsey told the group: "The eurozone is at great risk.". 

Reporting in The Guardian about the new European Union pact, Ian Traynor expresses the following concern: "The prospect is of a joyless union of penalties, punishments, disciplines and seething resentments, with the centrist elites who run the EU increasingly under siege from anti-EU populists on the right and left everywhere in Europe" and "In the cold new Europe taking shape, the Germans are more powerful than everyone else, but not all-powerful."; a true concern of some Europeans.

Additionally, Traynor's Guardian article quotes the director of the Centre for European Reform (a UK think-tank), Charles Grant, as saying: "For the first time in the history of the EU, the Germans are now in charge. But they are also more isolated than before."

The reaction from several leading French and Italian newspapers is to rebuke the United Kingdom for its veto of the new pact.  Conversely, once you dig a little below the surface you find a different European attitude.  

The ghosts of Neville Chamberlain and Édouard  Daladier fill the arguments against Germany's new hegemony over Europe.  Also, the newspapers and talkshows in Greece, Italy and Spain bristle with anti-German grudges; World War II, the Nazis, and a "Fourth Reich."

Europe and the world are in for a bumpy ride over the next few years.


"Euro crisis: US General Martin Dempsey warns of unrest." BBC-UK 9 December, 2011: online edition.

Traynor, Ian. "As the dust settles, a cold new Europe with Germany in charge will emerge." The Guardian 9 December, 2011: online edition UK.

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