Must-Read: Joschka Fischer: The Return of the Ugly German

Must-Read: Joschka Fischer: The Return of the Ugly German: “On July 12-13, something fundamental to the European Union cracked…

…Since then, Europeans have been living in a different kind of EU…. The path that Germany will pursue in the twenty-first century–toward a ‘European Germany’ or a ‘German Europe’–has been the fundamental, historical question at the heart of German foreign policy for two centuries. And… during that long night in Brussels… German Europe prevail[ed] over European Germany. This was a fateful decision for both Germany and Europe. One wonders whether Chancellor Angela Merkel and Finance Minister Wolfgang Schäuble knew what they were doing….

Germany has been the big winner of European unification, both economically and politically. Just compare Germany’s history in the first and second halves of the twentieth century…. The foundation of the second, unified German nation-state in 1989 was based on Germany’s irrevocable Western orientation and Europeanization. And the Europeanization of Germany’s politics filled–and still fills–the civilization gap embodied in German statehood. To allow this pillar to erode–or, worse, to tear it down–is a folly of the highest order. That is why, in the EU that emerged on the morning of July 13, Germany and Europe both stand to lose.

July 23, 2015

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