If the EU did not exist, it’s highly likely that the countries and continent of Europe would now be in a far worse situation.
For hundreds of years, European countries were more used to resolving their differences by violence, war, and subjugation.
There was no easy, let alone democratic, means to decide the running and future direction of our continent, as there is now through the EU.
- As recently as the second half of the last century, Greece used to be run by dictatorial colonels.
- Spain and Portugal were ruled by dictators.
- Half of Europe was hidden behind an Iron Curtain.
Europe has come a long way since then – in great part thanks to the EU. However imperfect is the EU, our continent was far more imperfect before it was founded.
The EU has brought peace and security between its member states, unprecedented in the long history of our continent.
And for that, the EU in 2012 was awarded the Nobel Peace Prize, for helping to:
“transform most of Europe from a continent of war to a continent of peace.”
The EU has democracy, human rights, and free market trade as the non-negotiable membership requirements for all members.
All member states of the EU volunteered to join, and all are free to leave.
The EU is a democracy. It can only change with the unanimous agreement of all its member states.
Its laws, aimed to protect almost half-a-billion citizens, are all democratically agreed.
The EU is the world’s most successful peace project in the history of our planet. We need to cherish and protect it.
Yes, the EU is flawed – as is every organisation run by humans. But the aim should be to improve it, not dismantle it.
As Michel Barnier, the EU’s former Brexit negotiator, wrote in his book, ‘The Secret Brexit Diary’:
‘In the coming world, a world of increasingly powerful and uprooted continent-states and multinationals, no country in the European Union, whether the smallest or the largest, stands the slightest chance of safeguarding its sovereignty without combining it with that of its neighbours.’
And at the time M. Barnier published his book in 2021, he also wrote:
‘In 15 years, we have welcomed – and it was no easy task! – more than a hundred million new European citizens who left poverty and dictatorship for the promise of shared progress.
‘What other group of nations, what other continent, has achieved so much collectively? None.’
Today, most European countries are in the EU or want to be. They know that in a dangerous world, there’s safety in numbers.
Follow my journalism on: