The European Union at a Cross-Road - The Writing is on the Wall
17 Pages Posted: 12 Sep 2016 Last revised: 23 Oct 2018
Date Written: June 7, 2016
This paper was written imminently before a referendum in the United Kingdom about its exit (BREXIT) from the European Union and without the benefit of hindsight. However, in view of these developments the issues highlighted in this paper have become all the more relevant:
In 2016 the European Union and the World are experiencing unanticipated challenges with potentially grave consequences. The paper draws on findings of several Global Round Table events and identifies questions to be addressed in connection with the EU’s future direction.
Great powers rise and fall.
They rise for reasons of fortuitous circumstance, they crumble because they overlook or underestimate warning signals. History has shown that neither economic nor military strength prevent civilisations from vanishing. The European Union has arrived at a cross-road. The EU must decide on how to best meet the new challenges, including the transition to a new global order, global migration and terrorism.
The situation is crying out for a realistic vision for the EU’s future in the 21st century global World followed by determined political leadership.
Warning signs: • The scale of uncontrolled migration from the Middle-East and Northern-Africa into the EU is stretching political cooperation and public opinion to the breaking point; • The foundation of civilization is under attack by criminal and fundamentalist forces from the Middle-East and Northern-Africa; and • The perceived post-Cold-War geo-political stability is under threat. In addition, the challenges from the end of the 20th century remain. These include global warming and global financial volatility.
The EU is struggling to find a common solution.
Keywords: EU at cross-road, new global order, political leadeship, migration, internal security
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