President Pahor`s contribution published in New York Times: Renaissance of the European idea

New York, 10. 10. 2019 | press release

Renaissance of the European idea

The European Union is a project designed with the idealistic intent of bringing peace, security and prosperity to our shared continent.

Since the founding of the European Union, the idea of European integration has encountered mixed reactions and results. We have experienced both excitement and disappointment. But lately, a serious obstacle to its fulfilment has arisen.

The resultant standstill is illustrated in part by the reduced efficiency of the European Union and subsequent deeply held disappointment of Europeans regarding the organization. Due to this standstill and the various criticisms of the European Union, the call to abandon further integration between the Member States so as to return to full national independence is today heard more frequently than ever before.

I remain a devout federalist, but even those of us who favor a more integrated Europe cannot be pleased with the current deadlock and the organization’s general lack of development and efficiency. When we advocate a stronger European Union, we do not do so in support of the current woeful situation, but wish to bring about a renaissance of the European idea, and embrace new concepts for its further growth.

As we lack the necessary ingenuity and cogency, it is understandable that people retreat to their national frameworks and seek answers to all questions within those familiar settings. But this is not a step forward. Returning to the old European geopolitics is not a solution for the future, but reminds us of a lesson that should not need repeating; divisions do not empower us, but cause disunity among people who should be striving for a common goal.

The European idea is founded on conciliation and fundamental democratic values. At this point, the achievements of the EU may not be the most glorious, but the idea remains powerful and inspiring.

The idea of European integration is one of humankind’s finest concepts, and I am willing to stake everything on it so that our children’s children can benefit.