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Inadequate critic of the EU

david_kameron_euThree days ago Europe celebrated one of the most important events of its recent history – half of a century since the Elysee Treaty was signed, after centuries of rivalry and struggle for territory. Perpetual revenge seeking and wars between the two great European cultures have been put aside. After fifty years common German-French historical textbooks were printed. This is an event which opens a door to something similar to our divided region.

Yesterday, British Prime Minister gave Europe a lecture. He mentioned the Elysee Treaty. He praised it, but by the end of the speech he seriously jeopardized (not directly) everything that this agreement represents.

“There are various kinds of political speeches. There is the call to arms with the aim to inspire the speaker’s audience. There is the speech to sway the audience, to persuade listeners, even incite them to change their minds. Some speeches clear the air, set out a new direction, and lay down a course of action. And then there is David Cameron’s long-awaited and long postponed speech on the UK’s relations with Europe”.1

Not finding the words to begin a reaction to yesterday’s speech of the British Prime Minister, I borrowed an introduction to the “Anatomy of a speech”, an excellent writing of former Secretary of the European Parliament, Julian Preastley.

At the end of the historical review of development of the Union which had surprisingly positive tone (although his Tory predecessors would not have agreed with it), Cameron continues the infamous speech with “Eurosceptic fallacies”2

Although he admits that “geography has shapes his psychology,” Cameron claims he is not a British isolationist (isola stands for island, i suppose).

Although he claims that UK will never become a part of the Eurozone ( a statement that smells like a mantra from our neighborhood), he advocates for stronger fiscal base for monetary union.

Criticizing accumulated bureaucracy and centralization of decisions, costly administration and withdrawal of decisions from the periphery towards Brussels in speech, he earned the support even from this Montenegrin euro-federalist. The only issue is that the starting point of his criticism is not to achieve serious reform, but to present EU as unnatural Leviathan, Leviathan which needs serious flexibilization to recognize all European differences. This has already been characterized as “Europe in 28 gears” by numerous European officials.

When speaking of defense policy, he highlighted the willingness of only a few countries for military intervention (UK and France). In this segment of Euro integration, he clearly gives prominence to the role of NATO. Reading between the lines one could presume that any independent European defense policy would increase unnecessary bureaucracy. It is clear that without this important segment, EU can never be an independent subject of international politics.

On economic policy – While reading the speech you will notice that the single market is mentioned 27 times, mostly criticizing its absence, while social spending is mentioned once, in a clearly negative context.

When expressing his concern for the survival of the Union, he mentions incidents on the streets of Athens and Madrid, but he is making a mistake in choosing the assumptions about the reasons for the rebellion. He sees them in the absence of subsidiarity and the increasing number of decisions made in Brussels. If you are already going into a witch hunt, we could go back in 2008., I reckon it would be best to knock on the doors of financial institutions with London addresses. Some of the biggest responses for Athens, Madrid and Maribor streets could be right there.

In moments when the survival of his own nation, regarding present boundaries (Scotland), is in question, he confronts Europe of nations to the Europe of citizens. I suspect that reason for this ideological return to the nineteenth century lies in nostalgia for the Victorian era. Joking aside, it’s strange that these voices are coming from cradles of citizenship.

He leaves the room to “those who want faster and more integration – to do so” but to also leaving space for those who do not want it. If there is someone who enjoys this space of “observers” it is UK (Eurozone, Schengen).

Motives of David Cameron are clear to provide support of “indenendists” (UKIP) before the next elections, and thus not to move into benches of the opposition. What is not clear is the arrogance, to pledge future of more than half a billion Europeans for that purpose.

1 http://www.eng.notre-europe.eu/media/anatomyofaspeech-priestley-ne-ijd-jan13.pdf

2 http://www.eng.notre-europe.eu/media/anatomyofaspeech-priestley-ne-ijd-jan13.pdf

Author: Ljubomir Filipovic, Vice-President of UEF Montenegro

12/12/12 Federalist Action: Conference “Through federalism to Europe now”

Conference “Through federalism to united Europe now” was held on 12.12.2012 in the capital of Montenegro – Podgorica. Event was organized by JEF Montenegro at Faculty of Administrative and European Studies with the aim of presenting ideas of European federalism to students and youth population. Vice-President of Union of European Federalists Montenegro – Ljubomir Filipovic was one of the speakers at the event, and he shared his views on the current situation in Europe and the need for a strong democratic and federal Union.

The event was also part of the 12.12.12 symbolic action “Time to decide – time for a European federation now!” that was organized around Europe by various UEF and JEF organizations.

About UEF Montenegro

From UEF newsletter (September 2011)

On August 2 in Budva the Founding Assembly of the Initiative Board of the Union of European Federalist of Montenegro was held. Resolution on the establishment of new chapter of European federalists movement – UEF Montenegro was made.
Behind UEF Montenegro stands a group of young professionals from different political affiliations, but they all share a common vision of UEF. Organization will be led by Bosko Kovacevic (President), Marija Blagojevic (Secretary-General), Ljubomir Filipovic (Vice-President), Boro Milovic (Secretary-International), Nemanja Tepavcevic (Board member) and Nevena Calic (Board member).Founding Assembly discussed about main goals of the organization as well as the first projects that UEF Montenegro will organize during September and October 2011. Foundation of UEF chapter in Montenegro already received respectable attention in the media, with articles appearing in main political sections of major daily newspapers in the country.Montenegro and other Balkan states are getting closer towards membership in the European Union. In this respect, UEF Montenegro sees itself as a strong contributor in achieving local and regional cooperation and integration into Europe and will be working together with partner organizations from the region in spreading ideas of united and democratic Europe. Another important goal of UEF Montenegro will be contact and involvement of citizens, organization of public debates and projects that will spread ideas of European unity. Organization has already created its web site, so more information will be soon available at www.uefcg.org. President and Secretary-General of UEF Serbia Marko Vujacic and Danijela Bozovic attended the Assembly of UEF Montenegro. After the Assembly ended a special meeting was organized gathering representatives of both UEF Serbia and UEF Montenegro. Numerous issues were discussed mostly connected to the technical and organizational aspect of the work of the chapter, experience as well as the possibilities and modalities of future cooperation.”We wish a warm welcome to Montenegrins into the large family of European federalists. We believe that promotion of federalist values and principles is of special importance on the Balkans. In future European federation all Balkan states should find its right place. European federation would solve all Balkan problems – there will not be majorities and minorities, borders, it will provide stable democratic political system and sustainable economic development. We are satisfied that the idea of federalism, which is not new in this area is gaining new vitality on the Balkans and finally has the chance to implement in its original democratic form,”said Marko Vujacic, president of UEF Serbia.

“UEF Serbia will gladly share its knowledge and its acquired knowledge in the establishment of new section with the European federalists in the Balkan states. Though we are a young organization in Serbia, we managed to get over the initial challenges and to constitute ourselves as a vital and functional organization. This is the reason for our presence here today. We wish a lot of success to our friends and colleagues in Montenegro,” stressed Danijela Bozovic, Secretary-General of UEF Serbia.