Monday, January 26, 2015

Ronald J. Granieri on a True Quote for the EU: Franz Josef Strauß

Franz Josef Strauß (1982)
(September 6, 1915 - October 3, 1988)

I've just read Ronald J. Granieri's "Europe: What Went Wrong?" (E-Notes, January 2015), and amidst the problems that threaten the European project, Granieri notes at least one undeniable truth, a truth uttered by the German politician Franz Josef Strauß, who despite numerous brushes with scandal and despite his Bavarian provincialism, considered himself, above all, a European:
One hears the skeptics more, of course, especially in [the US] . . . , and especially among those who consider themselves to be practical realists. They dismiss Europe as a chimera and praise the nation-state, even as individual European nation-states obviously cannot stand up to the continental challenges of China, Russia, India, and even the United States - none of which are nation-states on the classical European model. We do not have any leaders of the practical stature of the great Bavarian conservative statesman Franz Josef Strauss, who rejected "the idea that any European state - no matter its name, no matter how glorious its history, no matter how impressive its traditions - will be recognized in Moscow as an equal partner. One cannot ignore the laws of mathematics."
I count myself among those who want the EU project to succeed - one of the reasons being the one noted above in the words of Franz Josef Strauß, that only Europe as a whole has sufficient weight for dealing not only with Russia, but also with China, India, and even the US - but I think that Islamist-driven Islamization (within and without Europe) is not taken seriously enough by Granieri. If the EU fails, we may be watching not merely the collapse of one, but rather of two intertwined civilizations, Western and Islamic . . .

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