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Abulafia, David

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The Daily Telegraph - United Kingdom | 26/02/2015

David Abulafia on the myth of a united Europe

There is no real need to press on with European integration, historian David Abulafia warns in the conservative paper The Daily Telegraph, evoking present and past obstacles to deepening EU relations: "The events of the last few months have exposed serious shortcomings in the idea of a European demos. The current unwillingness of German creditors and Greek debtors to see eye to eye exposes the lack of solidarity at the heart of Europe. Far from making integration inevitable, the decisions of European leaders have pulled Europeans further apart. It is time to admit that a sense of 'Europeanness' cannot be traced far back in time. Europe is not one myth but many myths, myths rooted in an idealisation of the classical past and in fantasies about figures such as Charlemagne. Attempts to create an artificial notion of 'Europe' distract from the reality of the situation and make it harder to rectify the many problems that exist within the EU's institutions."

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