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Central European EU-realism

September 17th, 2014

A conservative analyst contends that a new model of ‘Europeanism’ is emerging in Central Europe. Central Europeans are realizing that EU integration is only possible at a slower pace.

We are witnessing the birth of a new type of EU-politics in Central Europe, which I call EU-realism,” Balázs Fekete writes in Mos Maiorum. The conservative pundit points out that ten years after joining the EU, Central Europeans have become somewhat disappointed with the European Union; unconditional support and euphoric sentiments have been replaced by a more cautious take on the advantages of EU-integration. Central Europeans have realized that joining the EU implies the opening of national markets and the consequent decline of national production as well as the obligation to follow directives from Brussels. In this context, even moderate parties have become somewhat skeptical of EU integration, Fekete believes. He goes on to point out that this discontent does not entail the overall rejection of the European idea. It is only a more realistic take on the possibility of swift integration. Central European conservatives believe that the nation-state is still the most important institution of democratic representation and national interest, and thus they oppose the prompt federalization of the EU. Nonetheless, Central European EU-realists welcome a slower and more organic European integration process which is more in-line with the original vision of the EU founding fathers, including Robert Schuman. In conclusion, Fekete hints that Central European EU-realism has already taken root and influenced conservative politicians throughout the EU.

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