PARIS – Whenever people seek a justification for European integration, they are always tempted to look backwards. They stress that European integration banished the specter of war from the old continent. And European integration has, indeed, delivered the longest period of peace and prosperity that Europe has known for many centuries.
But this perspective, while entirely correct, is also incomplete. There are as many reasons to strive towards “ever closer union” in Europe today as there were back in 1945, and they are entirely forward-looking.