Una Europa de Provincias, No de Estados

Puesto que la Convención Constitucional Europea se reunirá a debatir los detalles de las instituciones futuras de la Unión Europea (UE), ahora es el momento de pensar lo impensable acerca del camino que seguirá Europa. O, por lo menos, sopesar quizá una cuestión considerablemente distinta: ¿Qué dirección sería razonable que la UE tomara?

La caída del comunismo implicó la aparición de varios pequeños estados en Europa. Estonia, Letonia y Lituania remergieron de la ocupación soviética. Checoslovaquia se dividió en dos estados por completo separados. Yugoslavia resultó en Eslovenia, Croacia, Bosnia, Serbia, Macedonia; quizá pronto podría desembuchar Kosovo y Montenegro también. Aunque las repúblicas del Bálticono hicieron más que restablecer la independencia que tenían antes de la Segunda Guerra Mundial y la ruptura de Yugoslavia fue un asunto sangriento como tantas otras guerras de independencia, hay también algo que llama la atención en todo esto.

En la entreguerra, los estados del Mar Báltico fueron a menudo vistos como creaciones imprácticas y artificiales de los Grandes Poderes. La existencia de Checoslovaquia y de Yugoslavia se debió a que sus partes constituyentes no fueron consideradas estados independientes viables. ¿Por qué? Porque hace 80 años, cuando Wilson, Clemenceau y Lloyd George redibujaron el mapa de Europa, los estados pequeños eran disfuncionales tanto en tiempo de guerra como de paz. Para ser viable, un estado necesitaba ser suficientemente grande como para defenderse y para constituir un mercado económico relativamente autocontenido.

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