Los europeos no europeos de Europa

Los Estados naciones están construidos sobre la base de la unidad étnica y territorial, y sus historias y desarrollo político están anclados en un sentido de identidad colectiva. Los imperios surgen cuando un grupo nacional considera que su existencia dentro de sus fronteras territoriales es riesgosa o ineficaz, y se embarca en una expansión forzada que, por lo general, está asociada con una violencia en gran escala.

Europa occidental encontró otro camino para su desarrollo recién después de la Segunda Guerra Mundial, cuando el hitlerismo había quedado en el pasado pero el stalinismo planteaba un peligro muy presente. Los intelectuales de Europa occidental se dieron cuenta de que tanto el nacionalismo como el stalinismo eran abordajes inaceptables para la construcción de un Estado, y de que la estabilidad europea exigía una unión de naciones que pudiera y fuera a expandirse, pero que nunca se transformaría en un imperio.

La elite política de Europa occidental rápidamente adoptó esta postura y el pensamiento político "euroatlántico" de Estados Unidos, junto con el Plan Marshall, contribuyeron a esto de manera decisiva. El Tratado de Roma, junto con el establecimiento del Consejo de Europa, encarnaron un progreso legal, económico y político, pero básicamente filosófico.

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