Expansion et démocratie en Europe

L'Europe se tient en équilibre entre deux entreprises presque révolutionnaires : l'extension vers l'est et la possibilité d'un avant-projet de constitution pour l'Union européenne. Ces deux projets doivent être considérés comme étant inextricablement liés. Je soutiens l'agrandissement de l'Union européenne. C'est une nécessité historique. Cette expansion doit toutefois aller de pair avec des réformes institutionnelles visant à améliorer la capacité d'action de l'Union européenne ainsi que sa légitimité démocratique.

Depuis la chute du communisme, les nations d'Europe centrale et d'Europe de l'est ont subi des transitions exaltantes mais cependant violentes. Le plus grand danger posé par ce processus de transformation plutôt brusque et rigoureux est qu'en essayant de s'ouvrir, une société peut se désintégrer dans l'effort. Cela risque de se produire lorsque d'anciennes structures sont balayées sans être prudemment remplacées par de nouvelles. Les sociétés ouvertes nécessitent des institutions fiables qui ne peuvent pas être créées en une seule nuit.

Ce passage difficile d'une société fermée à une société ouverte a constitué une étape essentielle pour les états d'Europe centrale et d'Europe de l'est afin qu'ils puissent se porter candidats membres et - peut-être bientôt - devenir des membres à part entière de l'Union européenne. Ils ont consacré un énorme effort - qui n'a pas été pleinement compris par les membres actuels de l'Union européenne - pour réaliser leurs transformations nationales et ainsi s'adapter aux acquis incroyablement étendus de l'Union.

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