Margaret Scott

Das Gespenst Monnets

LONDON – Manche guten Ideen sind wie ein schönes Objekt, in dem eine Zeitbombe versteckt ist. Das Ideal eines vereinigten Europa wird zwar nicht explodieren, aber vielleicht auseinander fallen. Um die Gründe dafür zu verstehen, hilft es, die intellektuellen Ursprünge der Europäischen Union zu untersuchen.

Jean Monnet, ein französischer Diplomat und Ökonom und einer der Hauptinitiatoren der EU, hat einen großen Teil des zweiten Weltkriegs als Verhandlungsführer für die europäischen Alliierten in Washington, DC, verbracht. Nach Deutschlands Niederlage war er davon überzeugt, ein weiterer furchtbarer Krieg im Westen könne nur durch ein vereinigtes Europa verhindert werden. “Sollten Staaten auf der Grundlage nationaler Souveränität neu aufgebaut werden”, schrieb er in seinen Memoiren, “wird es in Europa keinen Frieden geben”.

Vom Krieg erschöpft und angesichts der zerstörten Infrastruktur ihrer verwüsteten Nationalstaaten stimmten ihm fast alle auf dem europäischen Kontinent zu. Nur die siegreichen Briten, deren alteingesessene Institutionen mehr oder weniger unbeschadet geblieben waren, äußerten Skepsis, aber nicht so sehr über die kontinentale Einheit, sondern mehr über ihre eigene Teilnahme am ehrgeizigen europäischen Projekt.

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