Well, yesterday there were quite a bunch of "How does the world see my country"-threads. This is not such a thread. I don't care, how Asia or America thinks about the EU. I wanna know how you experience the EU from inside. What your concerns and hopes are. Why you think the EU is necessary or maybe not. And foremost: Where should the EU head to.
Well, here's my opinion and a bit of history/statistics:
With the end of WWII Europe had no stable political system. Germany and France tried a different approach in securing peace in the war torn continent. The best ever to be tried. Back then many people believed the wars would go on. But they didn't. Why? Simply because we could not afford another wars or a split western Europe. Our economies depended on each other, just like our cultures. And then the Montan Union was founded. The very first step into a united Europe. It evolved and grew when other states joined in for until now there are 27 member states in the EU. Out of the 46 states in Europe. 501 million of about 740 million europeans are in the EU. And still it's growing. It's the world's biggest economy and if considered a state the 3. biggest in terms of population.
We have 4 capitals, 11 currencies, 23 working languages and over two dozens of different cultures inside. Our borders are open to each other and everyone can settle everywhere inside the EU.
So what do I think about the EU? Germany invented the car, Greece invented democracy, the UK had some of the most brilliant dramaturgists in the world. But know what? Thats nothing seen aside the EU. 500 million people living in peace and wealth, free to move all around the continent.
So what do I hope for the EU? I hope there'll be some more democratic reforms to the EU parliament. I hope the EU parliament gains more rights to decide. We need a _real_ foreign ministry instead of Ashton...
What we need is a deeper understanding for the EU. Many people don't see what the EU brought us because they're so used to it, they think it's self-evident. But it's not! The whole United Europe thing was an evolution ever since. We have to evolve even further and dispel the worries of the population about the loss of their culture. Noone wants to erridicate the countries' culture for this is what makes Europe Europe. But we need to work together. That's the point.
I see an EU covering all of Europe in the next decades or centuries. Maybe even Russia will get on board. Only time will tell. But I sure hope it will be like that. I don't want an "European Superstate". Such states tend to become arrogant and misguided. But I want a united Europe to a degree where the people don't say "I'm german" or "I'm a britton" but instead "I'm european".
Well, what are your hopes, sorrows about Europe? What do you think of the development we're taking?