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 Forecasting America's Destiny ... and the World's


Generational Dynamics Web Log for 16-Jun-05
European "Union" descends further and further into chaos

Web Log - June, 2005

European "Union" descends further and further into chaos

At EU summit today, there may be blood on the floor, as Tony Blair and Jacques Chirac butt heads over the "UK rebate."

Former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher negotiated this in 1984 with regard to the budget of the European Economic Community (EEC).

All member states contributed to the budget, and the EEC then distributed the money back to the members, mostly in the form of agricultural subsidies, most of which went to France, which had designed the system. So Thatcher pointed out that Britain was paying a lot of the budget, and getting almost no subsidies, and said Britain wouldn't play under those terms, so Britain got a hefty budget "rebate."

Tony Blair scowls angrily at grinning Jacques Chirac at Élysée Palace in Paris on Tuesday. <font size=-2>(Source: AP)</font>
Tony Blair scowls angrily at grinning Jacques Chirac at Élysée Palace in Paris on Tuesday. (Source: AP)

Now the EEC has become the EU. The EU budget is being renegotiated at today's EU summit, and the UK has been under pressure for a while to give up the rebate. French President Jacques Chirac, who had expected France to be the leader of the EU, was enormously humiliated by the vote 2 1/2 weeks ago, where France rejected new EU Constitution.

Blair and Chirac have never liked each other very much anyway, so it was easy for Chirac to blame France's rejection on Blair's inflexibility on the rebate. (Actually, it was a generational thing, as I explained.)

So Blair said (paraphrasing), hey, we'll talk about cutting back the rebate, if you wanna talk about cutting back the agricultural subsidies. (The agricultural subsidies are called the "PAC," standing for "la politique agricole commune.")

So Chirac said (paraphrasing), Screw you.

What we're witnessing is the EU, crumbling before our very eyes.

The EU was already in a crisis, after France and then Holland refused to ratify the new EU Constitution.

And suddenly there's a lot of talk around Europe about abandoning the new euro currency, and going to back to individual country currencies.

Divergent economic growth in different EU countries. <font size=-2>(Source: WSJ)</font>
Divergent economic growth in different EU countries. (Source: WSJ)

Last year, the international investment firm Morgan Stanley warned that the euro could collapse entirely in 2005, because some EU countries have a "more virtuous budgetary policy" than others. The adjoining graphic shows how different countries' economies have been growing (or not growing) at different rates, causing difficulties of the type Morgan Stanley predicted.

And now, the budget crisis and the discord between Blair and Chirac are spiraling Europe further and further into chaos.

From the point of view of Generational Dynamics, Europe is heading for a new major war, just as it has time after time for centuries. What we're seeing in the step-by-step collapse of European Union is the step-by-step trip on the road to war. This European War will be part of the major "clash of civilizations" world war.

Generational Dynamics doesn't predict who the belligerents will be, but it's increasingly clear that Britain and France will be fighting a new crisis war.

A reader wrote to me after reading my coverage of the French vote, as follows:

"You mention the French and England war concept but give no details for what seems like such a radical statement. I would have never guessed a war between those two nations now. Could you please elaborate?"

It's really not so radical, considering the fact that England and France have had literally dozens of wars in the last millennium, as they've done over and over since 1066, when the Normans conquered Saxon England. In fact, the Hundred Years War (which lasted 117 years) was mainly between France and England. Why should this cycle be any different? Or at least, why should it be considered radical? It shouldn't, especially to anyone who's studied anything about Napoleon.

Generational Dynamics predicts that there'll be a new W. European war, but doesn't predict who'll be fighting whom. For that, we need to look at the current trend lines. In the leadup to the Iraq war, Germany and Russia opposed the war and didn't want to participate, but France actively tried to cause the English and Americans to be defeated. The leading architect of the French strategy was sleazebag Dominique de Villepin, whom Chirac recently elevated to the position of French Prime Minister. Incidentally, de Villepin is known to be an admirer of Napoleon.

What would be the scenario for such a war? In my opinion, one or the more likely scenarios is as follows: When there's a new Mideast war, it seems pretty clear that Britain will side with Israel, and France will side with the Arabs. With France supplying arms to Arabs, it won't be long before British and American bombers are bombing French factories and supply lines, and the French are making strategic strikes on England. NATO's weapons will then be in play, and anything can happen, including a nuclear strike on British or American soil.

What about the other European countries? When they are forced to choose between Britain and France, which side will they choose?

We can't be sure, of course, but a very intriguing analysis recently appeared in the Times of London. The analysis listed which countries are supporting France, and which are supporting the UK in the EU battles. Here's their list:

Supporting one side or the other in the current political battle doesn't guarantee what will happen in the case of war, but it provides some indication. (16-Jun-05) Permanent Link
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