For Europe, the Only Way Forward Is Together

Can a collection of nation-states whose populations loathe each other hang together? Who knows, but it’s that or hang separately.


Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Francois Hollande and British Prime Minister David Cameron meet in Brussels, on April 23, 2015. EMMANUEL DUNAND/AFP/Getty Images.
Italian Prime Minister Matteo Renzi, German Chancellor Angela Merkel, French President Francois Hollande and British Prime Minister David Cameron meet in Brussels, on April 23, 2015. EMMANUEL DUNAND/AFP/Getty Images.
Response
Jan. 18 2016
About the author

Claire Berlinski, a freelance writer and consultant, is the author of four books, a contributing editor at City Journal, and a senior fellow of the American Foreign Policy Council. She blogs at Ricochet.

I share Daniel Johnson’s concern about Europe’s future—although not always for the reasons he cites. In general, I believe he conflates Europe’s domestic pathologies with the effects on Europe of global events, not all of which are of Europe’s making and not all of which are as grave as he stipulates. He writes, for instance, that the November 13 terrorist attacks in Paris mark a culmination so far in “a concerted campaign directed mainly at Europeans.” Those attacks are certainly the ones Europeans noticed, because they were the victims, but they are largely irrelevant to the main “campaign”: a vicious Islamic civil war and a superpower conflict by proxy. In that war’s real theaters, the death toll dwarfs, to say the least, anything directed mainly at Europeans.

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