From Kommunistisk Politik
No. 24, November 25, 2000
The Danish Union politicians are practically falling over themselves in attempting to claim that the European Union (EU) is not moving towards a federal state. At the same time, they are actively participating in the entire process which according to plan is supposed to ensure that the Union after the government conference in 2004 has its own federal constitution.
The Nice Summit and the expected decisions are merely a step on the way towards the super state. The extensive use of majority decisions, the change in the weight of votes within the decision-making organs, the establishment of a closer cooperation between the states most eager on further integration, the charter on the fundamental rights of the Union citizens etc. shall allegedly open for the enlargement of the EU with many new member countries from Eastern and Central Europe. However, they are at the same time important new steps for the Union. They are not just there to ensure the enlargement of the Union, but to set the stage for new qualitative leaps towards the super state. The crown of achievement is to be the summit in 2004, which shall give the EU a new constitution and demonstrate its character as a federal state, "the United States of Europe". The Nice Summit will also be adopting the plan for the course of this process.
For the moment, the character of the EU is debatable – is the Union an "international cooperation" or is it a federal state to be? According to the supporters of a federal state, with the German government, the European Commission and the majority of the European Parliament in the lead, the establishment of a Union constitution is of great urgency – a constitution, which can define the status of the Union and give it the framework and perspective for the actual development of a federal state, which in fact has been in progress for a very long time. This whole process is defined as the "process of constitutionalization". And it is right now that the constitution of the Union has come on the agenda for real, as a concrete project. Earlier, the European Parliament has received drafts for a Union constitution – the Spinelli Report in the 1980s and the Hermann Report in the 1990s – but it is not until now that this is going to be realized.
However, the constitution draft is not coming out of the blue. It will be based on the present main treaties, first and foremost the Treaty of Rome of 1957 (the treaty establishing the European Community) and the Union Treaty (the Maastricht Treaty of 1992, appended by the Amsterdam Treaty of 1997). And there already exists a basic document: Last year, the European Commission ordered the Robert Schuman Centre at the European University Institute in Florence, Italy to undertake a compilation of the present treaty foundations into one single text. During May, it was turned in with the title "The Basic Treaty of the European Union", and it has caused enthusiasm in the European Commission and among other federalists: It is possible to compile the basis of the present treaty foundations into one single relatively brief text. However, it does not end here: The above-mentioned basic treaty is only the starting point of the constitution. The authors themselves emphasize that the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union, which is ready to be passed in Nice, must be entered into the constitution. Appended by the other resolutions of Nice and the so-called catalogue of competence, which the Danish Union politicians are attempting to present as a safeguard against more Union, all the key elements that constitute a constitution for the Union exist. The Czech President Vaclav Havel has said that he wants a constitution, which can be understood by every 11-year-old in the coming Union. It has to be sold by saying that "the Union is brought closer to its citizens", that it is not just an economic project, that it is not just a project of the big industries, but that the Union becomes "the Union of the citizens". In other words: The economic treaty foundations of the Union has long since been in place – now it is the superstructure that is missing, the political and democratic varnish, and at the same time the super state institutions are beginning to find their final form. The statements of the German Foreign Minister Joschka Fischer that the Union must have a directly elected president (commission chairman), a parliament with to chambers (the current mildly reformed European Parliament and a second chamber of representatives of the national parliaments) and that the right of veto should be completely done away with, are concrete suggestions in the direction that will show up after the Nice Summit.
The "catalogue of competence" of the Danish Union politicians goes directly into the constitutional process of the super state and leads precisely to the strengthening of the Union, to the establishment of the federal state – and not in the opposite direction as they are claiming. They are continuing and undauntedly extending their gigantic Union deception on the population while they are meditating the elimination of all the Danish provisos with the adoption of the constitution in 2004. Perhaps without a referendum!
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