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Tageszeitung-TAZ: DiEM25 as the best hope for overcoming Europe’s nationalist resurgence

12/05/2019

Europe is in deep political crisis, and without renewal, the Union could soon fall apart. This is shown by Brexit, the strengthening of Euroscepticism in Italy, in Germany and many other countries. Many now rely on the French president as a renewal and saviour. But Emmanuel Macron is not the right person to stop the slow dying of the European Union. He represents that neo-liberal course that destroys the Union from the inside, making the rich wealthier and the poor poorer.

Whether Europe survives as a political alliance is not only theoretically important. It is a question of wealth or poverty for us all, and yes, even if it sounds pathetic: it is a question of war and peace.

A glimmer of hope is now coming from Greece, which has suffered the most from the austerity dictatorship dictated by the wealthy EU states:  the DiEM25 movement (Democracy in Europe Movement). Former Greek Finance Minister Yanis Varoufakis and his fellow combatants from many countries have launched DiEM25 to make the EU more democratic and fair – and to renew it. This approach is exactly what Europe needs now in order to survive: the concrete utopia of a united continent that overcomes national egoisms, where wealth is evenly distributed and people can have a formal democratic say.

In many countries DiEM25 will take part in the European elections in May 2019, also in Germany. This is not only politically exciting, because enthusiastic Europeans have an alternative to the more or less Europe-defied offers on the ballot. More importantly, the candidacy puts pressure on the Left Party and the SPD, both of which have strong anti-European wings.

Whether or not the movement will fare well in elections is not that crucial. If Varoufakis and his colleagues manage to give new impulse to the discussion about the future of Europe, this is an enormous success. And who knows, maybe the spark will even jump over. Germany lacks a political force that advocates, without any ifs and buts, for a united Europe, which also includes solidarity between poor and rich countries. In the public debate, today, those who have narrow nation-state boundaries prevail. Leaving the field to them would be fatal and dangerous.

Click here for the original in German

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