The warning comes from Director of EuroIntelligence, Wolfgang Munchau, who urged those in the EU who truly believe it could be saved and reformed to watch out from EU Council-obsessed figures. Mr Munchau explained how eurosceptics, who often call for radical changes in the EU, are not the enemy of the Brussels bloc.
Rather, those who see the latest EU’s attempt to reform via the Conference on the future of Europe as a threat to their dream of an ever-more integrated EU.
He wrote: “The biggest enemies to European integration are not the eurosceptics or Russian hackers.
“They are the inter-governmental integrationists, people of a pragmatic disposition.
“They incessantly talk about Angela Merkel and Emmanuel Macron.
“They drool over G7 summits, and about who is with whom against whom.
“Their narrative of European integration is what used to be called the Great Man Theory of history.
“Laws don’t matter in this Hobbesian world. The only institution they care about is the European Council.
“And the thing they most despise is the Conference on the future of Europe, a construction they don’t understand with all its aspirations for treaty change.”
He continued: “Failure and irrelevance, not breakup and conflict would be the hallmarks of a failing EU.
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Aimed at collecting feedback and suggestions on how to improve the union from citizens of all member states, the conference was opened by French President Emmanuel Macron.
At the launch, Mr Macron described Europe as an unfinished project, but one which was superior to its largest allies – although he carefully avoided singling any out by name.
He said: “Europeans, Europeans, let’s consider our future! Share your expectations, your aspirations, your ideas on futureu.europa.eu.
“France will take over the Presidency of the European Union in January 2022: I pledge to do everything to change things with you!”
President Macron announced that young French people will have the unprecedented opportunity to propose new challenges and changes to the European project.
He said: “In France, we are launching today a large online consultation which will allow at least 50,000 young people to assert their priorities, their criticisms, their ideas, their dreams for Europe.”
He continued: “The criticism, the challenging, the fights, quarrels disagreements is what defines us, and it’s also what makes us more effective. It allows us to express criticism democratically.”
Dismissing criticism of the bloc’s response to the coronavirus pandemic, especially related to its sluggish vaccine rollout, he added: “I say on the contrary, it is the European model that has proven itself in this crisis.”
Europe had “resisted the pandemic together” as a result of its 71 years of shared history, Mr Macron insisted.