Wednesday, June 08, 2005

The ripples 

It seems that the EU constitution is now also losing support in New Europe (link in Polish).

In May, some 60 per cent of Poles supported the document; immediately after the French and Dutch votes this fell to 51 per cent, and today it's only 40 per cent (with 35 against and 25 undecided).

The most Eurosceptical are the elderly and residents of rural areas. The most enthusiastic those younger and with higher education.

EU Commissioner Gunter Verheugen told Polish media that there is no favorable climate at the moment for the further expansion of the Union. Romania, Bulgaria, Croatia and Turkey are already under consideration (although the eventual inclusion is not guaranteed), and the window of opportunity might have closed for Ukraine, Serbia and Macedonia. Creating second class Europeans who aren't good enough to belong to the club is not a good idea - but it creates a scope for sensible European governments, together with the United States, to step in and embrace the unwanted of New Europe; show them who their real friends are and stabilize these new democracies by inclusion in political, economic and military structures.


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