10-Nation Euro CoreDec 13th, 2011 | By admin | Category: Signs of the Times (click on article name)
“Germany and France are exploring radical methods of securing deeper and more rapid fiscal integration among eurozone countries,” Reutersreported today.
In an effort to strengthen the European Union’s defenses against the ballooning debt crisis, Germany has been leading the charge to create new budget controls for the 17 eurozone countries. But according to EU officials, Germany’s original plan to get all 27 nations to agree on an amended Lisbon Treaty by the end of 2012 may no longer be possible.
“As a result,” Reuters continued, “senior French and German civil servants have been exploring other ways of achieving the goal, either via an agreement among just the eurozone countries, or a separate agreement outside the EU treaty that could involve a core of around 8-10 eurozone countries, officials say” (emphasis added throughout).
The idea of a smaller union within Europe—one with Germany at the top and consisting of a possible 10 nations—is not new.
That Germany is leading the way in this emerging union of European elites is clear. One EU official told Reuters: “The Germans have made up their minds. They want treaty change and they are doing everything they can to push for it as rapidly as possible. Senior German officials are on the phone at all hours of the day to every European capital.”
French President Nicolas Sarkozy has already publicly acknowledged the possibility of an emerging “two-speed” Europe. Now France and Germany are working overtime to put together a “radical” proposal by early December. Reuters wrote:
“The options are being actively discussed as we speak and things are moving very, very quickly,” a European Commission official briefed on the discussions told Reuters.
One source said the aim was to have the outline of an agreement set out before December 9, when EU leaders will meet for their final summit of the year in Brussels.
Herman Van Rompuy, the president of the European Council, which represents EU member states, is supposed to deliver a preliminary report on treaty change at the summit. He has held extensive talks with EU leaders in recent weeks to gauge the feasibility of bringing about rapid treaty changes.
As the European economy crumbles and only Germany stands ready to pick up the pieces, watch for things to continue to move “very, very quickly” into a two-speed Europe, with Germany and its 10 nations leading the way. •