Germany Is Very, Very Tired … The overriding worry is that a vicious cycle has begun: As Germany gets ever more frustrated with Europe's inability to change, it gets ever less likely to lead, so the change it wants becomes ever less likely to happen. If Britain were to opt to leave and other countries threatened to hold referendums, then even the cautious Merkel might be forced to seize the moment and bully reforms through Brussels to create a more cohesive, modern euro zone with a deeper single market. – Bloomberg
Is this the plan? It hadn't occurred to us. We're well aware that top Eurocrats have counted on crisis to move the EU project forward.
But this Bloomberg article shows us clearly how EU political bonds might be strengthened.
As we can see from the excerpt above, the idea is that a "Brexit" – a British exit from the EU – might cause an immediate deepening of ties.
In other words, the remaining EU members would soon turn from a coalition of loosely linked nation-states into the longed-for (by some) United States of Europe.
We've written on this idea of deeper EU political ties quite a bit. It turns out that the reason to impose the euro was to create an economic crisis that would necessitate a deeper political union.
You can see an article HERE.
The top Eurocrats of the day understood that binding the EU to a single central bank would create considerable financial fragmentation.
But the manipulation ran a good deal deeper than that. Many countries were given loans in order for them to meet EU financial criteria. These loans were duly wasted and after the 2008 market implosion, it became clear that many countries could not repay the loans.
Some countries, like Greece, have become virtual vassals of the EU. Other countries like Spain are facing out-and-out bankruptcy. Spain's debt is now worth more than its GDP.
The intention was to generate the largest possible union, while gradually weakening the economies of member states.
This process is ongoing. It includes Germany as well, though Germany has emerged EU's critical country. But the ultimate goal has not yet been met. The EU is still a disparate group of struggling nation-states.
Perhaps Brexit holds the key.
Over the past few days the Brexit referendum has taken a nasty turn, with Boris Johnson, the former mayor of London and a prominent "leaver," comparing the European Union to Adolf Hitler and complaining about Germany's growing power in the EU. He should visit Berlin, which I did last week. Far from wanting to rule Europe, Germany's leaders seem increasingly worn out by its endless crises and, from their point of view, downright ingratitude.
This growing fatigue in the continent's already reluctant hegemon could spell as much trouble for the EU as Brexit does. Postwar Britain famously lost an empire but couldn't find a role; now, Germany has acquired an empire of sorts but can't work out how to run it.
One of the myths circling the EU is that German leaders decided to build an economic empire when they couldn't acquire one militarily. But this doesn't make much sense. The power in Europe lies with London's City (the financial district), not Berlin.
It was London's City that wanted war – and achieved it twice in one century – in order to speed up globalization. It is London's City today that is in charge.
The Germans are indeed weary. But the weariness comes from what has happened to the country in the past 100 years.
The cohesive German culture did offer the Anglosphere a serious threat and that was one reason that Germany became the enemy. Now, having experienced these wars, Germany finds herself yoked to the European Union and in thrall to the City's larger ambitions.