The idea of a common European identity existed in academia long before WWII, but the devastation that WWII brought to the continent made people think long and hard how we could stop slaughtering each other on such scales. The two main actors in the notion were France and Germany. The first time they fought each other was in 1214, in the Battle of Bouvines, and since then they have been at war quite a few times, dragging others into it as well.

The main idea behind the EU for the French and German politicians that pushed for it was to bind the two countries in a common fate, thus avoiding a new and vastly more destructive war. The luck of patience with any nationalistic/right movement stems exactly from the inherited European fear that any space given to national pride will lead to the next shitshow. The truth is, however, that when even healthy patriotism is scorned and common people’s worries are dismissed as paranoia, it is a recipe for the results seen today.

 

Why the European Union is anything but a dictatorship