Sta Hungry Stay Foolish

Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish.

A blog by Leon Oudejans

Project Europe

Last Monday, Project Europe made a major leap forward without too much noise. Of all 28 EU member states, 23 agreed to join a military defence pact, called Pesco (eg, FT, NYT, Quartz). From a European perspective, this move is almost similar to the 1999 introduction of the Euro currency. From a NATO perspective, nothing much has changed. For Russia, a lot has changed. Project Europe is the main reason for Russian interference throughout Europe.

Project Europe started in 1951 when Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Luxembourg and the Netherlands founded the European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC).

In 1957, its purpose was enlarged and its name rebranded in European Economic Community (EEC).

In 1960, 8 other European countries raised a similar group, called the European Free Trade Association (EFTA). In 1970 and 1991, 2 other countries joined.

In 1973, the UK and Denmark left EFTA and joined the EEC. In subsequent years, 4 other EFTAmembers did the same.

In 1993, the EEC changed its name into European Union (EU) through adoption of the Maastricht Treaty. Until 2004, only 3 countries joined the EU: Greece, Spain and Ireland.

Since 2004, the EU has expanded significantly and picked up twelve East European countries: 9 countries in 2004, 2 in 2007 and 1 in 2013. These countries had been in an economic and military vacuum since the fall of the Soviet Union (1922-1991). Economic expansion by the EU is considered a military threat by Russia, which loses buffer states and/or a potential for expansion.

Remarkably, all 12 East European countries have signed Pesco. This probably relates to their fear over Russia and its military expansion (eg, 2008-Abkhazia, 2008-South Ossetia, 2014-Crimea, 2014-Eastern Ukraine). Moreover, continued Russian election interference in Europe, UK, and especially USA, has now created what was once unthinkable: the prospect of a European army

The Russian efforts to weaken Project Europe have become a boomerang that may even threaten the 2018 Russian presidential (re) election (eg, BI, Express, TIMETimes, WP).

Leningrad (1989) by Billy Joel – artist, lyrics, video, Wiki-1, Wiki-2


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