Hardly a week goes by now without one country or another announcing that the Lisbon Treaty is no longer valid. The Czech President Vaclav Klaus was the first to declare that his country would no longer ratify the Treaty after the Irish vote. The Austrian Chancellor Alfred Gusenbauer has promised a referendum on any future Treaty, which would include any re-hash of the current Lisbon Treaty. And now the Polish President Lech Kaczynski (Pictured above) has joined the chorus.
AFP Report as follows –
Polish President Lech Kaczynski announced in an interview published Tuesday that he will not sign the EU’s Lisbon Treaty, saying it was pointless after Irish voters rejected it in a referendum last month.
“For the moment, the question of the treaty is pointless,” Kaczynski was quoted as saying in the online version of the daily Dziennik.
(Alfred Gusenbauer below)
The French EU Presidency is just beginning, and Sarkozy has begun by saying that there is something wrong with the EU. That opinion is unlikely to stop him carrying on with all the EU programmes, of course, and pressuring Ireland into a second referendum after some suitable softening up has been carried out.
VACLAV KLAUS – President Of Czech Republic (Below)
But at least for now, the political weather is running against the EU. It could yet get worse. What, for example would Sarko say if the German President was to reject the current Treaty after the coming report from the German Constitutional Court (The Treaty does not have legality unless it is unanimous. If the Irish reject Lisbon, there has to be a new Treaty), or if there was sufficient rebellion in the Italian Parliament to force a referendum, or indeed if Gordon Brown’s regime in the UK fell and was replaced with one led a traditonal Labour eurosceptic leader?
Or if the European economic crisis was bad enough to start some cracks appearing in the Euro?
Reading europhile bloggers such Ralf Grahn, their opinion seems to be that a two speed Europe will result. Ratifiers of Lisbon (or the next Lisbon with the unanimity clause removed) will press on to form a core group of the EU, while the others not signing will be removed from the EU and offered an associate status.
If that thinking comes to fruition, the EU will become very messy, and will surely start to disintegrate further. Sarkozy is right to declare that there is something wrong. He and Merkel are not on good terms according to reports. If the prime axis of the EU now hangs on a dysfunctional relationship, it seems very possible that the whole thing will continue to gradually unravel.
A quick death would surely be preferable to a long drawn out terminal illness.
One change, if the EU did collapse, that would be likely would be a great improvement in the quality of national leadership. Brown, Sarkozy and Merkel were all brought in to promote the Lisbon Treaty. Merkel is popular as a person but is a complete lame duck. Brown and Sarkozy are detested by their own electorates.
Picture – Merkel (a little left out), while the unpopular Sarkozy and Brown chum it up in the Atlantic Pavilion, Lisbon.
For a very brief synopsis of the French 6 month Presidency programme for the EU, see this link which should be titled ‘Sarkozy – Busy Going Nowhere’.
The Telegraph explains why Sarkozy is getting into conflict with Europe’s smaller countries over Lisbon HERE