From the website of the Lepanto Foundation – dated 7 December, 2018
The roots of the crisis in the European Union (1991 – 2011)
The economic, social and political crisis which the EU is undergoing is there for all to see. In a few days it will be the 20th anniversary of the Maastricht treaty, signed on 11 December 1991, which brought the European Union into being. Professor Roberto de Mattei, who was then president of the Lepanto Cultural Centre and who is now president of the Lepanto Foundation, was one of the first in Europe to express his criticisms of the Maastricht Treaty in a letter sent to all MEPs in Strasbourg on 11 May 1992, the day before the speech given by Queen Elizabeth II to the European Parliament. His analysis, which preceded by nearly 10 years the entry into force of the euro, invites us to reflect on our future.
Prof. Roberto de Mattei’s letter to the Members of the European Parliament.
Rome – May 11th, 1992
Dear Sir /Madam,
On behalf of the Lepanto Cultural Centre, of which I am President, I take the liberty of submitting for your attention certain reflections (1) on the Maastricht Treaty, stipulated by the Heads of State and Government of the Twelve on the 11th of December 1991, to launch the new international organization called “European Union”.
This Treaty, formally signed on the 7th of February 1992 and due to be endorsed by the respective national Parliaments by the 31st of December 1992, is arousing increasing doubts and perplexities in many quarters: will it really unite and strengthen Europe, or will it plunge her into chaos? This letter aims to stimulate discussion on this capital point.
A nihilist dream of the destruction of Europe
The year 1992 marks the 500th anniversary of the Discovery and civilization of America by Europeans, yet European and Christian Civilization is on trial.
Europe is being accused of having imposed its civilised patterns on the world, instead of “opening itself to the Other”, “to what Europe is not, never was and will never be” (2); it should therefore deny itself to recover the “otherness” it rejected, viz. barbarians, Indians, Muslims, all bearers of a “cultural message” which we must now adopt. Europe should therefore renounce its “secular ambition of historical centralization whose symbol is Columbus” (3) in order to “de-civilize” itself and sink into tribalism.
According to the historical vision by these “theoreticians of chaos”, Europe should be founded on the “loss of foundations” (4) and “not identify with itself” (5). This is nihilism.
No historical and cultural identities would deserve to survive because in the world nothing is stable and permanent and everything is devoid of order and significance: this Nothingness is the only reality which is to assert itself in history and society: “We must acknowledge the historically positive role of Nothing / … / We should base our European citizenship on Nothing” (6).
The real nature of the Maastricht Treaty
These nihilist theses on Europe, set out in journals, books, symposia, amplified by the mass-media and abundantly echoed by politicians, are neither to be ignored nor forgotten when debating such an ambitious political accord as the Maastricht Treaty.
It is not a matter of being generally for or against Europe, but of addressing the real background issue: What kind of Europe are we aspiring to? What kind of Europe is envisaged by the Maastricht Treaty? Political and diplomatic agreements do not simply boil down to technical formulas, but reflect political patterns, visions of the world and ideal aspirations. Which ones in this particular case? Click here to read the rest of Professor Roberto de Mattei’s prophetic letter – it is lengthy, and thoroughly documented, and very well worth reading in its entirety.
One highly significant section in the Professor’s letter relates to the rise of Islam in Europe: “In terms of the Treaty, European political parties will “express the political will of Union nationals” (Title II, art. 138A). A “European Muslim Party”, owing to its deep-rooted presence in all territories of the Union, its power of political and religious cohesion, its financial resources and its international connections, might become the leading party in the European Parliament. This would imply Muslim political domination in Europe, peacefully won, or rather, peacefully handed over by Europeans themselves.”
Professor de Mattei goes on to point out the possibility of this same dominance in the member states. Logically, then, we must ask, might Brexit actually contribute to the restoration of Christianity – Christian belief and culture – both here in the UK and on the continent of Europe? If you have any practical ideas on how this might be effected, share them with us. Or maybe you think the restoration of Christianity in Europe is a pipe dream?