Europe is a continent that comprises the westernmost part of Eurasia. Europe is bordered by the Arctic Ocean to the north, the Atlantic Ocean to the west, and the Mediterranean Sea to the south. To the east and southeast, Europe is generally considered as separated from Asia by the watershed divides of the Ural and Caucasus Mountains, the Ural River, the Caspian and Black Seas, and the waterways of the Turkish Straits. Europe, in particular ancient Greece and ancient Rome, was the birthplace of Western civilization. The fall of the Western Roman Empire, during the migration period, marked the end of ancient history and the beginning of an era known as the Middle Ages. Renaissance, humanism, exploration, art, and science led to the modern era. From the Age of Discovery onwards, Europe played a predominant role in global affairs. Between the 16th and 20th centuries, European powers controlled at various times the Americas, most of Africa, Oceania, and the majority of Asia.
- Unless we act, events that we Europeans will be unable to influence will overtake us. I believe we Europeans feel far too safe. Europe’s political and economic leadership in the world, which was still unchallenged at the beginning of the century, has long since ceased to exist. Will the dominant cultural influence of Europe be maintained? I think not, unless we defend it and adjust ourselves to new conditions; history has shown that civilisations are all too perishable.
- European integration should not be rigid but as flexible as we can possibly make it. It should not be a straitjacket for the peoples of Europe but should be their common mainstay, a common support for the healthy, individual development of each of them.
- Whoever speaks of Europe is wrong: it is a geographical expression.
- Otto von Bismarck, speech to Reichstag, 14 May 1872
- I have always found the word Europe on the lips of those politicians who wanted something from other Powers which they dared not demand in their own names.
- Otto von Bismarck, quoted in A. J. P. Taylor, Bismarck: The Man and the Statesman (1955), p. 167
- The global role of the United States is perhaps the ultimate chapter in that long period of European expansion which had begun in western Europe, and especially on the Atlantic seaboard, during the 15th century. Europe slowly had outgrown its homeland. Its cultural empire eventually formed a long band traversing most of the Northern Hemisphere and dipping far into the Southern. The modern hub of the peoples and ideas of European origin is now New York as much as Paris, or Los Angeles as much as London. In the history of the European peoples the city of Washington is perhaps what Constantinople - the infant city of Emperor Constantine - was to the last phase of the Roman Empire; for it is unlikely that Europeans, a century hence, will continue to stamp the world so decisively with their ideas and inventions.
- Geoffrey Blainey, A Short History of the World (2000)
- The USA will remain the only superpower. China is becoming an economic giant. Europe is being Islamicized.
- Frits Bolkestein, address at the opening of courses at the University of Leiden (2004), as quoted in "Islamic Europe?" (4 October 2004), by Christopher Caldwell, The Weekly Standard
- Russia's only real geostrategic option - the option that would give Russia a realistic international role and also maximize the opportunity of transforming and socially modernizing itself - is Europe.
- Zbigniew Brzezinski, The Grand Chessboard (1997)
- The key point to bear in mind is that Russia cannot be in Europe without Ukraine also being in Europe, whereas Ukraine can be in Europe without Russia being in Europe.
- Zbigniew Brzezinski, The Grand Chessboard (1997)
- My conclusion will be simple. It will consist of saying, in the very midst of the sound and the fury of our history: "Let us rejoice." Let us rejoice, indeed, at having witnessed the death of a lying and comfort-loving Europe and at being faced with cruel truths.
- Albert Camus, "Create Dangerously," lecture given at the University of Uppsala, Sweden (December 1957); republished by Camus in Resistance, Rebellion and Death (1961), Justin O'Brien, translator, p. 270.
- Soon nostalgia will be another name for Europe.
- Angela Carter (1940–92), British postmodern novelist. repr. Vintage (1992). Expletives Deleted, review of John Berger, Once in Europa, The Washington Post (1989)
- If we're leaving our fate to sociopathic buffoons, we're finished... Trump is the worst, that's because of US power which is overwhelming. We are talking about U.S. decline but you just look at the world, you don't see that when the U.S. imposes sanctions, murders, devastating sanctions, that's the only country that can do that, but everyone has to follow. Europe may not like, in fact hate actions on Iran, but they have to follow, they have to follow the master, or else they get kicked out of the international financial system. That's not a law of nature, it's a decision in Europe to be subordinate to the master in Washington. Other countries don't even have a choice....
- One of the most ironic elements of today's virus crisis, is that Cuba is helping Europe. I mean this is so shocking, that you don't know how to describe it. That Germany can't help Greece, but Cuba can help the European countries. If you stop to think about what that means, all words fail, just as when you see thousands of people dying in the Mediterranean, fleeing from a region that has been devastated... and being sent to the deaths in the Mediterranean, you don't know what words to use.
- The Crisis, the civilizational crisis of the West at this point is devastating... it does bring up childhood memories of listening to Hitler raving on the radio to raucous crowds... it makes you wonder if this species is even viable.
- After Napoleon's 1815 defeat at Waterloo, Europeans had created nation-states in the image and likeness of Napoleon. The new states became the foci of popular affection, even worship. All organized themselves as Napoleon had France, and as Hegel had prescribed, with every house numbered so that bureaucratic government could pass its science to and collect sustenance from each. The states became the purveyors of education and sources of authority. They fostered the myth that people within their borders formed distinct races with different geniuses and destinies. All partook of Charles Darwin's ideology that life is an evolutionary struggle in which the fittest survive.
- Angelo Codevilla, To Make and Keep Peace Among Ourselves and with All Nations (2014)
- African citizens are certainly better off in countries that support their aspirations and communities rather than becoming 3rd or 4th class citizens in Europe... When did Europe ever operate on behalf of African people except when Africa or its people were used to benefit the goals and priorities of Europe?
- Marsha Coleman-Adebayo, "Negroes Need Not Apply: The EU-Africa Malta Conference" (1 December 2015), Black Agenda Report
- Many of the traits on which modern Europe prides itself came to it from Muslim Spain. Diplomacy, free trade, open borders, the techniques of academic research, of anthropology, etiquette, fashion, various types of medicine, hospitals, all came from this great city of cities. (...) The surprise is the extent to which Islam has been a part of Europe for so long, first in Spain, then in the Balkans, and the extent to which it has contributed so much towards the civilisation which we all too often think of, wrongly, as entirely Western. Islam is part of our past and our present, in all fields of human endeavour. It has helped to create modern Europe. It is part of our own inheritance, not a thing apart.
- Charles, Prince of Wales, 27th October 1993, Islam and the West
- It was the fate of Europe to be always a battleground. Differences in race, in religion, in political genius and social ideals, seemed always... to be invitations to contest by battle.
- Calvin Coolidge, The Genius of America (16 October 1924)
- Europe tears itself apart in moral confusion and historical guilt.
- Janet Daley, "9/11: The dark day that brought out the worst in Britain" (10 September 2011), The Telegraph
- For more than five hundred years the cardinal problem in defining Europe has centred on the inclusion or exclusion of Russia.
- Norman Davies, Europe: A History (1996)
- Yes, it is Europe, from the Atlantic to the Urals, it is Europe, it is the whole of Europe, that will decide the fate of the world.
- Oui, c'est l'Europe, depuis l'Atlantique jusqu'à l'Oural, c'est toute l'Europe, qui décidera du destin du monde.
- Charles de Gaulle, University of Strasbourg speech (23 November 1959). The phrase shown in bold is the most often quoted excerpt. De Gaulle was expressing his vision of Europe's future.
- We are inclined to overemphasize the material influences in history. The Russians especially make this mistake. Intellectual values and ethnic influences, tradition and emotional factors are equally important. If this were not the case, Europe would today be a federated state, not a madhouse of nationalism.
- As to the territorial limits of Europe, they may seem relatively clear on its seaward flanks, but many island groups far to the north and west—Svalbard, the Faroes, Iceland, and the Madeira and Canary islands—are considered European, while Greenland (though tied politically to Denmark) is conventionally allocated to North America. Furthermore, the Mediterranean coastlands of North Africa and southwestern Asia also exhibit some European physical and cultural affinities. Turkey and Cyprus in particular, while geologically Asian, possess elements of European culture and may be regarded as parts of Europe.
- Like the Roman Empire in the early fifth century, Europe has allowed its defenses to crumble. As its wealth has grown, so its military prowess has shrunk, along with its self-belief. It has grown decadent in its shopping malls and sports stadiums. At the same time, it has opened its gates to outsiders who have coveted its wealth without renouncing their ancestral faith.
- Niall Ferguson, "Paris and the fall of Rome", Boston Globe, November 16, 2015.
- Purity of race does not exist. Europe is a continent of energetic mongrels.
- Herbert Albert Laurens Fisher, A history of Europe, Houghton Mifflin Company, 1939, p.14
- Europe dominated the world, but it failed to dominate itself. For five hundred years Europe tore itself apart in civil wars.
- George Friedman, The Next 100 Years: A Forecast for the 21st Century (2009), Doubleday, p. 22
- Contemporary Europe is a search for an exit from hell... Europe has always been a bloody place.
- George Friedman, The Next Decade: Where We've Been ... And Where We're Going (2010), Doubleday, pp. 142–143
- No continent is as small and fragmented as Europe. Only Australia is smaller, yet Europe consists of fifty independent nations (including Turkey and the Caucasus, for reasons explained later). Crowded with nations, it is also crowded with people. Europe's population density is 72.5 people per square kilometer. The European Union's density is 112 people per square kilometer. Asia has 86 people per square kilometer. Europe is crowded and fragmented.
- George Friedman, Flashpoints: The Emerging Crisis in Europe (2015), New York: Doubleday
- Oui, c'est l'Europe, depuis l'Atlantique jusqu'à l'Oural, c'est l'Europe, c'est toute l'Europe, qui décidera du destin du monde!
- Translation: Yes, it is Europe, from the Atlantic to the Urals, it is Europe, it is the whole of Europe, that will decide the fate of the world.
- Charles de Gaulle, 23 November 1959, Strasbourg.
- The peoples of Europe are a work in progress and always must be... The history of the people of Europe has not ended -- it never will. Ethnogenesis is a process of the present and future as much as it is the past. No efforts of romantics, politicians, or social scientists can preserve once and for all some essential soul of a people or nation. Nor can any effort ensure that nations, ethnic groups, and communities of today will not vanish utterly in the future. The past may have set the parameters within which one can build the future, but it cannot determine what that future must be.
- Patrick J. Geary, The Myth of Nations: The Medieval Origins of Europe, Princeton University Press, 2003
- Europe is not really even a geographic entity; it is separated from Asia only at one point, the Bosphorus, by a small stretch of water. North of that there is continuity over the russians steppes, a complete terrestrial flow. I suggest that is also true of culture, and indeed of social organization. Indeed Europe has never been purely isolated, purely Christian. Instead of Christian Europe, one has to see the continent as penetrated by the three world religions that originated in the Near East and which indeed had a common mythology or sacred text; in order of arrival these were Judaism, Christianity and Islam. (...) All have equal entitlements to be present, and in this general ('objective') sense none can be considered only as the Other; they are part of Europe, part of our heritage.
- Jack Goody, Islam in Europe, Polity, 2004, p. 14
- It is time to consign to oblivion the cold war postulates when Europe was viewed as an arena of confrontation divided into "spheres of influence" and someone else's "forward-based defences", as an object of military confrontation — namely a theatre of war.
- Now it is up to all of us, all the participants in the European process, to make the best possible use of the groundwork laid down through our common efforts. Our idea of a common European home serves the same purpose too. It was born out of our realization of new realities, of our realization of the fact that the linear continuation of the path, along which inter-European relations have developed until the last quarter of the twentieth century, is no longer consonant with these realities. The idea is linked with our domestic economic and political perestroika which called for new relations above all in that part of the world to which we, the Soviet Union, belong, and with which we have been tied most closely over the centuries.
- As far as the economic content of the common European home is concerned, we regard as a realistic prospect — though not a close one — the emergence of a vast economic space from the Atlantic to the Urals where Eastern and Western parts would be strongly interlocked. In this sense, the Soviet Union’s transition to a more open economy is essential; and not only for ourselves, for a higher economic effectiveness and for meeting consumer demands. Such a transition will increase East-West economic interdependence and, thus, will tell favorably on the entire spectrum of European relations.
- A German-Russian partnership is a key element in any serious pan-European integration process. It is my ardent wish that Russia and Germany may manage to preserve all the positive achievements of the late 1980s and early 1990s in today's difficult times.
- Mikhail Gorbachev, Memoirs (1995)
- We have seen the Capitols and most of the principle towns and people, of every Country in Europe. I have not yet seen any to be jealous of.
- Ulysses S. Grant, letter to Edward F. Beale (6 December 1878), Paris, France
- Europe has not been a continent of immigrants... It lacks the ingredients necessary to assimilate, integrate, and intermarry large numbers of newcomers each year: There is no dynamic and fluid economy, no confidence in its own values, no belief that class and race are incidental, not essential, to one's persona, no courage to assume that an immigrant made a choice to leave a worse place for a better one. And all this is in the context of a class-bound hierarchy...
- Victor Davis Hanson, "Europe at the Edge of the Abyss" (29 March 2016), National Review Online
- The expansion of Europe was the transforming force in human history of the last 500 years, and yet the modern academy looks for reasons not to study it. In the era of decolonisation the new nations want to stress their indigenous roots and sympathetic scholars explain that European influence was not overwhelming, but that it was used and subverted by locals for local purposes. To concentrate on Europe is criticised as 'Eurocentric'. But to ignore Europe makes the history of any part of the globe unintelligible.
- John Hirst, Sense and Nonsense in Australian History (2005)
- European civilisation is unique because it is the only civilisation which has imposed itself on the rest of the world. It did this by conquest and settlement; by its economic power; by the power of its ideas; and because it had things that everyone else wanted. Today every country on earth uses the discoveries of science and the technologies that flow from it, and science was a European invention.
- John Hirst, The Shortest History of Europe (2009)
- Western European humanity moves by will and reason. A Russian person lives first of all with his heart and imagination, and only then with his will and mind. Therefore, the average European is ashamed of sincerity, conscience and kindness [regarding it] as "stupidity"; A Russian person, on the contrary, expects from a person, first of all, kindness, conscience and sincerity.
Original: Западноевропейское человечество движется волею и рассудком. Русский человек живет прежде всего сердцем и воображением и лишь потом волею и умом. Поэтому средний европеец стыдится искренности, совести и доброты как «глупости»; русский человек, наоборот, ждет от человека прежде всего доброты, совести и искренности.
- Ivan Ilyin, "Europe does not know Russia" (28 September 1948), published in Our tasks, Articles from 1948-1956, Tome I.
- Europe. Their political interests are entirely distinct from ours. Their mutual jealousies, their balance of power, their complicated alliances, their forms and principles of government, are all foreign to us. They are nations of eternal war. All their energies are expended in the destruction of the labor, property and lives of their people.
- Thomas Jefferson, from Thomas Jefferson to James Monroe, 11 June 1823, online in [From Thomas Jefferson to James Monroe, 11 June 1823 founders.archive.gov]
- When we get piled upon one another in large cities, as in Europe, we shall become corrupt as in Europe, and go to eating one another as they do there.
- Thomas Jefferson, letter to James Madison (20 December 1787), The Writings of Thomas Jefferson (19 Vols., 1905) edited by Andrew A. Lipscomb and Albert Ellery Bergh, Vol. VI, p. 392.
- The reality is that, since the fall of Rome, no power has come near to ruling this continent. Charlemagne did not do so, nor did the Habsburg Holy Roman Emperors, nor France's Napoleon, nor Germany's Hitler, nor yet the commissioners of the European Union. If history teaches anything, it is that all attempts to straighten Kant's 'crooked timber of humanity' will fail. Europe's peoples will not be put in bondage to a superior state, however liberal its intentions.
- Simon Jenkins, A Short History of Europe: From Pericles to Putin (2018)
- [Y]ou don’t have to talk about Nazis or Hitler or any of that to say the norm in Europe is competition, conflict. And if we think that that’s over, I think that history tells us otherwise.
- Robert Kagan, interview with Bill Kristol (March 2019)
- In Europe, there exist no borders. The people I spoke to all agreed that their quality of life was enhanced in many ways after unification of the continent. We saw the amazing synergy effects of European union.
- Wan-ju Kim, Mayor's Greetings (October 2004)
- Europe’s political stability, social cohesion, economic prosperity and security are more threatened today than at any point since the Cold War, Russia is destabilizing the Continent on every front. Indigenous factors – whether long-extant nationalism, design flaws in the Eurozone lack of a common foreign policy, or incapability at assimilating immigrants – certainly lie at the root of these crises.
- James Kirchick, "Russia's Plot Against the West" (March 2017), Politico
- In recent decades, Europe has retreated to the conduct of soft power. But besieged as it is on almost all frontiers by upheavals and migration, Europe, including Britain, can avoid turning into a victim of circumstance only by assuming a more active role.
- Henry Kissinger, "Out of the Brexit Turmoil: Opportunity", Wall Street Journal, June 28, 2016.
- For 400 years, world history was made by Europeans. Many of the great ideas by which we live — constitutional government, freedom of the individual, the ideas of the Enlightenment — originated in Europe and were spread by Europe around the world. Now this region, which was dynamic and built the world, has become too preoccupied with itself. It confines itself basically to the exercise of soft power. At present, no European government has the capacity to ask its people for sacrifices on behalf of foreign policy. Unless Europe can recover some of its historic dynamism, there will be a big hole in the world system as it has until now manifested itself.
- Henry Kissinger, as quoted in "World Chaos and World Order: Conversations With Henry Kissinger", The Atlantic, November 10, 2016.
- Even if Europe's decline is now irreversible, there is no reason that it should become a collapse. There is, however, a precondition: facing realities at long last, something that has been postponed in many parts of Europe to this day. The debate should be about which of Europe's traditions and values can still be saved, not about Europe as a shining example for all mankind, the moral superpower of the twenty-first century.
- Walter Laqueur, The Last Days of Europe: Epitaph for an Old Continent (2007)
- There is no place for concern that it would change the structure and operation of the EU in a radical way. 90% of the constitution agreement is already in the current agreements. The innovations in the draft will clarify the structure of the EU and make its activity more efficient, as well as strengthen citizens’ rights.
- Egils Levits (Latvian ECJ Judge), Quoted in “Latvijas avize”, 21 June 2004
- So there is no single European people. There is no single all-embracing community of culture and tradition among, say, Warsaw, Amsterdam, Berlin and Belgrade. In fact, there are at least four communities: the Northern Protestant, the Latin Catholic, the Greek Orthodox, and the Muslim Ottoman. There is no single language - there are more than twenty. (...) There are no real European political parties (...). And most significantly of all: unlike the United States, Europe still does not have a common story.
- I'm worried about moving in the direction of Western Europe, because I believe that the higher taxes in Western Europe are one of the reasons that those economies aren't as rich as we are and why people don't work as much in Western Europe as they do in the United States.
- N. Gregory Mankiw, interview with Bill Kristol (2 February 2017), full transcript
- What has made the European family of nations an improving, instead of a stationary portion of mankind? Not any superior excellence in them, which, when it exists, exists as the effect, not as the cause; but their remarkable diversity of character and culture. Individuals, classes, nations, have been extremely unlike one another: they have struck out a great variety of paths, each leading to something valuable; and although at every period those who travelled in different paths have been intolerant of one another, and each would have thought it an excellent thing if all the rest could have been compelled to travel his road, their attempts to thwart each other's development have rarely had any permanent success, and each has in time endured to receive the good which the others have offered. Europe is, in my judgment, wholly indebted to this plurality of paths for its progressive and many-sided development.
- John Stuart Mill. On Liberty (1859) Chapter III. Of individuality, as one of the elements of well-Being p.136
- More than any other continent or culture in the world today, Europe is now deeply weighed down with guilt for its past. Alongside this outgoing version of self-distrust runs a more introverted version of the same guilt. For there is also the problem in Europe of an existential tiredness and a feeling that perhaps for Europe the story has run out and a new story must be allowed to begin. Mass immigration — the replacement of large parts of the European populations by other people — is one way in which this new story has been imagined: a change, we seemed to think, was as good as a rest. Such existential civilizational tiredness is not a uniquely modern-European phenomenon, but the fact that a society should feel like it has run out of steam at precisely the moment when a new society has begun to move in cannot help but lead to vast, epochal changes.
- Douglas Murray, The Strange Death of Europe: Immigration, Identity, Islam (2017)
- In a word, to sum up our system of keeping the governments of the goyim in Europe in check, we shall show our strength to one of them by terrorist attempts and to all, if we allow the possibility of a general rising against us, we shall respond with the guns of America or China or Japan.
- The Protocols of the Meetings of the Learned Elders of Zion (1934) published by Sergei Nilus
- Throughout all Europe, and by means of relations with Europe, in other continents also, we must create ferments, discords and hostility. Therein we gain a double advantage.
- The Protocols of the Meetings of the Learned Elders of Zion (1934) published by Sergei Nilus
- [I]n Europe, faced with the choice between human rights and gas, many politicians pick gas.
- Boris Nemtsov, interview with Elena Servettaz (April 2013)
- People often think that Europeans are homogeneous group that arrived in a simple way there maybe 40 or 50 thousand years ago maybe based on the archaeology and just kind of sat there until they became the Europeans they are today, but that's probably not true: the Europeans today are a replacement population who came in much more recently and replaced the people who were there originally 40 thousand years ago.
- David Reich, History Aids Understanding Diseases Today, National Science Foundation (20 July 2012)
- Europe has produced certain ideas and institutions, has been able, on and off, and with varying degrees of means, to blend them, purify them, make them work effectively, and has been able also to spread them around the world.
- J. M. Roberts, A History of Europe (1996)
- Europe owes its greatness to the fact that the primary loyalties of the European people have been detached from religion and re-attached to the land. Those who believe that the division of Europe into nations has been the primary cause of European wars should remember the devastating wars of religion that national loyalties finally brought to an end. And they should study our art and literature for its inner meaning. In almost every case, they will discover, it is an art and literature not of war but of peace, an invocation of home and the routines of home, of gentleness, everydayness and enduring settlement... The idea that the citizen owes loyalty to a country, a territory, a jurisdiction and all those who reside within it — the root assumption of democratic politics, and one that depends upon the nation as its moral foundation - that idea has no place in the minds and hearts of many who now call themselves citizens of European states.
- Roger Scruton, England and the Need for Nations (2006)
- There are only two kinds of states in Europe: small states, and small states that have not yet realised they are small.
- The odd thing about modern Europe is that, if you look at the borders, you might think that Germany had won the First World War... The European Union and the old Soviet states are associated with a Europe that feels as if it is run from Berlin. From Scandinavia to Turkey, lorries trundle back and forth with German industrial goods; the euro is mainly German, the Deutsche Bank dominates the eurozone.
- Norman Stone, "Germany today is what we fought the Great War to create" (1 August, 2014), Evening Standard
- Europeans believe that people from other cultures are threatening their national identities and livelihoods... Europe is rediscovering nationalism... Europeans have long defined themselves by a strong sentiment of national belonging, often linked to language, ethnicity and religion, and distrust of foreigners. The love for the place you were born, the trust of the people who surround you, and the fear of what strangers could do to you and your community is a basic human feeling. But in Europe, nationalism is particularly notable for the sheer scale of death and destruction it historically has brought.
- STRATFOR, "Europe Rediscovers Nationalism" (January 2015), STRATFOR: Global Intelligence
- But there is no point in indulging in wishful thinking about the past. The changes were brought about by the World War and its repercussions. The war tore Europe from its previous position and transformed it into a continent bleeding from many wounds and left impoverished – not only in Germany – valuable segments of the population. “Where iron grows in the mountain shafts, the masters of the Earth arise." Europe is no longer the main source of the world’s raw materials, and we can no longer delude ourselves that Europe is the leader of the world. For this reason the peoples of Europe are drawing closer together to protect themselves against conquest and inundation. And inasmuch as economics has an effect on politics, this drawing together, even though it might be questionable from the standpoint of economics, does constitute progress toward international understanding and peace. Even though the psychology of this process, which involves billions, causes sociologists to have reason for misgiving, the process is still an asset to mutual understanding among the nations.
- Gustav Stresemann, Nobel Lecture, (29 June 1927)
- In the heart of Europe runs the purest stream of human love, of justice, of spirit of self-sacrifice for higher ideals. The Christian culture of centuries has sunk deep in her life's core. In Europe we have seen noble minds who have ever stood up for the rights of man irrespective of colour and creed.
- Rabindranath Tagore. "Nationalism in the West", 1917. Reprinted in Rabindranath Tagore and Mohit K. Ray, Essays (2007, p. 475). Also cited in John Jesudason Cornelius, Rabindranath Tagore: India's Schoolmaster, (1928, p. 83).
- Static inequality is a snapshot view of inequality; it does not reflect what will happen to you in the course of your life.
Consider that about 10 percent of Americans will spend at least a year in the top 1 percent, and more than half of all Americans will spent a year in the top 10 percent.
This is visibly not the same for the more static—but nominally more equal—Europe. For instance, only 10 percent of the wealthiest five hundred American people or dynasties were so thirty years ago; more than 60 percent on the French list are heirs and a third of the richest Europeans were the richest centuries ago. In Florence, it was just revealed that things are even worse: the same handful of families have kept the wealth for five centuries.
- Nassim Nicholas Taleb, Skin in the Game: Hidden Asymmetries in Daily Life (2018, Random House)
- From these shores, it may seem to some of you that by comparison with the risk and sacrifice which America has borne through four decades and the courage with which you have shouldered unwanted burdens, Europe has not fully matched your expectations. Bear with me if I dwell for a moment on the Europe to which we now belong. It is not the Europe of ancient Rome, of Charlemagne, of Bismarck. We who are alive today have passed through perhaps the greatest transformation of human affairs on the Continent of Europe since the fall of Rome. In but a short chapter of its long history, Europe lost the position which it had occupied for two thousand years -- and it is your history as much as ours. For five centuries, that small continent had extended its authority over islands and continents the world over. For the first forty years of this century, there were seven great powers: United States, Great Britain, Germany, France, Russia, Japan, Italy. Of those seven, two now tower over the rest -- United States and the Soviet Union. To that swift and historic change Europe -- a Europe of many different histories and many different nations -- has had to find a response. It has not been an easy passage to blend this conflux of nationalism, patriotism, sovereignty, into a European Community, yet I think that our children and grandchildren may see this period -- these birth pangs of a new Europe -- more clearly than we do now. They will see it as a visionary chapter in the creation of a Europe able to share the load alongside you. Do not doubt the firmness of our resolve in this march towards this goal, but do not underestimate what we already do. Today, out of the forces of the Alliance in Europe, 95%; of the divisions, 85%; of the tanks, 80%; of the combat aircraft, and 70%; of the fighting ships are provided, manned and paid for by the European Allies and Europe has more than three million men under arms and more still in reserve. We have to. We are right in the front line. The frontier of freedom cuts across our continent. Members of Congress, the defense of that frontier is as vital to you as it is to us.
- Margaret Thatcher, Address to a Joint Session of Congress, 20 February 1985
- What we should grasp, however, from the lessons of European history is that, first, there is nothing necessarily benevolent about programmes of European integration; second, the desire to achieve grand utopian plans often poses a grave threat to freedom; and third, European unity has been tried before, and the outcome was far from happy.
- Margaret Thatcher, Statecraft: Strategies for a Changing World (2002).
- Europeans may wish to opt out of the global battle for corporate domination. They may even hope that they may thus achieve a greater degree of freedom for democratic politics. But the risk is that their growing reliance on other people’s technology, the relative stagnation of the eurozone and the consequent dependence of Europe’s growth model on exports to other people’s markets will render those pretensions to autonomy quite empty. Rather than an autonomous actor, Europe risks becoming the object of other people’s capitalist corporatism. Indeed, as far as international finance is concerned, the die has already been cast. In the wake of the double crisis, Europe is out of the race. The future will be decided between the survivors of the crisis in the United States and the newcomers of Asia. They may choose to locate in the City of London, but after Brexit even that cannot be taken for granted. Wall Street, Hong Kong and Shanghai may simply bypass Europe.
- Adam Tooze, Crashed: How a Decade of Financial Crises Changed the World (2018)
- I would rather visit Latin America or the Middle East than Europe. The people – especially Arabs and Kurds – are more pleasant to be around.
- Michael Totten, "51 Facts About Me" (26 June 2006), World Affairs Journal
- In the European century that began in the 1840s from Engels's article of 1849 down to the death of Hitler, everyone who advocated genocide called himself a socialist, and no exception has been found.
- George Watson, The Lost Literature of Socialism, Cambridge: England, The Lutterworth Press (1998) p. 80
- Europe is and will be a Union of States.
- José Luis Rodríguez Zapatero, speech (15 June 2004)
- I am a citizen of the greatest Republic of Mankind. I see the human race united like a huge family by brotherly ties. We have made a sowing of liberty which will, little by little, spring up across the whole world. One day, on the model of the United States of America, a United States of Europe will come into being. The United States will legislate for all its nationalities.
- Attributed to George Washington, in "Farewell to the United States of Europe: long live the EU!" by André Fontaine at Open Democracy (29 November 2001). This is declared spurious by an anonymous blogger in "Did George Washington predict a "United States of Europe"? (30 January 2010) who believes it derives from statements in "The People of Action : An Essay on American Idealism" (1918) by Gustave Rodrigues and James Mark Baldwin, as translated by Louise Seymour Houghton:
- Washington wrote to Lafayette that he considered himself a "citizen of the great republic of humanity," adding: "I see the human race a great family, united by fraternal bonds." Elsewhere he wrote prophetically: "We have sown a seed of liberty and union that will gradually germinate throughout the earth. Some day, on the model of the United States of America, will be constituted the United States of Europe."
- Presented as the actual letter cited is this letter to the Marquis de Lafayette (15 August 1786), which contains general assertions of Humanity's unity, but without any predictions of a "United States of Europe":
- Altho' I pretend to no peculiar information respecting commercial affairs, nor any foresight into the scenes of futurity; yet as the member of an infant empire, as a Philanthropist by character, and (if I may be allowed the expression) as a Citizen of the great republic of humanity at large; I cannot help turning my attention sometimes to this subject. I would be understood to mean, I cannot avoid reflecting with pleasure on the probable influence that commerce may hereafter have on human manners and society in general. On these occasions I consider how mankind may be connected like one great family in fraternal ties. I indulge a fond, perhaps an enthusiastic idea, that as the world is evidently much less barbarous than it has been, its melioration must still be progressive; that nations are becoming more humanized in their policy, that the subjects of ambition and causes for hostility are daily diminishing, and, in fine, that the period is not very remote, when the benefits of a liberal and free commerce will, pretty generally, succeed to the devastations and horrors of war.