Brussels Travel Blog› entry 8 of 26 › view all entries
The institutions of the EU were developed to bring peace and prosperity to the continent of Europe and have been so wildly successful that today euroskeptics think of a peaceful Europe as so natural that the treaties are unnecessary. When the first treaties were signed, the Brussels Treaty in 1948 and the Treaty of Paris in 1951, Europe was in tatters after yet another war.
Robert Schuman, 9th May 1950:
"It is no longer a question of vain words but of a bold act, a constructive act. France has acted and the consequences of its action can be immense. We hope they will be. France has acted primarily for peace and to give peace a real chance.
For this it is necessary that Europe should exist. Five years, almost to the day, after the unconditional surrender of Germany, France is accomplishing the first decisive act for European construction and is associating Germany with this. Conditions in Europe are going to be entirely changed because of it.
Europe will be born from this, a Europe which is solidly united and constructed around a strong framework. It will be a Europe where the standard of living will rise by grouping together production and expanding markets, thus encouraging the lowering of prices.
In this Europe, the Ruhr, the Saar and the French industrial basins will work together for common goals and their progress will be followed by observers from the United Nations. All Europeans without distinction, whether from east or west, and all the overseas territories, especially Africa, which awaits development and prosperity from this old continent, will gain benefits from their labour of peace."