Due to the perceived loss of control over their immigration and other policies and the detachment of the EU officials from the citizens' concerns, a majority of the British voters have decided to leave the European Union. How do the politicians in the remainder of the European Union want to respond?
German and French foreign ministers arrived to Prague where they're meeting their Visegrád Group (PL, HU, CZ, SK) counterparts. The German foreign minister previously said that he didn't want a deeper integration anymore. However, the Polish TV TVP, Sputnik, TheNews.PL, The Express, and numerous others have pointed out a remarkable 10-page document
The territories once known as the EU member states would be turned into protectorates that would be prohibited from having their own army, criminal law, taxation system, or central bank. These entities would be centralized at the European level.
For Czechia, the proposal isn't original at all. Our lands have lived exactly under these political and legal conditions between 1939 and 1945 when they were referred to as the Protectorate of Bohemia and Moravia. The Czech lands no longer had their army, criminal law, taxation system, or central bank. For example, no Czechs could fight in any conflict. All officials in the police had to be ethnic Germans. One Reichsmark was declared another allowed currency codified to be equal to 10 protectorate crowns (at this rate, the mark was severely overvalued) and the Czech National Bank couldn't affect the money in any way.
How was the protectorate created? The decisive day was March 15th, 1939:
At 0115 hours, Czechoslovakian President Emil Hácha met with Adolf Hitler, who was accompanied by Wilhelm Keitel, Hermann Göring, Joachim von Ribbentrop, and Theodor Morell, in Berlin, Germany. Hitler threatened Hácha that German forces were poised to invade Czechoslovakia at 0600 hours, so it was up to Hácha to either agree to a peaceful occupation or face a destructive invasion. At 0215 hours, Hitler left the conference room, and Göring and Ribbentrop continued to threaten Hácha with, among other things, the bombing of Prague. Hácha fainted twice during the negotiations, and both times were revived by injections by Dr. Morell. Hácha gave in at 0355 hours, and German troops marched across the borders at 0600 hours unopposed. In the evening, Adolf Hitler entered Prague in a grand parade. During the day in eastern Czechoslovakia, Hungarian forces marched into Ruthenia, ending the one-day-old nation of Capatho-Ukraine.Hácha is often presented as a traitor. But this lawyer was a sensible guy – and also translated Jerome Klapka Jerome's "Three Men In a Boat" to Czech, among other things. He was short and, as the state president of the protectorate, his health deteriorated. So he was a characteristic symbol of the domination of the Germans over the Czechs during the war.
A map of a strong Europe in the time of uncertainties. Note that a few EU countries such as Spain were still missing on this map. Since this map, Norway and Sweden have switched their roles.
On the March 15th, he was told to surrender the country or be responsible for the flattening of Prague, among other things. Of course he had to do whatever he was asked. In the evening of the same day, the Führer already acted as a big guru in Prague. The occupation of Czechia obviously violated all the laws you can think of, including the 6-month-old Munich Treaty – much like the current proposal violates all the basic dignity and the laws of the EU.
Many Czechs were satisfied just OK in the protectorate. Many were not, however, and tens of thousands were executed (not counting 300,000 Czechoslovak Jews murdered in the Holocaust). There was some resistance, however, and the seemingly collaborationist Czech nation was also the only one who successfully executed a top beast of the Nazi regime, the acting protector Reinhard Heydrich (one of the main fathers of the Holocaust), in 1942.
Parachutists trained by the British units (where numerous Czechoslovak and Polish pilots served in the Royal Air Force) were sent from Britain (the attitude of Britain may be similar in different epochs – the country was always a good guy for the central European affairs), with the approval of the Czechoslovak government-in-exile in London (led by President Beneš). A weapon of the assassin jammed but a grenade, a spare solution, was enough to hurt the "blonde beast" sufficiently so that he died soon and his self-confidence ended. The revenge was brutal, including the burnout of the Lidice village, but with hindsight, most of us are happy that our leaders in London have improved the image of our national courage and character a little bit.
Before Mr Steinmeier reveals the plan to create the superstate and abolish the national armies and courts, I recommend him to watch a full movie about Heydrich's life because those who don't know the history are poised to repeat its mistakes. Danke sehr. Incidentally, one of the numerous lessons that I learned from the Czech history during the war is that we may want to think in advance. If someone looks like he wants to dominate the whole continent and piss on our interests and opinions, it's because it's probably true, and in that case, it may be a good idea to think ahead of time and beg the Russians to help us as soon as possible because all imperfections of the Russians are probably going to look rather mild very soon.
Incidentally, the criticism above seems to be directed mainly against the Germans which doesn't mean that the French are innocent. Some French folks also demand English to be disabled as the official language of the EU.
It's nonsense, first, because Ireland and Malta have English among their official languages; second, because English clearly is and will be the most important language for the communication between the European (and other) nations regardless of its official status in any EU member states – simply because it's the current era's lingua franca (for French nationalists: it plays all the roles that should be played by the French language in their dreams). It could have become the #1 world language because it's simple enough and because of other reasons.
For a century or so, English has been so important primarily because of the rise of the U.S., not because of the U.K., anyway, so a modified status of the U.K. isn't so important. Regardless of these political issues, not too many people will be able to learn French or German, so any attempt to bureaucratically marginalize the English language would be another step to artificially weaken the communication and understanding between the different European nations. Some EU-fanatical people could be eager to hurt England in some way, e.g. by harassing the English language, but they can't change the reality. And the dominance of English among the international languages is one of the parts of the reality.
The planned superstate is a straightforward recipe to kickstart several other Brexit-like referendums across the EU. If someone in Germany and France doesn't see this obvious fact, they have lost their contact with a majority of the continent. What the EU (and Germany and France as the bold champions of the EU brand) needs now is a lot of modesty and probably the reversal of some of the latest pathological changes in its functioning such as the Lisbon Treaty, not to mention the dismissal of some symbols of the recent failures such as Mr Juncker.
With plans like the superstate, it's hard not to understand why the Britons said "good bye" in time. Maybe this proposal is a deliberate provocation designed to expel post-communist countries from the EU. Except that I would guess that it may repel Denmark and perhaps the Netherlands and others, too. If it's a game, it's a game one can't be reliably in control of.