As for the other appointments, Charles Michel becomes President of the Council of the European Union, in a reassuring continuity with his predecessors. The former Belgian Prime Minister is also sympathetic and will be able to show a warm face to Europe. But it is not the "qualitative leap" that some dreamed of, seeing Angela Merkel as the moral authority and "wisdom" that the EU symbolically needed.
As the High Representative of the European Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Josep Borrell, who was Spain's Minister of Foreign Affairs, brings together many qualities that will be useful to the EU, from experience to firmness. Finally, as President of Parliament, David Sassoli, an Italian Social Democratic MEP, is welcome. He will embody the other face of Italy.
The banality of ignorance and contempt
On the opening day of the first session of the new Parliament, British MPs from Nigel Farage's Brexit party engaged in a particularly "regressive" provocation. They deliberately turned their backs when the first notes of Beethoven's European anthem, the "Ode to Joy", played. Members of the National Rally chose to remain seated.
It is precisely because this form of "banality of ignorance and contempt" is developing within the European Union that the choice of "the European team" is essential. In this respect, the "apprentice" Europe - after passing very close to disaster - has made commendable efforts. But can it do even better with the "masters" it has chosen?
With the permission of Les Echos (publié le 05/07/2019)
Copyright : FREDERICK FLORIN / AFP