The Netherlands: EU membership to no purpose

The leader of the Dutch Freedom Party, Geert Wilders, aims to exit from the EU. He said that the European Union deprives the Dutch of their identity and democracy. Professor of the Department for European Studies at the St. Petersburg State University, Nikolay Mezhevich, commented on the opinion of the European policy-maker.

"The Netherlands has been discussing this question for years. The country has given the EU and its progenitor, the European Economic Community, a lot more than it has taken," Mezhevich told Pravda.Ru.  

According to Nikolai Mezhevich, the public mood in the donor countries of the European Union differs from that in EU's beneficiary countries. For example, Poland, despite its euroscepticism, has obtained more than it has lost as a result of its EU membership, both financially and politically. In case of the Netherlands, Belgium and Luxembourg, the state of affairs is not so obvious. These countries have not acquired sales markets, unlike Germany, for instance. One may not say that they have increased their national wealth either, as the above-mentioned countries had been wealthy and prosperous before they joined the EU. Even the WWII had affected these countries at a lesser extent, in contrast to the Soviet Union, Poland, Germany and France. Therefore, these nations share different opinions about the value of the European unity. 

"The thesis from the times of the Cold War, the confrontation of the blocs - "Europeans, let's unite to stop the Soviet Union" - does not work today," the expert told Pravda.Ru. 

According to Nikolai Mezhevich, an increasing amount of people in EU countries criticize the official position of Brussels officials, who relentlessly claim that Russia is posing a threat to the world. 

"Attempts to blame Russia for all the errors of the ruling elites of the European Union may not last forever. Today, more and more people in Europe wonder whether it is Russia or China that are guilty of all the negative trends that have been happening in Europe lately. People wonder whether there is something else that should be held accountable for their problems, and this "something" is located in Brussels," Mezhevich said.

Also read: Three greatest myths about the European Union

At the same time, the expert does not believe in the possibility for the Netherlands to exit the EU. A referendum could be possible, but the authorities will pretend that they have not heard whether the people of the Netherlands said yes or now. They will not even try to pretend - they will simply ignore the expression of people's will, the expert told Pravda.Ru.  

The main problem of the Netherlands is about the crisis of ideology. In the past, everything was a lot easier, he added. In Germany and France, there were leftist forces in the 1960s and the 1970s, who were advocating ideas of effective social policy, fair state and Keynesian solutions for economy.

At the same time, there were the Christian Democrats and centrists, who shared the priorities of personal freedoms and liberal economies without any regulation. The agricultural class and intellectuals shared their preferences between those groups. In short, it was a classic political structure. Nowadays, it is not so easy to figure out where the left-wing and where the right-wing forces are. 

This ideology has discredited itself from the standpoint of classical Leninism and Marxism.

"When voters have to choose, let's say, between several slightly different apples, they do not see the difference. People do not see the difference between the programs of their political parties today. They do not understand what kind of future those parties want to build for their countries," the expert told Pravda.Ru. 

Vladimir Kuznetsov


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Author`s name Dmitry Sudakov