"Post-Wall Europe" - "Nach-Mauer Europa"

On 9 November, Herman van Rompuy, the president of the European Council, gave a remarkable speech at Pariser Platz in Berlin, which we document here.

Herman van Rompuy (center) and MSC chairman Wolfgang Ischinger (right) at the margins of the event.

"Bundespräsident Gauck spoke one month ago - in Stuttgart, I think it was – about your country's pride for having achieved this together - 'Ostdeutsche, Westdeutsche und Neudeutsche, alle zusammen'. Now let's take a moment to look at how this process played out for Europe as a whole. [...]


The realisation that what happens on the other side of the border is not just a matter for the EU neighbour, but for all of us. I notice that this awareness has massively grown in the past few years. I can clearly feel the difference since I took office. [...] Upon receiving the Nobel Peace Prize last December, European leaders said that the European Union stands-by those in pursuit of peace and human dignity. To fulfil such responsibilities, we need to have the means at our disposal. [...]


The challenge today, as I said, is to set forth this work, at a most difficult moment for the people of Europe: when the results to convince them are not yet all there, and with globalisation and the crisis already having left their traces. But I trust this work of conviction, and of convincing, will succeed; and that Europe's citizens will rise to the occasion. One of my successors will give a speech, perhaps in Berlin, or in Stuttgart, or perhaps in Athens, or Warsaw; a speech in which he or she will be able to tell the story of how we Europeans achieved the reshaping of our continent in the decades since the Wall came down – as 'Osteuropäer, Westeuropäer, Nordeuropäer, Südeuropäer, und Neueuropäer, alle zusammen'"

You can download the entire speech, including a summary, under this link here.

18 November 2013, by MSC