May 8, 2012

Daily Express Warns of New Charlemagne

May 7, 2012 | From 
A front page warning to Britain.

EU Plot to Scrap Britain warned the front page headline of Britain’s Daily Express newspaper on May 4. With a circulation of over 550,000, the paper warned its readership that “A covert group of EU foreign ministers has drawn up plans for merging the jobs currently done by Herman Van Rompuy, president of the European Council, and José Manuel Barroso, president of the European Commission.” 

“Opponents fear the plan could create a modern-day equivalent of the European emperor envisaged by Napoleon Bonaparte or a return to the Holy Roman Empire of Charlemagne that dominated Europe in the Dark Ages,” it wrote.
The Express article was a powerful warning to Britain and America. The online version appeared as the top headline on the influential Drudge Report.
It was based on a written question Lord Stoddart of Swindon submitted to the Foreign Office, asking “whether a selected group of European Union foreign ministers is considering the appointment of an official combining the roles of the president of the European Council and the president of the European Commission and elected by the European Parliament; if so, whether the foreign secretary is a member of the group; and whether they have made any assessment of those proposals.”

Lord Howell of Guildford replied on behalf of the Foreign Office on May 1, saying: “We are aware of one group of EU foreign ministers meeting on an informal basis to discuss a variety of issues related to the future governance of the EU. While the UK is not part of that group, we understand that one idea under discussion is a merger of the positions of president of the European Council and president of the European Commission.” 

Of course the Express isn’t the first to “reveal” this story. A few English-language outlets covered it a fortnight ago, and the Trumpet wrote about it here and here. A group of around 10 foreign ministers, sometimes called the “Berlin Club” or the “Berlin Group,” plan to meet several more times under proposals put forward by German Foreign Minister Guido Westerwelle. The creation of a new “super president” is just one of their ideas. 

There is little evidence the group is as secretive as the Express says. Media reports state that the foreign ministers plan on publishing their conclusion once the series of meetings is over. 

Nonetheless, it is dramatic news and should be on the front page of more than just one newspaper. A new Charlemagne is coming. Continue to watch for him in the headlines.

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