France has voted against! Is that final? It’s up to Europe’s behavior. Naturally, the French “no” would become a tragedy if Europe resigns itself to it. One thing is sure: electors deeply wished to wreck the government. The fact that changes are being made within the government proves that the current situation was recognized in the highest political circles, despite it was too late and improperly done.
France is not an exception. Europe is always the scapegoat of national politics. They talk about “the Brussels’ ones” as though it were an extra-European power, when all that has to be decided must be done under the consent of the member States. What will happen now? The European Council has important decisions to make in two weeks. The unwavering wish to go forward will be more valuable than any speech. Europe is progressing. Europe has left behind past mistakes, its thirst for domination, its blind believes, the military solution of international problems. This new common living culture has already become a reality from long ago. Instead of the law of the jungle, it must be the authority of the law and the responsibility of the strongest towards the weakest which must prevail. This must also be Europe’s attitude towards the creation of a more just new world order.
The ratification process should go on. First of all, in order to achieve a balance, just as it is defined in the Treaty, in the event this is ratified by at least 20 member countries. France will then have the possibility to reflect about its decision, and also have an opportunity for a new referendum. Germany, as a partner country close to France, should not express its opinion with words but with facts. The parties in the Bundestag - which will soon be renewed - should prove that they are openly in favor of the decisions already made by the European Council, and that they will adopt a common position regarding the financial decisions to be discussed at the Council in June. During that European summit, nobody is to think first of elections and the upcoming electoral fight in Germany, diverting away from a common position. And this in the interests of Europe and Germany.

Der Tagesspiegel (Germany)

« Nur nicht resignieren », by Hans-Dietrich Genscher, Der Tagesspiegel, May 31, 2005.