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Richard Balfe | October 11, 2008 at 15:03
This is a further extract from the EU archival records which you can find here under "1950 - 1956 The Birth of Europe" :-


Determined to find a way out of the deadlock by turning these divisive factors into the ingredients for unity, the French Foreign Minister Robert Schuman made a momentous announcement to the press on 9 May 1950. Inspired by the European plans of another Frenchman, Jean Monnet, General Commissioner of the National Planning Board, he proposed to put the two countries’ joint production of coal and steel within the framework of a strong, supranational structure to be called the High Authority. Designed mainly as a bulwark against a future re-militarisation of Germany and as an effective means of avoiding a steel surplus in western Europe, this sectoral economic integration plan created shared interests that automatically linked the two countries. In fact, it made another Franco-German war impossible. The Schuman Plan also had the advantage of ensuring that the Federal Republic of Germany (FRG) was firmly anchored in the free, western world. The plan, which was immediately welcomed enthusiastically by the German Chancellor Konrad Adenauer, led to the signing, on 18 April 1951, of the Paris Treaty establishing the European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC).

Schuman’s announcement is surely a major milestone in the history of the unification of Europe. It could be seen as the ‘birth certificate’ of the community of Europe. In essence, the Schuman Plan sought to end centuries of Franco-German hostility and to meet the current need for more organisations at the European level. Just five years after the end of the Second World War, there were great hopes for peace and prosperity in Europe.

The entire history is in the archives in flash and are easily read there on the above link.

Posted by: Ken Stevens | October 11, 2008 at 08:18

Resident Leftie
"I'd be in favour of an in/out referendum if when we voted yes, all the "Nos" would promise not to mention Europe for another 30 years if we voted Yes."

I'd accept that deal, provided it works both ways. And the date for the referendum (arranged by any major party) is when...?

Powerful though I am, that particular decision is not within my sphere of influence.

Resident Leftie
"..that particular decision is not within my sphere of influence..."

Damn! I was so sure that you were Gordon Brown, incognito.

We must have a referendum on the Lisbon Treaty soonest.

Brown was economical with the truth regarding these EU symbols. They were excluded from the Lisbon Treaty, but are now reappearing as 'Treaty creep'... thoroughly predictable.

The handling of this financial crisis has also exposed the true nature of the selfish attitude of other countries.

It is about time we looked after our own first and not be hoodwinked by Brown's false hopes that he will lead Europe out of the financial abyss.The Messiah complex must be catching in the Labour Party!

His curtailing of the Bank of England's regulatory powers to control smaller banks and his complete profligacy, has allowed this crisis to fester and explode under his watch.

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