Let's talk about Europe

Merkel : 1 – Sarkozy : 0

This Wednesday, the Eurozone heads of State and government are in the European Council (Brussels) to find an umpteenth solution to the umpteenth debt crisis. A crisis which is still damaging the relationships between EU Member States, everyone playing the field and everyone getting on the nerves’ others.

Germany warned : the country is ready to pay but not whatever the cost and according to its demands. It does not want to vouch for the Eurozone, although it is constrained and obliged because of the situation. Such an attitude can be explained by some calculations, the Chancellor, within its own government, having to take into account her FDP (liberal) partners who are more and more reluctant to be generous towards Greece but also some weak economies as Spain and Italy ahead, once again.

So, Germany would like to pay the bill but under conditions and with its conditions, defending its interests first and even if it means to get a less ambitious trade-off, which has surely an impact on the European integration and the Franco-German tandem.

A Franco-German tandem which has some difficulties to speak clearly despites their apparent will. Besides, there seems to have a kind of imbalance within the tandem from the moment Angela is imposing herself and imposing her views, driving France as a me-too rather than a leader, even if it means to make Sarkozy more ridiculous.

To such an extent that within the Franco-German tandem, it’s Nicolas who seems to be clearly dominated according to Jean Quatremer, French journalist based in Brussels. According to the “Liberation” correspondent, “France has been stuck to Germany since two years, scaring to see it leaving the ship […] France had to endure humiliation, Berlin sailing without instruments between a ruling coalition gained by the FDP and young euro-sceptical judges”. The French Republic President is clearly aware of this, Germany cannot be ignored to rescue the single currency and only Germany can break the crisis up, as long as it really wants.

Thus, and aware of her importance, the German chancelor takes her time to impose her own point of view better, enjoying to get on Sarkozy’s nerves. This fact remains that this attitude shows German is ready to play a leader’s role not only on the economic scope but also on the politic one, even if it means to contest this role to France, which remains the historic leader. This is the gamble of Merkel and the current crisis gave her this opportunity, an opportunity she is not going to give up.