4/2020

 

The Fourth number Autumn) is intitled to Karl Popper. On cover.


the Dossier is realized through the prestigious collaboration with the Diplomatic Studies Circle of Rome of which he is Co-President.
This year, the covers will be dedicated to the great protagonists of western rational thought.
The focus is signed by Domenico Letizia.
The postponement of the first edition of the International Festival of European Geopolitics in early 2021 is presented in this numeber.

 

THE AFTER IS NEVER LIKE THE BEFORE

Editorial

Editorial

THE AFTER IS NEVER LIKE THE BEFORE

The 1900s was characterized by a series of crucial historical moments, between two world wars and at least one economic crisis recognized as epochal (1929). The beginning of the third millennium and its first century of life saw (as well as the continuation of a series of regional wars) another economic crisis to be cataloged as a watershed, which was that of 2008 and which led to a memorable series of changes in mentality and classification even between states. Think of Russia's current realignment among regional powers after the fall of the Wall or China's appearance as a superpower (despite its status as a developing country means that it makes fewer contributions than Italy to the United Nations! ). However, perhaps no one except some science fiction or political fiction writers and Bill Gates, could have imagined the current scenario determined by the world health crisis caused by the covid 19 virus. It is not yet clear what the consequences of this crisis will be on the world economy and what it will be the countries and social classes that will suffer the most and benefit most from it. We'll see. However, paraphrasing not the head of Confindustria but the relativity theorist, those who will be ready to seize the times and their opportunities will be the winners while the losers will be those who will not be able to understand and interpret the future. That future already described a few years ago by Alec Ross in his book (horrible title in translation) "Our future" where five crucial points to understand the progress of the world (especially Western) were described and analyzed (read them). For our part, we believe that quality and innovation continue to be flags not only to be raised nonsense. But why not seize the moment to give Italy back its physiognomy upset by almost half a century of social bureaucracy? Why not take the opportunity to return to an avant-garde cultural humanism? There is a theme that is particularly dear to us.

From 1230 to the Black Death of 1348, Italian culture was produced in small towns: Giotto works and paints in Padua, the Rimini School of Painting flourishes; Spoleto and Assisi shine and are filled with masterpieces, the mathematician Fibonacci, the architect Mattaponi and the sculptor Pisano work in the peninsula. In the following centuries we witness a hierarchization of territories, with a capital that dictates the law (literally) and the periphery watches it. Things have changed with the phenomenon of globalization (is the virus a corollary of globalization?). Silicon Valley is not New York. Finance crushes the real economy which is local production. Returning to the local would not mean embracing the identity and local ideology as opposed to the universalist and globalist one, but rediscovering an individual quality of life that allows us not to conflict with the globalization of finance and low cost industrialism. Rebuilding human relationships and regaining one's own desire to experience the environment, the home, the family, the city (not the unmanageable metropolis) could be the added values ​​of the era of smart working. Transforming a need in times of crisis into an opportunity for the future.

On the European diplomacy of Italy

On the European diplomacy of Italy

Pietro Calamia

To understand a little more what Italian diplomacy has done in the integration process, today we have three excellent volumes - Silvio Fagiolo, The idea of ​​Europe in international relations, Milan, Franco Angeli, 2009; Rocco Cangelosi, The constitutional twenty years of the European Union: testimonies of a diplomat at the service of the European cause, Venice, Marsilio, 2009; Roberto Ducci, The hopes of Europe (scattered papers 1943-1985), edited by Guido Lenzi, Soveria Mannelli, Rubbettino, 2007 - each of which makes a contribution to this analysis, but actually perhaps something more will one day need to be sought to do to assess from within what the role of Italian diplomacy in the process of European integration was.

In Silvio Fagiolo's book there is an absolutely acceptable analysis of the roots of European integration, Franco-German reconciliation, and the Russian-American confrontation even before the Franco-German reconciliation. There is some justification for this statement, if we consider (I always quote from Fagiolo's book), that Altiero Spinelli, upon Stalin's death in 1953, wondered if the process of European integration would not have stopped; that is, a federalist of Spinelli's depth also saw between the East-West confrontation and the process of European integration as a link that probably escaped other personalities of that period. In the book by Rocco Cangelosi there is a precise and exhaustive testimony of the role of Italy even if, and I believe this goes to the honor of the diplomat, I found more federalist than diplomatic accents in some of the analyzes. I am not saying this in a critical sense, there is a federalist coating on the diplomatic role of Italy that deserves to be emphasized. In Ducci's book, if I can honestly say it, I often have the impression that the hand of the writer prevails over that of the historian, and this too is intended as a compliment. I will quote a passage from Ducci's book that seems to me to be the most fundamental even if, and this for those who met Roberto Ducci is not a reason for surprise, there are here and there in the book some fulminating jokes. I can't resist the pleasure of citing one, taken from a creed of 1964: Kissinger thinks of embarrassing de Gaulle by asking him how he could have prevented Germany from dominating Europe and de Gaulle, without smiling, replied " wars “.

Let's forget all this, but it is typical of that testimony that Ducci has always been able to provide of his vision and interpretation of the relationships between the great personalities of our time. I therefore return to the role of diplomacy; if at the origin there is the intuition, the vision of many men, often frontiers, such as Adenauer, Schuman, De Gasperi, what I would like to emphasize is that the process of European integration has so far walked on the legs of diplomacy, of diplomatic negotiation. This is why I confess that sometimes I don't understand some reservations about the diplomatic process. Guido Lenzi spoke of the art of conspiracy, this can feed suspicion; but in reality, in the complex equilibrium of our continent, without careful and discreet diplomatic negotiation, we probably, indeed I can certainly say, would not have reached where we have arrived.

In the preface to the book by Rocco Cangelosi, President Giorgio Napolitano significantly writes about the single act that at its conclusion it was considered to be renouncing, but that the subsequent judgment, as regards the scope of the single act and its political consequences and institutional, has completely overturned that judgment. I am quoting this because, apart from the authority of the president, in my opinion it constitutes a further confirmation of what has been the validity of the diplomatic method. If we had had to listen to the most advanced visions of my federalist friends, for example, we probably wouldn't have even reached the signing of the single deed in 1986. And here the quotation from Roberto Ducci seems justified, writes Ducci:

"Europeanism never becomes an expression of the conscious will of one or many European governments, in the sense that the abdication of the highest sovereign powers of the state - in defense, foreign policy, fiscal and budget policy - in favor of a government and a European federal parliament has never been explicitly part of the program of any government in Europe”.

I believe there is no need to comment. Let's say that when analyzing the role of diplomacy in the process of European integration, this assessment must be taken into account, which corresponds to reality. This is a writing from 1964, but in 2010 the situation did not change.

Very briefly I would like to make some further considerations on the role of Italian diplomacy.

The first: do we want to remember that Roberto Ducci chaired the drafting committee for the treaties of Rome? That is, for the founding act of the European adventure, the Treaties of Rome, it was an Italian diplomat who presided over the proceedings. There is a suggestive page, partly cited in the volume, but Ducci referred to it in greater detail on another occasion, when at the Castle of Val Duchesse, in Brussels, Spaak turned to him asking if there were other problems open to discuss the treaties, which were evidently not yet "of Rome", and Ducci with a certain prudence replied "to my knowledge, no". Spaak then declared the discussion closed and the treaties approved for subsequent signature in Rome.

Second consideration: at the end of the 1960s the European Parliament had no power, not even in budgetary matters; the first battle to give the European Parliament a very limited budgetary power in the framework of the negotiations for the Community's own resources, in '69 -'70, was by Aldo Moro who wanted, insisted and obtained that a minimum budgetary power in the European Parliament was insured for the so-called non-compulsory expenses. It is not important today to know what they are, it is enough to know that they were only 5% of the Community budget and countries wary in this field wanted it to be put on the record of the Council that it was estimated that the non-compulsory expenses (the Harmel list) did not exceed 15% of the Community budget. It was the first small budgetary power that was recognized in the European Parliament, within the framework of its own resources.

Third consideration: another key moment was that of the decision for the direct election of the European Parliament. The European Council of Rome on 1 and 2 December 1975 at Palazzo Barberini was an interminable meeting in which two absolutely opposing theses clashed. Rocco Cangelosi and Silvio Fagiolo remembered him. For the British there were Wilson and Callaghan who did not accept the idea of ​​the direct election of the European Parliament. Wilson argued with great force by objecting on two levels: the first that in Great Britain the political elections were not imaginable at a fixed date - a fixed date - naturally to make an election at the time in the nine member countries - a fixed date was needed - because in Great Britain only the prime minister has the power to choose the date and to call political elections. This was a political objection concerning Great Britain. The second objection, on the other hand, had a general political value: do you want us to hold elections in all member countries of the Community to elect members of a Parliament that has no budgetary powers, has no legislative co-decision powers, has no political powers?

But what is the point of electing a parliament that has no powers in any of these fundamental fields, Wilson argued. The vision of Moro, who presided over the European Council, on this point was much more far-sighted than that of the English: Moro with his calm continued to repeat that an elected Parliament would be able to conquer the powers. And then with his subtlety he added that it would not even be justified to speak of powers to be attributed to an unelected Parliament. It was one of the highest moments of the European political debate that took place at Palazzo Barberini and unfortunately little has been known about it outside (and this is the fault of Italian diplomats). But the decision was made and the English and the Danes, who at first abstained, then joined. What happened next proved Aldo Moro's vision most completely right. The Parliament, elected in June '79, rejected the budget in December '79 and left the Community without a budget until June 1980. The far-sightedness and the ability to understand concerning the powers and role of Parliament was above all Italy. Giscard d’Estaing, for example, certainly supported Moro in this circumstance, but France has a presidential regime. The Benelux countries and Germany are more convinced.

It could go on longer, but I will mention very briefly the institution of regional policy. Certainly, claiming Community action in the matter of backward regions favored Italy in particular, at that time, but it was the political idea of ​​what should have been solidarity between the richer and less wealthy regions in a perspective also in the medium and long term. The protection of the Italian interest at that time must be seen in a medium-long term perspective: how could a European Union that did not have this kind of solidarity policies work today?

To conclude, I would like to say - perhaps I pulled the blanket too far on the side of diplomacy - that of course everyone did their part and also the push of the federalists 6 served for the diplomatic and political action of the Italian government. And the European Union will be able to continue to make progress in this way, even in the future. (From Review of International Political Studies and from the book written by Pietro Calamia, an ambassador at the service of Italy and Europe)

 

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