August 22, 2011

EU—Power to the President! There’s a profound leadership gap in Europe. At a time of increasing crisis, commentators are crying out for someone to step up and take the lead in stemming the spread of the euro crisis: “Investors have little if any confidence in eurozone leaders’ ability to stick together in the face of mounting calamity …” (Wall Street Journal, August 9; emphasis added throughout). “Markets can adjust to a downgrade of global growth, but they cannot cope with a spiraling loss of confidence in leadership and a growing sense that policymakers are disconnected from reality” (Financial Times, August 8). “In a sane world, the German chancellor and the French president would sack their economic advisers who clearly lack an understanding of basic economics or national accounting principles” (EU Observer, August 17). “A poll released Friday indicates Germans know little about the current euro crisis—but are overwhelmingly opposed to the way it is being handled by German Chancellor Angela Merkel and French President Nicolas Sarkozy, the two leaders spearheading efforts to solve the crisis” (Spiegel Online, August 19). As the European Union fragments into what will ultimately comprise 10 leading nations, the rest enslaved politically—if not in the fullest sense of the word—to one centralizing power (Revelation 17), the leadership gap is becoming most glaring. Henry Kissinger during the 1970s famously asked the question, “If I want to call Europe, who do I call?” EU elites moved to begin solving that dilemma by creating the office of president of the European Council within the Lisbon Treaty/EU constitution ratified in December 2009. Appointments to that presidency are for a period of 2½ years, renewable once. That position is currently held by Belgian Herman Van Rompuy. The European Council comprises all EU member nations’ heads of state. It sets strategy and direction for the European Union.


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