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By Tony Judt

“I am enthusiastically eu; no knowledgeable individual might heavily desire to go back to the embattled, together opposed circle of suspicious and introverted countries that used to be the eu continent within the fairly contemporary previous. however it is something to imagine an final result fascinating, rather one other to consider it's attainable. it truly is my rivalry actually united Europe is satisfactorily not going for it to be unwise and self-defeating to insist upon it. i'm hence, i assume, a Euro-pessimist.” —Tony Judt

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The men who produced this precious resource were still the proud aristocracy of a traditional labor force. By I960 Western Europe's industrial dependence on coal had fallen to just 48 percent, and it dropped further still in the coming decade. But in the first fifteen years after the war Europe was spared the political and economic upheavals that ensued from this dramatic change; more to the point, without the vital role that coal had always played, and was expected to continue to play, in the domestic economies of the time, the shared interest of the West European states in forming an international economic community might have been much less obvious.

Even more tellingly, the Federal Republic had a positive balance of trade with the rest of Western Europe in 1949 by the export of raw materials, notably coal. A year later its trade balance was in deficit—it was already consuming its own raw materials. By 1951 West Ger- {31} TONY JUDT many had begun the first of the huge trade surpluses that marked its economic performance thereafter—but now in manufactured commodities. And as Germany went, so, in time, went its partners. The economic "miracle" was accompanied and made possible in Western Europe by social and economic reforms, which had also been postponed for a generation or more.

She was wrong in both cases. {34} A GRAND ILLUSION? 9 percent in 1929, had climbed back to 10 percent by 1980. 9 percent in 1980 (by contrast, the Japanese share of the same index rose nearly 400 percent in the same years). It seems fair to conclude that among European states, what distinguished EEC countries from others was that the former were enabled, slowly, to recover lost ground, whereas the latter never did. By such measures the outstanding accomplishment of the European Community was to put its members back, more or less, where they had once been.

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