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Ημερομηνία

Louise Weiss - Campaigner for liberty

20-11-2019

Throughout her career in the public eye, Louise Weiss was both a writer and an activist. She was among those who promoted the European ideal on the basis of their experiences during the First World War. Like many other people who were similarly influenced, Louise Weiss was a product of the borderlands, her family having come from the part of eastern France that had been annexed by Germany in 1871. Louise Weiss devoted her life to various campaigns, which can be seen as having been mutually reinforcing ...

Throughout her career in the public eye, Louise Weiss was both a writer and an activist. She was among those who promoted the European ideal on the basis of their experiences during the First World War. Like many other people who were similarly influenced, Louise Weiss was a product of the borderlands, her family having come from the part of eastern France that had been annexed by Germany in 1871. Louise Weiss devoted her life to various campaigns, which can be seen as having been mutually reinforcing: the battle for women's rights, the battles for Europe and for freedom for the nations of central Europe, and the intellectual struggle to analyse and eradicate the roots of war. At different times in her life, she was a journalist, a politician, a committed intellectual and a maker of documentary films in many parts of the world. Her commitment to Europe remained the underlying theme of everything she did, and in 1979 she successfully stood as a candidate in the first elections to the European Parliament by direct universal suffrage. As the oldest member of the assembly, she gave the inaugural speech, before handing over the presidency to another woman who had campaigned for Europe, Simone Veil. Today, the building in which the European Parliament has its plenary chamber in Strasbourg is named after Louise Weiss.

Walter Hallstein: First President of the Commission and visionary of European integration

11-07-2019

When Walter Hallstein became the first President of the European Economic Community Commission, in 1958, a long career already lay behind him: legal scholar, university professor, research manager, diplomat and German government representative at the conferences drafting the founding treaties of the European Coal and Steel Community and then the European Economic Community. The federalist ideas he developed and the emphasis he placed on supranational institutions remain among his most important legacies ...

When Walter Hallstein became the first President of the European Economic Community Commission, in 1958, a long career already lay behind him: legal scholar, university professor, research manager, diplomat and German government representative at the conferences drafting the founding treaties of the European Coal and Steel Community and then the European Economic Community. The federalist ideas he developed and the emphasis he placed on supranational institutions remain among his most important legacies. Equally significant was his administrative capacity to build an institution of a completely new type and to anticipate policies that seemed utopian at the time but turned out to be necessary many years later. This impetus to push for further integration earned Hallstein strong opposition from several national leaders, and eventually led to his precipitous departure. This briefing recalls three principal aspects of Hallstein's life: as a scholar and research administrator, as a protagonist of German foreign policy and, of course, as a crucial architect of the early period of European integration.

Jean Monnet, 'the inspirer'

27-11-2017

Born into a family of cognac merchants, Jean Monnet began a globe-trotting career as a very young man before deciding to throw all his energies into Franco-British cooperation during the First World War. After the war, he took a post at the League of Nations then returned to the family business, only to head off again, to the United States of America and China as an investment banker. During the Second World War, Monnet worked first in London, again promoting Franco-British cooperation, and then ...

Born into a family of cognac merchants, Jean Monnet began a globe-trotting career as a very young man before deciding to throw all his energies into Franco-British cooperation during the First World War. After the war, he took a post at the League of Nations then returned to the family business, only to head off again, to the United States of America and China as an investment banker. During the Second World War, Monnet worked first in London, again promoting Franco-British cooperation, and then in Algiers, where he helped to establish the French authorities that moved back to Paris when the war ended. He was then appointed Commissioner for 'the Plan', France's national economic blueprint. Largely responsible for drafting the Schuman Declaration of 9 May 1950, Monnet pursued his mission with plans for a European Defence Community, for Euratom and for the European Economic Community. After 1955, he continued to influence events through the Action Committee for the United States of Europe, working on economic and monetary matters, promoting United Kingdom membership of the European Community and establishing the European Council. Monnet's entire life was shaped by the world wars and the necessity of forging agreements between people, regardless of their nationality, to tackle shared challenges. That is why he is universally recognised today as one Europe's founding fathers.

Helmut Kohl, citizen of Europe

29-06-2017

Helmut Kohl died on 16 June 2017 at the age of 87. The father of German reunification and a strong supporter of European integration, he leaves a long-lasting legacy.

Helmut Kohl died on 16 June 2017 at the age of 87. The father of German reunification and a strong supporter of European integration, he leaves a long-lasting legacy.

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