The main point of Kirchik in his book is the fact that the European Union which has been known to be stable since the Second World War is now in a crisis. The contributing factor is the ignorance by the European countries on the diminishing once mighty continent. He establishes his argument by pointing out that early leaders struggled to unite the once known region dominated by violence. The author outlines that the early leaders have been replaced by populist who does not understand the struggle that the early leaders went through to ensure the prosperity and stability of the European Union. The article outlines the main factors that are contributing to the decline of the European Union such as; issues of mass migration across borders, issue of BREXIT, Russian expansion aspect and the rise of populism. He uses the trends in seven countries to outline his argument; the states include Russia, Hungary, Germany, France, Greece, Ukraine, and the United Kingdom. In the article, he describes the first instance whereby NATO is reluctant to address the aggressive means used by the Russian president on Ukraine and Baltic states. The Russians rely on the fact that NATO has not responded to the never-ending corrupt nature of the Ukrainian president who is always reelected. Another challenge presented by the author is the rise of nationalist such as the threat of Hungary. The country is ready to receive financial and economic contribution but fails to abide by the values of the European Union. Hungary suppresses the freedom of speech and tolerance of minorities which is among the core values of the European Union. Hungary is not the only country with such perspective since also the Czech Republic and Slovakia are on the same road. The author also outlines the presence and rise of economic and political refugees. The refugees from Islamic states challenges the core values of the European Union of tolerance and liberalism since the populist discriminates against such groups basing on their arguments that they are criminals. The European Union was established based on eliminating criticism based on race or religion yet currently there is increased criminalization of the Islamic faith, the Jewish and the increased violence against women and vulnerable individuals such as the children. The condition reflects the prewar period which was dominated by racial and religious discrimination.
The author is very persuasive in highlighting the current conditions which contribute to his argument of the decline of the European Union. He uses the Brexit condition to portray the failure of the elites to address the inherent issue of immigration which formed the basis of the BREXIT. The main contributor to the point of BREXIT is because of economic stagnation, high unemployment rates, excessive regulations outlines by Brussels, admission of weaker states to the union, free movement of labor and the open-door policy encouraging the middle-east and Africa to conduct business in the European countries freely. Compared to other countries who are adopting nationalism. Germany is moving in a different direction which also endangers the relationship within the European Union. Germany is supporting and accommodates the Russians while it is placing sticker rules on America. America perceives the move as a coalition and partnership which was evident during the preparation of the Second World War. Germany also has an open-policy encouraging the movement of the middle-east countries into their country. N issue which had been addressed by the European Union as being risky since the union has accommodated enough states and an increase will negatively impact its function.
From his article, it is evident of the current approaches that are used by various leaders in the European region through nationalism to gain their lost identity. The case of Donald Trump is an example of the authoritarian approach which was used by Hitler and other early leaders to enhance the aspect of nationality through identity politics. Donald Trump illustrates the issue of immigration which is discussed in the article to outline the increase in immigration rates as the primary cause of the challenges facing America. Trump argues that there is a need to build a wall in the Mexican border to prevent immigration to the United States which is not a good move when human rights are brought into play. The freedom of movement will be limited if such a move is to be implemented. Nationalism might be useful in term of enhancing productivity and development in the country; however, the globalization aspect is limited by such an initiative since such a perspective damages international relations.
Another new trend that approves the authors claim is when the Australian women filled cases in courts concerning instances of rape and groping which were mainly done by the Arab immigrants. The act placed Germany in a problematic condition since their declaration on harsh treatment against middle-eastern men would be viewed as being anti-Islam move. The action disrupts on the open-movement policy since the country has been forced to instill sticker policies on immigrants. The main contributing factor to these issues is the aspect of culture clashes and the increase in terrorist attacks in various countries. Due to competition for resources and public outcry, Sweden and Germany have reduced the number of migrants allowed in the country.