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By Tony Judt

“I am enthusiastically ecu; no knowledgeable individual may well heavily desire to go back to the embattled, collectively hostile circle of suspicious and introverted countries that used to be the ecu continent within the fairly fresh earlier. however it is something to imagine an final result fascinating, rather one other to consider it truly is attainable. it's 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 guess, a Euro-pessimist.” —Tony Judt

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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.

40} A GRAND ILLUSION? But more even than coal, labor, and dollars, sheer good fortune fueled the vehicle of European unity: the fact that five of Europe's actually or potentially wealthiest countries were among its six founding members; the convenience of waiting until 1973 before absorbing a further three and until the 1980s before being constrained to make room for the poorer lands of Mediterranean Europe; most of all, the peculiar advantage of never having to worry, from 1951 to 1989, about the implications of trying to incorporate into "Europe" even poorer lands to the east.

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.

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