“Lethal” Europe, anti-missile shield, commercial interests… what to remember from Macron's speech on the EU at the Sorbonne

“Lethal” Europe, anti-missile shield, commercial interests... what to remember from Macron's speech on the EU at the Sorbonne

Emmanuel Macron lors de son discours à la Sorbonne ce jeudi 25 avril. MAXPPP – CHRISTOPHE PETIT TESSON/POOL

A little more than two months before the European election, in a speech addressed to the Sorbonne this Thursday, April 25, Emmanuel Macron painted an Alamist portrait of a Europe which requires a real start of # 39;by 2030. 

A Europe "deadly", in "situation encirclement", which runs the risk of being "relegated" faced with competition from other great powers… the portrait drawn by Emmanuel Macron at the Sorbonne this Thursday, April 25 is far from encouraging. In a rather alarmist tone, the President called for a new start by the Twenty-Seven by 2030. 

"We must be lucid today about the fact that our Europe is mortal, it can die", he insisted in a speech on the future of the EU, seen as his entry into the campaign for the European elections.

Europe's democratic values ​​in danger

"It only depends on our choices but these choices must be made now" because "on the horizon of the next decade, (…) the risk is immense of being weakened or even relegated&amp ;quot;, he told 500 guests, including ambassadors from the 26 other EU member states, students, researchers and the entire government.

The French president spoke of a Europe "in a situation of encirclement" facing the great regional powers and judged that the values ​​of "liberal democracy" European countries were "increasingly criticized" and "disputed".

Strategic autonomy threatened

"The risk is that Europe is falling apart and we are already starting to see this despite all our efforts& ;quot;, warned the Head of State, pleading for a "Europe power", who "is respected","ensures its security" and regains "its strategic autonomy".

In a geopolitical context weighed down by the war in Ukraine, he called on the EU to further strengthen its defense within NATO, mentioning in passing the possibility for it to equip itself with an anti-missile shield.

Emmanuel Macron announced in this regard that he was going to invite Europeans to build a "strategic concept" of "credible European defense". He also called on Europe to strengthen its defense industry and pleaded for a "European loan", a taboo subject particularly in Germany , to invest in armaments.

Business interests to protect

At the commercial level, the French president requested a "review" of European trade policy "by defending our interests", in the face of current practices Chinese and American trade.

"It can't work if we are the only ones in the world to respect the rules of commerce as they were written 15 years ago, if the Chinese, the Americans, no longer respect them by subsidizing critical sectors&quot ;, he declared.

A campaign speech ?

A speech widely considered as an entry into the campaign by the French head of state, while his camp is slipping six weeks before the European elections of June 9, for which the National Rally (RN, far right) is largely in the running. head.

L'Elysée refuted any electoral tactics, affirming that Mr. Macron aimed to influence the agenda" of the next European Commission following the June elections.

Jordan Bardella is organizing a press conference too

According to an Opinionway poll on the European elections of June 9 published Friday, the list of the presidential majority, at 19%, was still far behind that of the RN (29%), but kept a clear lead over that of the socialists (12%).

Echoing the Head of State, Jordan Bardella, head of the RN list for the European elections, will hold a press conference in the afternoon to present his program and try thus imposing a duel at the top.

A legitimacy which will be measured against European reactions. And upon the return of the French who estimate at 57% that the president did not have "real influence" on the EU since 2017, according to an Elabe poll published Thursday.

From Friday, the president will also take the temperature during an exchange with students in Strasbourg, where he will sign a new three-year contract to consolidate the European stature of the Alsatian capital.< /p>

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