The Big Worry in Berlin is Now France and its Eurosceptic Voters
Photo: Tobias Koch
Over the past few months, Europeans have gradually wrapped their heads around the idea that the United Kingdom might actually vote to leave the European Union. Contingency plans were developed to prevent “contagion” and stop the EU unravelling. Yet when Europeans woke up on Friday morning to discover the Brits had actually done it, they, like many of us in the UK itself, were shocked.
In particular, the British decision sent shockwaves through Germany, which finds itself increasingly at the centre of the EU and, as the chancellor, Angela Merkel, said on Friday morning, feels a special responsibility for it. The crisis comes after three others during the last six years, all of which are far from resolved. But Germans see Britain’s decision to leave the EU as an even greater existential threat than the refugee crisis, which had in turn affected them more directly than the euro crisis or the Ukraine crisis.