In the second half of the twentieth century, Germany became the dominant political and economic power in Europe - and the arbiter of all important EU decisions. Yet Germany's leadership of the EU is geared principally to the defence of German national interests. Germany exercises power in order to protect the German economy and to enable it to play an influential role in the wider world. Beyond that there is no underlying vision or purpose.In this book, former British ambassador in Berlin Paul Lever provides a unique insight into modern Germany. He shows how the country's history has influenced its current economic and political structures and provides important perspectives on its likely future challenges and choices, especially in the context of the 2015 refugee crisis which saw over 1 million immigrants offered a home in Germany.As Britain prepares to leave the European Union, this book will be essential reading and suggests the future shape of a Germany dominated Europe.
Sir Paul Lever was British ambassador to Germany from 1997 to 2003. During his earlier diplomatic career he specialised in European political, economic and security issues. His postings included service in NATO, in the European Commission, as chairman of the Joint Intelligence Committee and as EU and economic director in the Foreign Office. From 2004 to 2010 he was chairman of the Royal United Services Institute.
'Timely and enlightening, Paul Lever's insightful book tells us why Germany is vital to Europe and why Europe is so essential to Germany’ - Peter Mandelson
‘In this cool, shrewd and richly detailed account of Germany in Europe, a former British ambassador analyses Berlin's rise to dominance. Without panic or illusion, Paul Lever is mercilessly clear about the decline of French influence in the EU, leaving Mrs Merkel's Germany effectively in control of a Union whose structures closely reflect Germany's own. 'The EU is Germany writ large'. But Paul Lever, confident in German democracy, thinks that this power will not be misused, not least because Germany has no clear idea of how the EU should develop. Europe suits Mrs Merkel as it is, and Lever - contrary to current pessimism and alarm - predicts that in 20 years the European Union will not be radically different.’ - Neal Ascherson
‘Paul Lever has had a long and close relationship with Germany, and knows it and its leaders well. His book is required reading in Britain, where we are astonishingly ill-informed about the country that will matter most to us as we negotiate our exit from the European Union.’ - Lord Jay of Ewelme
‘Paul Lever’s insights cannot be ignored by the politicians, diplomats and negotiators who will be charged with charting our, as well as the EU's future, in the next few years.’ – Gisela Stuart MP
‘Readable and dispassionate…should be required reading for UK policy makers’ - Ben Bradshaw MP
Publisher: I.B.Tauris & Co Ltd.Hardback
Publication Date: 29 Mar 2017
Number of Pages: 288