Does anyone in Europe care about what is happening on the ‘Euromaidan’ (the new name for Independence Square) in Kiev right now?
Or have austerity and hardship, the rise of far right nationalism and secularism turned a moral European majority into cynics about the European dream?
Europeans fear the tide of immigration – not simply of North Africans on their boats, but those who move along the passage of EU expansion. I wonder if the cries of ‘Yevropa! Yevropa!’ in the frosty air of Kiev are being heard in Paris or Berlin.
The Russian media has sold the story well to those who believe European values are an illusion. They say that the EU is a miserable place to be. Look at what it’s done to Greece or countries on the threshold of membership like Serbia.
There’s an enviable fervour in the eyes of the Ukrainian protesters – young and old. They still believe in something. They want to belong to a community of peoples, who have by and large banished everyday corruption and made their leaders accountable. Many believe they can make a valuable contribution to this community through their own faith and culture.
Cynical Europeans take note. They scorn the EU’s failings, but they do not know how lucky they are to live under its roof and share its values. Spend some time living in a country where there is no rule of law.
Perhaps they should listen to the cries of the Europeans out in the cold in Kiev, and welcome them in.