Not long ago, I spent some time with a Romanian socialist member of the European Parliament called Adrian Severin. He is an impressive figure. He is not only a former Romanian foreign minister (1996-97) but also – according to his official CV – the proud recipient of the “Man of the 20th Century Award”. This, in case you didn’t know, is a distinction conferred by the International Biographical Centre, which is something based in the English university city of Cambridge.
Severin was talking to me just after Irish voters said No to the European Union’s Lisbon treaty in their June 12 referendum. What he said has stuck in my mind ever since. “There are countries without which the EU cannot function, and countries without which it can,” he pronounced. Read more