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George Soros: To survive, Europe must recapture spirit of solidarity

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A distinguishing feature of the tragedy I am talking about is that it feeds on hope. Germany is willing to do the minimum but nothing more to hold the euro together. That is how the eurozone becomes permanently divided between creditors and debtors.

This is such a dismal prospect that it must not be allowed to become reality. There must be a way to avoid it – after all, history is not predetermined. When the European Union was only an idea, a fantastic object, it was conceived as an instrument of solidarity. Today, Europe hangs together out of grim necessity. That is not conducive to a harmonious partnership. The only way to reverse this seemingly inexorable fate is to recapture the spirit of solidarity.

Since I am a fervent believer in the European Union as the embodiment of an open society, I have set up an Open Society Initiative for Europe – OSIFE for short – and I have been looking for ways to achieve this goal.

I realized that the best place to start would be where current policies have created the greatest human suffering. Clearly, that place is Greece. Within Greece, the fate of the many migrants and asylum seekers stuck there particularly resonated with me. Clearly, their plight cannot be separated from that of the Greeks themselves. An initiative confined to migrants would reinforce the hostility they face from some in the majority.

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