Recognizing that the Western values and way of life are under attack by the rise of authoritarianism, 

Concerned about the absence of a clear-eyed vision for securing the future of liberal democracy, 

Confident about the role of Europe as superpower and defender of the rules-based liberal world order in partnership with our traditional allies,

Forward Europe is committed to unite Europe into a sovereign political entity, to strengthen its position as a force for good in the world, and to re-establish reason as the governing principle of the liberal world order.

To realize this objective, the Forward Europe Party strives to provide a flexible and democratic structure where all Europeans can obtain information, participate in dialogue and militate for reform through open communications, free dialogue, and participatory action both electoral and non-electoral. 

In accordance with its European values, Forward Europe subscribes to the fundamental rights and freedoms of persons under the rule of law and commits itself to the protection of these essential values and their constant adaptation to the changing needs of modern Europe.

Europe must become the champion of reason in the world

Our Founding Fathers have lived through two world wars, and were the pioneers of a Europe of peace founded on the values of human rights, democracy and the rule of law.

Through their sacrifice, we inherited a Europe which has the human, material, and ideological potential to emerge as the world’s preeminent superpower in the 21st century.

The united Europe of today is the greatest, and one of the very few positive political achievements of the last hundred years. It has proven itself prosperous, peaceful, industrious, restrained, and thoughtful. It is a balancing force for good, and has proven itself a calm voice during bellicose times.

World peace cannot be safeguarded without the making of creative efforts proportionate to the dangers which threaten it.

Robert Schuman

European unity is the continuation and natural consequence of the European tradition of Enlightenment, and in many ways, Europe remains the primary defender of reason, human rights, and freedom in the world today. 

A new approach is needed to reach our potential as world leader

Despite our notable achievements, the European Union’s current form has proven itself vulnerable to a number of challenges:

  • Foreign interference: powerful, large, and cohesive opponents have repeatedly demonstrated their ability and intent to disrupt and subdue our democratic processes
  • Governance: our structure proved unable to provide effective governance and responses to crises including the sovereign debt crisis, immigration crisis, and COVID-19 pandemic 
  • Monetary policy: the usefulness of the monetary policy for the Euro currency area is limited without a common fiscal policy, budget, and banking policy
  • Rule of law: our enforcement mechanisms proved incapable of ensuring the rule of law in Member States where democracy took a turn for authoritarianism
  • Foreign policy: our inability to react decisively in defense of international law and human rights violations, incl. abduction and murder of European citizens by China and Russia
  • Defense: our inability to secure the borders against illegal immigration, human and drug trafficking, and international terrorism

While attempts have been made to deal with these issues individually, the root cause continues to remain unaddressed: the European Union is not designed to be a globally competitive structure. 

These challenges cannot be met in an effective way by the current model. They require a new model of unity, one focused on transforming Europe into a political entity which can be competitive on the world stage. 

The timid behaviour of Europe’s current leaders has allowed our democracy to be penetrated and subverted by foreign actors. Their successes have emboldened these actors to commit human rights violations in broad daylight, against their own citizens and ours.

There will be no peace in Europe if states are reconstituted on the basis of national sovereignty. The countries of Europe are too small to guarantee their peoples prosperity and social development.

Jean Monnet

In international affairs, size matters. Current views of individual competitiveness of European states are outdated; to safeguard our interests, we believe it is in all our interest to pool our sovereignty into a reformed, stronger, and more democratically accountable European Union.

The primary purpose of a united Europe needs to change from regulating interactions between Member States, to establishing a competitive new political entity to stand up for our values and be a force for good in the world. 

To achieve that goal, however, Europe will first need to address its deepest, most fundamental flaw: its introversion. 

Europe needs a bold and inspiring vision to unlock its potential

We are lacking ambition. On climate, defense, economy, foreign policy. 

We want to articulate a bold and radically different vision for European unity, and introduce it into the public discourse by redirecting and repurposing relevant existing currents of opinion.

There are those who believe that being less bold, more compromising, more timid, will make our job easier. However, easy is not the goal. We want to articulate a bold vision, not one that is easy to implement. It is only boldness that can grab the attention and imagination of the public.

If it is to succeed, a European federalist movement should be bold, not timid — our aim is to inspire, not appease.

It is not the addition of sovereign nations met together in councils that makes an entity of them. We must genuinely create Europe, it must become manifest to itself and public opinion, and it must have confidence in its own future.

Jean Monnet

We want to drive European unity by fostering pride in our common purpose: to be a true beacon of peace, light and hope in the world, treated with dignity and respect by all.

In particular, we believe the following should become immediate policy goals of the Union:

  • United military: a single defense force should be established, with the immediate goal of standardizing hardware, tactics, and training, creating a credible blue-water navy, developing flexible response capabilities, and achieving nuclear triad capability
  • Unified taxation: common taxation should be established to fund expenses related to defense, foreign policy, and trade; these categories should be concomitantly reduced from state tax budgets, rendering the impact null or even positive (after synergies)
  • Foreign relations: all foreign relation decision-making authority should be pooled at the EU level, to leverage the size and influence of Europe on behalf of individual states

However, in order to achieve that, we need to first find the institutional courage to reexamine and reform our union from the ground up, from first principles of sovereignty, government, and structure.

The future of Europe must be decided through democratic means

We do not believe in the common wisdom of slowly, gradually broadening the scope of the European Union through the tactical use of crises to centralize decision-making.

In liberal democracies, political legitimacy originates directly from the people, and states are subsequently constituted through the direct consent of the people, expressed in a referendum, to pool their sovereignty together and invest their authority into a government.

Sovereignty is therefore the supreme source of authority in a state, and can be consensually ceded to higher levels of organization (region, nation-state, confederation).

In order to maintain the social contract and the credibility of our democratic institutions, we believe the pooling of sovereignty must take place through the same mechanism it is given: the direct expression of the will of the people. 

Any other method of indirectly eroding sovereignty would violate the fundamental human right of not having one’s body, intellect, or labor being used without consent. Using other mechanisms than the ballot is unjust, and it would irreparably undermine the credibility of the European Union.

Modern civilisation has based its specific foundation on the principle of liberty which states that man is not a mere instrument to be used by others but rather a main autonomous living being.

Altiero Spinelli

In the wake of 2016 and the rise of Euroscepticism, the current European leaders seem to be afraid of the democratic process, and would like to avoid the ballot if possible. This is not an option. The future of the peoples of Europe will be decided through the ballot. Avoiding the ballot only delays the issue and reinforces the legitimacy of Eurosceptic movements. 

We remember the results of the European Constitution ratification process of 2005, and we have learned from its failure. Instead of repeating the mistakes of the past, a new way forward must be devised, anchored in constitutional and political reform, a way which respects the democratic process, gives people a direct voice, and also utilizes democratic representation to deal with such a complex issue in a proper way.

To ensure the continued legitimacy and authority of the European Union, such far-reaching changes should be adopted through a balanced process, distinguishing between two main phases of constitutional establishment: drafting and ratification.

The drafting should be undertaken by a Drafting College, a European group of legislators tasked with negotiating and drafting the Constitution of the European Union, while the ratification should be undertaken by a Ratification Convention, directly elected through popular vote, with the explicit and only task of approving or rejecting the drafted constitution.

In conclusion, one of the most critical aspects in the long-term success of the European Union is that the people should be given a direct voice in shaping it. No other process can have the credibility needed to ensure long-term stability.

Join us and bring back reason into the world

We believe that by working together and leveraging the diversity of our continent, we can achieve our goals and create a better future for all Europeans. We invite all Europeans who share our vision to join us in this effort. 

Together, we can create a sovereign and united Europe that is able to act as a force for good in the world and defend our values and way of life in the face of authoritarian aggression.