For some in EU founder member states, the ideal of unity is not the Roman empire, which included London and Constantinople within its boundaries, but Charlemagne’s medieval empire, consisting essentially of France, the Benelux countries, Germany and northern Italy. […]
Franco-German differences are nothing new in EU history. It is possible the two nations will again find a way to keep alive some version of European unity. But if they do, it will be a political federation or fiscal union limited in scope. Nor will all 27 existing EU member states be part of it. If Europe’s luck holds, it will in the future be free. But it will be something less than whole.