Voices rise against further EU integration

  • 2013-01-23
  • From wire reports

Imants Kalnins says a federal Europe will be destructive.

RIGA - The continuing onslaught of Western “values” is making Latvia a country without a future; the nation must stand up to it and defend itself, the popular composer and former Saeima member Imants Kalnins writes in an open letter printed in newspaper Neatkariga on Jan. 18, criticizing Latvia’s plans to join the eurozone.
Kalnins says in the letter that Latvia wanted to be an equal among equals, itself manage its economy, develop relations with other countries and decide its own goals in all areas; however, now the nation is being driven like a flock of sheep into a small pen on the outskirts of a federal Europe.

He notes that the problem is not about the euro, but about Latvia’s willingness or unwillingness to become dissolved in a federal Europe, which will be destructive for the Latvian nation.
“All we will have after joining the euro area is more problems if we eventually decide to quit it. The Latvian nation has never voted on joining the federal Europe, therefore this time a referendum is a must. But the question should not be about joining the eurozone, but on joining, or not joining, a utopian project called federal Europe,” believes Kalnins.
The composer writes that the system of Western values is bankrupt and not wanted in Latvia, and that the Latvian nation must stop and think if it really needs to join the eurozone, or perhaps there is another, better way.

On Riga’s Dome Square on Jan. 20, where a large bonfire burned marking the January days spent on the Barricades in 1991, several hundred people gathered for the so-called Awakening manifestation ‘For the Nation’s Life!” The introductory speaker, popular actor Gundars Abolins, emphasized that the event had no political subtext.
Catholic Cardinal Janis Pujats spoke about “principles of a Christian life,” voicing opposition to abortion and same-sex marriage. An emotional address was delivered by now former Auditor General Inguna Sudraba, who recalled that 22 years ago, “God gave us freedom, but we ourselves have rejected it in favor of the ‘golden calf.’”
She declared that “we are gradually losing our freedom,” mentioning that “people are leaving Latvia, land is being sold to others, decisions are made by others, children are no longer being born.”

Sudraba advocated adopting a “new testament” for further existence. “This begins with crossing out [the past] in bold black, and redeeming sins,” she declared.
A minor incident on Dome Square, where people gathered to remember the lives lost at the Barricades, included a young man – born 1990 – who was detained for displaying Nazi symbols.
On hand to help light the bonfire on the square were President Andris Berzins, Prime Minister Valdis Dombrovskis and Saeima Speaker Solvita Aboltina, as well as Riga Deputy Mayor Andris Ameriks. Representatives from the neighboring Baltic States were also present.

About 100 people observed the proceedings.