Analyse and essay
The recent entry into office of the new Italian government was received, in media and financial circles, as well as by most European leaders, with a mixture of indignation and concern. How could Italy—one of the founding members of the Union and its birthplace due to the Treaty of Rome—bring to power Eurosceptic, anti-establishment forces likely to jeopardize the stability of the euro and to create unprecedented tensions within the EU? The alliance between the far-right League and the Five Star Movement (M5S) stemming from a leftist, anti-globalization ideology, is regarded by many as the unfortunate confirmation of the rise of all kinds of “populisms” and therefore as a reversal of the virtuous pro-European momentum generated by last year’s election of French President Emmanuel Macron.
Ironically, however, this negative perspective is not entirely shared in Paris, where French diplomats see in the Italian results a validation of their own long-standing priorities on Europe and an opportunity to convince their EU partners to finally follow along...