So claims Timothy Garton Ash, in an unintentionally moving attempt to say something inspiring about the new Europe. Ash is a sincere man and, one suspects, the owner of a good heart. But to write of rebirths in a continent sinking into depopulation is beyond inept . Ash illustrates the problem described by Weigel below. He writes about the past with some feeling. He concludes that all Europeans can unite around “food and football” – again, an unintentional parallel to bread and circuses that, I believe, will become the EU battle-cry. He sounds vaguely aware that something is missing from the mix, but is utterly clueless about what that might be. Abe Lincoln could tell him: Europe is missing a proposition around which it can unite, and toward which people, as individuals and communities, can aspire.