The modern world began in Athens and Rome; is it likely to end there too?
Europe, the continent that gave the world democracy, rule of law, tolerance, universities, the industrial revolution and a vast heritage in literature, music and the arts, is looking increasingly frail. Its native population is ageing rapidly. Its countries are burdened with massive amounts of public debt. Its societies are unable to integrate migrants from different cultural backgrounds and risk becoming segregated. The post-war project of European unity is struggling under a quagmire of bureaucracy imposed by the European Union, which suffers from the contempt and frustration of its citizens.
Has unification failed? Will the European Union disband? Will the common currency survive? What does a declining Europer mean for Australia? Is the European crisis a regional phenomenon or does it foreshadow greater troubles for the West?