THE NATIONS: Step Toward the Future

  • Share
  • Read Later

It was one of those small actions that hold hopes and promises far greater than mere words. By a 66-to-7 vote, the lower house of the Dutch States-General approved a constitutional amendment that 1) empowers the national government to surrender legislative, administrative and judicial prerogatives to supranational organizations; 2) authorizes Parliament (by two-thirds vote) to ratify treaties even when they conflict with The Netherlands' constitution, and 3) enables the government, in certain circumstances, to declare war without Parliamentary consent.

The hardheaded Dutch, who learned in World War II that they cannot exist without allies, are already closely bound by common tariffs with Belgium and Luxembourg in Benelux; with three other nations (Italy, France and Germany) in the common iron & steel pool of the Schuman Plan, and in the projected European Army; with all these nations, and eight more besides, in the mutual defense guarantees of NATO. By its latest action, The Netherlands went farther than any nation has before to prepare itself for the rights & duties of a United States of Europe, should that day ever come.