The European Ombudsman
Against the European Commission

What is the decision or matter about which you complain? When did you become aware of it? Add annexes if necessary.

The complaint is about the continuing failure of European Institutions in particular the European Commission to publish the full text of the Schuman Declaration (and publishing an edited version as allegedly the Full Text) and refusal to publish the Charter of the Community of 18 April 1951. The full details of the complaint are in Complaint 1200/2010/ RT.

I have made numerous appeals, written and otherwise, over a period of two or three decades, including letters to the Commission President and other institutions. Some letters were also published on the Web on 30 November 2009. and

I am here replying to latest letter of the director general of the Commission’s Communication DG of 5 July 2010.

What do you consider that the EU institution or body has done wrong?

Following my earlier complaint, 1200/2010/RT, I would like to expose the fallacies in the response I have received from Commission Director General Mr Sørensen of the DG Communication. These answers seem to have been accepted at face value by the Ombudsman. I was not allowed to reply before the Ombudsman closed the case. Following the subsequent recommendation of the Ombudsman, I am therefore renewing my complaint.

The Commission is supposed to be guardian of the treaties. This function requires that the Commission have a clear understanding of what the treaties are, where they are kept and also how to discern the truth and veracity of documents. Unfortunately the Director General Sørensen makes some elementary mistakes in his reply. The officials do not know where to look for the original (which is clearly stated in the treaty) and they have chosen an archive that is obviously the wrong one. This would indicate that the Commission officials do not take their major public function seriously.

(1) The Director General says that he verified the Schuman Declaration with the University Institute of Florence. He need not have gone so far abroad; the answer is near at hand. It can easily be shown that the real Declaration is not the document at Florence, and that the problem document was presumably provided during the Monnet presidency of the High Authority. The Florence archive of Commission documents was only set up by Commission Decision in 1983. Officially it only deals with documents deposited since the European Coal and Steel Community started. Its archives started in 1952. The archive contains a dossier labeled the Schuman Declaration but obviously this does not contain the original of the Declaration. Nor does the archive contain important originals such as the Treaty of Paris, signed on 18 April 1951 or other foundational documents like the Charter of the Community (‘Europe Declaration of Interdependence’). These were apparently never in the Commission archive. (Monnet did not like the word supranational, the foundational, legal term for the Community. ‘I do not like the word supranational and never fancied it.‘ Mémoires p 352.) At best the DG’s alleged Schuman Declaration used so frequently by the Commission and other institutions is a shortened copy introduced by the Monnet team who have been proved to be unreliable when it comes to historical fact.

(2) (a) Where is the original of the Schuman Declaration? The original Declaration is the text of the actual speech that Schuman made on 9 May 1950 in the Salon de l’Horloge of the Quai d’Orsay, the Foreign Ministry building in Paris. Where is it? As might be expected, it is deposited at the French Foreign Ministry archives. Is it a secret matter, kept out of public view? Possibly. However, the Commission has at hand an authentic copy of the original text. It is annotated with corrections in the handwriting of Robert Schuman. It contains the full text of the introduction that set the geopolitical context and describes the importance of the initiative. These vitally important paragraphs are always omitted from Commission publications. They are reproduced in colour facsimile in the book, ‘Un Changement d’Espérance’ published only in 2000 (fifty years after the event) by the Jean Monnet Foundation (JMF). A copy is to be found in the Central Library of the European Commission in Brussels. The book says that one copy of the important introductory paragraphs of the Declaration is to be found in the archives of the Jean Monnet Foundation, which also holds important private papers of Schuman. The last words are ‘Voici cette décision, avec les considérations qui l’ont inspirées.’ According to this book, Schuman’s corrected text of the rest of the Declaration is to be found at the French Foreign Ministry. It should be noted that the pages of the typescript are numbered and that page 3 starts with the phrase ‘La paix mondiale …’ (That is the part that the Commission uses with some changes on .) That page numbering would indicate the full text with Schuman’s corrections in his own hand is probably in the Ministry. The JMF copy of this first part of the Declaration is typed on a different typewriter and the book says that this is to be found at the JMF at Lausanne, Switzerland.

(2b) Mr Sørensen says that as part of celebrations on 9 May 2010 a reconstitution of the Schuman Declaration took place at the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs. He did not say if this and the ‘re-lecture of the Schuman Declaration’ also at Paris included the full text. If not why not?

(2c) The list of events he supplies supposedly for the sixtieth anniversary of the Schuman Declaration includes many events having nothing to do with Schuman (Chopin, Nikowitz, cocktail parties and discussions of Gaullist ideas like ‘Franco-German engines’, which Schuman opposed. Why is the Commission spending money supporting anti-communautaire ideas? ) The letter fails to say how much money was spent directly on the Schuman Declaration celebrations (not Schumann Declaration as was written) compared with the fraudulent 50th Birthday campaign of 2007, called ‘Together since 1957’. That PR event, aimed unsuccessfully to try to make people like the Lisbon Treaty without its being published, was in total contradiction to the Community Charter. In the Charter the Founding Fathers declared that 18th April 1951 should be commemorated as the day creating ‘the true foundation of an organized Europe’ and Europeans should be free to choose.

3 (a) The French Foreign Ministry is also the Depository of the original text of the Treaty of Paris. According to Article 100 of the Treaty there is only one authentic copy and that is held in Paris. Certified copies of the Treaty are to be sent to Member States.

(3b) The French Foreign Ministry is presumably the legal Depository of the Charter of the Community, the Europe Declaration of Interdependence. This document is of primary importance as it represents a signed agreement of all the Founding Fathers, the plenipotentiaries of the Six. It defines the spirit and purpose of the European Community. However it is not clear whether the French Ministry sent copies of the Charter of the Community to Member States. It is hard or almost impossible to find. After Schuman left the Foreign Ministry {in early 1953} it came under even stronger Gaullist control. The Charter is printed in books about the Treaty and is in newspapers of the time. This Charter is, by some considerations, more important than the treaty itself as it describes the principles on which Europe should unite, such as freedom of thought and the free and wholehearted action of the people. In it the Founding Fathers defined the federating principle for organizing Europe as supranational democracy. Schuman puts the Charter in the category of the Magna Carta for Europe.

What, in your view, should the institution or body do to put things right?

The European Commission has refused over decades to publish its foundational documents because presumably the documents insist that all treaties should be democratically agreed and not forced through against the wish of the people.

(1) The Commission should publish a full apology for not having published these documents in more than half a century (when de Gaulle took power). (2) The full text of the Schuman Declaration with the introduction and the corrections of Schuman should be published prominently with an explanation. (3) The Charter of the Community should be given major prominence and presented to the public by the Commission itself with a full explanation of what is meant by supranational democracy, how it provides the true foundation for Europe, how the five supranational institutions are to work together in this democratic system, which is ‘open to all European countries’ and where people are ‘free to choose’. (4) These documents should remain the major documents in all publications explaining the astonishing introduction of peace in Europe after more than 2000 years of continuous warfare and the creation of a true foundation for organizing Europe for works of peace.

Please treat my complaint publicly

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