In the spring of 2017 the European Union breathed a sigh of relief. Against the backdrop of the Brexit and Trump revolts, it finally had some good news, or so it seemed.
At elections in the Netherlands the Eurosceptic Geert Wilders had been contained. Fears that his Party for Freedom would emerge as the largest party and stage a ‘Nexit’ referendum made way for the cold reality of a second-place finish.
Then, in France, the passionate liberal Emmanuel Macron enjoyed a meteoric rise into the Élysée Palace, re-igniting the hopes of liberal internationalists along the way by playing Ode to Joy, the EU anthem, as he celebrated victory.