Europe is facing change-overs and old ideological ideas loose their meanings. Far older political ideas are experiencing revival. New and independent states are emerging, old states unite into supra-national economical systems.
New guiding ideas, so far, have not shown any power of attraction, or remained diffuse, de Gaulle's "Europe of Fatherlands" as well as Gorbatshov's "European House".
The experience of two world wars was needed to establish at all a type of European conscience which is being represented by the Council of Europe in Strasbourg since 1949. The first Chapter of its "London Statute" says: The first objective is to establish a closer union between the member states to safeguard the ideals and principles which are their common heritage and to further economical and social progress. This should be achieved "by reviewing questions of common interest, conclusions of contracts and resolutions for cooperation in the following areas: economy, social conditions, culture, science, administration as well as preserving and developing of human rights and basic liberties". A so-called second birthday the Council of Europe looks at the 4th November 1950, when the European Convention of human rights was ratified in Rome. - Since 1965 the Council of Europe has a comprehensive Social Charter including the guaranteed right to work.
Unfortunately, in Europe and elsewhere the basic rights have not been realised yet, notwithstanding the Council of Europe and UNO. The separation of the world into the Poor and the Rich, outlawed and privileged people goes through all areas of life; in intranational relations as well as internally in the states themselves. The silent conflict between Poorand Rich is an everyday experience in all the nations. The individual accumulation of material goods and resources at the expense of our fellow-beings is hindering the unfolding of a peaceful culture of co-existence individual and international. There is a lack of convincing ideas of compassionate humanity, a lack of respecting the natural basics of life and a lack of life perspectives beyond individual death.
For our continent, institutional strengthening of the Council of Europe will, for the future act as an indicator of the will of agreement between Europeans. This also applies to the cultural force of integration of states and nations.
In the past the Council of Europe had managed with English and French as official languages. Since the opening of the borders to Eastern Europe and to the Slavic linguistic area holding of 35% of the European population, the demand for communication has been increasing considerably. This development must taken into account.
That is why Europe - as the Textile Network, developed from the European changes, can only become a credible institution of textile-cultural co-operation, if it be first seizing the problems and chances of our own continent which are resulting from a total population of approximately 700 million people.