After the news made my day, I figured I had get a short comment out. Today it was announced, that the European Union will be awarded the 2012 Nobel Peace Prize. Besides expressing my appreciation for this, my comment serves a second purpose: After my first answer to the challenge in the title, here’s another answer to what the European Union has ever done for us:
It has brought peace.
Yes, as lame and old as the argument seems. The European Union and its preceding steps of European Integration have brought the continent an exceptionally long peaceful period. As a reminder, please have a look at the “list of conflicts in Europe“, which the fine folks at Wikipedia have so nicely brought together. Start a a time of your choosing, whenever you think the countries you’re interested in have been constituted in borders similar to today. Then scroll down through decades and centuries of bloodshed. Our allies of today basically where at each others throats at any given moment. Please note the absence of interstate conflicts between countries who joined the Union or its predecessors during the second half of the 20th century and later.
War between EU member states seems so unthinkable today, that this peace is sadly often taken for granted by many European citizens.
The Nobel Peace Price and the media coverage about it will hopefully remind a few of those people of how extraordinary and grand this achievement really is.