The progress of European integration has to be judged through the lens of a very long history and without a fixed idea of the final point of arrival. The evolution of common European policies in some key areas shows that, despite the uneven progress, real massive advances have been achieved over the long term, following a specific European path that cannot be expected to conform to previous experiences elsewhere. The long story of the evolution of European federalist ideas is briefly considered. The Euro, the European Central Bank and its instruments of intervention are some of the most significant advances in the integration process but also some of the most controversial. They represent the point of arrival of several centuries of monetary unions attempted or practiced throughout Europe and now forgotten. The inadequacy of the budget and of the fiscal resources of the Union remain a major gap in the construction of Europe, despite the post pandemic program of New Generation EU. Important results have been achieved on the freedom of movement for EU citizens inside the Union. Common rules have also been established for non-EU migrants but the integration of policies on new flows and on refugees still fails to materialise when faced with sudden surges in population movements.