The European Union's commissioners have decided to welcome Croatia as the 28th member of the European Union with a video:
Croatia joined the political bloc at midnight, following over two decades of independence from federal Yugoslavia. The country now faces a fifth year of recession and unemployment of 21 per cent.
The country of 4.4m people, blessed with a coastline that attracts 10m tourists each year, is one of seven that emerged from the ashes of Yugoslavia in the 1990s.
To get to this point, Croatia has gone through seven years of often unpopular EU-guided reform.
The blog Berlaymonster points out that the welcome by Germany's Guenther Oettinger is pretty scary: