Lieber, Robert J. (2004) The European Union and the United States: Threats, Interests and Values. ACES Cases No 2004.1. UNSPECIFIED.
Europe’s relationship with America is intimate and yet troubled. Some have predicted that the expanded European Union (EU) of twenty-five countries, reaching from the Atlantic to the Russian border and with a population of 460 million people, a common currency and aspirations for a common foreign and defense policy will emerge as a powerful competitor to the United States. European resentment of American political, economic and military predominance is real, and disputes have multiplied over a wide range of issues, from Iraq to the International Criminal Court to genetically modified foods. Many foreign journalists, authors and politicians offer strident criticism of American policy and it is by no means excessive to ask whether the United States and Europe may now be on the verge of a divorce in which their alliance of more than a half century collapses or they even become great power rivals. A number of European leaders have proclaimed their vision of an EU comparable to the United States and – in the view of some – one that can act to counterbalance America. The former head of the European Commission, Romano Prodi, observed that one of the EU's chief goals is to create “a superpower on the European continent that stands equal to the United States.” For his part, French President Jacques Chirac, has said that “we need a means to struggle against American hegemony.” Germany and France, in cooperation with Russia, not only opposed the U.S. on the use of force against Saddam Hussein’s Iraq, but Chirac and his Foreign Minister, Dominique de Villepin, took the lead at the United Nations in opposing the American policy and in organizing an international coalition against it.
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