NATO secretary general Stoltenberg at NATO Foreign Affairs meeting John Thys/Stringer

Europe’s New “Indispensable Nations”

President-elect Donald Trump has already undermined the credibility of America's longstanding security guarantee for Europe. The EU should now shore up what it can with respect to NATO and its own integration, while relying on its most powerful member states to provide an alternate security option.

BERLIN – After the shock of the United Kingdom’s Brexit referendum and Donald Trump’s election as President of the United States in 2016, this will be a decisive year for Europe. Upcoming parliamentary elections in France, Germany, the Netherlands, and possibly Italy will decide whether the European Union will hold together, or whether it will disintegrate under the neo-nationalist wave sweeping the West.

Meanwhile, the Brexit negotiations will begin in earnest, providing a glimpse of the future of the EU-UK relationship. And Trump’s inauguration on January 20 may someday be remembered as a watershed moment for Europe.

Judging by Trump’s past statements about Europe and its relationship with the US, the EU should be preparing for some profound shocks. The incoming US president, an exponent of the new nationalism, does not believe in European integration.

We hope you're enjoying Project Syndicate.

To continue reading, subscribe now.



Register for FREE to access two premium articles per month.