How Europe Can Learn to Stop Worrying and Love Power
Faced with Donald Trump's inward-looking America, Europe must reestablish itself as a true global player, not by attempting to emulate a classic superpower, but rather by consolidating and deploying different types of power. To do so, however, it must address three key weaknesses.
PARIS – US President Donald Trump and European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker may have averted a trade war last month, but the challenges confronting the European Union are far from resolved. In today’s increasingly Hobbesian global environment, the EU can survive only by increasing its capacity to project power – no easy feat for an entity that was formed precisely as a repudiation of power politics.
With the 1957 Treaty of Rome, Europe shed what remained of its militaristic impulses and focused on building a sprawling and peaceful single market. From then on, Europe’s only means of projecting power would be its trade policy.
Yet that policy has never been guided by strategic thinking, leaving the EU with only limited global influence, despite its tremendous success in world markets. The time has come for Europe to reestablish itself as a true global player, not by attempting to emulate a classic superpower, but rather by consolidating and deploying different types of power.