El nuevo impasse transatlántico

WASHINGTON, DC – La reciente gira europea del senador Barack Obama sugiere que el senador de Illinois es el favorito de Europa para ser el próximo presidente de Estados Unidos. Pero los europeos no deberían esperar demasiado. Si bien Obama probablemente le devolvería la civilidad y la cortesía al discurso transatlántico, las fuentes de fricción son más profundas. Los intereses geopolíticos de Europa y Estados Unidos se han estado distanciando, y pueden seguir haciéndolo, no importa quién sea el presidente.

Interrumpir este alejamiento progresivo demandará cambios importantes en la perspectiva y la política a ambos lados del Atlántico. Estados Unidos tendrá que dejar de definir sus intereses transatlánticos en términos de su mentalidad hegemónica, y Europa deberá asumir un control más pleno de su propia región.

Hablar de intereses “geopolíticos” subraya la influencia de la geografía a la hora de darle forma a esos intereses. Como alguna vez coincidieron Charles de Gaulle y Winston Churchill: “Cuando se dijo y se hizo todo, Gran Bretaña es una isla; Francia, la capa de un continente; Estados Unidos, otro mundo”. Ambos entendían que, durante siglos, el Canal de la Mancha había sido una monumental barrera geopolítica para que Gran Bretaña y Francia pudieran compartir sus intereses de manera duradera. Si el Canal ha sido una barrera semejante, los lazos duraderos a lo ancho del Atlántico parecen improbables.

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