The European Union What is it? Why does it interest us?
Where is the EU? And Where is Europe?? Is This the border of “Europe?” Who Knows? How far East Does it go? Are Russians “Europeans”? Are Ukrainians? Are the Turks???
And What is this EU? • This is the hardest question of all • It looks like a state, but does not behave like one, which is really confusing for US Foreign Policy: Is it a State in Denial? • It is a group of countries with no internal boundaries for goods, capital and labor. • It used to be called the European Economic Community but has gone way beyond that.
Netherlands Here it is (2003) Belgium Sweden Finland United Kingdom Ireland Denmark Germany France Luxemburg Austria Portugal Spain Italy Greece
It Grew in Phases Northern States Britain—the “Island State.” Is it Europe? The Core Six Southern States
EU in 2004 Entering 2004
Iceland? Who ever heard of Iceland? 2007 Norway, small country with oil. Happy on its own Bulgaria and Romania are almost certain. Turkey: Is it really Europe? Albania, Bosnia, Croatia, Macedonia, Serbia and Montenegro. Still too unsettled. Sometime inevitably, but not in the near future. The Balkans Switzerland worried about its neutrality
The BIG Problem. • The EU has many of the attributes of a state, but is not a state, and this causes many problems—the most recent being Iraq. A Civil Service (The "Commission') This is where the Power Is, which is why people see the Commissioner more like this A Flag and Ambassadors too A European Court of Justice An Elected Parliament A Common Currency
A State in Denial. • The EU was drafting a Constitution defining human rights and coming close to defining a common citizenry. This was voted down in May 2005. Why? Where does that leave them?
The Real Dilemma • The EU is made up of countries that do not want to stop being countries, e.g. Britain and France. • On the other hand, they have passed to the EU many—I would say most—of the functions of a national government. • The laws passed by the EU are binding on the member states, but they are not produced by the Parliament—so why have one? • Because, if the European Parliament were to have any serious legislative power it would have to come from the individual member states
"I'd like to help you out. Which way did you come in?" This? Or this? The Faceless, Unelected, Unaccountable Bureaucrat.
Why it Interests Us • Defensive Alliance (NATO)—now in tatters? • Cultural Heritage—So What? • Huge Trade Competitor and Rival, and getting bigger rapidly • Europe has caused so many wars, into which the US was drawn • Leading to a new sense of regionalism in the USA • It is our natural trade rival in the world.
And you want to tell me about Democracy! From the European View • A True Paradox • By incremental, and seemingly technocratic means, more and more “rule-making” and “standard-setting” has moved to Brussels • In order to remove “Barriers to Trade” • Each time this happens it diminishes the sovereignty of the nation state • E Parliament ineffective, so decision-making moves to Commission. Not Democracy
Why is this Important to the US: 2? The EU represents, potentially, the only counterbalance to the USA economically and politically. The September 2002 Defense Policy Statement from the US said that it would never allow any country—or group of countries—to rival the military strength of the USA. Right now, the EU does not form any sort of rival in military power to the USA. Why is this?
Why is this Important to the US: 2? • Because the EU is not a state (meaning a country like the US), but a loose grouping of existing countries, it lacks two essential things: • It has no uniform foreign policy. Until now all the member countries have spoken with one voice and voted together. Not since Iraq. Frankly, the US has no-one to speak to in the EU in crises like Iraq.
Why is this Important to the US: 2? The One and Only There is NO Balance of Power • Beside no common foreign policy or voice (there is no equivalent of the Secretary of State), the EU has no combined military force. There is NATO, but that is not European and we will discuss this later. So, the size and wealth of Europe is not reflected in its military strength. France, Britain and Germany may have been world powers once…but not now. Europe could be. But Now?...