March 10, 2005
Bush’s Second Term: Europe Responds
Creative Policy Debate Question 10
As Bush’s recent trip to Europe confirmed, strong transatlantic ties are central to preserving global peace and stability. The nature of terrorist incidents and PR activities of terrorists, demonstrate that their actions, and even those of rogue states, are designed to exploit transatlantic divisions and sway public opinion and influence policy. The recent unified declarations by the United States and France vis-a-vis Syria demonstrate the potential power of transatlantic solidarity.
How can the United States and Europe forge a strategy that also balances other philosophical and political differences?
Participants in the Bush's Second Term: Europe Responds Creative Debate
- Chloe Davies
- Silvia Escobar
- Declan Ganley
- Silvia Hidalgo
- Joichi Ito
- Grzegorz W. Kolodko
- Anatol Lieven
- Kenneth Roth
- David Unger
Work in progress session given where the polic objectives are between USA and Europe. Referenced the Attorney General´s representation at the Democracy conference. Reflecting Bushism´s and his philisophy on foreign policy. Impression being that USA was well represented, but Bush administration not well represented.
[Dimitrios]Transatlantic summit was devoid of Bush administration, only with Kerry support.
[Ken] Lack of Bush representation of top level for key summits on Foreign Policy. At the Democracy Summit no one really effectively spoke about Bush administration.
[Waya] Perception was that the Club de Madrid is a left leaning organization and could not, therefore, attract key Bush representatives, as it was endorsed so strongly by Zapatero.
[Dimitrios] Transatlantic seminar was too optimistic. Too tactical, not deep strategic enough. Interpreted Rice´s policy as too optimistic. No link to radical right wing agenda of Bush administration...no real conflict that was required.
[David] Focus should be on how Europe responds to Bush's Second Term, rather on Bush administration itself.
New thesis based on second Reagan term. Counter terrorism = counter communism. Using similar rhetoric Bush is using now. Salvadorian government lack of support undermine communism policy. Haiti and other communist led regimes consequently failed for the positive result. If we took Bush rhetoric seriously can we come out in a positive way?
Central Europe in strong support of Bush and his rhetoric. Especially for Nato. Bush policy is short sighted as his leadership is based around him, not through him. It is hypocrisy as rhetoric is shaped in a certain way that is easily bought by different countries. Who is leading the show...what show? Blair leading a new agenda with the G8, presenting commission with a new agenda focusing on core cause of terrorism being exclusion and poverty. Democracy vs. Fighting poverty - there should be a bridge between the two.
The USA administration does not support dictators because they are dictators, they are supported either for economic or geopolitical reasons. Based on history it is difficult to see to get rid of a dictator as they are part of terrorism(?)
Trends studies and Human rights facts in Philipines, democracy has not really made a hude amount of difference. Chili is different, it is able to embrace democracy better than say Philipines for many complicated reasons. Sees it as cynical given historical references and trends from the past to see American orientate its policy to other than satifying a means to an end, rather than for democracy.
[Grzegorz] There was no alternative other than when Saddam Hussein as in charge. Driving force for Yeltsin was not necesarily purely democracy, but more to do with pure power and influence.
[David] Climate change and Africa new agenda for G8. USA to water down both pre July. Europe has an American role - what are the ways Europe can pre July develop a positive working relationshp with USA.
[Dimitrios] Late 80´s cold war was being won which is different to today´s world where there is no longer two clear open sides. Europe, tactically, should entangle wit with their rhetoric - should dance together. Growth of Americanology - policies were not so different to the real society. Whilst now we see much deeper changes occurring in USA society, which go for or against existing USA policies, which is different from before. Much deeper cracks occurring in USA society than before. Maybe Europe could strategically be focusing on alternatives to this over a longer term.
[David] Let´s re-address the debate to more about how Europe reacts. Let´s put together cooperation at a practical level as a Europe together.
[Anatol] Oil in Africa is the reason for USA interest in Africa - added to the inflamatory competition with China.
[Chloe] How can Blair and company be so supportive of Bush administration, when blatantly Bush negated European authority before. So why does Europe cooperate?
[Dimitrios] Europe wants to see Iraq resolved; USA still is the key country to do business with. Bush rhetoric also seems very open-ended compared to Reagan rhetoric. UK believes they can steer the USA in one way or another...
[Chloe] What else can Europe do?
[David] USA and Europe need to keep on talking atleast (Condie Rice).
[Waya] Europe has to engage with America; Europeans cannot shirk responsibility - but they do - as they let USA spread their policy across the world especially when you are in support of the existing policy thrust.
[Ken] EU is not speaking as one voice; it is very hard to get 25 governments to agree, stalemate works well for the growth process as lowest common demominator. Major changes required as anonyminity should not be allowed to continue.
[Dimitrios] The issue may be to do with EU military presence, and heavy reliance on USA military reliance on security via military investment.
[David] Who can take on the USA military role in today´s world?
[George] What is it that is going to make the Bush administration accept what the EU proposes. Can we see this happening?
We need to see all of this from a longer term perspective. We are at the beginning of the end of USA might. Bush has neglected Russia and China as potential partners - Europe has not turned its back on these two tiger markets, and Africa is also important for the future world economy. Attitude of USA - why should they care about Africa, other than oil? Why does Europe have to be increasingly reliant on USA as the world powers shift in an increasingly globalized planet? Weakening of transatlantic relationship rather than strengthening.
[David] How can we change the USA atitude to a potentially pragmatic relationship.
How does European policy affect USA electorate? Does it at all? Does it really affect USA at all? If Bush joins the African policy put forward by Bush and Blair it would be a win-win for all.
EU has to look at other countries other than USA. Trade however could be a constraining, or opportune force in this regard. USA has broken the pot, but everyone is part of the mess. Let USA maybe come to EU for help, and EU could offer a compromise to say Iraq policy. We may have to wait for USA to suffer in Iraq for this to happen. This could be an indirect policy directive: Eu to play a dominant role in administering in Iraq by allowing USA to fail further in Iraq.
EU: to do this requires a different decision making role.
USA: "What can Europe give us" Iraq help.
This is very difficult. Other ideas: USA want help on arms sales to China; Iran foreign policy facilitation; Further help on Afghanistan. In return USA should help on climate change and Africa, Tony Blair's agenda - agreement on Africa and climate change, Geneva convention and International Law (Torture & Human rights.) So a deal should be made based on this compromise, and then to sell to the American people.
Bargain deal, 3 elements; Iraq, Iran, Israel and Palestine. Climate change difficult, and Africa also difficult as a bargain point as it only really appeals to European electorate. So have to focus on top 3.
Dimitrios also sees Geneva Convention and Africa as low level importance to USA.
Bigger question at hand here; who is Europe, and its voice? Europe's voice is not mandated by populace of Europe - not democratically accountable. Europe and the USA must remain a positive influence on each other, and develop a new trasantlantic agenda beyond NATO. Develop a new treaty of Rome such as the 1959 one with the USA. They should aspire to a closer union with Europe.
[Anatol] Non starter for USA as it sees itelf as a highly sovereign animal and is allergic to treaties (Geneva Convention, Kyoto etc).
[David] Two types of policy; pragmatic deals, or treaties with USA.
[Dimitrios] Recognize differences and project European vision into USA society to secularize the USA religious/societal way of being.
[Declan] Should have a right to vote for everyone. The treaty of Rome was so aspirational when it was signed.
[Declan] Lack of deeper alignment with USA could lead to deep-seated drifting over longer period of time away from USA.
[Grzegorz] Current terrorist situation is a result of total neglect from all sides. Issue has been around for many years. Transatlantic treaties would pull away the focus from core issues of security provision potentially for the future. USA is happy to see Ukraine join the EU as it will make Russia weaker. Turkey in EU is positvely accepted for security reasons. Union of USA and Europe would discriminate against rest of poorer world, and would not assist with a response to global challenges.
[David] So, we can build Europe up as a stronger independent power away from USA influence.
[Charity] How can we overcome sovereign issue to make deals easier to come by.
[Waya] USA and Europe can cooperate via Lebanon now.
[Anatol] Cannot be any serious alliance when continuous agreement takes place. Nigeria could be a place where differences could be ironed out.
[Dimitriou] Try to prevent civil war in Lebanon with Syrian troop withdrawal.
[Ken] Procedural proposals cannot be sorted in the short or long term (IMF etc); focus should be on current areas of potential agreement to build some kind of working alliance. There is room for bargain in some areas.
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