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Alex88 Donating Member (155 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Jul-20-03 05:19 AM
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Becoming the 51st State

May 20, 2003
It's beggars belief, but it is true. Last week, a group of influential politicians who inhabit the rarefied but influential world of Washington DC think-tanks, proposed that US government officials be given the right to sit in on the European Union's inter-govermmental conference, and on meetings of its other executive bodies, so that the USA can keep an eye on the direction Europe is taking. The cat, therefore, is finally out of the bag: American politicians are now so seriously worried that the European Union might be emerging as some kind of independent force, that they are trying to work out a way of preventing this from ever happening.

The suggestion that US officials attend the highest-level European inter-governmental meetings was made on 14th May 2003 by the Center for Strategic and International Studies. The proposal was signed by one of those temporary constellations into which the luminaries of the American political establishment frequently arrange themselves in order to encourage policy to navigate by their lights: Madeleine Albright, Harold Brown, Zbigniew Brzezinski, Frank Carlucci, Warren Christopher, William Cohen, Bob Dole, Lawrence Eagleburger, Stuart Eizenstat, Al Haig, Lee Hamilton, John Hamre, Sam Nunn, Paul O'Neill, Charles Rob, William Roth, and James Schlesinger. That makes four former Secretaries of State, one former National Security Adviser, two former Secretaries of Defense, a former Secretary of the Treasury, a former Secretary of the Department of Housing and Urban Development, a former Director of the CIA, and three Senators.

"Rather, more should be done to reinforce the perception that the 'finality' of Europe is being developed in cooperation with the United States." To this end, the authors of the Declaration suggest that US officials should be allowed to monitor the meetings of the European Convention, the body charged with drawing up a European Constitution, and of the Intergovernmental Conference which will take over from the Convention in the second half of this year. The authors also suggest that, once the new constitution is approved, provision be made for members of the US government to be "associated on appropriate issues with the work of separate European Councils." The European Councils are the meetings of EU ministers which make policy and law for the whole of the European Union, so this means that the states of the European Union, which are among the richest and most powerful states in the world, should invite US government officials to attend their highest-level legislative and policy-making meetings, in order that these officials can ensure that the Europeans do not pursue policies which are independent of, or disapproved by, the American government.

Despite an attempt at overt even-handedness (the document berates American anti-Europeanism as much as European anti-Americanism) the authors make no suggestion that the transatlantic relationship is or should be a relationship between equals. Instead, it is a relationship between hegemon and subordinate. The authors make no equal and opposite proposal, for instance, that members of European governments should be invited to sit in on meetings of the US Cabinet, the Pentagon or the National Security Council, so that they can monitor whether decisions being taken there are directed towards what Richard Perle called for in February, namely "a policy to contain our erstwhile ally, France". (1)
This extraordinary document therefore confirms that senior Americans are now seriously worried that the tame EU states might be flirting with the heretical idea that they are masters of their own fate.
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