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Is The U.S. (Still) Ignoring Europe?

Friday, May 6, 2011 - 10:00am

 

"Is The U.S. (Still) Ignoring Europe?"
A delegation of European leaders voice their concerns at a meeting hosted by the World Policy Institute

...

As the U.S. policy establishment focuses on the various crises around the world, many in Europe are beginning to feel neglected. This was the sentiment expressed at a recent discussion hosted by the World Policy Journal and facilitated by the U.S. Department of State’s International Visitor Leadership Program, where a delegation of young policymakers, legislators, and journalists from 16 European nations took part in a lively exchange with WPJ Editor David Andelman and managing editor Justin Vogt.

The European delegates voiced concerns about current issues influencing U.S. foreign and domestic policy, such as the ongoing upheaval in North Africa and the Middle East, and the future of U.S.-Pakistani relations.

While the representatives also sought insight into potential candidates for the 2012 presidential election, debating the role of media in shaping public opinion, and the economy—one overarching question stood out: how will these factors influence U.S.-European relations?

The participants felt that the U.S. is collaborating less intensively with its transatlantic counterparts, namely the members of the European Union and the U.K., in addressing vital matters of counter-terrorism, economic recovery, investments in alternative energy, and developmental efforts. Some even mentioned that they believed the Obama administration would make more of an effort to engage Europe than his predecessor. But according to Andelman, with spreading instability and crises in the Middle East and Africa, U.S.-European relations remain a source of consistency and strength.

Indeed, as recent events have demonstrated, neither partner has taken this relationship for granted. The U.S. continues to engage with its European allies on issues that will have long-lasting effects on American foreign policy—participating in the World Economic Forum at Davos, the G8 and G20 summits later this year and, critically, consulting closely with Europe before making the decision to intervene in the Libyan crisis.  

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