Presentation on theme: "Power and Weakness By: Robert Kagan. Introduction Europe claims that the United States resorts to force more quickly and that it sees the world as divided."— Presentation transcript:
Power and Weakness By: Robert Kagan
Introduction Europe claims that the United States resorts to force more quickly and that it sees the world as divided between good and evil. Americans tend to seek finality in international affairs and tend to favor unilateralism in foreign affairs.
Introduction Europeans claim that they approach problems with a greater sophistication, trying to influence others subtly. They are also more tolerant of failure; more patient when solutions do not come quickly. They generally favor peaceful responses to problems, preferring negotiation, diplomacy, and persuasion. Europeans are also quicker to turn towards international law and towards international opinion.
Introduction Americans and Europeans hold different views of the world in regards to the all- important question of power. The question of power concerns the efficacy of power, the morality of power, and the desirability of power.
Why? Europeans have also enjoyed a level of free security provided by the United States, and its dealings with issues outside of Europe. Europe is no longer a primary target of agression, while the United States asserts its national dominance.
Modern European Foreign Policy Europe in the past fifty years has developed different perspectives of the roles of power in international relations. Europes perspective evolved after World War II, due to the successful integration of Germany into the workings of the continent once again.
Modern European Foreign Policy Diplomacy, negotiations, patience, the forging of economic ties, political engagement, the use of inducements rather than sanctions, the taking of small steps and tempering ambitions for success, were all tools of the Franco-German rapprochement. The strategy of the German integration helped solidify the current policies of European action.
The U.S. America needs to appreciate the fact that for the first time in a long time European nations are not at war with each other and that their system is working for them. Europes evolution occurred under the security provided by the United States and could not have happened without it.
Introduction Europe is moving away from power towards a self- contained world of laws and rules, in conjunction with transnational negotiation and cooperation. The United States chooses to exercise its power in a world where international laws and rules are unreliable, and where security and the promotion of liberal ideals still depends on military force. When it comes to setting national priorities, determining threats, defining challenges, and fashioning and implementing foreign and defense policies, the United States and Europe have parted ways.
The Power Gap Europe has been militarily weak for a long time, but its weakness has been obscured. World War II destroyed European that had once claimed global power. After the war they were rendered incapable of maintaining their colonial empires. Europe also lost its strategic centrality after the Cold War, which masked its growing weakness. During the Cold War, Europes strategic role had been to defend itself. It was unrealistic to expect a return to a great-power status, unless Europeans were willing to reallocate resources to military programs.
The Power Gap With the creation of the EU, Europe had hoped to regain its power. Incidents in the Balkans during the 1990s displayed the ineffectiveness of Europe in dealing with conflict. It served to demonstrate Europes weakness. However, the incidents in the Balkans allowed America to demonstrate its power single handedly.
The Power Gap In the 1990s the collapse of the Soviet empire increased Americas strength in relation to the rest of the world. America stood unopposed. European military capabilities fell behind those of the United States throughout the 1990s.
Psychology of Power and Weakness Todays transatlantic problem is a power problem. American military strength has produced a propensity to use that strength, while Europes military weakness has forced it to used alternate methods. For Europeans appeasement has become a policy of sophistication.
Psychology of Power and Weakness Europe has a continuing interest in promoting a world where power and strength do not matter, and where international law and international institutions predominate. The historic disagreement between the strong and the weak has grown in todays transatlantic dispute over the question of unilateralism.
Psychology of Power and Weakness Europeans oppose unilateralism because they do not have the capability for unilateralism. The disparity of power has led to the disagreements by Europe and the United States regarding threats and what constitutes a threat.
Psychology of Power and Weakness Europe remains relatively tolerant towards threats due to the disparity of power, and its relative weakness. This incapacity to respond to threats leads not only to tolerance but to denial. Europeans focus on issues and problems with which they can deal with by themselves. Europeans, today, have placed a greater importance on soft-power tools such as economics and trade, rather than military strength.
Modern European Foreign Policy Americas power, and its willingness to exercise that power, represents a threat to Europes new sense of mission. Such action by the United States represents an attack on the essence of postmodern Europe. It represents an assault on Europes new ideals.
The U.S. Response American power made it possible for Europeans to believe that power was no longer important. Ironically, the fact that the United States solved Europes problems (Germany) allows Europeans to believe that American military power, that created their union, is now outmoded and dangerous.
Conclusion America already shoulders the burden of maintaining world security and has no real desire to change. Americans derive their understanding of the world from a very different set of experiences. Americans are idealists and have no experience promoting ideals successfully without the use of power.
Conclusion The United States is unlikely to reduce its power and Europe is unlikely to increase its power, leading towards increased transatlantic tensions. European attitudes favoring diplomacy dont come from philosophical beliefs, but weakness A man with a knife doesnt hunt a bear, a man with a rifle does