Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
Europe's problems are somewhat similar to the root problem that paralyzes US politics.  MONEY.  Most US citizens would rather let willing donors with strong self interests pay for the political campaigns rather than paying for them themselves.  Too few Europeans see a need to develop and pay for their own integrated military force when the US would rather do it for them.

In both cases the respective citizens end up paying a far higher price by letting others pay for the "service" than it would cost them were they to insist on doing it themselves.  The fault is not in our politicians, but in ourselves.  The USA gets to be looted by an elected cleptocracy in the service of business and banking.  Europe gets to be jerked around by senseless conflicts generated by sociopathic US administrations for domestic political ends.

For its own security and future I believe Europe needs to develop its own integrated military forces and then either pull out of NATO or downgrade and reign in the US influence in NATO.  Creating such a force would, of itself, immediately transform NATO into an alliance of equals.  Doing so would be doing a big favor to the true interests of the USA, though it would be fought by the current administration, and possibly resisted by any successor administration.

It may be that this can only be accomplished by starting with a subset of EU members, such as the original members, who agree to coordinate and integrate their military forces and to add capabilities to them as required so that those forces can be brought to bear so as to deter any potential threat from Russia or the USA, even should such scenarios seem unlikely.  That would put Europe in control of its own security, rather than playing the Seven Dwarfs to the US's Snow White.

"It is not necessary to have hope in order to persevere."

by ARGeezer (ARGeezer a in a circle eurotrib daught com) on Sat Aug 16th, 2008 at 05:43:11 PM EST

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