Thursday 7 August 2008

Why Europe needs to be a grown-up

Acres of newsprint and UK broadcast space has been given over to coverage of the US presidential race. When one of our close neighbours - Ireland or France, for instance - have an election we tend to care less. Right now I'd guess less than 5% of us Brits could even name the Irish Taoisech.
Perhaps the UK and the rest of the EU are just too focussed on what is happening over the other side of the Atlantic when we would gain more from knowing just a little bit more about other EU partners. If we knew a bit more about them, we might feel more in touch, and better connected. Whether it is Obama or McCain who wins the US race, the EU needs to establish a more grown-up relationship with the US. Stop moaning about all things American, and then buying them or mimicing them, and work out a way of establishing our own stances that balance or complement or disagree with the US. Americans often moan about having to spend too much time and money on "looking after" Europe, paying for "our" defence, etc. So what does happen next? Does the EU need its own defence force? It certainly needs to start working together more cohesively.

No comments: