World News and Trends: European Defense Initiative

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European Defense Initiative

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As The Economist put it: "The French present these ideas in one way: as an opportunity to assert itself as a 'separate civilisation' from North America ... The British have another view. European and defence forces, they reckon, will work best for tasks that are endorsed by the American administration, but fail to arouse enough enthusiasm from Congress to warrant direct American involvement."

Eyebrows have already raised across the Atlantic, and for good reason. The Economist continues: "Many French politicians and businessmen, however, want to create not just a defence identity for the European Union, but also a common front against the English-speaking world" (emphasis added).

Obviously Britain is caught in the middle. One report on the response from the U.S.A. said: "America is insisting that NATO [which would automatically include U.S. participation] must be given the 'right of first refusal' to intervene in any humanitarian crisis in Europe, to block the European Union from launching a military operation without consulting Washington."

Former prime minister Margaret Thatcher, a longtime supporter of strong U.S.-U.K. relations, came out firmly against the idea. Reported the Times: "Baroness Thatcher last night fiercely attacked plans for a European defense structure, saying it would threaten NATO and could help to create a European superstate ... She put the drive towards a separate European defence on the same level as the single European currency. Both were aimed at 'the Utopian venture of creating a single European superstate to rival America on the world stage.'"

Mrs. Thatcher noted "The creation of a separate European defence, whatever the qualifications and reassurances, threatens both those conditions, and so poses a serious long-term danger to NATO's cohesion and effectiveness."

Bible prophecy indicates that in the long run both America and Britain will lose the battle for these defense priorities. (Sources: The Times [London], The Daily Mail [London], The Economist.)