The Atlantic Alliance in a Global System
The war in Iraq led to a confrontation between emerging American and European models for global governance. In imagining the future, each has tended to project its own positive experience in the Cold War years. Europeans imagine a multilateral concert, with confederal institutions encouraging mutual appeasement. Americans imagine a benevolent unipolar hegemony. Experience in the 1990s reinforced America's unipolar perspectives. Trends in the new century make Europe's model seem better adapted to an increasingly plural world system. The conclusion speculates on the European model's relevance to Asia. Much will depend on whether China and Japan can replicate the Franco-German reconciliation. China may have more success "containing" the US within a larger Eurasian or even UN context, including, in some fashion, Europe and the US. Conceivably the Western powers may more easily balance their own relations in a Eurasian rather than transatlantic geopolitical framework.