Mediterranean Union Still Alive

President Sarkozy of France initiated the idea of a Mediterranean Union which would link nations bordering that body of water, but the European Union has decided to rename the project, the Barcelona Process Union(UfM). The original idea was a Sarkozy end run to hold off Turkey’s entrance into the European Union which caused many nations in the region to give lukewarm support for such an effort. The UfM attempts to develop bonds of economic, political, and social relations among the various nations which border on the Mediterranean. It was hoped such cooperation could spark an economic resurgence in the region and through that means establish the basis for peace.

A major issue is the continuing conflict between Israel and other Arab nations in the region. If the UfM had a rotating president it might lead to a situation in which an Israeli was president of the group. Until that issue is resolved, it is difficult to imagine genuine cooperation among participants.