In the 1960s, French Presiden De Gaulle withdrew his nation from being an integral aspect of the NATO armed force. Today, President Sarkozy is proposing an idea of a European defense capacity within the framework of NATO. Ironically, the Sarkozy proposal is consistent with the ideas of President Eisenhower in the 1950s who regarded America’s military role in Europe as temporary until Europe created its own powerful armed forces. Originally, NATO was to serve as a cover while Europe proceeded with the process of establishing its own armed force that would be free from American control.
Bush America fears the emergence of a European Union armed force because such an entity would allow Europe to pursue its own foreign policy without worrying about the United States. The current situation in Afghanistan symbolizes that European nations simply do not agree with American military or diplomatic thrusts and prefer a different path. If Europe had its own armed force, it would be freer to pursue alternative military strateges from those of the Bush administration.
It is time to reintegrate France into a new European army that would allow the European Union to speak with one voice and with one military establishment. In the long run, a powerful European Union aids the interests of America.