mandag 26. april 2021

Think the EU Isn’t Acting on China? Look Closer.

The European Union (EU) tends to get a bad rap in English-language political commentary (and not only there). In an increasingly conflict-prone international system that is being upended by a resurgent China and a United States defending its global primacy, the EU seems ill at ease and takes criticism for issues ranging from ineffectiveness to disunity to poor strategic judgment. It would seem the EU is woefully under-equipped for the return of history.

Criticisms of this sort are sometimes warranted, but at other times they miss part of what is happening on the ground and point to a misunderstanding of what the EU is and how it works. First of all, it is important to recall what the EU is not: It is not a federal state, but an international organization of sovereign states.