(025) THE SPECTRE OF A MULTIPOLAR EUROPE Cover Image

(025) THE SPECTRE OF A MULTIPOLAR EUROPE
(025) THE SPECTRE OF A MULTIPOLAR EUROPE

Author(s): Ivan Krastev, Mark Leonard, Dimitar Bechev, Jana Kobzova, Andrew Wilson
Subject(s): Inter-Ethnic Relations, EU-Accession / EU-DEvelopment, Geopolitics
Published by: ECFR European Council on Foreign Relations
Summary/Abstract: The EU’s ‘unipolar moment’ is over. In the 1990s, the EU’s grand hope was that American hard power would underpin the spread of European soft power and the integration of all Europe’s powers into a liberal order – embodied in NATO and the EU – in which the rule of law, pooled sovereignty and interdependence would gradually replace military conflict, the balance of power and spheres of influence. However, the prospects for this unipolar multilateral European order are fading. The dilemma facing the European Union in its own continent is somewhat similar to that faced by the US at a global level. The EU can do little to prevent Europe’s evolution from a unipolar to a multipolar order; but it can do a lot to shape the relations between its emerging poles. The new approach would take advantage of a political opening created by Moscow’s desire to modernise and Turkey’s search for a regional role, and recast the continent’s institutional order for a world in which Europe is increasingly peripheral and in which a weak neighbour can be as frightening as a strong one. It would be the first step towards creating a trilateral rather than a tripolar Europe: a new institutional order in the continent that (to paraphrase Lord Ismay) keeps the EU united, Russia post-imperial and Turkey European.

  • Page Count: 80
  • Publication Year: 2010
  • Language: English