Fifty Years of Formal United States and European Union Relations and European Union Accession

By Powell, Colin | DISAM Journal, Summer 2004 | Go to article overview

Fifty Years of Formal United States and European Union Relations and European Union Accession


Powell, Colin, DISAM Journal


[The following remarks were presented at the reception in honor of fifty years of formal United States and European Union (E.U.) relation and accession, May 1, 2004.]

I often remark to my audiences and my colleagues that I never thought as Secretary of State that I would be working this closely with the European Union. I am a North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) guy. I started my military career as a young second lieutenant in infantry in Germany along the Fulda Gap, and twenty-eight years later I went back to the Fulda Gap as a corps commander, and so I commanded forty troops at the Fulda Gap and I commanded 80,000 troops at the Fulda Gap.

And it was, you know, pretty consistent over that time. When I went to Germany in 1958 as a second lieutenant, they drove me up to the Fulda Gap and they said, "Lieutenant, you ever hear about the strategy of containment?" "Uh-huh, uh-huh." "Well, this is where it starts." "And you see that tree over there?" "Uh-huh." "You see that tree over there?" "Yeah, uh-huh." "Well, that's your zone, lieutenant." "And when the Russian army comes, stop it." "Do you understand?" "Uhhuh, uh-huh." I can handle that.

And twenty-eight years later when I went back, there was a tree that was a little farther to the left and farther to the right, but it was the same strategy over a twenty-eight-year period of time, even though I had not gone Vietnam for a couple years; I served in Korea. Everything was quite familiar when I got back to Germany and to the Fulda Gap. And now I have discovered that the Fulda Gap is really now a store that sells Levi's and other kinds of impedimenta. It is a tourist attraction.

And I was privileged to be part of that Administration, the Reagan Administration, and then, of course, the Bush 41 Administration. When we saw Gorbachev come along with glasnost and perestroika and we watched the end of the Soviet Union. And at that time my Russian colleagues I am now Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff would come and visit me and say, "Well, you know, the Soviet Union is over, the Warsaw Pact's gone, and therefore NATO has no further purpose, so why don't you get rid of NATO? We got rid of the Warsaw Pact, and we'll start all over with something new."

And I said, "You know, it is a great idea, I would love to do it. The only trouble is, people keep trying to join NATO and it is hard to shut down a club when people are trying to get in." So, amazing--I mean, think of it. This grand alliance that was created at the end of the 1940s to fight Soviet imperialism, Soviet attempts at hegemony over all of Europe, when it finally got into the late 1990s, it was not getting smaller in the absence of this reason for being in the first place, it was getting bigger. And who was joining? Those we had been fighting or getting ready to fight all those years.

And I have great fun with my Eastern European colleagues. The first time I ever got them all together Hungary, Bulgaria, Romania, Czech Republic, Slovak Republic all together, the Baltics, the Balkans, everybody was there, and they were in a big room in a big circle and we were all talking. And I gave my stock speech and then I listened to all these nations talk about freedom and democracy and, you know, I stared at them. And when it came back to me again I asked for the floor again and I said, "I cannot tell you how moved I am by your presentations, because just nine years ago you were all on my target list." And here we are. And amazingly this grand alliance continues to grow. Why does it grow? Because it is connected to North America. Not only is there a European component to the expansion of NATO, but it is connected to North America. It is connected to Canada and the United States, and they want to be part of transatlantic community.

Now, what I have discovered over the last three years is that my horizon had to expand because it is not just the twenty-six nation NATO alliance that is so important, but just as important is the European Union. …

The rest of this article is only available to active members of Questia

Already a member? Log in now.

Notes for this article

Add a new note
If you are trying to select text to create highlights or citations, remember that you must now click or tap on the first word, and then click or tap on the last word.
One moment ...
Default project is now your active project.
Project items
Notes
Cite this article

Cited article

Style
Citations are available only to our active members.
Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

(Einhorn, 1992, p. 25)

(Einhorn 25)

(Einhorn 25)

1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

Note: primary sources have slightly different requirements for citation. Please see these guidelines for more information.

Cited article

Fifty Years of Formal United States and European Union Relations and European Union Accession
Settings

Settings

Typeface
Text size Smaller Larger Reset View mode
Search within

Search within this article

Look up

Look up a word

  • Dictionary
  • Thesaurus
Please submit a word or phrase above.
Print this page

Print this page

Why can't I print more than one page at a time?

Help
Full screen
Items saved from this article
  • Highlights & Notes
  • Citations
Some of your highlights are legacy items.

Highlights saved before July 30, 2012 will not be displayed on their respective source pages.

You can easily re-create the highlights by opening the book page or article, selecting the text, and clicking “Highlight.”

matching results for page

    Questia reader help

    How to highlight and cite specific passages

    1. Click or tap the first word you want to select.
    2. Click or tap the last word you want to select, and you’ll see everything in between get selected.
    3. You’ll then get a menu of options like creating a highlight or a citation from that passage of text.

    OK, got it!

    Cited passage

    Style
    Citations are available only to our active members.
    Buy instant access to cite pages or passages in MLA 8, MLA 7, APA and Chicago citation styles.

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn, 1992, p. 25).

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences." (Einhorn 25)

    "Portraying himself as an honest, ordinary person helped Lincoln identify with his audiences."1

    1. Lois J. Einhorn, Abraham Lincoln, the Orator: Penetrating the Lincoln Legend (Westport, CT: Greenwood Press, 1992), 25, http://www.questia.com/read/27419298.

    Cited passage

    Thanks for trying Questia!

    Please continue trying out our research tools, but please note, full functionality is available only to our active members.

    Your work will be lost once you leave this Web page.

    Buy instant access to save your work.

    Already a member? Log in now.

    Search by... Author
    Show... All Results Primary Sources Peer-reviewed

    Oops!

    An unknown error has occurred. Please click the button below to reload the page. If the problem persists, please try again in a little while.