Alliance with the US: Europe soon on its own?

Trump's cancellation of the nuclear deal with Iran, strife within the EU over the US embassy's move to Jerusalem, conflict over tariffs and the military spending of Europe's Nato states: transatlantic relations are facing one test after another.

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Právo (CZ) /

Europe facing tough choice

European governments must put some thought into what they consider more important: relations with the US or preserving the nuclear deal with Tehran, Právo comments:

“If Europe sides with Iran, it will also be siding against its most important ally. Nevertheless it's hardly imaginable that the big EU states will simply comply with Washington's demands. Britain, France and Germany are co-signatories of the nuclear deal. If they allow the deal to fail due to pressure from the US they'll never be able to persuade anyone that they are independent players who can stand up for their own interests. Basically this is increasingly about Europe's place in the world.”

Hürriyet Daily News (TR) /

No longer a stable alliance

Trump is putting the European allies in a serious predicament, Hürriyet Daily News comments:

“The US is moving towards another 'unilateral moment' in international affairs, reminiscent of the George W. Bush era. Trump's criticisms of NATO and ambivalent stance on the US security umbrella over Europe have already triggered questions about the value of the transatlantic alliance. The collapsing Iran deal and what would undoubtedly follow it in Middle Eastern politics - i.e. more conflict and suffering for the region - would be a real test for transatlantic ties. Prevention of the EU from having a unified stance against the U.S. relocation of its embassy to Jerusalem by its three 'newish' members and the similar division within Nato show the untested grounds the western alliance system has found itself.”

Libération (FR) /

There is no alternative to Nato

Trump has repeatedly threatened to withdraw from Europe if European Nato members don't increase their defence contributions. But the EU would be defenceless without the US, Libération laments:

“Europe has no defence policy of its own. ... France and Britain are the only nations with credible armies. London rejects any form of independent European defence policy, however, because it refuses to leave the American caravan no matter how uneasy the ride. There is no serious alternative to the North Atlantic Treaty - at least for the next generation. Until now Nato has withstood every challenge. With Donald Trump, the man who tears up treaties and reneges on signed agreements, it no longer can. Europe is naked.”

Contributors (RO) /

Eastern Europe lost without US and EU

Central and Eastern Europe would be hit hardest by a breakdown in transatlantic relations, political scientist Valentin Naumescu fears in Contributors:

“Because in that case the major Western powers will no longer really care whether things go well in our region or not. It could disappear from the West's strategic radar and be seen as nothing more than a location for military bases on the Black Sea. ... Without the US our region will once again become insecure. If we no longer belong to core Europe we will be relegated once more to the poor, corrupt periphery, vulnerable to large, non-Western powers that come in and take over our markets. ... Watch out: the Russians are coming! Or on a more optimistic note: there is an alternative to 'Mother Russia' - the Chinese are coming!”