Ted Malloch, President Trump’s candidate for EU ambassador, visted Poland recently. In a surprisingly candid editorial in February he outlined his view of the European Union:
The long held State Department view, since Dulles, has been that the best way to achieve peace in Europe is by uniting it. The Franco-German relationship was at the centre of such thinking. But the question today is what kind of Europe, and what kind of union, do we want?
What is in the US national interest looking ahead? Does what used to be called a European Economic Community necessarily equate with the evolution of a single European government?
Since the Maastricht treaty of 1992 and all the other treaties since, does this policy make sense? Or are there fundamental flaws in such a pro-integrationist logic, as detailed by the likes of the late Lord Dahrendorf and so many others like him? Is the European Union in need of a total redefinition?
We in the US realistically also need to ask: What are the dangers of a failing EU? These questions too should be considered as the consequences and sequencing have wide ramification. No one wants Europe to fail or instantly disintegrate.
We do know that the US and the UK are different from Europe: we want democracy and accountability, while the EU is intrinsically undemocratic and unaccountable. So should the US continue to promote such a damaged European model, which is alien to our own traditions? Is it not working against US interests to do so? Most certainly it does not put America, first, as Trump has now designated.
It’s well worth reading in its entirety for how the Trump Administration views Europe.
Outside of UKIP’s Nigel Farage, critics of the EU within Europe are few and far between. Poland has been admirably defiant, especially in their recent rejection of forced migrant quotas, but given the countries relatively weak position in Europe, the government can’t be as candid as it wants to be.
I think the reform of the EU is impossible. It was always meant to be a supranational, continental entity, ruled by Germany. If any meaninful changes can take place without the entire house of cards collapsing, it has to start with candid and harsh criticism, like Mr. Malloch’s.