Other Regional Issues

  • William C. Cromwell

Abstract

US—European differences over Central America during the early and mid-1980s resembled the earlier Vietnam experience in several respects. In both cases, the United States had far stronger strategic interests (or at least commitments) at stake as compared to Europe which, coupled with European security dependence on the US through nato, set practical bounds to European dissent and independence from American policies. Both cases involved the direct or indirect use of American military power to effect or prevent change in Third World situations, thus invoking the issue of US political judgement and morality in the use of force against less-developed societies. Relatedly, with respect to both Vietnam and Central America, there was a European tendency to identify American policies with opposition to the expression of indigenous nationalism (Vietnam) or with efforts to prop up or advance the cause of governments or groups which were not genuinely committed to fundamental political, economic and social change (for example, South Vietnam and El Salvador).

Keywords

Europe Amid Stratification Lution Reso 

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Notes

  1. 1.
    Michael Harrison, ‘Central America’s Impact on the International Security Order’, in Joseph Cirincione (ed.), Central America and the Western Alliance ( New York: Holmes & Meier, 1985 ) p. 143.Google Scholar
  2. 4.
    Andrew J. Pierre (ed.), Third World Instability - Central America as a European-American Issue (New York: Council on Foreign Relations, 1985) pp. 27–28, 117–20.Google Scholar
  3. 8.
    Marc Bentinck, NATO’s Out-of-Area Problem.Adelphi Papers no. 211 (London: International Institute for Strategic Studies, 1986) p. 77;Cirincione, Central America and the Western Alliance, p. 120.Google Scholar
  4. 16.
    Alfred Pijpers, Elfriede Regelsberger and Wolfgang Wessels (eds), European Political Cooperation in the 1980s ( Dordrecht, The Netherlands: Nijhoff, 1988 ) p. 31.Google Scholar
  5. 21.
    Roy H. Ginsberg, Foreign Policy Actions of the European Community ( Boulder, CO: Lynne Rienner, 1989 ) p. 166.Google Scholar
  6. 23.
    Statement on the Middle East, New York Times, 28 June 1977.Google Scholar
  7. 27.
    Roger Tomkys, ‘European Political Cooperation and the Middle East: A Personal Perspective’, International Affairs (London) vol. LXIII, (Summer 1987) no. 3, pp. 427, 432.Google Scholar
  8. 53.
    Ilan Greilsammer and Joseph Weiler, Europe’s Middle East Dilemma: The Quest for a Unified Stance ( Boulder, CO: Westview Press, 1987 ) p. 65.Google Scholar
  9. 57.
    David Allen and Alfred Pijpers (eds), European Foreign Policy-Making and the Arab-Israeli Conflict ( The Hague: Nijhoff, 1984 ) p. 222.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© William C. Cromwell 1992

Authors and Affiliations

  • William C. Cromwell
    • 1
  1. 1.The American UniversityWashingtonUSA

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