European Security in the George Bush Era: Through American eyes

Perhaps in security matters most of all, the US President can lead his country and sometimes the rest of the world. How will foreign and security policy play in the George W Bush administration, and what does it mean for Europe?

The World Today
4 minute READ

Tim Garden

Visiting Professor, Centre for Defence Studies, King’s College London

The United States of America never fails to surprise. The US President has remarkably few direct powers: the Founding Fathers were very keen on checks and balances, even if they were a little vague on hanging chads. Yet, twentieth century history is littered with examples of how the President determined the future course of history.

The only use of atomic weapons in war was the personal decision of Harry Truman. John Kennedy might have misjudged his 1962 game of nuclear poker with Nikita Khrushchev over missiles in Cuba. Richard Nixon was able to bring the Vietnam War to an end, and to engage with China. So what surprises will George W Bush pull on Europe?

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