Faced with the willingness of US President Joe Biden, manifested during his recent European tour, to impose the theme of the “Chinese challenge” on the G7 and NATO, the European Union ( EU) must assert its strategic singularity, said Alain Frachon, columnist for the French newspaper Le Monde in his column published Thursday.
The Joe Biden festival in mid-June in Europe marked a most exotic geopolitical innovation: China, the power of the Pacific, was officially listed among the “challenges” weighing on the security of the Atlantic zone. This is new in the history of this military-political alliance forged between the United States and the Europeans in 1949, he recalled.
The American president wanted to line the allies from across the Atlantic behind the United States in a posture of opposition to China’s behavior on the international scene, noted Alain Frachon, adding that in his calm, direct way, Mr. Biden imposed the theme of the “Chinese challenge” on his G7 allies, those of NATO and in the institutional relations between Brussels and Washington.
It is tempting to give in to Joe Biden’s charm and line up behind the Americans in an anti-Chinese stance. The tenant of the White House reaffirming the commitment of the United States in Europe, very good, but “it is also the opium of the European people”, said, last week, the political scientist Nicole Gnesotto during a seminar in the Jacques Delors Institute, cited by Alain Frachon.
There is a danger of an alignment that would mark a halt to the will to exist as Europeans in the relationship with Beijing, as in other areas, warned the columnist.
The EU has specific interests in China, a country with which it trades more than the United States. Faced with the “Chinese challenge”, Europeans must define what is the “strategic autonomy” of the EU, say what is the European singularity, explains the Italian essayist Riccardo Perissich in a remarkable column recently published on the Telos site, cited by Alain Frachon in his column.