The first foreign trip of a newly appointed U.S. secretary of state carries a particular message, foreign policy analyst Ulrich Speck writes for Carnegie Europe. John Kerry’s visit to Europe suggests that we may be witnessing the birth of a new transatlantic partnership.
In his State of the Union speech, Obama endorsed the project of a Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), a new alliance which would be built not on Cold War romanticism, but on tangible economic and strategic interests.
… If both sides manage to overcome the many obstacles to the TTIP, the pact could restore the normative power of what geostrategists like Thomas P.M. Barnett have branded “the core:” Europe and the United States as the heartlands of liberal democracy.
A successful transatlantic marketplace would confirm the superiority of economic and political liberalism as an organizing principle for modern societies.
The strategic challenge for Americans and Europeans in the twenty-first century is to find ways to share wealth and power without sacrificing the principles that have made the accumulation of wealth and power possible: the institutions of market economy and liberal democracy. The TTIP could, if properly handled, become a key element in this transfer of power.
Ulrich Speck is a foreign policy analyst in Heidelberg, Germany. He is an associate fellow at Spanish think tank FRIDE, senior analyst at Wikistrat, and editor of the Global Europe Morning Brief. RTWT