While ""old Europe"" is most often portrayed as more bark than bite in its differences with the current U.S. administration, NPR commentator and former Washington Post European bureau chief Reid finds the E.U. as a whole ""determined to change a world that has been dominated by Americans."" The opening chapters quickly summarize everyday Europeans' love-hate relationship with the States, the legacies of the 20th-century wars, and the creation of the Euro. The center chapters present GE as a case study in transatlantic trade gone wrong (""Welch's Waterloo"") as well as other snafus that show Europe attempting to dominate market share of everything from cell phones to pharmaceuticals. A chapter detailing what's left of Europe's welfare states is followed by a relatively bleak assessment of Europe's armies, and the spin that the E.U. is betting on economic ""soft power"" for eventual global dominance. The concluding chapters warn that the U.S. ignores Europe's new 25-nation strong union at its economic and political peril, but also draw attention to Europe as a huge, tariff-free market and potential sharer of global burdens. There's little surprising here, but Reid's primer on recent U.S. European relations genially summarizes an evolving, if often reluctant, partnership.
Reviewed on: 11/01/2004 Release date: 11/01/2004 Genre: Nonfiction