Where did we start? As a peace project among adversaries. What is our greatest accomplishment? The spread of stability and democracy across the continent. And what is our task for the future? To make Europe a global power; a force for good in the world.
– Javier Solana, 2006
The European Union has, over the years proved its worth as a structure for peace and security…But that is not enough to tackle global problems in an interdependent world. The EU must also become a serious actor on the global scene. And in order to do that, it must go beyond its traditional role as a major trading and economic power.
– Jim Cloos, 2006
My message to you is that Europeans must focus on, and act in, the wider world. That is the kind of Europe which I, as the President of the Commission, want. An open Europe. A generous Europe, which spreads its drive and determination for change beyond its borders. A Europe which enages with the world, rather than trying to avoid it.
– José Manuel Barroso, 2005
The postmodern, Europe answer to threats is to extend the system of co-operative empire ever wider. “I have no way to defend my borders but to extend them”, said Catherine the Great – and the European Union sometimes seems to be saying the same. This is, in fact, an exact description of the most natural security policy for a postmodern community of states. The wider the postmodern network can be extended, the less risk there will be from neighbours and the more resources to defend the community without having to become excessively militarised.
– Robert Cooper, 2003
If we succeed, in twenty-five years or fifty years – the distance separating us from the Treaty of Rome – Europe’s role in the world will have changed. It will be respected and listened to, not only as the economic power it already is, but as a political power which will talk on equal terms to the greatest powers on our planet, either existing or future, and will have the means to act to affirm its values, ensure its security and play an active role in international peace-keeping.
– Valéry Giscard d’Estaing, 2002
We do not start in a vacuum. The European Union is already a global player on the world stage. Europe is crucial in the formulation of the major trade policies, financial trends and monetary decisions. It is high time for Europe to become a more active and influential global power. We have to work for a stronger Europe better prepared to prevent instabilities, with a robust sense of solidarity. A Europe determined to play all its potential in the world.
– Javier Solana, 1999