Final Word from Wednesday, April 30, 2003

The Economist wrote that many European politicians think the U.S. has changed its policy toward the EU and is now actively undermining the integration process. The U.S. will seek to build up "coalitions of the willing" on specific issues, the magazine said, and will bypass Brussels, just as it did with Iraq. This could explain U.S. Ambassador Craig Stapleton's sudden change of attitude toward President Václav Klaus. After refusing to comment for weeks about their alleged dispute, Stapleton said in LN on Fri. that the rumors are false. Klaus didn't make any of those outrageous comments, he said. He apparently thought Klaus had been punished enough. Klaus is a key player in EU accession and can help the Americans "undermine" the EU before and after the Czechs become a member. Klaus seems to be playing ball. He told French Foreign Minister Dominique de Villepin that Prague won't do anything to weaken the transatlantic relationship.


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