With regard to terrorism and Iraq, the Europeans have been called appeasers. European diplomacy regarding the Israeli-Palestinian conflict has been explained by rising anti-Semitism in European society. Western Europe has been criticized for its handling of the Balkans crisis, its slowness in extending EU membership to Central and Eastern European countries and its low levels of military spending. EU initiatives such as the Single Market, the Euro and a European Security and Defense Policy have been interpreted as anti-American in inspiration. In the economic area, the European welfare state and labor laws that often discourage employment and entrepreneurship are deemed archaic and antigrowth. Even European society has been indicted for being a breeding ground for terrorists, anti-semitic and immoral.
In his Athenaeum lecture Chamorel will try to gauge the real origins, novelty, scope, depth, consistency, sustainability and implications of Euroskepticism in some American intellectual and policy circles. Is it mostly a response to anti-Americanism? Does it reflect an increasing gap in ideas, interests and values across the Atlantic? Does the Euro-Atlantic community risk dissolving, at a time of growing challenges to the West?
Between 1982 and 1995 Chamorel was responsible for international affairs in the French Ministry of Industry and then for international trade in the Prime Minister's Office. During that time, he continued to teach and write on American politics and was an American Political Science Congressional Fellow in 1987-88 and a Visiting Scholar at the Institute of Governmental Studies at Berkeley in 1993. He is a Public Policy Scholar at the Woodrow Wilson Center and teaches European politics at George Washington University. His research focuses on the policy consequences on the transatlantic relationship of American exceptionalism and European identity.
Patrick Chamorel's lecture is jointly sponsored by the European Union Center of California and the Marian Miner Cook Athenaeum.