The Atlantic Community, Germany's Role, and Western Europe's Integration, 1950–1962

Geir Lundestad

in The United States and Western Europe Since 1945

Published in print September 2003 | ISBN: 9780199266685
Published online April 2004 | e-ISBN: 9780191601057 | DOI:
The Atlantic Community, Germany's Role, and Western Europe's Integration, 1950–1962

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Discusses the expansion of the cooperation established between the US and Western Europe in the period 1950–1962, and analyses the Atlantic community, Germany's role in the relationship, and Western European integration. The first section looks at the dominant status that America had achieved in Europe by 1950, and at Europe's centrality to American–European cooperation—the shared assumption that Europe was the area of the world that mattered most, and that the struggle between East and West was primarily a struggle over Europe. The second section discusses the (North) Atlantic community in terms of balance of power (notably the threat of Soviet communism), the domestic threat from communists and other anti‐democratic groups, and from Germany, and the third discusses European integration in relation to this Atlantic framework. The fourth and fifth sections examine the motives for America's support of European integration, and the European economic challenge to the Atlantic framework. The sixth section analyses the development of the ‘special relationships’ formed between the US and various European countries, notably Britain, but also West Germany, Norway, Switzerland, Austria, Ireland, Sweden, Finland, and Yugoslavia. The last section looks at some of the concessions that the US had to make, and some of its defeats, in its relationship with Western Europe.

Keywords: American–Western European relations; Atlantic community; Austria; balance of power; Britain; concessions; cooperation; East–West struggle; European economic challenge; European integration; Finland; history; Ireland; Norway; special relationships; Sweden; Switzerland; threat of Soviet communism; US; West Germany; Western Europe; Yugoslavia

Chapter.  23051 words. 

Subjects: International Relations

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