THE BASIS OF PARTNERSHIP
THE crisis in NATO and in the European Communities is not over. It has destroyed the chance for a Western diplomatic offensive following the firm reaction of the United States against the establishment of Soviet atomic weapons in Cuba. The only reason the damage has not been greater is that the Soviet Union has troubles of its own with China, a conflict which the West could have turned to advantage if the Soviet Union had not still hoped to exploit the differences within the Western Alliance. There is no use in trying to place responsibility for this on nations or personalities. The task is to strengthen Western unity, Atlantic solidarity and the European Community. What are the problems in these three fields?
The European Community must strengthen its inner structure, deal with the problems involved in enlarging its area and regulate its relationship to other countries and regions. The first was blocked by de Gaulle's opposition to further integration. He opposes the transfer of national sovereignty to supranational or community institutions; he calls them "Aeropegs" and says no nation could place confidence in them. The benefits produced by the Common Market, in which France has shared, have persuaded him to accept the existing institutions, but he remains opposed to any further integration.
A community of the sort now existing in Europe represents more than mere coöperation between governments, for along with community institutions it has developed a community interest and a community spirit. All this adds up to integration. Obviously, integration should not injure national interests but incorporate the interests of each in an over-all body. Since the European Council of Ministers is not a conference of governments but a community institution responsible to the Community as a whole, individual ministers must act in the interest of the Community and not as representatives of their own governments. This is even more true in the case of the European Commission, the members of which do not sit
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