Chicago Journal of International Law


Like many Anglo-American conservatives, Jeremy Rabkin believes that the European Union ("EU") presents "a serious challenge to American policy aims and American political ideals."' This argument is timely, for the defense of "American sovereignty" seems to resonate in current US political debates. Uncompromising opposition to any surrender of US sovereignty to international organizations is increasingly widespread these days, particularly on the right wing of the US political spectrum. The question whether US foreign policy should be unilateral or multilateral is emerging as a salient electoral issue. Many critics of international organizations are deeply troubled, moreover, by what they know of EU politics, which they view as presumptively undemocratic and suspiciously concerned about social issues. Since writings by Euroskeptic British Tories wield a powerful and disproportionate influence on conservative opinion about Europe in the United States, it is fitting that William Cash, a Conservative Member of Parliament, head of the Euroskeptical "European Foundation," and a leading public critic of the current terms of British EU membership, joins this symposium.2 Their arguments-a common position that I shall term "conservative idealism"-are worth exploring in detail because they are typical of much contemporary Anglo-American thinking about the EU.