French Security Policy After the Cold War
Continuity, Change, and Implications for the United States
This report examines contemporary French security policies and finds that despite momentous geopolitical changes in Europe since late 1989, the basic elements of French security policy have not changed much, as revealed both in France's relations with Europe and NATO and in France's response to the Gulf War. Looking ahead, the study finds that a major reorientation of security policy is unlikely in the near term. For U.S. policy, the study finds that it is not in America's interest to "marginalize" or "isolate" France by focusing solely on our "Atlantic" allies in Europe. While the study shows evidence that immobilism is more likely than major change in French-U.S. relations, it still argues that the United States should not oppose attempts to create a European security and defense identity and that it should do more to show France that the rejuvenation of NATO is not meant to exclude and replace everything else.