Europeans are pro-US but see China and Russia as rivals
Von der Leyen’s remark shows she holds the traditional view that the US is Europe’s ally and that China’s growing assertiveness is a worry
Ursula von der Leyen, the European Commission president-elect, has promised to run a “geopolitical commission” in the next five years. A recent study by the European Council on Foreign Relations, the international think-tank, shows that this is what Europeans want, too — but Von der Leyen’s vision of the EU’s global role isn’t necessarily aligned with theirs.
Von der Leyen’s description of her mission builds on her predecessor Jean-Claude Juncker’s idea of a “political commission”, one that represents the democratic will of European citizens rather than the policy preferences of an unelected technocratic elite in Brussels. The president-elect cannot quite make the same promise: she got her appointment as a result of backroom dealing by national leaders, not by any democratic process. What she proposes instead is to run the EU’s policy-making and regulatory body as the united front Europe presents to the world...