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A nation must think before it acts.
Current tensions between the United States and Europe have raised questions about the future of the transatlantic relationship, though historical analysis suggests that the good old days were not perfect either. This article considers the history of U.S.-European relations and concludes that they have always been complex, as neither Americans nor Europeans have been sure how an integrated Europe would fit into an Atlantic partnership. It concludes that the future of the West depends on Europeans’ developing on their own a clearer vision of the concrete shape and international role of the EU.