Chapter 7

Joshua (Merkel and the U.S.)

The debt crisis didn’t only cause a north–south split in Europe. It also led to a trans-Atlantic disconnect on economic policy, reigniting conflict between the U.S. and Europe just as friction over the Iraq war subsided. In the 1990s, American military power and diplomacy were needed to end warfare and atrocities in the Balkans, the EU’s back yard. Now the Obama administration was publicly goading Europe’s biggest powers on how to run their joint currency. Hackles went up in Paris and Berlin. U.S. Treasury officials viewed Germany as hamstrung by the Bundesbank’s inflation-fighting tradition and slow to recognize the threat to the global economy. German leaders saw a U.S. administration too close to the ...

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