The EU campaign against the death penalty shows that the United States no longer enjoys a monopoly on moralising in international affairs. The architects of the EU, influenced by the US precedent and anxious to define what the EU was for, fastened on to the death penalty as a way to seize the moral high ground. The death-penalty campaign is not simply a target of opportunity but broadly consistent with an emerging EU moral consensus that renounces violence and seeks to resolve conflict through engagement and negotiation. This worldview, very different from the more hard-boiled US approach, has generated transatlantic frictions on issues ranging from the International Criminal Court to Iraq, and is likely to foreshadow even more.
Thursday, November 15, 2007
Schmidt: The EU Campaign Against the Death Penalty
John R. Schmidt (U.S. Department of State) has published The EU Campaign Against the Death Penalty (Survival, Vol. 49, no. 4, p. 123, December 2007). Here's the abstract: