Brussels Blogger

There is a drastic difference between two recent speeches by Nicolas Sarkozy: The one in Washington last week and his speech today in Strasbourg.

Sarkozy’s address to the US congress was impressive. His declaration of love to the United States was so full of praise that one could indeed forget that France has ever had a critical view of its transatlantic partner.

As much as he avoided any criticism when in Washington, as much he chose to not leave out any controversial topic when back in Europe. Talking to the European Parliament today, Sarkozy hold a frank speech about globalisation, trade, protectionism, monetary policy, identity and nationalism. His articulation of being pro-American and of being pro-European couldn’t be more different.

Despite the words used in the US, it feels like Sarkozy more talked to the “neighbour” America, while in Strasbourg he feels clearly “at home”, among his European family. Both speeches could have a positive impact on political life in the transatlantic village.

To watch the speeches:

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