Border Security And Transatlantic Counter Terrorism Measures

3406 words - 14 pages

Border Security and Transatlantic Counter-Terrorism Measures

ABSTRACT: The United States and the European Union share common values, economic interests, and security challenges. The expansion of the European Union into the countries which were under the Soviet sphere of influence continues to complicate the internal border security of the European Union. Given the liberalization of trade within the EU and in turn into the US, the port and border security of each trading partner is connected in this global economy. This paper examines some of the border security issues facing the EU and how these challenges affect the United States. Particular interest is paid to the porous borders of the former Warsaw Pact countries given their habitual, Cold War trading partners. The EU must strengthen its executive authority in order to enforce external border security in order to maximize its internal free trade zone. The national leaders within the EU will continue to resist the increasing strength of the EU Commission and the decreasing sovereignty of the member states. This paper was originally submitted on 5 August 2004 as the final project for Bush 689-200 Structure and Policy of the European Union, taught by Dr. Klaus L. Aurisch.

The haunt of terrorism after the September 11, 2001 and March 11, 2004 attacks in Europe and the United States have spurred further transatlantic cooperation to counter this global challenge. The US and the EU have differed on several positions regarding the Global War on Terror and the manner in which it has been conducted. The inability of the EU to reach a consensus on support of US action in Iraq in 2003 coupled with the vocal dissension of the French in the United Nations Security Council drove a wedge in the transatlantic relationship. This division provides a security gap which terrorist cells may exploit to the detriment of both sides of the Atlantic Ocean.

The United States created a more protective stance on homeland security after the terrorist attacks in 2001. This defensive mentality has effected allies and enemies alike and placed more stringent security barriers at America’s gates. The changing global environment created by these terrorist activities has challenged the transatlantic relationship and its ability to produce effective counter measures. Cooperation between the US and the EU in this arena is critical to the security and economic prosperity of both regions. The EU’s limited executive authority over Justice and Homeland Affairs presents obstacles to the equal implementation of counter-terrorism measures throughout the Union.


The US has enacted new counter-terrorism measures since the attacks of 2001. Several of these measures affect the travel standards and economic interaction with allied nations. The developments of the Security Container Initiative, the Passenger Name Record exchange, and the freezing of terrorist...

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