TFR 53 – 21st Century Strategies of the Trilateral Countries: In Concert or Conflict?


This collection of three essays with a brief concluding chapter identifies areas of conflict and cooperation in the foreign policies of the United States, the European Union, and Japan likely to arise in the 21st century. While Trilateralism is founded on the acknowledgement that some issues should or must be dealt with collectively, the strategies adopted by any one of these three actors may not necessarily be shared by the other Trilateral partners. In fact, they may even conflict with one another. Moreover, the priorities placed on various issues may differ among the partners. The three authors address economic and security issues in an environment considerably different than the relative stasis of the past fifty years. Robert Zoellick provides a view from the United States on the U.S. role in creating international institutions built on international law and American power. He provides an outline of what he considers U.S. foreign policy priorities should be in the coming years. Peter Sutherland provides a view from Europe within the context of an evolving European Union. He suggests that any constructive role Europe will play in the wider world will largely depend on its ability to evolve into a cohesive unit with a single coherent foreign policy. Hisashi Owada focuses on the nature of the post-Cold War world order, arguing that traditional balance of power arrangements will no longer suffice. He examines the possibility of a pax consortis among the Trilateral countries and Japan’s role within it. The brief concluding chapter draws the individual chapters together, highlighting areas of likely cooperation and potential conflict.


Robert Zoellick, Research Scholar, Harvard University; Fellow, German Marshall Fund of the United States; former U.S. Undersecretary of State
Peter D. Sutherland, Co-Chairman, BP Amoco, and Chairman and Managing Director, Goldman Sachs International, London; former Director-General, World Trade Organization
Hisashi Owada, President, Japan Institute of International Affairs, Tokyo; former Permanent Representative of Japan to the United Nations; former Japanese Vice Minister for Foreign Affairs

Table of Contents

I. The United States
Robert B. Zoellick

A. The United States...and the World
B. The U.S. Search for International Law...and Order
C. The Creation of an International Political Community
D. U.S. Strategic Goals Today
E. Will the U.S. Public Support the Strategy?
F. The United States Security Agenda
- The Future of NATO
- The Future of East Asian Security
G. The United States Economic Agenda
- Adjusting to Global Capitalism
- Adjusting the Trading System
- Adjusting to Aging
H. The Ongoing Search for International Law...and Order...and Political Community

II. The European Union
Peter D. Sutherland

A. A More Integrated Europe Is Required for a Leadership Role in Addressing International Challenges
B. A Credible Economic Player
- Trade
- Aid and Development
- The Financial System
- The European Economic Model
C. An Effective Foreign and Security Policy
- CFSP: Limited Progress, Fundamental Weaknesses
- A Slowly Developing Commitment to a Common Defense Policy
D. Europe’s External Role Dependent on Successful Internal Reform

III. Trilateralism Revisited: The Need for Shared Responsiblity and Its Importance for Japan
Hisashi Owada

A. The Shape of the World in the Post-Cold War Era
B. The Present State of Trilateralism
C. Japan at the Turn of the Century
D. Trilateralism in a New Setting: Pax Consortis in an Age of Interdependence
E. Policy Suggestions for the Future
- The Composition of the Trilateral Commission
- Relevance of East Asia
- The Importance of Development for World Public Order

IV. 21st Century Strategies of the Trilateral Countries: In Concert or Conflict?

  • Topics: Economics, Trade, Security, Multilateral Cooperation
  • Region:  North America, Europe, Pacific Asia
  • Publisher:  The Trilateral Commission
  • Publication Date:  © 1999
  • ISBN:  0-930503-78-3
  • Pages:  66
  • Price:  $9 US plus shipping and handling
  • Source:  Brookings
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