Foreign Policy Digital

Europe’s Dream: Escaping the Dictatorship of the Dollar

Trump’s hostile behavior is reinvigorating efforts to turn the euro into an alternative to the world’s dominant currency. If only the Europeans could find some way to do it.

Europe’s quest to find an alternative to U.S. financial dominance and the global rule of the dollar has only intensified since French and German leaders first howled about the need to recover their economic sovereignty last summer. But European governments are finding that coming up with a workable plan is a lot easier said than done—leaving them fuming but still vulnerable to Washington’s strong-arm tactics.

That doesn’t mean, however, the Europeans are going to give up trying—and that poses a long-term danger to U.S. power.

Countries such as France and Germany first bristled at the Trump administration’s decision to unilaterally pull out of the 2015 Iran nuclear deal and reimpose crippling sanctions on Iran, putting European firms squarely in the crosshairs of U.S. sanctions. America’s Iran policy still rankles, and Europe’s efforts to create a so-called special purpose vehicle to enable some trade with Iran continue, with even with oil tankers ablaze just outside the Persian Gulf.

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