The EuroMed beyond Civilisational Paradigms
Nicolaïdis and Nicolaïdis ask in this concluding paper: Why has a project with such auspicious beginnings, such worthy intentions failed to develop peace-making practices, increasingly exhibited inconsistencies and dilemmas, and proven unable to provide a framework for the negotiation of a security partnership? Authors of the other papers in this series give numerous clues to the contradictions that have characterized the Barcelona Process since its inception and the current challenges facing it. Above all, instead of seeing structural realities – the economic, political, social, cultural gap between Europe and the Arab world – progressively addressed through EMP institutions, geopolitical realities and developments have intruded to heighten these gaps and asymmetries. Moreover, Europe’s self-perception as a regional power increasingly colludes with its effort to protect itself against the fundamentalist threat under the growing political sway of right wing politics. The Arab regimes’ continued objective to avoid social-political destabilisation through external legitimacy while minimizing structural reform has generally been abated; and the necessity for all actors to take into account the growing presence of the US, its actions, initiatives and representations in the post 9/11 era, have further marginalized the EMP.