The great powers of the nineteenth century were European and exerted global influence mainly through their empires and trading interests. But the toll of two world wars left behind a relatively tame and introspective Europe, and the EEC in its early years was too focused on internal challenges to think much about its global role; western Europe mainly followed the lead of the US, while its eastern states were dominated by the Soviet Union, and a few holdouts tried to remain neutral.
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- The EU as a Global Actor
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