chapter  VII
24 Pages

The Advent of the Customs Union

The ambitious scope of American plans for a free-trade customs union in western Europe had to be met by a European response of equal scope; dogged opposition to them within the OEEC was not enough. The issue for the European states was whether their response should be made merely for publicity purposes to appease public opinion in America, and where it support­ ed the American initiative in Europe also , or whether there was an alliance of real interests in Europe for some other form of economic integration . A publicity gesture might be made which avoided the German problem by postponing it, but any alliance of real interests would have to meet it head on.