Chancellor Helmut Kohl, making his first visit to United States of America as head of a unified Germany, called Monday for creation of a United States of Europe.
Kohl said his initial goal was to ensure German unity and then "to participate in building a just and lasting peaceful order for Europe which brings together all nations of our long-divided continent in common freedom.""We now seek political unification, the construction of a United States of Europe," he continued in remarks prepared for the Atlantic Council, a private organization formed to support the North Atlantic Treaty Organization.
Kohl's speech was sandwiched between planned meetings with Secretary of State James A. Baker III and President Bush. The German leader has meetings scheduled with congressional leaders on Tuesday.
Kohl recalled that Sir Winston Churchill had set a United States of Europe as a goal 45 years ago. Since then, many advocates of the idea have avoided using the phrase for fear that it would scare off Europeans concerned about keeping national identities.
A German source who requested anonymity said Kohl believes the way should be kept open for the countries of Eastern Europe to join. The 12 governments now in the European Community already manage many economic policies jointly. They are planning to both broaden and tighten their organization, abolishing most barriers to trade among them next year.
The EC members already have a joint executive, the European Commission. The European Court of Justice puts community law over national law, although it has no police to enforce its rulings. The European Parliament also has limited powers, but they have been strengthened recently.