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For the last five years, Europe has been shaken by financial and economic convulsions that have wreaked havoc on many of its citizens' livelihoods.The focus of European Union leaders on internal problems has caused them largely to neglect external policies, particularly in the area of security.To be sure, the ESS's three basic tenets – development assistance, soft power, and effective multilateralism – remain important. But Europe's leaders must reconceive these concepts in light of today's challenges.Nonetheless, the ESS's soft-power vision should not be allowed to obscure the security challenges that Europe faces.In this case, the problem comes down to a lack of commitment, with the European Union choosing the convenience of informal and ad hoc groupings over the challenge of reforming key institutions such as the United Nations, the International Monetary Fund, and the World Bank, which are essential for effective multilateralism.The shine may have come off the European Union, but the gripping scenes from Kiev's Maidan Square are a powerful reminder of the enduring appeal of Europe's core values.
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