Summary: The analysis of the three fundamental documents of Franco-German co-operation enables us to make a sketch of three scenarios which seem to show the major directions of common action during the past years. Firstly, Franco-German actions are motivated by different national interests and traditions. This divergence of interests may result in constructive common European policies under the condition that both partners share a joint goal for their political and economic projects. In this case, they are capable of drawing up u0093compromises by proxyu0094 and of obtaining the support of most of the other member states. In the history of European integration, this has been the case for the implementation of the European Coal and Steel Community as well as of the Monetary Union. But the French-German initiative for ESDP at the European Convention had received a large majority and only failed due to the determined resistance of the United Kingdom. This counter-example and the outcome of the Franco-German propositions in economic and monetary policy u0096 which were hardly constructive u0096 underline the importance of a common vision. Secondly, Paris and Berlin pursue a policy based on converging u0096 if not identical u0096 interests without, however, feeling the necessity to formulate compromises by proxy. The example of the Iraq crisis has shown the risk both countries run in case they end up as a minority and lose their influence unless they seek closer co-operation with their partners. Within the Union of 25 member states, an u0093offensive Franco-German harmonyu0094 requires a counterbalance by way of the deliberate integration of other partners. Otherwise, Paris and Berlin may harm European community achievements (such as in the debate on the SGP), or even their own legitimacy as the driving force of European integration. Thirdly, as it will be difficult to reach compromises by proxy in the future due to the diversity of national interests in a Union of 25 and more, and considering that it will become impossib
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