The European community holds a range of contradictory, changing, and evolving views of the United States and the Soviet Union. Hassner notes that the United States is seen both as an individualistic agent with a guilty conscience that intervenes irresponsibly and hypocritically, and as a model for resistance to oppression. The Soviet Union is also viewed antithetically, both condemned for totalitarianism and praised as more humanistic than the United States. Hassner sees these oppositions as reflecting the profound differences between the superpowers and indicating the challenge the United States and the Soviet Union face in establishing a common ethics.
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