Many continental Europeans, if they have registered that there is a crisis at all, will probably think of it as yet another consequence of a foolish, illegitimate Anglo-American military action in Iraq. They will see it as a problem for "them" (Brits and Americans) rather than for "us" (right-thinking, peace-loving Europeans). Some may suspect the British sailors and marines did in fact stray into Iranian territorial waters, as the Iranians claim. A few may even privately mutter, "Well, you had it coming to you."
But I would bet my bottom euro that none of these continental Europeans' synapses will have fired spontaneously with this thought: "Our fellow Europeans have been kidnapped, so what can we, as Europe, do in response?" [Babbler's bold]
What, indeed. Between NATO and the EU, I'm wondering if the defining characteristic of European solidarity is convenience.