NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg recently said the 70-year-old NATO alliance had to be part of the response to the climate crisis as ‘the defining challenge for our generation and a crisis multiplier’. This statement came in the middle of an alarming build-up of Russian troops on the Ukrainian border – so just as Europeans were being given a reminder of the security threat for which NATO was originally designed.
The coincidence of Stoltenberg’s statement about the security implications of the climate crisis and fears about a Russian invasion of Ukraine illustrates the increasingly complex and diverse set of challenges Europeans face.… Seguir leyendo »
All European countries – many of them NATO allies – see European and Euro-Atlantic security as the top strategic priority, though the ‘threat perception’ of central and eastern Europe tends to focus on Russia, and southern Europe on the Mediterranean and southern neighbourhood.
But Europe’s attention is now also increasingly turning to Asian security as developments in that region – above all, the rise of China – begin to heavily impact European interests. Even NATO is assessing links between Euro-Atlantic and Indo-Pacific security. But the resources Europeans can devote to Asian security are limited. If they are to play an increasing role in Asian security – given the wide range of challenges in that region – it is time to think in a more structured way about how it can be done.… Seguir leyendo »
As the UK’s post-Brexit foreign policy takes shape, it is increasingly clear that joint cooperation with France and Germany will be of key importance. The current dispute with the US over imposing further sanctions on Iran shows that the UK values continuing strong cooperation with its European partners on key international issues, even at the cost of a major transatlantic dispute. Moreover, the recent first meeting of the German, French and British defence ministers in an E3 (European/EU 3) format signalled political commitment by all three partners to double down on joint diplomatic cooperation despite troubled UK-EU Brexit negotiations.
The UK working with France and Germany as part of the E3 has evolved in recent years from a shared approach to diplomacy on Iran’s nuclear programme to include a broader range of international security issues, such as the conflict in Syria and freedom of navigation in the South China Sea.… Seguir leyendo »
With all EU economies still reeling from COVID-19, the ongoing heated deliberations on the bloc’s next budget, which will determine the amount of money matching its priorities for the next seven years, have taken on an urgency rarely felt in Brussels.
Relying in part on an unprecedentedly large volume of jointly issued debt, the European Commission’s plan for a €750 billion coronavirus recovery instrument is embedded within a revamped proposal for the EU’s long-term budget, of €1.1 trillion for the 2021-27 period.
Now the ball is in the member states’ court. All seem to agree that getting the EU budget right is crucial to fostering an economic recovery and ensuring the Union is on the right track towards its long-term pre-COVID objectives, from increasing its strategic autonomy to reaching climate neutrality by 2050.… Seguir leyendo »
Already fighting for funding and political credibility, the coronavirus crisis has created new challenges for the EU’s defence ambitions. While the European Commission is trying to sustain a level of commitment, the prospect of budget cuts and a lack of European unity in the post-COVID-19 world will become more acute in the coming months of budget negotiations. Despite the pressures, member states should resist the temptation to underfund and sideline their ambitions. The case for EU defence cooperation is stronger than ever.
Since 2016, the European Union has been establishing new defence tools in response to the deteriorating strategic environment surrounding its borders, the challenges presented by Brexit and doubts over the US security guarantee.… Seguir leyendo »