Does Europe Need its Own Military?

Discussion in 'Europe' started by Falcon, Feb 20, 2016.

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  1. Falcon

    Falcon Major Staff Member Social Media Team

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    Tony Blair says that a European military might be needed to deal with security threats that the U.S. doesn't want to get involved with.
    https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2016/02/02/blai-f02.html

    Czech President Milos Zeman said that a European Military is needed to deal with the migrant crisis.
    http://www.ceskenoviny.cz/zpravy/eu...otect-eu-border-czech-president-zeman/1315503

    European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker wants a European Army to deter aggressive powers like Russia.
    https://news.vice.com/article/the-european-union-wants-an-army-of-its-own

    It looks like people are doubting NATO and think something else is needed. The U.S does not have as many troops in Europe as it did during the cold war. The U.S. is shifting its assets to East Asia and the Indian Ocean, Europe is no longer a top priority in the minds of U.S. strategic thinkers. With all of this going on does the EU needs its own military? Can this idea even work?
     
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  2. Technofox

    Technofox That Norwegian girl Staff Member Ret. Military Developer

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    The EU has 18 battlegroups, which also included non EU members like Norway - part of the Nordic Battlegroup, which also included Baltic nations Latvia, Estonia and Lithuania. But not all EU nations participate, nor is every European nation an EU member. Denmark decided not to participate in the Nordic Battlegroup, despite being a Nordic nation.

    The problem isn't the lack of a military in Europe, it's command, control, training and coordination that's been the concern. How closely do the individual battlegroups cooperate? Now many soldiers does each have and are they a sufficient deterent against a larger power? The Nordic Battlegroup only has 2500 soldiers:

    • Sweden: 1900
    • Finland: 60
    • Ireland: 170
    • Estonia: 50
    • Latvia: 150
    • Lithuania: 50
    • Norway: 50
    Yeah, 50 Norwegians isn't going to cut it, but we're a contributing NATO partner so our priorities are elsewhere. But this is Europe's problem. Everyone is preoccupied elsewhere and thus don't put too much focus on collective defense. Germany is occupied with their economy, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland and Estonia are focused on a Russian threat, Norway with NATO and France with North and Central Africa... everyone's doing something else, no one is focused on a NATO-type structure for Europe.

    And for the record, I do think the EU needs its own NATO. The US brings a lot of contention to Europe, even though I welcome their presence many others don't. Having the US support, but not being the primary party or contributor to European defense is a preferred option for our continent.
     
  3. Pathfinder

    Pathfinder Lieutenant Colonel

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    Right, Europe is a big content with about 50 countries each with its own history, identity, often times language, and unique security threats. Spain faces completely different threats from Germany. Greece faces different threats from Hungary so having a unified EU military would be difficult. There could be a significant EU coast guard and border protection force. Instead of having a collage of various nations contributing forces to build these border and coast guard forces it could act as a force of its own. It buys its own equipment, sets its own standards, creates its own training schema, and operates under the authority of the European Parliament. European countries would be required to send a certain amount of soldiers to the force in order to fill its ranks.
     
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  4. Technofox

    Technofox That Norwegian girl Staff Member Ret. Military Developer

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    I like the idea of a shared border protection force and Coast Guard, but even here we run into European politics and differing views on immigration, refugees and economics. Already we are having European Union members, an organization that promised Freedom of Movement in the EU, closing their borders to other EU members due to the influx of refugees coming from Africa and the Middle East. The EU's bylaws and constitution don't agree with its member nations, and the result if members forging their own path, thus undercutting the purpose of the EU charter.

    Perhaps this discord is expressed no better than in this Polandball comic:

    [​IMG]

    Without a common consensus or platform, even forming a unified policing action is difficult. The Baltic and Icelandic Air Patrols work because of NATO command running each, but a common EU Coast Guard and border protection force? I can't image the EU agreeing on where to go for lunch, let alone manpower contributions, each nation's funding requirement, and a set of rules or guidelines to govern each's actions. No two nations in Europe agree on any of these points, and even with central EU tenants like Freedom of Movement, some nations are already starting to shirk the EU bylaws that they signed up to because of their unique situation.

    Hard for me to imagine the EU coming up with a second set of bylaws that everyone could agree with and would follow
     
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  5. Pathfinder

    Pathfinder Lieutenant Colonel

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    Some people are saying that the EU will not even survive in its present form, perhaps only the free trade agreements. In the Middle East countries are looking to become more independent with regard to their regional security affairs, in the future it is likely that Europe will do the same. Lets wait and see if Russia drives a wedge right through NATO with the Turkey-Syria debacle.
     
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  6. Atilla

    Atilla Major

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    Europe does not need its own military, NATO is enough to provide for Europe's defence against Russia. Besides Russia Europe faces no serious threats. The migrant crisis can be resolved by supporting Turkey and Greece.

    Creating a joint European Military would also be impossible because everyone has different security needs and everyone uses different equipment and does things in different ways (Military culture, procedures). It is a waste of money to build a parallel force to NATO.
     
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  7. Pathfinder

    Pathfinder Lieutenant Colonel

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    There is already a proposal for a European Border and Coastguard. The size of the proposed force is very small and likely not to be effective.

    A European Border and Coast Guard to protect Europe's External Borders

    Strasbourg, 15 December 2015

    A European Border and Coast Guard to protect Europe's External Borders

    The European Commission is today adopting an important set of measures to manage the EU's external borders and protect our Schengen area without internal borders. Today's proposals will help to manage migration more effectively, improve the internal security of the European Union, and safeguard the principle of free movement of persons. The Commission is proposing to establish a European Border and Coast Guard to ensure a strong and shared management of the external borders. To further increase security for Europe's citizens, the Commission is also proposing to introduce systematic checks against relevant databases for all people entering or exiting the Schengen area.

    European Commission First Vice-President Frans Timmermans said: "In an area of free movement without internal borders, managing Europe’s external borders must be a shared responsibility. The crisis has exposed clear weaknesses and gaps in existing mechanisms aimed at making sure that EU standards are upheld. Therefore, it is now time to move to a truly integrated system of border management. The European Border and Coast Guard will bring together a reinforced Agency, with the ability to draw on a reserve pool of people and equipment, and the Member States’ authorities, who will continue to exercise day-to-day border management. The system we propose will allow for an identification of any weaknesses in real time so that they can be remedied quickly, also improving our collective ability to deal effectively with crisis situations where a section of the external border is placed under strong pressure."

    European Commissioner for Migration, Home Affairs and Citizenship, Dimitris Avramopoulos added: "The current migration and security challenges know no borders, and require a truly European approach. Where Frontex used to be limited to supporting Member States in managing their external borders, the new Border Agency will go beyond this. What we are creating today is more Europe: to manage our external borders, to step up returns of irregular migrants, to allow our asylum system to function properly for those in need and to strengthen checks at the external borders of the European Union. The Border Package we are presenting today will increase security for our citizens and ensure high standards of border management."

    A European Border and Coast Guard

    The European Border and Coast Guard will bring together a European Border and Coast Guard Agency built from Frontex and the Member States’ authorities responsible for border management, who will continue to exercise the day-to-day management of the external border.

    The new European Border and Coast Guard will have:

    • A rapid reserve pool of border guards and technical equipment: The Agency will be able to draw on at least 1,500 experts that can be deployed in under 3 days. For the first time the Agency will be able to acquire equipment itself and to draw on a pool of technical equipment provided by the Member States. There will no longer be shortages of staff or equipment for European border operations. The new Agency's human resources will more than double that of Frontex, to reach 1,000 permanent staff, including field operatives, by 2020.

    • A monitoring and supervisory role: A monitoring and risk analysis centre will be established to monitor migratory flows towards and within the European Union and to carry out risk analysis and mandatory vulnerability assessments to identify and address weak spots. Liaison officers will be seconded to Member States to ensure presence on the ground where the borders are at risk. The Agency will be able to assess the operational capacity, technical equipment and resources of Member States to face challenges at their external borders and require Member States to take measures to address the situation within a set time-limit in case of vulnerabilities.

    • The right to intervene: Member States can request joint operations and rapid border interventions, and deployment of the European Border and Coast Guard Teams to support these.Where deficiencies persist or where a Member State is under significant migratory pressure putting in peril the Schengen areaand national action is not forthcoming or not enough, the Commission will be able to adopt an implementing decisiondetermining that the situation at a particular section of the external borders requires urgent action at European level.This will allow the Agency to step in and deploy European Border and Coast Guard Teams to ensure that action is taken on the ground even when a Member State is unable or unwilling to take the necessary measures.

    • Coast Guard surveillance: National coastguards will be part of the European Border and Coast Guard to the extent that they carry out border control tasks. The mandates of the European Fisheries Control Agency and the European Maritime Safety Agency will be aligned to the new European Border and Coast Guard. The three Agencies will be able to launch joint surveillance operations, for instance by jointly operating Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (drones) in the Mediterranean Sea.

    • A mandate to work in third countries: The Agency will have a new mandate to send liaison officers to and launch joint operations with neighbouring third countries, including operating on their territory.

    • A stronger role in returns: A European Return Office will be established within the Agency to allow for the deployment of European Return Intervention Teams composed of escorts, monitors and return specialists who will work to effectively return illegally staying third country nationals. A standard European travel document for return will ensure a wider acceptance of returnees by third countries.

    • Guaranteeing Internal Security: The Agency will include cross-border crime and terrorism in its risk analysisand cooperate with other Union agencies and international organisations on the prevention of terrorism, in full respect of fundamental rights.
    Systematic checks of EU citizens at external borders

    To increase security within the Schengen area, the Commission is proposing a targeted modification of the Schengen Borders Code to introduce mandatory systematic checks of EU citizens at external land, sea, and air borders. Obligatory checks on EU citizens will be introduced against databases such as the Schengen Information System, the Interpol Stolen and Lost Travel Documents Database and relevant national systems, in order to verify that persons arriving do not represent a threat to public order and internal security. The proposal also reinforces the need to verify the biometric identifiers in the passports of EU citizens in case of doubts on the authenticity of the passport or on the legitimacy of the holder. Checks will now also be mandatory when exiting the European Union.

    In principle, since controls on documents and persons can be carried out in parallel, authorities should be able to consult relevant databases without delaying border crossings. The rules provide for flexibility in cases where systematic checks could have a disproportionate impact on the flow of traffic at the border. In such cases Member States can, based on risk assessments, decide to carry out targeted checks at some land and sea borders crossings. The risk assessment shall be communicated to the Agency, which can assess the way the exception is applied in its vulnerability assessment.

    The systematic checks in the databases are done on a 'hit/no hit' basis. This means that if the person does not present a risk then the check is not registered and no further processing of their data happens. Using the databases in this way means that personal data rights are only impacted to a very limited extent, and justified by the security objectives.

    Background

    The establishment of a European Border and Coast Guard, as announced by President Juncker in his State of the Union Speech on 9 September, is part of the measures under the European Agenda on Migration to reinforce the management and security of the EU's external borders. The European Agenda on Migration adopted by the Commission in May 2015 set out the need for a comprehensive approach to migration management. This objective has also been signalled by the European Parliament and endorsed in the clear orientations set out by the European Council on 23 September and 15 October.

    In response to the recent tragic attacks in Paris and the growing threat from foreign terrorist fighters, the Commission has swiftly taken action to accelerate work and implementation of measures under the European Security Agenda. Today's proposal responds to the need to reinforce security controls at the EU's external borders, as called for by Interior Ministers on 20 November.

    For More Information

    FACTSHEET: A European Border and Coast Guard

    FACTSHEET: Systematic Checks at External Borders

    Detailed Q&A: The European Border and Coast Guard

    Proposal for a regulation establishing a European Border and Coast Guard

    Proposal for a regulation on a targeted modification of the Schengen Borders Code

    Proposal for a regulation on a European travel document for the return of illegally staying third country nationals

    Revised EUROSUR Handbook

    8th bi-annual report on the functioning of the Schengen area

    Legislative Documents

    Press release: Implementing the European Agenda on Migration: Progress Reports on Greece, Italy and the Western Balkans

    The European Agenda on Migration

    http://europa.eu/rapid/press-release_IP-15-6327_en.htm
     
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  8. T-123456

    T-123456 Captain Staff Member International Mod

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    Its not NATO but the US,the soft approach of Obama makes people doubt NATO,whats NATO without the US?
    Take a look at how he handled the situations in Georgia,Ukraine and Syria,what a disgrace.
     
  9. J-A

    J-A Officer Candidate

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    I wanted new sum in German Bundeswehr. Today 103.500 isn't enough.

    Bring back outside Navy. Smaller unit are better.

    I saying 40.000 in Army. And 30.000 in Air Force.

    Like central Europe I wanted. No Navy.

    But if Russia will attacks with bigger force Germany need old time reserve forces.

    In 1990 when Germany weres back in world after 44 year down. Reserve force was 200.000 men.

    Bring back that forces to 70.000 professionel Army.
     
  10. J-A

    J-A Officer Candidate

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    And Military spend will be in German Bundeswehr 15-20 billion euro by professionels and 5 billion of the old time reserves.

    Still at least 20 billion euro in spend of German military.

    Maximum 25 billion euro for German Bundeswehr cuts.
     
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