Very important article in the FT today by Philip Stephens on the need for a new vision in European defense strategy. I really appreciate the fact that rather than looking for some innovative new policy, Stephens argues for a renewal of deterrence. It is important to stress the difference between deterrence and aggression and I think he’s right in arguing that Europe needs more of it. Although I generally think his point is valid, I do question if more NATO is actually the way forward for Europe?
“Nato needs to find ways of working in groupings smaller than the full membership of 28. The alliance should extend the interoperability of forces and improve planning and burden-sharing.” – Philip Stephens, FT
The idea of smaller working groups is a step towards what Europe needs. Yet rather than forming haphazard, ad-hoc clusters, European powers should focus on a current institution: The European Union. Ultimately, the biggest problem facing Europe isn’t that it needs a NEW strategy, but rather that it never had one — at least not a cohesive, continent-wide approach. Therein lies the problem. Currently, Europe’s strategy lies between national imperatives and an uncertain link to NATO. The Old Continent needs to find a way to work in a unified manner. Only together can Europe possibly work to counter ‘Authoritarian Capitalism‘ AND stand shoulder to shoulder with the United States. This way, Europe would guarantee itself a firm voice in international matters rather than unstable, indecisive policies seen today!
Make sure to check back for a new TheChiffre post tomorrow on the energy crisis in Pakistan!