NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg was recently asked if Europe really needs a European Army?

Stoltenberg responded:

“What Europe needs is more investment in defence, stronger capabilities, and we also need fairer burden sharing within the Alliance. And therefore I welcome EU efforts on defence, as for instance the European Defence Fund, military mobility or PESCO. Because I believe that can improve burden-sharing within NATO, it can provide new European capabilities.

But this should never compete with NATO, it should complement NATO and thereby strengthen NATO by strengthening the European contributions to our shared security and collective defence.”

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg delivers a doorstep statement upon arrival at the European Council.

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg recently welcomed unprecedented levels of cooperation between the EU and NATO ahead of a meeting with the EU Foreign Affairs Council on Tuesday.

The Secretary General noted that stronger European defence can contribute to fairer burden-sharing within NATO, but stressed the need for complementarity between NATO and EU efforts. “NATO remains the bedrock for European security,” he said.

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Mr Bell

I like this guy. He is utterly correct. NATO not the EU has maintained the peace and guarantees its members protection. The EU could not fight it’s way out of a donut box without UK, Canada and most importantly the USA.

Callum

Don’t forget the French, in many regards their forces are at parity with our own, and superior in some cases.

Which is why it makes so much sense that Macron is pushing for an EU army. With France’s position as the EU’s dominant military and only nuclear deterrent without the UK, they’ll be in a prime position to secure themselves permanently at the head of the table. All those jokes around about the EU 4th Reich, we might end up with Napoleon Macronaparte instead.

Darren

“The” UK, not UK.

Callum where exactly are the French armed forces superior to ours ? Who do you think has been teaching who for the last decade ?

maurice10

NATO is only as strong as America’s commitment to maintaining support. Sadly, Trump’s concerns about the alliance and its disproportionate dependency on US involvement, may not go away even under a new presidency? The seeds have been sown, and it may not be possible to return to the old NATO commitments. If that is the case and we witness an inexorable decline in US involvement, then there must be some sense in creating a truly European defence force?

andyreeves

can we expect ‘wiggy’ trump not to do something stupid? he’s more dangerous than putin

David E Flandry

Seriously? What nation has the US navy fired on, what nation has the US annexed parts of, or is occupying parts of with ‘partisan rebels”? Which nations are having to increased their defense spending to avoid a Russian steamroller? Such a statement is without foundation in fact or logic.

iraq, afghanistan, libya, i didn’t see a timeline in your post, si, i’d assume from your obviously anti american diatribe, that you live in a parallel universe as for funding trump would better advised to sell on to other nato nation , their retired asetts, google AMARG inventory, and see what could be affordable to nato nations.

just keep comrade corbyn away from it all

Mr Bell

Maurice you are probably right- and hence why HMG need to get their house in order. Seems the only bandwidth the government have at the moment is Brexit and this single issues is almost tearing the country apart. I had hoped the budget would have released quite a bit more than just £1 billion extra for defence. Our armed forces have been cut too far by successive governments and there should be some form of recourse to these “bad decisions”. If we are militarily defeated or our brave servicemen and women suffer losses as a result of the successive cuts… Read more »

maurice10

The problem as I see it is the inner workings of Whitehall. For many years it was believed a Labour government would always take a large knife to the MOD, as it never produced anything, nor helped the exchequer in any way other than taking valuable tax payer’s money. In part that was true, Dennis Healy was not liked at the MOD, and under Wilson’s leadership we saw the demise of many projects including TSR2. Under the IMF thumb, and at the same time begging Europe to let in poor hard done by Britain, defence took a really bad knock.… Read more »

DaveyB

Doesn’t the Prime Minister’s office have to investigate an issue/question if there are more than 100K petitioners? Perhaps a lobby group should be set up to do this very thing. Imagine the reaction from politicians if they were to be investigated for dereliction of duty or dare I say incompetence. I think we should also include chiefs of the armed services in the list, who have been more interested in feathering their nest rather than what they’ve been tasked with. This is especially true when they blatantly tow the party line to the detriment of the Services when question by… Read more »

Daniele Mandelli

Spot on Davey B!

Rfn_Weston

I’d sign it.

andyreeves

HMG house in order? i never thought i’d see those words together! the MOD should be closed down as being unfit for order

andyreeves

100,000 signatures to a petition means that then, it will be put before parliament.

captain P Wash.

OMG and WTF. Farcebook, Twatter, instaarse and Whatsup has put an end to anything even remotely Important in life, and no one ever seems to worry about the national defence of this Country, “Social Media” Is giving The latest generation of young offended types powers beyond belief. “we are offended” is the cry, ” lets have a petition ” FFS. I’d love to see these Techno Zombies stepping away from their Phones, dismounting their soap boxes and just getting back to plain old common sense and Intelligence. not to mention actually joining up and making an actual difference. We don’t… Read more »

i’d love to see the utter chaos and panic in the halls of westminster and the M.O.D if her majesty chose to review the fleet, a bunch of bobbing archers is the only way the size of the royal navy can be emphasised, unless the gosport ferry was painted grey and called a frigate!! her maj ‘ phillip ‘dear, where are all the ships?

Andrew

Mr Bell/Davey,

I don’t think you have any realistic chance of anything happening…. the UK maintains the 2% of GDP for defence as per the NATO target of spending….. that is far more than most other NATO countries….

the national audit office has stated the u.k allocated 1.8 of gdp and not the expected 2%. last year.

Callum

We maintain that 2% by including previously separate expenditure in the conventional budget. The deterrent, pensions, etc, were all transferred to the MoD to bulk out the budget and hide the cuts. A rule I try and stick with is, judge yourself not by how bad everyone else is, but by how good you are. Relatively speaking, the UK is a military powerhouse compared to a lot of countries; realistically speaking, there are huge capability gaps across the board that reduce the overall effectiveness of the whole. To name a few, HMAF has deficiencies in or lacks completely long range… Read more »

andyreeves

look at where the foreign aid actually goes£200 million to pakistan and india, one, that harbours terrorists and allows its soil to be used to train tem, the other, india has the most booming economy in the region, tanzania/hundreds of millions, nigeria, syria, sudan, nigeria, afghanistan over half of the 13.2 billion £ given away, is an utter disgrace its my opinion that it could be halved. money saved into education, health,defense, and other worthwhile areas.

Steven

I’d say that Typhoon better replaces the Tornado more than F35. It’s an absolute bomb truck!

Typhoon replaces both F3 and GR4 variants.

1.8% not “%2% as people assume ED DID NOT MAKE THE 2%

MikeR

While I agree that We don’t need duplication of capabilities in terms of the organisation responsible for leading on European defence, and the lead organisation is NATO. Would having a EU army not potentialy reduce duplication of military functions across different national military’s, allowing the money to be spent on required Capabilities?

Frank62

Sign me up DavyB. Putin is pressing all our buttons yet all HMG wants to do is cut more, fooled by its own spin. If many European NATO members are currently spending only c.half the GDP on their own forces that they need to & have signed up for, then adding all the beaurocracy etc to create an EU army is criminally counter productive, unless it’s a vehicle for the French &/or Germans to become top dogs in Europe(In which case it makes a little sense but could be trouble in the long run). However, the EU does mot have… Read more »

Dave_F

I think all the talk about European defense cooperation is good news for NATO overall. It is really more about streamlining equipment and procurement which is a great idea to keep costs down and numbers up – of course by pushing for European built equipment when possible. The UK through BAE could be a major partner in achieving this. As the UK doesn’t have to be part of a future European army if it ever goes ahead as planned it’s also a win-win as we can focus elsewhere. The EU does not really have a leadership. I would suggest you… Read more »

Dave F. There is no chance of the EU buying kit from us. They don’t now. As far as France is concerned the purpose of a EU army is to buy from them and them only. What the others think is another question.

Elliott

I am very much aware of how the EU works. I am also very well aware of how it was created, the ultimate goals of the globalists and pseudo-intellectuals who created and maintained it are, and most disturbingly I know of the shear arrogance and moral bankruptcy of the European Union. Which is highly undemocratic has utter contempt for free speech and is dead set on leading it’s members off a cliff. The European Commission which is unelected yet is the only body capable of presenting legislation to the European Parliament except nations themselves in matters of security. Thereby making… Read more »

captain P Wash.

Christ Elliott, That’s a worrying Picture you painted there. Best “We brit’s” get a wriggle on and get back to where we were.

Dave_F

Elliot, apologies for the long answer and thank you for taking the time to answer. Throwing things around that the EU is undemocratic does not make it true. What is that constant meddling you are talking about? The ECJ like any other body of the European Union works within clearly defined boundaries that were created and signed off by member states. The members of the EC are of course not elected ( appointed by the governments of the member states except for the president )- neither are our civil servants. In reality all the decision making power of the European… Read more »

Elliott

Dave_F Where to begin? First if a MEP does not have the right of legislative initiative and therefore make law he has no power. Currently they must go to the Commission and say “please” before anything can go to the floor. As for accountability of the Commission? Good luck getting enough MEPs there to vote for removal of anyone. As for the Commission being no different than civil servants? My garbage man and my local police man are civil servants, they do not nor should they dictate to the Houses of Congress what they can vote on. The European Council?… Read more »

Mr Bell

The EU is ultimate luxury doomed. Simply because of quantitive easing. They have bought up nearly as much debt as the USA and now sitting on a debt pile in the trillions and trillions. The ECB is trying to wean the EU economy off QI but it is hard to do especially as Italy wants expansive changes that will ratchet up more debt. The EU economically is in trouble, militarily is a joke and would struggle to hold without the UK and most importantly the US any form of cohesive defence against a serious Russian incursions into the Baltic’s, Ukraine… Read more »

THE BIGGEST ISSUE WOULD BE WHO RUNS IT? and how? a european anything would be an abject farce and failure

Steven

An EU army?? HAHA. Germany can hardly muster 2 fighters to intercept a Russian bomber and all their subs are stuck in port and how many operation combat ships do they have? France and the UK at least take national defense a bit more seriously and the rest of the EU militarily is a joke. They all have gotten lazy knowing if the Russians ever invade America will come to our rescue so why should we spend all that money on defense. Trump tells them them pay just 2% of their GDPs on defense and they all start crying like… Read more »