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Democrat August 2002 (Number 64)

Military matters

Call for EU Army Headquarters

According to Belgian Prime Minister Guy Verhofstadt, development of the European security police and defence has not been making much progress. He fears "renationalisation" of defence policies, calls for a return to the "spirit of St Malo", where, in December 1998, the Franco-British summit was held which reactivated European defence policy. This is when Prime Minister Blair reversed Britain's previous opposition into support for the development of the European Army of 60,000 troops.

The Belgian Prime Minister has recently made several suggestions to Mr Blair and President Chirac:-

  • to include in the future "constitutional treaty" a "mutual security guarantee in the event of an attack calling for a collective response, such as a large-scale terrorist attack" - such a clause already exists in the Treaty of Brussels (the WEU Treaty);

  • to envisage the creation of an "EU military headquarters" with men and budgets in common and putting the headquarters "in charge of all multinational forces within the 15-nation bloc, with its own budget and integrated command";

  • to encourage the European Commission to resume the initiative in the industrial armaments field to create a homogenous economic area for defence.

  • Clearly, this call by the Belgian prime Minister is an attempt to offset the overbearing military influence of the USA, to have a seperate command structure to NATO and pour yet more money into a Euro-military-industrial-complex. The developing EU superstate is imperialist in nature with a Common Foreign and Security Policy. The unelected high representative for CFSP, in the shape of Javier Solana, is strutting the world stage developing and carrying out this policy with no accountablity to any national parliament or electorate.