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Merkel's European Army: More Than a Paper Tiger?

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

In an interview with the mass-circulation German tabloid Bild Zeitung, German Chancellor and current EU president Angela Merkel marked the EU's 50th birthday celebration by revealing that her wish list includes a European Army. What Merkel and other EU leaders want is not a perpetuating of existing arrangements, but a "European fighting force" independent of, but working with, NATO.

Given the complexities of existing EU defense arrangements, it is easy to understand the desire of European leaders for the kind of unified command and control structure a European Army would need. While Merkel claimed the prospect had "come closer," the current gap between aspiration and reality still appears considerable. ...

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