European Military Integration Of The United States

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European Military Integration For 65 years, Europe has had its military policy tied to that of the United States through the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO). During much of this period European and U.S. security interests were aligned against a common threat in the USSR. However, the era following the collapse of the Soviet Union has been marked by a European shift away from national sovereignty and towards a more integrated Europe. This can be most notably observed by the adoption of a common currency in the 18 member states of the Eurozone. Interestingly, this level of integration has not been present with regards to the military forces of Europe despite considerable support from several powerful states in the European Union.…show more content…
Protectionism is the natural reaction to foreign competition and the EU member states have been no exception. Article 296 of the EC Treaty offers an exemption from internal market regulations when their application would undermine member states’ security. Predictably, members have employed a loose interpretation of Article 296 in order to avoid an open market for defense contracts. They generally prefer to procure military equipment domestically to support their defense industry. The creation of an integrated “European Military” along with a single market for defense could alleviate these shortcomings. The amalgamation of Europe’s militaries into one unified entity would necessitate military equipment standards to support cohesion. A truly connected military, designed to serve the whole of Europe, would more effectively provide global influence, just as integration has provided Europe more influence in the economic sphere. Additionally, a single market for defense products would promote competition and specialization, helping the European defense sector become more competitive in the global market as well. The adoption of a single market is likely to produce “winners” and “losers” as the states with the least competitive firms may struggle, but the net economic effect for Europe should be positive. Strategic
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