Welcome to European Tribune. It's gone a bit quiet around here these days, but it's still going.
Display:
Is the European Defence Agency an EU agency?
by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Sun Jun 18th, 2006 at 04:16:36 PM EST
[ Parent ]
That's the best question ever

.

by cigonia on Sun Jun 18th, 2006 at 04:22:15 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The answer in three words:

Yes it is.

A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sun Jun 18th, 2006 at 04:33:42 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Need more evidence perhaps. The pdf you link to comes up garbled on this end.
by cigonia on Sun Jun 18th, 2006 at 04:41:47 PM EST
[ Parent ]
There are three different links. They PDF files seem fine for me...

How is This for evidence?

Why the European Defence Agency?

The European Defence Agency has been created to help EU Member States develop their defence capabilities for crisis-management operations under the European Security and Defence Policy.

The Agency will achieve its goals by:

  • Encouraging EU governments to spend defence budgets on meeting tomorrow's challenges, not yesterday's threats;
  • Helping them to identify common needs and promoting collaboration to provide common solutions.

The Agency's success will mean:
  • Better military capabilities;
  • Stronger European defence industries;
  • Better value for European taxpayers.


A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sun Jun 18th, 2006 at 04:45:54 PM EST
[ Parent ]
All fine and dandy but the site to which you refer me is primarily announcing fait accompli, not inviting debate.

This was my point.

.

by cigonia on Sun Jun 18th, 2006 at 05:07:27 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Do you want to expand your point a little? I'm not too sure what you're getting at?
by Colman (colman at eurotrib.com) on Sun Jun 18th, 2006 at 05:08:13 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Yes. I'm happy to do so. The (third) link Migeru provides tells us "how it is". There's no openess to debate, there. None.

My point has been that there is no discourse open to citizens about EU defense.

by cigonia on Sun Jun 18th, 2006 at 05:27:51 PM EST
[ Parent ]
How much discourse on Defence is open to citizens of your country? You're supposed to be happy with your minister of defence making decisions at the EU Council meeting. We know that is not satisfactory, but that's what there is. How open is your minister to citizen input?

A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sun Jun 18th, 2006 at 05:36:04 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I am French.

How open is "my minister"?

That's what I want to know

by cigonia on Sun Jun 18th, 2006 at 06:11:53 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I'm Spanish. You are better placed to answer that question than I.

A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sun Jun 18th, 2006 at 06:17:18 PM EST
[ Parent ]
that's a "non resonse"
by cigonia on Sun Jun 18th, 2006 at 06:29:11 PM EST
[ Parent ]
It's the best I can give.

A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sun Jun 18th, 2006 at 06:35:16 PM EST
[ Parent ]
explain
by cigonia on Sun Jun 18th, 2006 at 06:42:14 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I would expect you to understand the workings of the French government and its relationship with French citizens, specifically the avenues for citizen participation and input, better that I given our respective nationalities.

A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sun Jun 18th, 2006 at 06:45:19 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Before this thread gets even more off track, a crucial point is missing here: the public consultation considers propsed new EU legislation -- and presently there are no new proposals in the Defense field.

*Lunatic*, n.
One whose delusions are out of fashion.
by DoDo on Mon Jun 19th, 2006 at 03:46:20 AM EST
[ Parent ]
You're right. But, as I point out in a parallel subthread, while External Relations has a history of consultations (just none currently open), there is no history of consultations on the Foreign and Security Policy even though it's been developing for 14 years.

A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Mon Jun 19th, 2006 at 04:31:11 AM EST
[ Parent ]
I would expect you to understand the workings of the French government and its relationship with French citizens, specifically the avenues for citizen participation and input, better that I given our respective nationalities.

[about to state the obvious] ... this is why I come here: to keep refining my understanding of government [French, EU and other] and with that knowledge be in a better position to evaluate arguments, mine and others'.

My apologies, Migeru, for having become a bit edgy, yesterday. -- My primary concern re defence and security issues is that Europe will find itself corralled into the US's foreign policy fold by virtue of agreements that no longer serve their original purpose and which should have been reevaluated, if not abandoned, years ago. Europe is presently in the midst of a tug of war between North America and Asia. Europe's policy in such matters is essential to pulling the world back from the vertiginous precipice we're staring down, by speaking reason to belligerent parties. Whether, despite its best and most reasonable intentions, Europe will be drawn into armed conflicts against its will is a matter that warrants discussion and clarification.

There's no question that the opportunity to be heard through the EC website's open consultations is potentially a positive thing, but I should have thought that one might find more substance here. [I see that this has been pointed out further down in the thread]

.

by cigonia on Mon Jun 19th, 2006 at 06:00:32 AM EST
[ Parent ]
There is one implicit point in this diary and which only you picked on, and that is: what about the policy areas where we have an interest but there are no public consultations?

Now, regarding geopolitics, defence and NATO maybe you should consider writing a diary. Also, what exactly is France's position on NATO? It's sort of in it but not quite, isn't it?

It seems to me that NATO is destined to unravel like the Delian League. I think that subtext is what makes Alexander G. Rubio's diaries so appealing.

A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Mon Jun 19th, 2006 at 06:16:51 AM EST
[ Parent ]
Very informative article by Alexander G. Rubio. Thanks for the tip.

I'll see what I can do to get a diary together on NATO.

.

by cigonia on Mon Jun 19th, 2006 at 12:21:48 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Your link is broken, here is the correct one.

A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sun Jun 18th, 2006 at 05:38:09 PM EST
[ Parent ]
 This is an extremely important insight into the real workings of the European Commission, where the power is held and kept.

 You needn't feel alone in being relegated to a position of being told "how it is" only after "how it is" has been decided for all practical purposes.  That, indeed, is the very position in which Europe's national parliament-members find themselves.  In that, it is very important to distinguish their total marginalisation from the marginalisation of European heads of state-- Prime Ministers and Presidents.  These are often a deal more aware of and involved in the issues as they are discussed and hammered out--often in "informal meetings" between the Commission, its agents, and, most importantly, the tremendously powerful corporate lobbies who can as good as draft the Commission propositions themselves--as they have done!

 For the Euro heads of state, the EU--i.e. the Commission-- serves a very handy dual purpose: it can and does do, effectively in what is tantamount to private dealings, what these heads of state could not do in front of their own parliaments and electorates.  On the other hand, whether or not the European Commission does what the heads of state like or not, it is always a convenient whipping-boy, offered up as useful political cover for the heads of state to "blame", saying that these things are, alas, out of their hands.  That is sometimes true and other times not true.

 In any case, the fact remains that dealing with the Euro Commission is something like having a "tiger by the tail".  It is extremely powerful, well-organized, and it is at the beck and call of the international corporate community which, while not a monolith, is the most consistent, unified, wealthy and powerful set of interests in the world today-- bar none.

 I cannot urge strongly enough the importance of reading the information contained in Raoul Marc Jennar's Europe, la trahison des élites (édition augmentée), Fayard, Paris, May 2005.]

 and, once more, the invaluable set of references (many in english) at
Étienne Chouard's website .

"In such an environment it is not surprising that the ills of technology should seem curable only through the application of more technology..." John W Aldridge

by proximity1 on Tue Jun 20th, 2006 at 09:06:52 AM EST
[ Parent ]
You said...
If there is no published information as to Defense policy, we might as well have no voice at all.
There is a wealth of published information, which should allow you to find a voice. Your point
the site to which you refer me is primarily announcing fait accompli, not inviting debate.
is that nobody is asking for your opininion,  which is a different issue from lack of information.

And it is an EU agency. One of Javier Solana's multiple hats is heading the EDF.

A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sun Jun 18th, 2006 at 05:11:58 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I mean EDA, not EDF.

A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sun Jun 18th, 2006 at 05:12:17 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I'm willing to hear you! I'll scour the links you've provided, here, but you seem to be operating on the premises that we, in Europe, and elsewhere, still function according to democratic processes.

.

by cigonia on Sun Jun 18th, 2006 at 05:40:09 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The Common Foreign and Security Policy seems to follow under the purview of the EU Council. This means it is fully intergovernmental and you are represented in it by your minister, Michèle Alliot-Marie, though Javier Solana plays a key role in his capacity as EUHRCFSP.

The page I linked above is the view from the European Commission (see also this), and it gives you pointers to all the relevant institutions. At the Commission level, I think it is Benita Ferrero-Waldner (EU Commissioner for External Relations) that would have any responsibility for Defence issues.

In the European Parliament it is Committee on Foreign Affairs that has responsibility for the CFSP.

Committee responsible for:
1.   the common foreign and security policy (CFSP) and the European security and defence policy (ESDP). In this context the committee is assisted by a subcommittee on security and defence;
The French MEPs sitting on the committee are:
and a few additional "substitutes". On the Security and Defence subcommittee you find Morillon, Rocard and Vatanen.

One thing we don't do enough of in Europe compared to the US is to contact our representatives directly. You now have a list of all of yours [in the case of the European Parliament you can contact the chairmen of the committees, and document rapporteurs, regardless of nationality or political affiliation].

A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman

by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sun Jun 18th, 2006 at 06:16:32 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Thank you.

I'll scour these too, but I can't help entertaining the idea that we're missing the point.

missing the point altogether.

.

by cigonia on Sun Jun 18th, 2006 at 06:35:16 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I don't know what you think the point is. My point is that we know who sets the EU's defence policy: the EU Council of Ministers. It is set at an intergovernmental level. Who sets France's defence policy?

A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sun Jun 18th, 2006 at 06:43:53 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Who sets France's defence policy?

The Togo football federation [/snark of the century]

by Alex in Toulouse on Sun Jun 18th, 2006 at 06:45:26 PM EST
[ Parent ]
Too bad I can't give you a 10 for that.

A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sun Jun 18th, 2006 at 06:46:12 PM EST
[ Parent ]
The Common Foreign and Security Policy seems to follow under the purview of the EU Council. This means it is fully intergovernmental and you are represented in it by your minister, Michèle Alliot-Marie
Correction: it seems that there is not a "council configuration" of "Defence", so that the Common Foreign and Security Policy (and the Defence Policy) are discussed under General Affairs and External Relations. However, the Defence ministers are of course still involved:
Meetings bring together the Foreign Ministers of Member States. Ministers responsible for European Affairs, Defence, Development or Trade also participate depending on the items on agenda.
Ok, so these are big fat meetings with up to 5 ministers per member state
Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP)

The principles and objectives of the CFSP are to safeguard the common values, fundamental interests, independence and integrity of the Union, in conformity with the principles of the UN Charter; to strengthen the security of the Union in all ways; to preserve peace and strengthen the international community, in accordance with the principles of the UN Charter; to promote international cooperation; and to develop and consolidate democracy and the rule of law, and respect for human rights and fundamental freedoms.

Under the CFSP, the Council adopts Joint Actions and Common Positions. It normally takes decisions by unanimity. The Council also adopts conclusions on the main issues in discussion.

The Council is also responsible for the European Security and Defence Policy. Defence Ministers traditionally participate in GAERC [General Affairs and External Relations Council] meetings twice a year, in addition to their informal meetings (also twice a year).

The Secretary-General of the Council/High Representative for the CFSP [that would be our friend the omnipresent Javier Solana] participates in General Affairs and External Relations Council meetings and plays a key role in the formulation, preparation and implementation of the CFSP.

In the field of CFSP, the Political and Security Committee (PSC) helps define policies by drawing up opinions for the Council, without prejudice to the role of the Permanent Representatives Committee (Coreper) in preparing Council sessions. The PSC also exercises, under the responsibility of the Council, political control and strategic direction of crisis management operations.

So maybe we should ask Douste-Bla-Bla to the list of people responsible for the European Defence Policy...

A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Sun Jun 18th, 2006 at 07:51:59 PM EST
[ Parent ]
I mean 'add' not 'ask', sorry.

A society committed to the notion that government is always bad will have bad government. And it doesn't have to be that way. — Paul Krugman
by Migeru (migeru at eurotrib dot com) on Mon Jun 19th, 2006 at 04:35:33 AM EST
[ Parent ]

Display:

Occasional Series