Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Trump Victory Galvanizes EU Defense Plans

Trump Victory Galvanizes EU Defense Plans: European officials who have been pushing for a beefed-up, better-integrated EU defense capability may have been handed the best argument they could have wished for with the election of Donald Trump.

During campaigning before his shock win this month, Trump warned that if elected he would not defend countries in Europe that failed to spend enough on defense — a move which would end decades of US underwriting of Europe’s security.

For European officials, Trump’s views were the second good reason this year for the continent to collaborate on military matters.

After years of vetoing plans for better integrated European defense, the UK voted to leave the Union earlier this year, immediately spurring countries like France, Germany and Italy to plot the EU military capability they had long dreamed of.

"Europe cannot blink after Brexit, after the election of Donald Trump with all the questions being raised,” said French Foreign Minister Jean-Marc Ayrault, as European defense and foreign ministers gathered on Nov. 14.