Italy calls for ‘European army’ — RT World News

Antonio Tajani said that without a common army, EU countries would be “helpless birds in a world of vultures.”

Italian Foreign Minister Antonio Tajani called on European Union leaders to create a joint European army. Tajani says that without a joint army, the bloc cannot have a credible foreign policy.

“If we want to be bearers of peace in the world, we need a European army.” Tajani told Italian newspaper La Stampa on Sunday.

“This is an essential precondition for an effective European foreign policy,” he added. He continued, adding that he is in a world “Strong players” Such as the United States, Russia, China and European citizens “It can only be protected by something that already exists, which is the European Union.”

NATO currently includes about 22 European Union countries, with the US-led alliance effectively dictating security policy on the continent since the beginning of the Cold War. However, several European Union leaders have floated the idea of ​​pooling their militaries into a joint force independent of US control in recent years.

French President Emmanuel Macron and former German Chancellor Angela Merkel were among the most vocal supporters of this idea. Macron has famously referred to NATO as… “brain death” In 2019, he urged European leaders to pursue a policy “strategic independence” From Washington.

NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg warned in 2021 that such a move would happen. “Weakening the relationship between North America and Europe.” When talk of an independent European army first emerged two decades ago, then-US Secretary of Defense William Cohen was more blunt, when he described the idea as an “independent European army.” “A threat to NATO’s very existence.”

The conflict in Ukraine appears to have weakened discussions about European autonomy. Since then, Macron has changed his tune on NATO and now supports expanding the US-led alliance. Merkel's replacement, Olaf Scholz, continues to talk about the need for this “A more sovereign European Union” But she remained silent about the idea of ​​building what Merkel called it “A real and real European army.”

At the same time, NATO member states in Eastern Europe have emerged as the most ardent supporters of US oversight of security in Europe. After Poland received a $2 billion loan from Washington to modernize its army and welcomed its first permanent garrison of US forces at a base in Poznań, then-Defense Minister Mariusz Blaszczak said in November that “No competition between [NATO] “The European Union when it comes to security is very bad.” Warsaw chose close partnership with the United States “Some imaginary European army.”

Ultimately, the European Union agreed to create a joint defense strategy last year, which envisaged the creation of a 5,000-strong force. “rapid spread” Strength – severely incapable of forming a combined army.

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