Brochure: The European Common Foreign and Security Policy in ...

Brochure: The European Common Foreign and Security Policy in ...

EU Regional Office • 15, rue d’Arlon • B-1050 Brussels











Beyond the Great Divide


Foreword by Sascha Müller-Kraenner 2

Introduction 5

1. Speaking with One Voice – European Experiences in Multilateral Institutions 7

2. Will Europe Remain Divided? The NATO Experience 10

3. The Balkan Conflict: Has Europe Learned its Lessons? 12

4. The Quartet, the Barcelona Process, and the Road Map for Peace:

Europe’s Role in the Mediterranean and the Middle East 15

5. Operation ARTEMIS: Mission Accomplished?

An Evaluation of the EU Involvement in the Great Lakes Region 18

6. Does Europe Neglect the Caucasus? 21

7. The EU/Russia Strategic Partnership: How Bumpy Is the Road? 23

8. The EU and China: How Mature Is the Relationship? 27

9. Two Years after the Bonn Agreement:

Has the International Community Failed in Afghanistan? 30

10. Test Case Iraq – How to Overcome the ‘Great Divide’? 33

11. After the ‘Great Divide’ on Iraq:

What Future is There for the Transatlantic Relationship? 35

Final Remarks 39

Appendix 41

Recommended Web Sites 41

Recommended Literature 45



Should Europe be a partner or a counterweight to the United States in global and regional

security matters? This would be asking the wrong question. A security partnership between

Europe and the US – or as the Americans tend to label it, “a partnership in leadership” – can only

be based on Europe’s capability to put the necessary weight behind common decisions.

Europe has become a partner of the US in the global trade system. Both partners together serve

as the motor of the World Trade Organization (WTO). Third parties such as China or coalitions

of smaller countries can block decisions in the WTO. However, no progress can be achieved when

Europe and the US have not agreed on a common negotiating platform in advance. Europe and

the US have different interests and represent different regulatory philosophies in the global

trade system. However, with the WTO, both partners have agreed on a common framework

of governance for this policy area.

France and Germany have built a solid partnership inside of the European Union. In the

post-World War II period, both countries decided to balance their opposing economic and

political interests by pushing for European integration. France and Germany have been true

partners in leadership. The post-war deal between both countries was renewed and deepened

with the Maastricht Treaty and the foundation of both a Political Union and the Economic and

Monetary Union. The much acclaimed “friendship” between Germany and France is not based

on similar interests, but on a voluntaristic decision to push ahead with European integration.

Ultimately, the European project has served both countries’ domestic as well as foreign policy

interests – as different as these may be. The inclusion of other EU Member States – Poland could

be such a case – in the Franco-German partnership in leadership will be possible only if based on

a similar voluntaristic act.

After the US-European rift on Iraq, the transatlantic security relationship needs to be

redefined. This redefinition should not involve the mere duplication of Europe’s post-war

security dependency on the US. Europe should ask itself how its own security interests –

including different interests of Member States with different historical experiences and

perspectives – can be guaranteed by a new governance structure in which Europe has a decisive

say. To redefine the US role and mandate in Europe, we need to have an honest transatlantic

conversation on our differing threat analyses and the instruments that we have in mind to counter

those threats.

It is obvious that, before the events of September 11, both Europe and the US underestimated

the threat presented by terrorist activities possessing a global reach. In the US, the even larger

threat of a combination of terrorist methods with weapons of mass destruction has been widely

discussed since the early 1990s. The European debate has largely neglected this issue. However,

the subordination of other threats as well as crucial regional and international security issues to

the “war against terrorism,” as proposed by the new US National Security Strategy, runs

counter to European policy priorities. Regional conflicts – such as the Israeli-Palestinian


conflict and conflicts in the Kashmir region and the Horn of Africa – cannot be subsumed under

the issue of terrorism. The greater security challenges of the twenty-first century are all

consequences of phenomena that involve change at a global level. Climate change, resource

depletion and migration from economic and ecological disaster zones are some of the more

pressing examples of these types of new threats. Our conversation with the US must start with

the question of how we analyze and prioritize threats.

Most of today’s threats and conflicts are of an asymmetric character. Increased military

capabilities do not always provide an answer to them. Therefore, the future of Europe’s

Security and Defense Policy does not lie in creating an expensive US-style global intervention

force, but in the development of instruments and capabilities for civil and policy-based inter

vention. Strengthening international law and working toward a more just economic globalization

will provide the framework for countering today’s asymmetric threats with a new set of mainly

non-military instruments.

However, Europe’s military will continue to be needed and must therefore be modernized and

re-oriented toward the new threats as described above. In the long term, this must lead to the

creation of a common European army, instead of the 25 national armies of an enlarged Europe.

Steps toward this vision, such as a European Procurement Agency, have recently been proposed

by Germany and France. Europe must also modernize part of its military equipment, such as its

air transport and reconnaissance capabilities. Europe’s commitment to regional and global

stability must grow, both politically as well as financially. Those stability costs will contain a

military budget that fulfills Europe’s security needs. However, an increase in military spending

alone will not be the answer.

Europe must invest politically as well as financially in international security and governance

structures. Our focus must be to strengthen the capacity of the United Nations to be a more

relevant forum for decisions on global security issues as well as for operational tasks in conflict

prevention, crisis management and nation-building. To achieve that mission, the EU must

acquire a unified voice inside the UN.

The ideas presented in the following text are based on debates (“Lunch Lectures”) that the

Heinrich Böll EU Regional Office Brussels organized in 2003 on the history and future of the

CFSP. The “Lunch Lectures” were held under the Chatham House rules, meaning that none of

the speakers will be quoted by name. The reader should keep in mind that not all current

developments could be integrated into the text before going into print.

Sascha Müller-Kraenner

Director Europe/North America, Heinrich Böll Foundation,

Berlin, April 2004


The Heinrich Böll Foundation would like to thank all participants and

especially the following experts (listed in alphabetical order) for their

contributions to the discussions:

Laurent Amar, Counselor Mediterranean and Gulf Countries, Permanent Representation of

France to the EU

Dimitar Belcev, Minister-Counselor, Mission of Republic of Macedonia to the EU

William Boe, Council of the European Union, Policy Planning and Early Warning Unit,

Responsible for Caucasus

Sven Biscop, Senior Researcher, Security and Global Governance Department, Royal Institute

for International Relations, Brussels

Reinhold Brender, European Commission, DG RELEX, Responsible for the Caucasus

Luc Carbonez, Director “European Security,” Federal Public Service Foreign Affairs, Foreign

Trade and Development Cooperation, Belgian Government, Brussels

Daniel Cohn-Bendit, Member of European Parliament, France

Jan Dhaene, Member of European Parliament, Belgium

Kim Eland, European Commission, DG RELEX

Michael Emerson, Senior Research Fellow, Center for European Studies, Brussels

Richard Escott Cox, Senior Adviser to the UN/UNDP Representative, Brussels

Pieter Cornelis Feith, Council of the European Union, Deputy-General (ESDP)

Eran Fraenkel, Director South East and East Europe Regional Program, Common Ground, Brussels

Paul Fritch, Head of Section, Russia and Ukraine Relations, Political Affairs and Security

Policy NATO, Brussels

Ralf Fücks, Executive Heinrich Böll Foundation, Berlin

Lutz Holländer, Researcher “European and Atlantic Security,” Stiftung Wissenschaft und Politik, Berlin

Christopher Holtby, Council of the European Union, Deputy Director-General (ESDP)

Michael Köhler, European Commission, RELEX and Professor for “Europe and the

Ethan Kapstein,

Mediterranean,” College of Europe, Bruges

Paul Dubrule Professor of Sustainable Development, Economics and Political

Science and Transatlantic Fellow, German Marshall Fund/Transatlantic Center, Brussels

Gerhard Lohan, European Commission, DG RELEX, Responsible for Russia, Ukraine, Moldova and Belarus

Helene Radcliffe, European Commission, DG RELEX, Afghanistan Team

Karla Schoeters, Director Climate Action Network Europe, Brussels

Mark Sedra, Associate Researcher, Bonn International Center for Conversion

Michael Swann, Council of the European Union, Directorate-General E (CFSP)

Antti Turunen, Council of the European Union, Policy Planning and Early Warning Unit,

Responsible for Afghanistan

Koen Vervaeke, Council of the European Union, Policy Planning and Early Warning Unit

Koen Vlassenroot, Professor Conflict Research Group, Ghent University

Gudrun Wacker, Stiftung Wissenschaft und Politik, Head Research Unit, Berlin

Nicholas Whyte, Europe Program Director, International Crisis Group, Brussels





It is likely an understatement to conclude that the European Common Foreign and Security Policy

did not look very good in 2003. Just when we thought it was going somewhere, the US-led war on

Iraq divided Europe and seemed to blow the rudimentary fundaments of the CFSP into smithereens.

And just when the Member States looked decided to pick up the pieces and glue them together

again by charging the EU High Representative for the CFSP, Javier Solana, with the elaboration

of a European security strategy (which was presented at the European Council in Thessaloniki in

June 2003 and adopted by the Brussels European Council in December of that same year),

it went all wrong again. The failure of the Brussels Summit in December 2003 to adopt the Draft

Constitution prepared by the European Convention, in which the CFSP has been provided with new

aims and means, was another serious setback. Now that enlargement has become a fact, leaving

the constitutional questions in limbo, the future of the CFSP looks, to say the least, confusing.

Still, in spite of all obstacles and defeats, European Member States are very much aware of the

fact that they will only have an impact when they act together. And, in spite of the fact that the

‘great divide’ on Iraq has caused the impression that Europe is far from able to lead a common

foreign and security policy and in spite of the (temporary?) problems with the new constitution,

the progress the European Union has made in this area since the first Gulf war in 1990 should not

be underrated. Europe was not even expected to have a common position just a decade ago.

Since then the situation has changed dramatically. During the conflict in the Balkans,

the Member States of the EU learned that the only way to achieve something is to speak with one

voice. The Member States have made valuable common experiences with both military and

non-military operations in Bosnia, Kosovo, Macedonia, and, most recently, in the Congo. In the

past years, Europe has succeeded in developing a wide range of different foreign policy instruments.

Now the important task is to integrate all these different military and non-military instruments

and capabilities effectively.

The adoption of the European Security Strategy (A Secure Europe in a Better World) 1 by the

end of last year as the basis for the CFSP is an important step forward in the right direction.

It was about time for Europe to define its own security and strategic interests. The document

defines the new threats in a new security environment (terrorism, proliferation of Weapons of

Mass Destruction (WMD), regional conflicts, failing states, and organized crime). It discusses

the resulting strategic objectives of Europe’s foreign policy (addressing the threats, building

security in Europe’s neighborhood, and effective multilateralism) and assesses the

policy implications for the EU. The conclusion is that Europe can only achieve its objectives in

an effective multilateral setting of international institutions and through partnerships with

other global and regional actors as illustrated in the Commission’s Wider Europe 2 concept.

Just as crucial is the chapter on CFSP in the Draft Constitution, which not only strengthens its

institutional basis and the decision-making mechanisms, but also describes its political aims

and means. Conflict prevention, support of democracy, the rule of law, and human rights are


mentioned here, as well as the promotion of an international system for stronger multilateral

cooperation and good global governance 3 . Also, foreign policy is supposed to serve sustainability,

free trade, and the eradication of poverty.

On the institutional level, the creation of the post of a European Union Minister for Foreign

Affairs likely represents the greatest progress made. An EU Foreign Minister should increase

the ability of the EU to act and its visibility in an international context. The fact that the future

European Foreign Minister has a separate right of initiative 4 provides him or her with real

political power and the possibility to develop a real CFSP through effective leadership. S/he will

also be charged with the coordination of the CFSP, foreign trade policy, development cooperation

and most likely enlargement policy, and be assisted by a European diplomatic service 5 .

Unfortunately the Draft Constitution neither extends majority voting on the CFSP nor improves

parliamentary control 6 .

The European Security and Defense Policy (EDSP) rests on two pillars, civilian and military 7 .

The Petersberg tasks 8 have been expanded in a way that they now consist of disarmament

operations, post-conflict stabilization measures, military consultation, the fight against terrorism,

conflict prevention, humanitarian tasks, peacekeeping, and peace making. All this can be

considered a reliable legal basis for an active civil crisis prevention, as it was desired by UN

Secretary-General Kofi Annan.

A remarkable development is also the admission of a structured cooperation of a limited number

of Member States 9 , which enables the concept of a “defense union with the Union” as was proposed

by Belgium, France, Germany, and Luxembourg during the “mini-defense summit” on 29 April

2003. We can hope that this possibility will be an incentive rather than an impediment to the

development of CFSP.

Finally, the Draft Constitution contains an open assistance clause 10 , similar to Art. 5 of the

NATO Treaty, converting the EU into a partial defense alliance. In addition, there is also a

solidarity clause in case of terrorist attacks, or natural or man-made disasters 11 .

In spite of the clarification and simplification of means and methods, decision-making related to

CFSP will remain problematic as a result of the continuation of the consensus principle and the

extremely complex regulations in defense policy. The Draft Constitution has flicked the

switches for a CFSP that can make the EU a player on the global scene, but whether the train will

actually ride smoothly on the rails depends on the willingness and capability of the 25 to learn

from the past and focus on our common future.

The EU enlargement, especially with states that formerly belonged to the Soviet sphere of

influence, confronts the European CFSP, which had taken so long to develop, with new challenges

and problems. Initially, more internal differences within the European Union can be expected

during the process of integrating foreign and security policies, as an (ever) increasing number of

different interests and historical experiences will have to considered. The following chapters

will discuss the historical experiences (either common or different) that Europe can build on as

well as the new challenges it will have to deal with in the short and long term.


3 Part III, Art. 193

4 Part III, Art. 197

5 Part III, Art. 230 and Declaration of a European

External Action Service

6 Part I, Art. 39; Part III, Art. 201

7 Part III, Art. 210

8 Part III, Art. 210

9 Arts. 40.6 and III-213

10 Part III, Art. 214

11 12 Part I, Art. 42; part III, Art. 184, 195, 231

1. Speaking with One Voice: European Experiences in Multilateral Institutions

The EU enlargement, especially with states that formerly belonged to the Soviet sphere of

influence, confronts the European common nominator Foreign and Defense Policy (CFSP) with

new challenges and problems. Can CFSP learn from experiences in other areas where a common

EU policy has already been established? What are the problems there and how are they

overcome? How influential and successful has the EU been in multilateral institutions? What

will be the new challenges for the near future?

In some areas, like climate negotiations, the EU operates in unison, even though here is no legal basis

that demands the Member States to speak with one voice. The Member States have demonstrated a

strong willingness to cooperate and negotiate behind the scenes in order to determine their position.

This is a way of working that, in fact, demands a strong presidency, and the weakness of this procedure

is that the result is usually the lowest common denominator.

Even though the way the EU works in this area cannot be considered optimal, progress in

environmental issues would be unthinkable without this cooperation. The question is, however, whether

this way of working will be possible and feasible after enlargement when 25 Member States will have

to negotiate in order to determine a common position.

Climate negotiations are not the only example where the European Union has found a way to speak

with one voice. Though there are still many organizations where the EU is absent – Bretton Woods is

the most significant example – it is present in many organizations, whereas only a few years ago a

single EU voice seemed impossible.

One can differentiate between two basic categories: Organizations where the EU has an

exclusive competence, like the World Trade Organization and various trade arrangements (e.g. the

Kimberley process 12 ), and where it does not. Agriculture and fisheries are two other areas where the

EU has exclusive competence. The simplicity here lies in the fact that the institution that designs and

elaborates policy is also the institution that represents it on the outside. The link between policymaking

and representation is a crucial one. It ensures that the institution that speaks is also the institution

that does the following up. In all these areas, the general policy objects are defined by the European

Council. The European Commission does not act in a vacuum, it acts in very close contact with the

Member States to make sure that the position it defines is a position the Member States agree with.

So far, this way of working has proven very successful. People outside the EU may probably even

contend that the EU is too successful in international trading negotiations. Developing countries will

certainly take that view.

In these areas, there is always the potential use of qualified majority voting which is very rarely evoked.

But having the possibility in case of disagreement means that there is a very strong incentive for

Member States to reach a compromise. The issue put forward tends to be more strategically oriented

than a situation where any party to the decision-making process can insist on a minor concern to be

integrated into the package.


Another ingredient to this recipe is giving the negotiators a certain amount of flexibility when they go

to the negotiation table. Telling the negotiator exactly what s/he has to say when going to the table

makes the chances of success fairly low. Giving him/her a strategic objective and leaving the tactical

means up to him/her increases the chances of obtaining the desired result. An important distinction is

made between the tactical and the strategic. Historically this is how the EC/EU has been operating in

international (trade) organizations.

Negative examples usually come from an area where there is no exclusive competence, like the

tobacco convention at the recent meeting of the World Health Organization. Then there are issues

which have no exclusiveness of competence, but a rather mixed or CFSP-style competence. In the UN

context, it tends to be CFSP-style coordination. Member States usually consider everything that

happens in the UN as a part of the second pillar and CFSP. This may be debatable, but it sets the

framework within the EU operates. It is actually a very recent phenomenon that only just emerged the

past few years. It has proven to be a tremendous success, in the sense that the EU is now visible as a

cohesive force.

In the United Nations, the EU Member States now vote together on nearly 95% of all UN resolutions.

This is a very impressive score if one considers that the exceptions are mostly on very specific issues.

The EU votes and speaks together via its presidency. There is actually a legal basis for this in the EU

Treaty that says that Member States should coordinate their positions in international organizations.

There is also a specific provision in the Treaty that concerns what should happen in the Security

Council, which is perhaps the exception to the rule. Otherwise, the obligation to coordinate applies

across all UN committees.

On most issues discussed in the UN, the EU will try to come to a common position. Sometimes

coordination takes place a long time in advance, if the agenda is known and documents are available,

and, therefore, an actual coordination process is possible. On other issues, coordination will be very

improvised and ad hoc, though expert groups do meet on a regular basis.

These expert groups sometimes have conferences where they develop long-term strategic views, which

however, depends greatly on the presidency. One problem here is that a six-month presidency’s interest

in a conference that will take place in two years is usually moderate. On the other hand, it should be

easy to understand that the experts working on the issue for a future presidency will already make sure

that some good comes of it, although for less important issues there may be room for improvement. As

far as issues in the first pillar are concerned, there is not so much the problem of the presidency, but the

problem of an impossible workload. All these factors combined may lead to the perception of other

Member States in the UN that the EU tends to be reactive in UN events and that it is not anticipatory


The UN procedures work also rather well for the ECOSOC 13 and its functioning commissions, and

there are major conferences where rules similar to the ECOSOC tend to apply. It does not work quite

so well for the Security Council – for obvious reasons. It does not yet work perfectly for certain

specialized UN agencies, particularly certain agencies based in Geneva.


13 Economic and Social Comittee

Even though for the immediate future, it is unlikely that the EU will operate with just one seat in the

Security Council, this remains a realistic option for the long term. Whether this option becomes reality

will depend on the ability of the EU to build up a (diplomatic) structure that could develop more of a

common ethos and understanding. A common EU Foreign Minister, as foreseen in the Constitution,

would probably help to produce such a structure rather than needing to involve national diplomats.

The long-term process is, so far, positive. An important step forward is the fact that Member States

agree that only the EU speaks even if there are important national interests at stake and that,

consequently, they remain silent in a meeting. What Member States have realized is that they are more

likely to achieve their goals in this manner than they would if they were to speak as one of 191

members in the UN.

What these experiences show is that, regardless of what kind of EU presence there is in an

international organization, incredible progress is being made. The fact that this is the case in many

organizations where the EU is not even formally a member is even more astonishing. The challenges

that lie ahead now are concentrated in the general issues and enlargement.

A European strategic concept seems to be the only way to ensure consistency in EU policy in different

international forums. It is a new phenomenon that the EU is being expected to take a common position

both from outside its ranks and from the inside. This was not the case at the beginning of the Balkan

crisis. There has been a major change of mentality since then.

What political consequences have to be drawn from that? First of all, we should certainly not

overestimate the intrinsic stability of what we have achieved with(in) the EU. The extent to which this

is still fragile and easily undermined from within and from outside, if we cannot make the additional

step towards effective institutions, has to be taken seriously. It does not take very much to destroy

what we have, as is constantly being demonstrated in trade negotiations. Any negotiator will try to

break up a group that will turn up divided at a negotiation.

It is therefore important that institutional structures that provide a strong basis for united action are

developed and defending international institutions as a united Europe is just as important. The new

constitution is a step in the right direction, even though it is not the giant leap one would have hoped

for. European experiences in various international arenas have proved that only a united Europe is a

serious global player. If this lesson is not applied to the CFSP, Europe will be a ball in the game rather

than a player and it will only have itself to blame.


If Europe is serious about a Common Foreign and Defense Policy (CFSP), it will have to improve

its institutions and build up a permanent (diplomatic) structure in order to develop a common

ethos. Experiences in other areas have shown that only a united Europe is an effective global

player. Member states, old and new alike, have to be aware of the fact that the achievements

that the EU has realized in the past are fragile and can be undermined. The CFSP provisions in

the new Constitution, especially the post of a European Foreign Minister, can help to solidify

Europe’s position and to provide it with new perspectives.


2. Will Europe Remain Divided?

The NATO Experience

“Damn Europe, if it remains divided,” Valery Giscard d’Estaing, head of the Convention on the

future of the EU, said when receiving the 2003 Charlemagne Prize in Aachen for “fostering a

united Europe.” Will the new EU constitution really provide Europe with a reliable fundament

for a Common Foreign and Security Policy? What powers will the new European Foreign Minister

have? And what shape will the future relationship between NATO and CFSP take?

Bush’s advisers suspected that, if the EU had spoken with one voice, if its member governments had

stood together against Bush’s point of view, they would never have been able to persuade the American

public to agree to the war on Iraq. Unfortunately for all of us, that did not happen.

Until the events of September 11, the question of the effectiveness of the CFSP was blurred by the

Balkan conflict where Europe, finally, acted together. The time after 9/11, however, showed that the

EU Member States are divided. This has historical reasons. The political assessment of the Suez crisis

led the UK and France to different conclusions. Whereas the UK linked its foreign and defense policy

to the US, France saw the need for a stronger Europe as being in its own interest. For historical

reasons Germany was until recently the closest ally of the US, but it had also everything to win by

having a stronger Europe. This means that, in fact, the EU can only speak with one voice when France,

the UK, and Germany agree.

As far as operating within NATO is concerned, the EU Member States have three different approaches.

All of them see NATO as cornerstone of security, but, whereas the neutral Member States have a

restricted reading of the Petersberg tasks (i.e. military intervention should be left to NATO), the UK

and others believe that NATO plays the leading role for their security. France and other Member States

agree on the NATO role, but only in the context of the Berlin Plus agreements, which allow the

EU to utilize NATO resources to carry out operations. These three different approaches make a

consensus difficult.

Of all Member States, France, the UK, and Greece are the only ones making a serious effort to improve

their military capabilities. Others make different choices. This basically means that even with one

voice, Europe would lack credibility, simply because it lacks the military capabilities.

Will Europe develop its capabilities and how? Will the EDSP set the pace for the CFSP? For most

countries, an increased effort on developing capabilities is only possible within a European context.

The mini-defense summit on 29 April 2003 in Brussels came up with seven specific proposals for

improving capabilities, even though the original proposals had gone much further (they included

benchmarking). Among these suggestions were a rapid reaction capability (to be built around the

Franco-German brigade) available for both EU and NATO operations, a European command for

strategic air transport, European training centers, and a joint European Nuclear, Biological and

Chemical protection capability.

By the end of the day, Europe will have to come up with a military capability that matches its economic

capacity. It can be expected that enlargement will further complicate decision-making. The new


chapter in the proposal for a European constitution still means that what is needed is the political will

to make the CFSP work and Member States will still have to understand that national interests are best

served by a European approach. Even though the progress made in this area does not look convincing

at first sight, we should not forget that the CFSP was only introduced in the Treaty of Maastricht

(1992) as a possibility for the future.

So long as the security dimension of the EU remains intergovernmental and largely based on consensus

rather than majority voting, no serious tension between the NATO format and the EU’s own processes

can be expected. However, in case the development of CFSP would lead towards more independence

from NATO, the United States might drift even more towards unilateralism. This would reduce Europe’s

chances to influence US policy, increase the likeliness that the United States and Europe will go

different ways and, consequently, endanger NATO and transatlantic relations in general.

If there is a strategic rift within the NATO alliance, it is not so much concerning the objectives as the

instruments to be applied and under what conditions, which was the case in the Iraq question. For the

first time since its foundation, there is now a real opportunity to change NATO’s structure. What could

it look like? If the EU had a performing capability, would it not stand to hold that they should only

activate the NATO level when EU means are insufficient? In that case, the transatlantic pillar would be

asked to become involved. Both pillars could agree to cooperate, but if they did not agree, this would

not mean a breach of transatlantic solidarity.

There are, however, certain preconditions to arriving there. Europe needs to proceed with enhancing

the efficiency of its military capability. There is actually a great deal of room for savings here: In the

long run, a much higher output can be created within the current defense budgets. There is, in fact, a

broad consensus to enhance capabilities in the way it was proposed at the mini-defense summit where

the greatest diversion was caused by the idea of a European headquarters.

The only way to push forward the idea of CFSP is to have enhanced cooperation, which is a possibility

in the new Constitution. If the EU, with all Member States at once or by way of ‘structured

cooperation,’ succeeds in building a performing, integrated European military capability that can deal

with the whole range of Petersberg tasks in an autonomous way, this would have consequences for

relations within NATO.

Such a European capability could be deployed in the context of a NATO or an EU mission. It would

thus at the same time constitute the European pillar of NATO at the level of the military capacity. This

would, of course, have implications for the political level: NATO could evolve into an equitable

two-pillar organization, within which the EU would speak with one voice. Creating a European caucus

within NATO would actually be in line with the Treaty on European Union. It would also put an end to

the danger of the US dealing with selected member States and ignoring the EU as such.

With regard to non-Article 5 operations, each pillar would then itself assume first-level responsibility in

case of crises on its side of the Atlantic. The overarching NATO level would only be activated

either if the means of the pillar concerned would not suffice to subdue the crisis or if the other pillar for

political reasons would choose to be involved from the beginning, e.g. because it feels important

interests are directly at stake. The European pillar would then not be obliged to take part in US

operations against which the EU has political objections, like the invasion of Iraq.


With regard to collective defense, NATO would remain the ultimate guarantee for the security of all

allies, although perhaps in this field too each pillar could at first itself take responsibility.

Finally, the Iraq crisis made it very clear that the EU needed a common strategic concept for its

external action. Building on existing policies and partnerships, the new European Security Strategy is

an ambitious policy making tool that outlines the overall long-term objectives that the EU pursues as

well as the basic categories and instruments that it will apply. It is a comprehensive strategy for

external action and as such goes beyond the purely military dimension. Together with the relevant

chapters in the new constitution, the European Security Strategy should enable Europe to speak with

one voice and to operate as a responsible global actor.


The new EU Constitution is a step forward in the right direction, but CFSP will still rely on the

political will of the Member States to make it happen. Enhanced cooperation would be an

acceptable way of getting there. The power of the new European Foreign Minister will initially

depend very much on his/her ability to work with discretion and to build up a common European

diplomatic corps. Creating a European caucus within NATO would be in line with the Treaty on

European Union. It would also end the current situation in which the US deals with selected

member States and ignores the EU as such. The new European security Strategy is another

important tool to enable Europe to become a responsible global actor.

3. The Balkan Conflict: Has Europe Learned its Lessons?

When Yugoslavia fell apart in 1991, Europe was hopelessly divided. Some Member States

wanted to keep Yugoslavia together, others wanted to recognize the independence of the

breakaway republics of Slovenia and Croatia unconditionally, and yet a third group was in favor

of a more coherent approach. Fortunately, Europe has learned from its mistakes and in the last

few years it has made a real difference in the region. But where do we go from here? What are

the main challenges for Europe in the Balkans in the near future and what can be learned from

the experiences in this region with regard to other conflict areas?

On 1 January 2003, the European Union Police Mission (EUPM) in Bosnia and Herzegovina (BiH)

followed on from the UN’s International Police Task Force. In line with the general objectives of the

Paris/Dayton Agreement, the EUPM seeks to establish sustainable policing arrangements under BiH

ownership in accordance with best European and international practice. The mission is established for

a duration of three years. The EUPM is only one of the EU’s contributions to stability and security in

the Balkans. It is also another good example for the development of a European Common Foreign and

Security policy, particularly a European security and defense policy (ESDP).

According to Commissioner Chris Patten, the EU-Western Balkans Summit on 21 June 2003 was a

milestone in European relations with the Balkan countries that sent two important messages to the

Western Balkans. First, that the prospect of EU membership is real, that the map of the European

Union will not be regarded as complete before they have joined it, and that the European Commission

will do all it can to help them succeed. The second message was that membership must be earned and


that it will take hard work and the political will of those in the region in order to determine how far

they can see down the road toward European integration and how long it will take.

Calling the Thessaloniki results a milestone seems a rather optimistic assessment of the situation. The

progress which the EU has been driven by the Balkan conflict to make is significant, but a more

concrete approach to the stabilization process is needed, an approach where new partnerships are being

drawn up every year between the EU and the countries concerned with real goals that can be fulfilled

and real strategies that can be followed. The conclusions of the Thessaloniki Summit are disappointing

in spite of the fact that the original paper of the Greek presidency was rather promising. It was,

however, seriously watered down by other Member States, probably due to a certain enlargement

fatigue. Gone is, for example, the commitment to the Balkans’ economic development, the only

mention of economy in the Thessaloniki paper being an almost irrelevant commitment to the Western

Balkan states allowing them to join the European Charter of Small Businesses.

The current EU policies – the Stabilization and Association Process (SAP) and the Stability Pact –

were established in the uncertain days of 1999, immediately following the Kosovo crisis. They combine

a standard set of bilateral initiatives urging the states of the region to cooperate with each other more.

An effective strategy to support the reform process in the Western Balkan countries and to move them

closer to the EU should allow every country to proceed at its own pace, without making any of them

feel that they are being held back by the slow progress of others or that they are being left behind.

Such a strategy should:

Make it clear, as Commissioner Patten already did, that the countries of the region are welcome as EU

members once the established criteria are fulfilled.

Increase financial commitment to the region, such that the western Balkan countries concerned are not

disadvantaged in comparison with the current EU membership candidates.

Tie assistance to the region to a program of benchmarks for reform, worked out in partnership between

the EU and the countries themselves, with regular assessment and the application of strict conditionality

within the framework of European Partnerships, which should be regarded as the cornerstone of the SAP.

Apply the European Partnerships flexibly, dealing with central, regional, or local levels of government

as appropriate. The SAP Tracking Mechanism should be incorporated into the European Partnerships

approach, so that Kosovo would not be disadvantaged within the SAP on account of its unresolved status.

Give Western Balkan states the option of a customs union with the EU in advance of membership.

Introduce a subtler visa regime for citizens of Balkan states..

Promote the creation of areas of facilitated freedom of movement between neighboring regions, which

will encourage the development of cross-border and regional cooperation.

Commit the EU to continue to build on its security role in the Western Balkans – most notably its military

mission in Macedonia and its police mission in Bosnia – particularly in the fight against corruption

and organized crime.

As far as security is concerned, the question should also be raised as to what exactly it means from the


grassroots perspective. This also means trying to understand South Eastern Europe in, both, its

component parts and as a region. European pressure has lead to a severe level of competition among

countries as they vie for the highest position on the list. Since the list has been hierarchically defined,

it has resulted in competition rather than cooperation.

Are the people in the Balkans more or less secure as a result of Europe’s policy? How do the people

define security? It must be said that the question of identity has made the region less secure.

In economic terms, there has been improvement to some extent. In militarily terms, the answer has to

be ‘no’ seeing as there have been three wars in the former Yugoslavia and, as recent events in Mostar

and Kosovo have shown, peace in many regions is still a rather temporary and fragile situation.

What has not been considered sufficiently is the problem of allegiance between the US and Europe

following along the lines of economic and military security issues. Economic allegiance in the region

is more with Europe whereas military allegiance for most people, despite the last ten, eleven years,

is tied to the US.

The people of the Balkans do not really see Europe as having a Common Foreign and Security Policy,

and – despite the fact that governments and people are willing to accept the fact that their destiny lies

with Europe – the Euro-Atlantic integration was never meant to be a dissociated gap between the

governments and what the people think they need. The EU needs to find a balance there, in the same

way as the governments and people of the Balkans have to.

None of the Balkan states will become the 51st state of the US; fundamentally, the EU is the future.

The EU has a strategic interest of integrating the Balkans into the EU and the US is aware of that, too.

On the other hand, it is crucial for the Balkan people to see Europe actually speak with one voice,

because at the moment they still notice the differences between the Member States in many cases.

Maybe expectations are too high on both sides, but the Balkan countries are doing the best they can. It

would do them some good to hear a little more about what the EU is doing in terms of rewards. In a

way, the Stability Pact has become part of the problem, as it offered huge prospects back in 1999. Five

years later, not much has happened. There has been a lot of empty rhetoric with respect to the Balkans

and Thessaloniki was not sufficient to change that impression.


In spite of the EU’s positive contributions to stability and security in the Balkans, much remains

to be done in terms of positive incentives. The EU has to make its commitment towards the

region very clear through a greater financial involvement in the area, better economic

cooperation, and a subtler visa policy. Regular and continuous dialogue between civil societies is

especially important. The lessons learned from ethnic conflicts in other parts of the world are: A

military power from the international community has to intervene in an early stage, and a

strategy to avoid ethnic conflict has to involve two levels, first, building up cooperative

structures in civil society and, second, putting external pressure on the political leadership.

Finally, the presence of a credible international military force has to last long enough in order to

avoid a rekindling of violence and in order to allow the development of local structures that can

guarantee a sustainable peace.



4. The Quartet, the Barcelona Process, and the Roadmap for Peace:

Europe’s Role in the Mediterranean and the Middle East

The Southern and Eastern Mediterranean and the Middle East are a key priority for the

European Union. In 1995 the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership was launched at the Barcelona

Conference between the EU and twelve Mediterranean partners. The EU is also involved in the

Middle East Peace Process. The situation in the region is seriously deteriorating. What state is

the Barcelona process in? What are the EU’s experiences in the Quartet? What can Europe do to

contribute to peace and prosperity in the region?

Even though there is without doubt a complementarity between the Euro-Mediterranean Partnership/Barcelona

Process and the Middle East Peace Process, a direct linkage, however, should be avoided. The interest of

the European Union in the Mediterranean has been evolving since the 1990s. In 1990, the EU renewed its

Mediterranean policy by adding two new elements to the traditional dimensions, trade and aid. One was

the idea of regional cooperation of the Mediterranean countries and the other was a stronger involvement

of civil society, especially through university and media projects. This was a rather short-lived phase.

When in 1995 the Barcelona Process (BP) was started, it offered a comprehensive framework that included

economic and political layers, security and cultural aspects, and human rights. The main energies went into the

free trade pillar and association agreements. The main corpus was the establishment of bilateral north/south

zones. New was the idea of connecting those zones and creating a diagonal trade zone, which is still one of the

biggest European ambitions. This ambition was and is not only about providing chances for European businesses.

At the time, everybody was under the influence of the World Bank analyses that showed what the

demographic forecasts for these countries looked like and that something needed to be done to mobilize

their demographic and social forces, make them more performing and offer more chances, political and

economic, to their population 14 . This was the state of the situation six or seven years ago. Further

layers have been added to the BP through the declarations of Marseille (2001) and Valencia (2002)

and, most recently, Naples (December 2003).

At the last meeting of the Euro-Mediterranean conference in Naples in December 2003, the ministers

of foreign affairs expressed awareness of the necessity to deepen the BP as well as make it more visible

and transparent in an attempt to bring it closer to the civil societies of the region.

In this spirit, the meeting established a Euro-Mediterranean Foundation for the Dialogue of

Cultures, which is to act as a catalyst for initiatives aimed at increasing dialogue and understanding

throughout the Euro-Mediterranean region on a grassroots level.

The weakness of civil society in the Mediterranean countries has so far negatively affected the pace of reform.

This will only change once the governments themselves realize the necessity of new relationships between state,

markets and society and that, therefore, civil society has to be encouraged to participate actively in the reform.

However, economic reforms are still crucial. The Southern Mediterranean countries need to be able to

offer an acceptable future to their population. In spite of all European efforts, which include large

volumes of economic and technical assistance as well as substantial trade concessions, the prosperity

gap between the EU and the Southern Mediterranean countries is not diminishing.


A Euro-Mediterranean Parliamentary Assembly was also established in Naples. It should enable

parliamentarians from both sides of the Mediterranean to exchange ideas on how a democratic system should

function in a modern state, and on how to fight terrorism and organized crime while respecting human rights

and the rule of law, including an independent Judiciary.

We are getting closer to the ‘global village,’ to the point that our occupation with the Mediterranean is no

longer restricted to foreign policy, a perception that is clearly expressed in the Wider Europe paper. One of

the central ideas taken up in that document is that, with our immediate neighbors, we should use community

instruments in order to solidify and develop relationships. This means that there are now more layers than

just the BP. However, this new policy should build on BP acquis.

Wider Europe further adds a program of joint action. Parallel progress is offered towards the EU’s four

fundamental freedoms: free movement of goods, services, capital, and people.

The Thessaloniki European Council conclusions contain a chapter on European initiatives towards the Arab

world. Europe has to acknowledge the problem of under-performance in the Southern Mediterranean

countries. It also has to acknowledge the new situation created by the Iraq war. It has to intensify the

cooperation with those forces in the countries that are fighting for good governance, for democracy, for

human rights, and for women’s empowerment. There is a new debate on how to fix the relationships with

these countries without merely aiming for stagnation, but trying for dynamic forces.

CFSP/ESDP has so far been the poor cousin of the BP. There is still a project of a Charter for Peace and

Stability in the drawer that figured rather prominently in Barcelona in 1995. The BP has not only been

influenced by the developments in the region, but also by the process of European integration. Therefore,

justice and home affairs are so prominent at the moment.

The EU should offer the Mediterranean countries partnership in CFSP. A first meeting of the Political and Security

Committee and the Mediterranean countries, including Israel, has already taken place. We could imagine a situation

where the EU could work together, e.g. in Afghanistan, with Moroccans or Lebanese forces. Already, some of the

Mediterranean partners work with the EU in peacekeeping activities (the Balkans, Africa) under UN auspices.

In spite of the fact that the BP did not quite live up to the first expectations, a change occurred through the

unified position by the EU on the Mediterranean (Berlin Council, 24-25 March 1999) which gave a two-state

solution. In Berlin, the Heads of State and Government of the European Union reaffirmed their support for

a negotiated settlement in the Middle East reflecting the principles of “land for peace” and ensuring the

security, both collective and individual, of the Israeli and Palestinian peoples.

This was a positive development. However, what the EU badly needs is a strategy towards the Mediterranean

to bridge the huge difference in development between the North and the South of this region. The events of

September 11 and afterwards made it even more necessary to close this gap. In spite of the necessity of a

dialogue in culture, the real challenge still is economic. Just to stabilize the level of unemployment in the

Southern Mediterranean countries, it would be necessary to create 45 million jobs between 2000 and 2010

and to achieve a growth of 7% of the GDP.

Apart from economic reforms, the difficult issues in the BP remain democracy, human rights, and the fight

against terrorism. The dialogue has so far brought little change in the policy of the Southern Mediterranean

countries, which is the main weakness of the BP. Still, the very fact that the BP went on in spite of the

difficulties in the Middle East is as such an achievement. It could have stopped on numerous occasions.

Many times, Arab States (Syria and Lebanon) threatened to stay away, but, in the end, they did turn up,

apparently because they realized the important role of the EU in the region.


15 with the UN, the US, and Russia

A difficult issue remains the regional cooperation. On the one hand, it is the main strength of the BP, since it provides

the only framework in which Israel and the Arab countries cooperate, though the lack of progress in that

respect is one of the causes giving the BP a bad reputation. Additionally, there is no real synergy between

the regional and the bilateral level. It has turned out to be difficult to discuss human rights at a regional

level. Perhaps it is necessary to introduce more flexibility or subsidiarity in order to make more progress.

The BP is extremely complicated and neither the general population nor the decision-makers understand it

very well. Although the BP contains everything, even the fight against terrorism, there are huge problems of

implementation. It is also obvious that the BP is being kept hostage by the peace process in Middle East.

Europe has played a major role in the peace negotiations in the Middle East. The EU is part of the Quartet 15

and it was the EU that wrote the Road Map for Peace, though the text we have now is a compilation of a European

text and an American text. The monitoring mechanism is also a European idea. The fact that today this is basically

a US/CIA approach has to do with Israel not accepting the Europeans and the EU preferring to have an American

monitoring approach than none at all. There is also an annual settlement report as a formal EU activity.

However, after the recent developments, especially the assassinations of Sheik Yassin and the Hamas leader Abdel

Aziz Rantisi by Israeli missiles and the undermining of the Road Map by Sharon and Bush, the situation has

changed. Washington is no longer a credible trustee for peace in the Middle East and can no longer lead the

Quartet. Europe’s role is now more important than ever. It is up to Europe to point out to Israel and the US

that a one-sided deviation from the Road Map is unacceptable. It is also up to Europe to make clear that it

is just as unacceptable for Europe to help reconstruct the Gaza Strip after an eventual Israeli withdrawal as

long as Israel does not provides guarantees that it will not continue to destroy EU reconstruction assistance.

The EU could use its influence by offering Israel the opportunity to join NATO as a way to guarantee its

future security. This offer should be linked to the definite willingness of Israel to conclude a peace treaty

following the example of the “Geneva Treaty” in which Israel and Palestine recognize each other as

sovereign states. NATO membership including the support guaranties according to Article 5 of the NATO

Treaty would provide Israel the security it needs. Such a solution would also put the Palestinians into the

position to finally create a sovereign state that can determine its own destiny.

Another crucial issue of bilateral security is the access to the region’s scarce water resources. Management

should be subordinated to an international trusteeship administration within the framework of a peace treaty

for guaranteeing a distribution that is fair for both parties. Finally, Palestine should be granted support for

reconstruction similar to the Marshall plan that inaugurated the reconstruction of West Germany after

World War II. This support must be linked with the obligation to create a democratic state under the rule of

law, which guarantees human rights and separation of powers.


Barcelona Process: In spite of the fact that the Middle East conflict is blocking the first chapter of

the Barcelona Process, last year's meeting in Naples has given a new impetus to the Euro-

Mediterranean partnership. Europe has to intensify the cooperation with those forces in Southern

Mediterranean countries that are fighting for peace, for good governance, for democracy, for human

rights, and for women’s empowerment.

Middle East Peace Process: Europe played an important role in writing the Road Map to Peace. It

has to insist that deviations from the Road Map are out of the question and that targeted killings

cannot be tolerated. Europe should now use its influence by speaking with one voice in the United

Nations in order to ensure the recognition of a Palestinian State and in NATO in order to ensure the

membership of Israel linked to international recognition and protection of a Palestinian state.


5. Operation ARTEMIS: Mission Accomplished?

An Evaluation of the EU Involvement in the Great Lakes Region

In June 2003, the European Union launched a Military Operation in the Democratic Republic of the

Congo (DRC). Code-named ARTEMIS, the operation was conducted in accordance with UN Security

Council Resolution 1484 (30 May 2003) and the Council’s Joint Action adopted on 5 June 2003. The

operation, the first of the EU outside Europe, ended officially on 1 September 2003. Has it fulfilled

its objective to improve the security conditions and the humanitarian situation in the region?

What is the EU’s current strategy and how is it working out? Has ARTEMIS proven a successful

model to be applied in other regions? Is there a European concept for the Great Lakes region?

For more than ten years, the eastern parts of the Democratic Republic of the Congo have been the scene

of perpetuating violence which has killed more than three million people and has destroyed the entire

infrastructure. The outbreak of violence in Ituri in northeastern Congo should be understood as the

result of the exploitation, by local and regional actors, of a deeply-rooted local political conflict for

access to land, economic opportunity, and political power. The political economy of social

fragmentation in Ituri is the outcome of a long historic process, in which internal and external elements

became intertwined. The Belgian colonial administration had relied on one local community (the

Hema) to the disadvantage of the other local ethnic communities. As a consequence, the Hema found

themselves in a favored position after independence. At several occasions, ethnic communities (mainly

the Lendu) resisted the Hema-domination, but this conflict never escalated into full-scale violence. It

was only after the Kabila-led AFDL-rebellion (1996-1997), and the subsequent internal political void

that local elite’s tried to strengthen their position of power. Their search for allies, in concurrence with

the divide-and-rule tactics of Ugandan army commanders, has led to the first eruption of violence in 1999.

Local conflicts only became visible to outsiders when Ugandan troops withdrew in April 2002. They

left a power vacuum that caused a subsequent round of animosities between different militias. It came

very close to genocide, even thought there was a group of MONUC peacekeepers. Hema and Lentu

militias became the major actors of ethnic cleansing and split up the city center into Lendu

neighborhoods and Hema neighborhoods. No decisive international action was taken. The UN

continued to support the IPC (Ituri Pacification Commission) and tried in vain to reach an agreement

between the ethnic militias in Dar-Es-Salaam.

On 16 May 2003, after asking the Ugandans to stay twice, the UN then asked them to follow the

provisions of the Luanda agreement that indicated that Uganda had to leave the Ituri region. This

turned out to be the United Nations’ mistake: By concentrating solely on the administrative framework

of the different peace agreements, MONUC was totally incapable of fulfilling its peacekeeping task.

International pressure came for decisive military action. In May 2003, Kofi Annan made an appeal to Chirac

to assist in Bunia where a serious humanitarian crisis was to be feared. The French mentioned it in the Council,

and Solana showed interest. The UK and Germany supported a military intervention in Ituri which would be

led by France and which would be present in Bunia from June to early September 2003 when the operation

would come under Chapter VII of the UN command. The mandate for ARTEMIS was to ensure protection

of the airport, the internal displaced persons in the camps in Bunia, and – if the situation required it to contribute

to the safety of the civilian population – the UN, its personnel and the humanitarian presence in town.


Within two weeks, on 12 June, Operation ARTEMIS was launched and reached its full strength of

1400 troops on 6 July. It involved support from other Member States: Sweden, Belgium, Germany and

the UK, and some third countries like Canada, South Africa, Hungary and Brazil. France acted as a

framework nation, but the political control was exercised by all 15 Member States. It was an

autonomous operation without the support of NATO.

As the first autonomous military operation of the EU and the first EDSP operation to be deployed

outside Europe, Operation ARTEMIS has proven to be an important test for the maturity of the ESDP.

ARTEMIS generated a very positive response at a moment when the usefulness of military intervention

was being strongly questioned. The moment the decision was taken to send an international military

force to Ituri, the very future of peacekeeping and peace enforcement was at stake.

The European effort goes back at least two years to the Council in Laeken. In these two years,

European capabilities have been developed to a great extent. The target was to have sufficient military

capabilities to deploy a peacekeeping operation of approximately 60,000 men. The Petersburg tasks

also included a capability for rapid intervention. The EU currently has a wide range of instruments

based not only on military capabilities, but also in the field of civilian crisis management.

The way ARTEMIS handled the situation in Bunia was very promising, and not only for future peacekeeping,

but also for EU involvement in other regions, such as the Great Lakes. Still, it was impossible and not at all

operative to go beyond Bunia. With 1500 soldiers it would be physically and logistically impossible to reach

out into the whole Ituri province and it was not what the UN had asked the EU to do. The EU was

asked to provide a bridging operation between MONUC I and MONUC II, and this is exactly what was done.

Still, it proved to be a very difficult job. First, it was a very limited mandate, both in time (September 2003)

and in space (Bunia). This explains why the massacres in the interior, which was inaccessible for the ARTEMIS

troops, continued. In June several massacres occurred in the south of Ituri and also later on in the

eastern parts of Ituri. The militia started to hide in the hills around the city center before the French

arrived. Second, ARTEMIS had a military mandate, i.e. even though the operation was very successful

in pacifying the city center of Bunia, providing some protection to the local population, the operation

did not have the mandate to support the local peace process. Third, ARTEMIS was considered by some

of the parties as not neutral. By the Lendu militia the French were considered an ally of the UPC. In

the end, ARTEMIS only temporarily delayed new confrontations between the different militias.

Still, ARTEMIS was able to secure the airport and refugee camps, to prohibit the open bearing of arms in Bunia,

and to establish checkpoints at the entrances to the city. The force was also fully deployed at the beginning

of July, one week ahead of the original plans. In that sense, the objectives set for ARTEMIS have been fulfilled.

When ARTEMIS left, there was fear that old conflicts would rise again. The new MONUC troops do

not have the same skills and capacities. Even though they have a Chapter 7 mandate and can also

operate outside Bunia, the soldiers on the ground do not have the same training. They do not speak any

of the local languages and have no knowledge of the region.

The new force has no capacities to pacify the country, which means that the ARTEMIS operation might

turn out in vain. ARTEMIS did not have the mandate to go into the interior of Ituri, but in order to

break the cycle of violence, this operation should have covered the whole province. However, even that

would not be enough because the underlying dynamic of the conflict will remain untouched by


interventions like ARTEMIS. If the international community wanted to be efficient, it would have to

address the internal dynamic of the conflict which is characterized by a deepening social fragmentation,

illustrated by an increasing dehumanization and demonization of the enemy.

However, the intervention of the EU does not end with Operation ARTEMIS. Locally in Bunia, security

was restored, even though there were certainly incidents. The bridging operation was successfully

concluded, the perspectives for MONUC II to continue are clearly there. On the whole, ARTEMIS

forces have performed well. It has proven a model that can be repeated in support of UN

peacekeeping. The operation has started a new period in CFSP: The EU has widened the scope of the

CFSP with all its limitations and restraints and has shown that it is capable of limited peacekeeping

operations lying further away than the Balkans.

Operation ARTEMIS will not be the end of the EU’s role in Eastern Africa. The Council meeting on June 2003

has set out on a path forward in the Congo and the Great Lakes region. First, there exists the potential of

training and equipping the police of the Republic of the Congo, aiming to establish an integrated police unit

in Kinshasa with the task of providing security to the transitional institutions. These transitional institutions

were set up fairly quickly during the summer. This development can be seen as one of the positive spin-offs

of the Bunia intervention. The EU also intends to assist the establishment of a new Congolese national army.

Resources available for the important program of rehabilitation and integration of the various factions

as well as rehabilitation of the infrastructure in the country. The EU will continue its diplomatic

activities through the EU Special Representative in Kinshasa and it will support the convening of an

international conference of the Great Lakes with the aim to restore the authority of the government in

Kinshasa over the whole territory. The EU supports future elections and further democratization, and

an arms embargo in the Congo. One problem is that there are no real monitoring mechanisms.

One point of criticism was that the consultations with NATO on ARTEMIS were not detailed enough. However

when NATO ministers met last year in May in Madrid, there was a general consensus that the EU operation

was embraced and that it was in accordance with the Berlin Plus Agreement. The US was content with the

willingness of the EU to engage in a part of the world where the US had no particular interest at that moment.

In all this, we have to keep in mind that the peace process in the Congo is not there because an internal

force wants peace, but because the international community wants it. The real work for the

international community including the EU starts now and consists of bringing development to the region.


In spite of the many problems and difficulties, Operation ARTEMIS has fulfilled its objective to

improve the security conditions and the humanitarian situation in the region. The Council

meeting in June 2003 has set out a path forward in the Congo and the Great Lakes region

concentrating on police training, a rehabilitation of the Congolese Army, and the infrastructure.

The EU will support the convening of an international conference of the Great Lakes with the

aim to restore the authority of the government in Kinshasa over the whole territory. The EU

supports future elections and further democratization, and an arms embargo in the Congo. All

this may not add up to a “European concept for the Great Lakes region,” but is a proof that

Europe is willing to take responsibility beyond its own backyard.


6. Does Europe Neglect the Caucasus?

In March 2003, the European Commission presented a document entitled Wider European

Neighborhood: A New Framework for Relations with our Eastern and Southern neighbors. It

offers the prospect of mid-term integration into the EU to many new (and old) neighbors,

however it excludes the countries in the Caucasus. What is the motivation behind this

exclusion? Does Europe have a strategy towards the Caucasus region at all and what

does/should it look like?

Three years ago, after the Kosovo war and the launch of the Stability Pact for South East Europe, the

idea of a stability pact for the Caucasus as a solution to the “frozen conflicts” of Nagorno Karabakh,

Abkhazia, and South Ossetia was very much alive. That nothing came of all this is to blame as much

on leaders in the region as on the international community.

Meanwhile the same old diplomacy continued year after year. The OSCE Minsk group carried on with

its secret meetings over Nagorno Karabakh with no results. The UN Secretary-General’s ‘Friends of

Georgia’ group (France, Germany, Russia, the UK, and the US) also struggled to agree on a proposal

for a federal constitution to settle the Abkhazia-Georgia conflict, without success.

Since conventional diplomacy in the Caucasus under UN or OSCE auspices had failed to deliver

solutions over a whole decade, the question is what solutions are possible in the current situation. New

internal developments - such as the elections in Georgia -and in some of the breakaway entities

themselves give new hope. Developments external to the region such as the EU enlargement and the

widening of the “Europeanization process” on the one hand, and the Pax Americana characterizing

Washington’s policy since 11 September 2001 on the other hand are new factors which have to be

taken into consideration.

Following the events of September 11, the US began exerting its influences particularly in Georgia. In

February 2002, an agreement between the US and Georgia allowed – despite Russian protests – around

30 US military instructors to train the Georgian armed forces in anti-terrorist operations.

Following the collapse of the Soviet Union, expectations in the newly independent states Armenia,

Azerbaijan, and Georgia were high. Unfortunately, those expectations have not been fulfilled. In spite

of some positive political developments towards democracy and human rights and in spite of the

European ambitions held by all three states, the harsh reality is characterized by widespread poverty,

corruption and weak economies, as well as “frozen conflicts” and geopolitical rivalries. All together,

this has turned the Caucasus into Europe’s most explosive periphery.

The reason for leaving the Caucasus out of the Wider Europe concept in spite of the urgency of the

situation may be that the EU cannot afford another priority region alongside the Balkans. It has to be

said, however, that Wider Europe is an ambitious concept that goes far beyond enlargement. The

Caucasus was not included so as to not overburden the initiative, but there is enough potential

concerning the Caucasus to have it be included in the end. It is also important to mention that the

South Caucasus has been promoted to an area of special interest for the EU in the new European

Security Strategy that, however, avoids outlining a strategy towards this region.


Still, the EU has an interest in stability and in promoting democracy and market economy in the South

Caucasus. It also has huge energy interests in the greater Caspian region. Since the breakup of the

Soviet Union, the EU has tried to focus on assistance. It has spent almost 1 billion to promote the

transition. On top of this the EU has tried to include the Caucasus in political cooperation

(agreements) – assistance being focused on cooperation agreements. In these agreements, all issues

can be discussed now except for military ones.

What are the lessons that the EU has learned? If there is no progress, it is due to the complexity of the

situation (lack of good governance, lack of experience with democracy, interest of outside powers).

Another problem is that the external players do not act along the same line. Russia, for example, does

not want the EU to play a role in the Caucasus, which it considers very much its backyard. Maybe it is

about time to make the Caucasus a key issue in relations with Russia, but the Member States are not

willing to put this issue at the top of the agenda. We also have to keep in mind that there is a link

between the internal situation of a country and the way the countries deal with the conflicts. The EU

will have to move forward on different tracks in parallel. There is a renewed effort to move forward

along lines which together ultimately have to promote change.

The link between internal factors and external politics is also true for Russia: Russia has no interest for

a conflict resolution, as it is not willing to give up hegemony on the region. The European Union will

have to ask itself whether it has a strategic interest in the Caucasus or whether it will allow Russia to

treat it as its backyard.

In July 2003, the former Finnish diplomat Heikki Talvitie, was appointed EU Special Representative

for the South Caucasus. His mandate is to assist in conflict resolutions and it will expire at end of

2004, and by that time he will have to produce a report with recommendations. The fact that there is a

SR sends a message to Russia about the Caucasus. It is understandable and legitimate that Russia has

an interest in the Caucasus. For the EU it is important make clear that it wants to play the role of a

partner, not an imperial role.

The criticism may be raised, however, that the EU is only moving whenever pressure (the Balkans, the

Middle East) is exerted. Is the EU really extremely interested in becoming engaged in the Caucasus?

Why is it necessary to become involved in places where there is no open conflict? Being realistic means

that the EU will have to overcome this procrastinating attitude. Perhaps it would be a good idea if the

Commission were to further the MINSK group. That will be the litmus test for the SR. In the end, his

position should replace the ‘Friends of Georgia’ group. His role could then be effective in that case.

On the other hand, there are some promising signals coming from Turkey and Armenia. There is,

actually, prospect for rapprochement, which would allow for the opening of the border. The EU has

never formally made this a condition for Turkey’s membership. There is also some criticism on the

Wider Europe concept from the Black Sea parliamentarians (Romanians, Bulgarians, Turks) who

blamed the EU that its policy is cutting the Black Sea into two.

Though Russia has a legitimate interest in the Caucasus, one has to stay aware of a creeping

annexation. Putin is not trying very hard for a cooperative solution. It should, however, not be seen as

impossible to imagine shifting the Russian position. There is no need to be overly pessimistic.


The governments of the Caucasus countries and most political groups have expressed their interest in a

closer involvement with the EU. The EU should realize its security interest in the region and commit

itself stronger than before. Suggesting alternative approaches in the resolution of conflicts and

focusing on addressing their economic and political sources would be one way to do this. The EU can

help to develop civil society, prepare it for conflict resolution, and help with democracy building in Europe.

The EU can also influence Russia to restrict its military involvement in these conflicts, as well as exert

its influence on other regional actors who do not act responsibly. It should persuade Turkey to lift

restrictions on Armenia and recognize the genocide taking place there. Finally, it should contribute to

providing an institutional framework for the treatment of war criminals, restoring the status of the

concept of justice in the eyes of the people in the Caucasus. Even though it seems to be unrealistic to

pick up the idea of a Stability Pact for the region again, there are still valuable lessons to be learned

from the successful experiences with the Stability Pact for the Balkans.


In spite of the fact that the Caucasus is not mentioned in the Wider Europe paper so as to not

overburden the initiative, but there is enough potential concerning the Caucasus to have it be

included in the end. The deployment of an EU Special Representative for the South Caucasus in July

2003 sent a clear message not only to the Caucasian countries, but also to Russia. The conflicts in

the region can only be solved in cooperation with Russia, the US, and also Turkey. The EU can

contribute greatly in terms of non-military conflict solution and conflict prevention, although its

success would depend on the existence of a real and realistic strategy. At the moment all hope

in that respect is focused on the conclusions to be presented by the Special Representative.

7. The EU/Russia Strategic Partnership: How Bumpy is the Road?

After enlargement, the EU’s common border with Russia will not only have increased

considerably, 1.5 million Russians will actually be living within its borders. To make the

strategic partnership between Russia and the EU work is crucial for both sides. The events of

September 11 have brought Russia and the West closer together. A NATO-Russia Council has

been established underlining Russia’s new relationship with NATO, and the EU and Russia have

sorted out most problems concerning Kaliningrad. However, there are still many sour points to

be dealt with: the war in Chechnya, human rights matters, and the poor state of democracy in

Russia. What is the “state of affairs” of the Russia/EU strategic partnership and what is the

“state of affairs” of Russia’s “emerging role as a participant in our collective security,” as

Commissioner Chris Patten put it?

Russia plays a crucial role for security and stability in Europe and the EU conducts a policy of

constructive engagement vis-à-vis the Russian Federation. EU-Russia relations have four priorities:

consolidation of democracy, the rule of law, and public institutions in Russia; integration of Russia into a

common European economic and social space; the strengthening of stability and security in Europe and

beyond; and addressing common challenges to the European continent such as environment, crime, and illegal

immigration. However, in spite of an increasingly intense cooperation between the EU and Russia, the actual

progress is modest. Russia’s democracy remains problematic, economic reforms are going slow, and the


situation in Chechnya is worsening. Russia has refused to sign the bilateral agreement (PCA) which forms

the legal basis for relations between the EU and Russia before some of Russia’s demands are met.

After a disastrous EU-Russia summit in early November last year, where the divisions between Member

States were cleverly exploited by the Russian government and Berlusconi unpleasantly surprised the

other EU leaders by apparently backing Russia’s actions in Chechnya, the EU decided to push a harder

line on Russia. With enlargement, eight states that were part of the Soviet sphere of influence will join

the European Union. This could lead to a further complication of the situation.

The foundations of the relationship between the EU and the Russian Federation are two basic policy

papers: the EU Common Strategy from June 1999 and a Russian document entitled “The Medium-Term

Strategy for the Development of Relations between the Russian Federation and the EU (2000-2010)”

from the same year. The EU strategy was extended for a year until June 2004. It provides for an

overall policy framework in four priority areas:

Consolidation of democracy, rule of law, and public institutions,

Integration of Russia into a common European economic and social space,

Stability and security in Europe and beyond, and

Common challenges on the European continent including environment, crime, and illegal immigration.

The real bridge consists of a Partnership and Cooperation Agreement (PCA) that came into force in December

1997 for an initial period of ten years, which is open to continuation unless one party terminates it. It contains

a number of open-ended objectives in the areas of trade and economic cooperation, cooperation in science

and technology, and political dialogue, but does not fully cover the field of justice and home affairs.

More recently, the need to increase and modify the contact at government levels has grown.

The Cooperation Council has been transformed into a permanent Partnership Council and at the summit

meeting in St. Petersburg, four “common spaces” have been created: a common economic area, a

common area of freedom, security and justice, an area of cooperation in the field of external security,

and an area of research and education, including cultural aspects. In the meantime, a strong and clear

message has been passed on to the Russian government that the PCA has to be extended to the ten

countries becoming new Member States without precondition or distinction on 1 May 2004 16 .

It has also been made clear to Russia that a strategic partnership has to be based on shared values and

not only on common interests. This means that issues such as human rights violations in Chechnya,

media freedom, and cooperation on environment issues cannot be excluded from the discussions.

Finally, the EU has decided to clean up its act and better coordinate its policies at EU level and the

approaches of individual Member States with respect to Russia.

EU policy towards Russia should focus on:


Ensuring good neighborly relations, including appropriate border management, cross-border

cooperation and effective measures to address ‘soft security’ problems such as nuclear hazards,

pollution, transborder crime, etc.,

Exploiting the potentials of increased trade, deeper economic relations, and mutually beneficial

cooperation in other areas,

16 On 27 April, 2004, Russia and the EU finally came

to an agreement on the first meeting of the

Permanent Partnership Council.

17 In the Russian-EU strategy document from 1999,

e.g. cooperation between Russia and Europe in crisis

management is seen to “counterbalance, inter alia,

the NATO-centrism in Europe.”

Promoting human rights and democracy, and

Cooperating in addressing ‘frozen conflicts’ in the South Caucasus, resolving the Transnistria issue, and

controlling the international trade in arms.

Other open questions are: What should happen with the TACIS program, is the window for influencing

Russia by means of aid practically closed, and what does the new “Wider Europe” approach mean for Russia?

NATO has a somewhat different perspective and history and quite a different structure in comparison to

last year. The most fundamental difference is, obviously, that it is a transatlantic institution. NATO-

Russia relations are defined in two fundamental documents: the NATO-Russia Founding Act on Mutual

Relations, Cooperation, and Security signed in 1997, and the NATO-Russia Council from May 2002.

In 1997 the initial euphoria over the fall of the wall had made way for rivalry between Russia and the EU.

Russia’s perception of NATO and the EU were and are different. Throughout the 1990s there was a very

typical Russian tendency towards institutional approaches, i.e. if you change the institutional framework with

the same country you will have a different outcome. Therefore, Europe could be divided into “good Europe” (EU)

and “bad Europe” (NATO) which has also something to do with the perception of the role of the United States 17 .

The evolution in the Russian view of NATO has much to do with the EU as an evolving political force.

The general Russian opposition against NATO enlargement in the 1990s was shortsighted: So far there

has been no massive move of infrastructure towards the east. Also, through the more positive political

engagement of new members in many ways, the NATO enlargement has facilitated the development of

bilateral relations. None of this has completely removed Russian skepticism towards NATO, as the

recent visit of the new NATO Secretary-General De Hoop-Scheffer has shown.

For historical reasons, NATO has always been focused on the Soviet Union/Russia and NATO’s staff

tends to bring a lot of expertise in this respect. NATO also operates in comparison to the EU within

limited capacities (security). The core of NATO is more limited than that of the EU’s, but it is also

limited to territories where Russia remains extremely competitive. Russia has capabilities that could

contribute to the work of the alliance. The missing element that really resulted to the failure of first

Russia-NATO Council was the absence of shared threat and security analyses. This has changed since then.

It is safe to say that the events of September 11 set a process in motion that led to the establishment of

the NATO-Russia Council at the Rome Summit on 28 May 2002 and opened a new chapter in NATO-

Russia relations. It was an attempt to renew a partnership that had exhibited problems. It used to be a

structure that was focused less on information exchange, and more on convincing each other that both

sides no longer created a threat for each other. The NATO-Russia Council is more like an outward

looking body, where NATO and Russia can look at emerging threats coming from the outside. Specific

areas of mutual interest were defined: the fight against terrorism, crisis management, arms control and

confidence-building measures, non-proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, search and rescue at

sea, military-to military cooperation, and defense reform and civil emergencies.

The NATO-Russia Council has been operating for almost two years now. In this short time it has turned

from a three page document to a working council with three committees, seven standing working groups,

and it has organized large-scale civil management crisis exercises and, on ministerial level, conferences


on issues like the role of the military in combating terrorism. In the meantime, there are a political

agreement on decision-making on peacekeeping operations and a framework agreement on search and

rescue at sea, and intelligence experts and assessments of the terrorist threats have been developed.

There is also a proliferation aspects document in the works. All of this is highly remarkable.

If there is one thing, though, that the Council has not achieved, it is raising questions about Chechnya.

The Council is not the ideal instrument to discuss certain aspects of Russian politics, as it will shift towards

practical military cooperation. As far as NATO is concerned, Chechnya is an internal Russian matter, whereas

Georgia, for example, is not. Neither is the rest of the Caucasus. This means that it is hard to address the issue

directly in the NATO Council. It is necessary to distinguish between what can be addressed by the NATO-

Russia Council and what can be addressed by NATO as an institution. There are limitations in both contexts.

NATO has evolved into a shifting collection of partner states. The agenda of the NATO-Russia Council is

probably the most robust of any of NATO’s partnership councils. But it is not exclusive: There are also NATO

meetings with Georgia and the Georgian representatives have ventured to air their concerns rather freely.

Currently the NATO-Russia Council is working on a status of forces agreement. (questions of judicial

liability) which is crucial if NATO forces want to train in Russia and the other way round. Progress is

being made in this area as well.

Certain key aspects have improved: There is an arms control commission; there have also been very

frank exchanges between senior military leaders on questions of the effectiveness of the Russian

military campaign in Chechnya. NATO has made the link between human rights concerns and

effectiveness and has gained a certain amount of credibility by recognizing the threats posed by

Chechen separatists and terrorism. It has become clear to Russia that this discussion is not used as a

means to pry Chechnya away from the Russian Federation.

The European Commission’s line on Chechnya is based on three components: First, there has to be a peaceful

solution; second, terrorism needs to be fought wherever it emerges, but not to the extent of violating human

rights, (which leads to the question of how we learn about human rights violations as even NGOs have no access

to Chechnya); and, third, the EU is by far the biggest donor of humanitarian aid to Chechnya. As the conditions

are not sufficiently good in terms of safety and communication possibilities, the Commission constantly stresses

that the conditions need to improve on the ground in order to get the aid to the people who need it most.

The Wider Europe concept that, as has been pointed out before, left out the Caucasus countries has its

origins in EU enlargement. It is an attempt to identify the best and closest relationships possible with

the new neighbors. Russia is not a new neighbor, but one cannot talk about the neighborhood of the EU

without talking about the most important neighbor. Russia, however, has so far shown little enthusiasm

for the new concept. There is a soreness that needs to be resolved as soon as possible.


The situation in Chechnya, human rights matters, the poor state of democracy in Russia, and the

Russian skepticism towards the Wider Europe concept will have to remain high on the European

agenda, if it is serious about Russia’s “emerging role as a participant in our collective security.”

The recently expressed concern by Russia about NATO enlargement (and, indirectly, EU

enlargement) is another obstacle for the progress of a relationship that has developed

unexpectedly positively since the collapse of communism, but still looks fragile since it depends

on the Russian perception of threat to their national interests.






8. The EU and China: How Mature is the Relationship?

In the new European Security Strategy “A Secure Europe in a Better World,” Javier Solana identified

China as one of the EU’s global strategic partners. Repeated EU Council conclusions have underlined

the importance of strengthening relations between the EU and China. The Commission’s policy paper

adopted on 10 September 2003 (“A Maturing Partnership – Shared Interests and Challenges in EU-China

Relations” 18 ) adds further impetus to this debate. In which CFSP areas will it be easiest to achieve

progress? What are the sticking points likely to be? Will it be possible to seriously “increase the efficiency

of the human rights dialogue,” as claimed in the Commission paper? Is the relationship between the

EU and China mature enough to stress the need of finding peaceful solutions for Tibet and Xinjiang?

The political dialogue between the EU and China formally started in 1994. Since 1998 there have been

annual summits at the Heads of Government level, the sixth of which took place in Beijing in October 2003.

At the same time, China published its very first policy paper on the EU, which is a very significant step

forward in the relationship between both powers19 . In its relationship with China, the EU aims

To engage China further on the world stage through an upgraded political dialogue with the international


To support China’s transition to an open society based upon the rule of law and respect for human rights,

To encourage the integration of China in the world economy by bringing it fully into the world trading system

and supporting the process of economic and social reform that is continuing in China, and

To raise the EU’s profile in China20 .

The most important aspect of the EU-China relationship is still trade. In spite of the fact that Solana identified

China in his paper as one of six strategic partners, foreign and security policy is currently a fairly low-key area.

China has been on the Security Council since 1949. Its key principle has always been non-interference.

Recently, China has become much more active in the UN and other multilateral fora. It has taken initiatives

concerning North Korea, it has stimulated the Shanghai cooperation, it has taken up close relationships with

the Association of East Asian Nations (ASEAN), and it has concluded numerous free trade agreements. China

has also just come up with a proposal to develop a FTA with ASEAN over the next 15 years. This certainly

raised some eyebrows in Japan, which sees its economic leadership being challenged in the Far East. China

is ready to make considerable sacrifices for a FTA with ASEAN, since it is of very high political significance.

Also, for the first time in history, Chinese troops have been deployed in a UN military operation

(Congo). China has currently about 120 police officers and monitors overseas. Stability is important

for China in order to ensure the best conditions for trade. It is clear that China and the EU have key

shared interests on the world stage, such as security, anti-terrorism, the fight against organized crime

and the proliferation of weapons, the tackling of failing states, and support for multilateralism. Health,

though not a traditional foreign policy issue, has become relevant as SARS and AIDS are key regional concerns.

Multilateralism is very much in China’s national interest. Especially in the UN, it has often been used

by China to stop interventions. From this experience, one could argue that the Shanghai Cooperation

Agreement (SCA), which was initiated by China, was partly motivated in order to make the other

members do what China wants, and as far as ASEAN is concerned, it is also dwarfed by China.


If one differentiates between formal and substantial multilateralism, it would go too far to say that

China is supporting substantial multilateralism. For China, multilateralism is a way of maximizing its

influence on the world stage. Also, it is a very important means to restrict others’ means of action

(non-interference). On the other hand, one has to keep in mind that China does not aspire to be a global

power like the US with military capabilities to intervene everywhere in the world. China’s ambitions are more

regional. However, if the UN is devalued by countries that ignore multilateral institutions that is not in the

interest of China. It is not in the interest of Europe either. In many areas, the European recipe of

multilateralism appeals to China much more than the unilateral approach of the US. All this boils down

to the fact that Europeans and Chinese embrace multilateralism, even though for different reasons.

The strong stake China is taking in the international order is a matter of weapons of mass destruction.

China has three new nuclear-armed neighbors, among them India and Pakistan, which means it cannot

be interested in the wide proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. The Comprehensive Test Ban

Treaty (CTBT) was signed by China after the US abolished the Treaty. The US signaled to China that it

would understand China’s intentions if China took up nuclear testing again. This is not the sort of

signal we should give, since China is not known for breaking international treaties. There is a growing

understanding in China that for it is more secure if it signs more of these multilateral agreements.

There are also major diversities. The EU has democracy and human rights as key founding principles.

These issues do not figure on top of the Chinese list, even though China has agreed to support a human rights

dialogue. There are numerous projects to increase and support the understanding of human rights and

to develop local democracy with which the EU will continue to support the development of civil society.

One of China’s messages has always been that Europeans need to understand that “things are different

in China.” This, however, should not stop Europe from pushing human rights as a key theme. The problem

is that for the EU human rights is a key foreign policy issue, whereas China considers it a completely

internal issue, which makes it hard to put pressure on China in that respect.

The remaining problem areas are Taiwan, Tibet, and Xinjiang. There is an ongoing dialogue between

the EU and China in these areas, which has not led to spectacular results so far.

Can we call the relationship between EU and China a partnership? There is definitely a deepening

relationship between both powers. There are also many areas where there is a partnership, but there is

not enough cooperation in many areas to really push things forward. A dialogue as such is not (yet) a

partnership. The clearest signs of maturity are that the EU and China are talking to each other instead

of shouting. Both are maturing as world powers and the talking seems to be gaining ground compared

to the shouting – though that still happens often in the trade area.

Europe and China are not yet equals, but the reality is that they have to treat each other as equals

because if they do not, there is actually little the EU can do in terms of coercion, or even incentives or

disincentives. China is still such a strong ideological entity that isolation is simply not an option.

For China, the relationship with the US is equally important to its relationship with the EU. Interestingly

enough, the perception of China in the EU and the US differs greatly. The most striking difference is

that the rise of China as a global power is seen by 95% of US citizens as of critical importance to US

national interests, in the EU only by 10%. China’s influence is assessed by Americans as equally


important as that of the EU and Russia, by EU citizens it ranks far below Russia and the US.

In the eyes of the Chinese, Europe is perceived as mostly harmless: a strong economic actor, but not a

unified political actor. On the other hand, China thinks that the US will always try to contain China,

deny its rightful place in the world – the EU is not met with such mistrust since it has no hard security

interests in the Pacific. So, in a way, Europe’s weakness is Europe’s strength. That, however, is also

one of the major problems: China wants a strong Europe that acts as a counterweight to the United

States, but it does not want a Europe that sees a competitor, and not a partner, in China. Neither does

it want a Europe that is too close to the US. Therefore, it will always try to exploit contradictions

between Europe and the US. Europe should be strong, but not too strong.

There is still a difference between what is done on EU level and what is done on national level. On

many issues, national foreign policy continues to exist and most of the thorny issues are pushed on to

EU level, whereas Member States are dealing with economic issues. This tension has been noticed by

the Chinese side and is being cleverly exploited.

There is a conflict between economic and other interests such as human rights. There are also contrasts

between global issues and issues that concern the national level in China. The war against terrorism is

a good example of how many countries sail under this flag where in reality they try to fulfill their

national agenda, which is, fighting separatism and religious fundamentalism. We have to distinguish

between legitimate interests and claims of minorities and separatist and terrorist tendencies. For the

EU it is important to make this point to both Russia and China.

In the EU policy paper on China, there is a discrepancy between the opening of China’s markets and

integration into the global economy whereas, on the other hand, we see that the regional Chinese

disparities are growing. China’s WTO access in the short term (3-5 years) will aggravate this situation.

In the agreement, you can already see that regional discrepancies are likely to grow. It is expected that

unemployment will increase to 30 million over the next five years as a result of WTO access.

We simply cannot take it for granted that China is really on the rise to become a global power, because

there are a lot of internal challenges. China is a country with a strong economic dynamism and less

political dynamism in terms of political reform. The question is: Will China be able to go on with

economic reform process and will the political system not at one point break under the economic dynamism?

For China leadership and stability are the most important things. But, how can you guarantee stability

if 30 million people will be unemployed? The 16th Party congress made it clear that the party still

claims it can act on behalf of all people.

There are 80-120 million migrants in China, which is almost the population of Russia, migrants who

have no rights, not even the right to live where they are – in the cities. It is not clear whether China

will be able to manage these problems. If it does, the problem of Taiwan might not be relevant

anymore. There are almost no means to stabilize China from the outside. Also, in 30 years time, China

will have a demographic problem: If the one child policy continues, the Chinese will run into the same

problems the Germans and the Japanese already have.

It is not legitimate to look back at the last years and say that China had growth rates of 13.8% and

then project it onto the future. It will become harder and harder to sustain this growth rate. Can


China afford to do without good governance?

The more unified Europe is, the more serious it will be taken by China. No country in the world should

overestimate the possibility of influencing China from the outside. The rule of law, for example, can be

supported from the outside, but it is the development within China that drives the development. China

will refuse to do anything it perceives as being against its interests.


The EU and China have a growing interest to work together as strategic partners to safeguard

and promote sustainable development, peace, and stability. Interests converge on many

international governance issues, notably the importance both attach to the role of the UN in

physical and environmental security and to that of the WTO, where both have much to gain from

further trade liberalization. Europe has to continue to pay close attention to human rights in

the conviction that this is an integral part of ensuring sustainability of the reforms and longterm

stability. Measures to increase the efficiency and impact of the dedicated EU-China

Human Rights dialogue include the raising of its level, greater focus on key issues, stronger

continuity and follow-through on issues and individual cases, maximizing synergies with existing

bilateral Member State efforts, and raising the visibility and transparency of the dialogue.

Moreover, China’s developing civil society has an important role to play in protecting the welfare

and rights of vulnerable people in general and in mitigating negative effects of reform.

9. Two Years after the Bonn Agreement:

Has the International Community Failed in Afghanistan?

Nearly two years after the Bonn Agreement, Afghanistan is slowly sinking back into chaos.

Many of the promises made to the Afghan people seem to have dissolved into thin air. With the

International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) not operating outside Kabul, the rest of the country

is again in the hands of feudal warlords. Violence and discrimination against women continue

and there is no respect for the rule of law. In the meantime, the world’s attention has moved on

to Iraq. Has the international community given up on Afghanistan? How strong is the European

Union’s commitment and what role can it play to prevent the situation from deteriorating?

It seems difficult to bring forward positive conclusions about the reconstruction and nation-building

efforts that the international community has supported since the collapse of the Taliban regime in

November 2002. However, in spite of all apprehensive events and developments, the achievements

should not be forgotten: The Taliban rule is gone and Afghanistan is no longer a war zone in its totality.

There is a peace program. There is a (traditional) central government, chosen on a democratic basis,

the UN office under Brahimi is functioning, and a police force and an army are being inducted. The

reconstruction of the judicial system has begun and there is a draft constitution. Also, four million

refugees have come back to their country, three million children are going to school, among them one

million girls, and a new, astonishingly stable, currency has been established. Issues like corruption and

competing regional governments are being addressed. Preparations for elections in July 2004 as

provided in the Bonn Agreement are starting. For a government just established after 20 years of war,

this is not such a bad record.


This does not mean that everything is going smoothly, mainly because of the security vacuum outside of Kabul

where warlords and remnants of the Taliban and Al Qaeda threaten to undermine the reconstruction process

and force the country to slide back into civil war. Adding to this problem is the fact that the border between

Pakistan and Afghanistan is difficult to control, therefore making it hard to prevent attacks from outside.

Another concern is the growing poppy production that could easily lead to a situation like in Columbia.

Democracy and human rights are slow developments. It is difficult to find anyone in the country who has

not been touched by human rights abuse. Unfortunately, the UN has shown unwillingness to tackle these issues.

According to Brahimi, peace has to come first before it is possible to deal with justice. He often uses the

example of Chile where the people had to wait for eight years. Some of the worst perpetrators in Afghanistan

are high-ranking officials and they continue their misbehavior. The situation of women is especially bad.

The situation is, however, not yet desperate. The international community needs to ensure a balanced

and democratic outcome for the Loya Yirga meeting and it also needs to assist in organizing elections

as soon a possible. This is a long-term commitment. Two years ago, after 9/11, the EU claimed to

have no strategic interest in Afghanistan. That may be so, but there are certainly issues that infringe

on EU policies: the management of refugees, international threats, protection and promotion of

common values, and promotion of conflict resolution and regional stability.

EU support for Afghanistan is set firmly within the context of the Bonn Agreement. The overall objectives

were: to promote the Bonn Agreement and its implementation by all groups; to restore stability in Afghanistan;

to provide support for civil, social and military structures, and services and aid for all those in need, especially

for refugees and displaced persons; to promote democracy and the functioning of public institutions and thus

promote the protection of human rights; to give special attention to the inclusion of women as equal partners

in Afghan society; to insist that the Afghan authorities, in cooperation with the IMF, establish an effective

and comprehensive macroeconomic and monetary framework to ensure sustainable economic development

and effective use of donor funding; to reinforce the fight against illegal drugs and terrorism; and to

promote cooperation with neighboring countries in the successful reconstruction of Afghanistan.

The key political instrument of the EU has been the Special Representative. Until the end of June

2003 this position was held by Klaus Kleiber, who was followed by Francesco Vendrell, a former UN

representative in Afghanistan. He makes regular recommendations to the Council. The EU’s influence

is mainly based on its assistance efforts.

In the security sector, the Police Reform was assigned to German police, the Judicial Training to Italy

and Counter-Narcotics to the UK. The progress in these areas has been particularly slow. In 2002,

Afghanistan re-established its leading position in the production of heroin. Heroin production is a

major source of income for warlords and terrorist groups. The attempt of the Afghan Interim

Administration to ban poppy cultivation and to introduce an aggressive eradication program turned out

to be inefficient. Without providing alternative sources of income for farmers, all counter-narcotics

measures will be useless. This problem, however, is not being tackled by current efforts. As far as the

judicial reform is concerned, the situation of Afghan women remains particularly disconcerting. In

spite of some progress in restoring basic rights, such as health and education, women remain excluded

from major areas of public life. The main problem is the apparent difficulty to develop a legal

framework that respects Islamic legal principles yet recognizes the equality of women.


The European contribution has also been great in the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF),

inaugurated in December 2001 by UN Security Council Resolution 1386: Over 60% of the troops come

from EU Member States. The success of the ISAF in stabilizing Kabul has led to UN resolution 1510

that is ready to reach beyond Kabul. An expansion of the ISAF is necessary to give the Afghanistan

Transitional Authority (ATA) room to maneuver in the provinces.

After Bonn came the Tokyo conference, where the EU pledged in total 2.5 billion, with 1 billion being

earmarked for aid over five years – quite a substantial sum of money. In 2002/03 the EU was actually

overachieving on the Tokyo pledge. There is also very substantial humanitarian support from ECHO. All this

makes the final commitment closer to 250 million than the 200 million pledged by the EU, with 50-55

million coming from ECHO. Also, the Member States have lived up significantly to their Tokyo pledges.

On the basis of the priorities established in the National Development Budget of the Afghanistan Transitional

Authority (ATA), the European Commission has concentrated on four key areas for the period 2003-04:

Capacity building within the ATA linked to strong continued support for the recurrent budget;

Rural development and food security;

Economic infrastructure (including the reconstruction of the Kabul-Jalabad-Torkham road);

Health (focusing on the reduction of infant and maternal mortality

Other issues that will be tackled by Commission aid are demining, social protection of the most

vulnerable, promotion of regional cooperation, the return of refugees, and the fight against poppy production.

In spite of the international community’s support, progress has been slow to come in Afghanistan. The

draft constitution was delayed several times. The reason behind these delays is that many people in the

Afghan civil society and the international community thought that the vast majority of the people was

being excluded from it. There was also a great deal of intimidation during the consultative process.

Balancing Islam and international human rights and democratic values turned out to be a difficult challenge.

In early 2004, a constitutional convention ratified the draft constitution, enshrining a strong presidency

for Afghanistan. The constitution asserted equality for men and women, which might be annulled by

the inclusion of the supremacy of Islamic law, as the preamble says that no law in Afghanistan can be

contrary to the beliefs and provisions of the sacred religion of Islam. There are no rights for due

process and against gender-based discrimination in the constitution, and parties are not to touch on the

principles of Islam and may have no military affiliation.

The question is whether Afghanistan is really ready for elections in June 2004 or whether the agenda is

being pushed by the Bush administration, which is badly in need of a shot in the arm before the US

elections in November. So far only about 10% of an estimated 10.5 million voters have registered to

vote and of these only one-quarter are women.

Two encouraging signs of Afghanistan still being a top priority for the international community are the

new commitment made by 50 countries at a recent conference in Berlin pledging $8.2 billion over three

years and the announcement made by NATO to expand its security forces to areas outside Kabul.



In spite of the support from the EU and the rest of the international community, the situation in

Afghanistan remains fragile, especially outside Kabul. Human rights and women’s rights continue

to be threatened and the Afghan constitution may not help to improve the situation. It also looks

highly unlikely that the country is prepared for the elections in June. Due to the increasing problems

in Iraq for the US, it looks like the EU will have to (continue to) make the main contribution to

the difficult development of stability and security in the region. New financial pledges from the

international community and NATO’s announcement to extend its security forces outside Kabul

are encouraging signs of the international determination to rebuild and stabilize Afghanistan.

10. Test Case Iraq – How to Overcome the ‘Great Divide’?

The divide among (future) Member States of the European Union regarding the war on Iraq has

left the rudiments of a common Foreign and Security Policy in tatters. In the eyes of many, US

unilateralism and European disunity have also jeopardized the authority of the UN, the

efficiency of NATO, and transatlantic relations. While liberating Iraq from the dictatorship of

Saddam, “collateral damage” caused to Iraq and the Iraqi people has been significant.

However, Europe will not be able to efficiently help Iraq and the Iraqis until it has mended the

internal rupture. How serious are the attempts to find a common position and to restore the UN’s

authority, and what role can and should the EU play in bringing peace and stability to Iraq?

Not so long ago George W. Bush promised that “the terrorist threat to America and the world will be

diminished the moment that Saddam is disarmed.” Rather alarmingly, the contrary has proven true:

The situation in Iraq has seriously deteriorated, and since the bombings in Madrid on 11 March,

terrorism has become a worse threat than ever before anywhere in the world. In fact, the rights and

wrongs of the US strike look almost irrelevant considering a situation in which nobody is gaining

anything apart from the hopelessly fanatical. As Commissioner Chris Patten remarked after a two-day

meeting of 25 European foreign ministers in Tullamore, Ireland: “Asking if Iraq could become as

difficult as Vietnam is misplaced because I think it’s arguably much more serious.”

The American actions in the case of Iraq have arrived at a critical phase in terms of the survival of

multilateral institutions. There is a serious chance that we might be going back to a more nineteenth

century realpolitik. As far as the UN and the EU are concerned, these two large bureaucracies have

never been very close, and the EU saw the UN more or less as a US-guided Trojan horse. All of this

changed in 2003. Proof of this can be found in the European Parliament report on EU/UN relations, in

the European Commission communiqué on the EC-UN relationship, and an EC-UN framework

agreement signed on 29 April 2003. The meetings held as part of the EC-UN strategic partnership

agreement discovered that it is necessary to bridge quite a gap in crisis management. There is also a

Berlusconi and Annan joint declaration and the European Parliament has awarded the Sachorov prize

to the UN, in particular to those who died in the Baghdad blast. Maybe this rapprochement has been

brought about by the unilateral threat.

Then, of course, there has been military cooperation in Bosnia and more recently in the Congo, when

UN missions were taken over by the EU. As far as the Iraq crisis is concerned, the UN could not win


no matter how the vote went. As the UN and the EU share the same critical Member States, the

general mood was that the Iraq war marked the end of an era. The general question was: How can

multilateralism ever gain credibility again? The UN is currently operating in Iraq under a bizarre

mandate: Go in and do something. In the organigram of the Coalition Provisional Authority (CPA), the

UN was even listed under the NGOs. In practical terms some of UN programs are continuing in spite

of the fact that most staff was evacuated after the Baghdad blast.

The question after the Iraq fiasco is: How to counterbalance a super power who can basically do what it

wants. It is obvious that the UN needs to be reformed, especially the Security Council. But what we

should not forget is that the UN as any other multilateral and supranational institution will only be as

strong as its Member States.

The EU can only help in rebuilding the UN, if it succeeds in sorting out its own problems, especially after

enlargement. With a proper foreign minister after 2007, there is room for optimism. In the meantime,

Europe will have to decide whether it wants to be a regional superpower or a global player. It has to decide

what it wants to be, what role in the world it wants to play, and how it values transatlantic relations.

The first tangible result after the Iraq divide is the re-emergence of the CFSP, a very strong consensus

that gave a mandate to Solana to work out a European strategy through comparison with the US

position. There was a major consensus on the original draft of Solana’s paper. The concept of the

CFSP is advancing – in that sense, enlargement should not be seen as a direct weakening.

As far as Iraq is concerned, Europe cannot afford to hope that the US fails. If the US fails, it means – as

the current unstable situation shows – more severe consequences for everybody. As it stands right now, however,

it is unclear what could be considered a success as the mission that was started under false pretenses has

failed on all fronts. Is there anything that the European Union can do right now? If the international community

fails in Afghanistan and in Iraq, the doors will be opened to serious global and regional instability.

To suggest that from July 2004 onwards Iraqis will be in charge of their own destiny is at best misleading.

Even after the planned transfer of sovereignty on June 30, at least till the elections planned in January next

year, the real power will lie in the hands of the Coalition forces. So far, all plans how to proceed have been

rejected by the Iraqis. Even the proposals of Lakhdar Brahimi, Kofi Anan’s envoy to Iraq that bear a striking

similarity to measures applied by the UN in Afghanistan were met with mixed reactions. They contain installing

a caretaker government with limited powers by the transfer of sovereignty and an interim administration

led by a prime minister, a president and two vice presidents, a group of Iraqi judges and members of the Iraqi

Governing Council and the US-led occupying force. The US-appointed Council will have to go and a

post-transition gathering of leaders will have to choose a consultative assembly to advise the interim

government. Perhaps Brahimi’s proposals could have a fair chance, but it looks like the recent

revelations of human rights abuses of Iraqi porisoners by members of the US forces may have

jeopardized any effective and democratic solution. In spite of the current seemingly hopeless situation,

they still look like the only reasonable and realistic options.


The divide among (future) Member States of the European Union regarding the war on Iraq has,

in fact, opened up new possibilities for the European Common Foreign and Security Policy. This

chance has to be used to restore multilateral institutions like the UN and NATO and make them

more efficient. The damage done in Iraq by the one-sided and shortsighted American actions


cannot be undone by European or American self-righteousness, nor can it be undone by the call

for the withdrawal of troops. Security in Iraq is just as important to the US as to Europe. What

we need is a serious transatlantic dialogue where ideas can be exchanged freely between equal

partners. It is important that a situation that allows the UN to function again is restored and

that the proposals made by Lakhdar Brahimi are given a chance. The recent revelation of abuse

and humiliation of Iraqi prisoners at the Abu Ghraib prison and probably elsewhere has not made

this task easier.

11. After the ‘Great Divide’ on Iraq: What Future is There for the Transatlantic Relationship?

The transatlantic relationship has never reached such depths as it has now. The unilateralist

tendencies of the Bush administration, especially the US-led war on Iraq, have estranged a

majority of Europeans, governments, and people alike, from US foreign policy. Still, as Javier

Solana put it in A Secure Europe in A Better World, “the transatlantic relationship is

irreplaceable.” Its future depends on how much both sides will be able to work out a common

strategy for tackling common threats and to what extent the US will accept Europe as an

emancipated partner rather than a reluctant and unreliable subaltern. “Acting together,” writes

Solana, “the European Union and the United States can be a formidable force for good in the

world.” But how difficult will it be to act together after the ‘great divide’ on Iraq?

In spite of the damage it has caused, the transatlantic and European divide on Iraq could very well go

down as the defining moment in history where the dynamic of a European foreign policy started. It

forced the Europeans to sit down at the table and discuss with each other what type of relationship with

the United States it is they want and, secondly, what are Europe’s responsibilities in the world and

whether these responsibilities should be taken as Europe or as nation-states, as was done in the past.

All European countries are in this dynamic process now. From that point of view, even the UK is really

a part of Europe and tries to find its position towards the US with respect to defense. So, for the first

time, Europe is to ask itself whether it is ready to take responsibility for the organization of the world.

If it wants a multilateral world, it has to define its position in it.

In this sense, the Iraq war can play the same role as the Suez crisis in 1956, where the US made it very

clear that Europe (the UK and France) was wrong. The Iraq crisis made Europeans feel that somebody

should have the power and the courage to tell the US that it should not be handled the way they did. It

is, therefore, now the right moment to rethink transatlantic relations. The most important result that

came out of the rift on Iraq was that Europeans do not want a world where there is one power dictating

what is right or wrong. The majority of countries in Europe agrees on this, even in countries which

participated in the Iraq war. On the other hand, it would be wrong to see the United States as an enemy.

In the eyes of the Bush administration, the danger that terrorists would acquire WMD was such a great

threat to the US that it would be irresponsible to depend on international institutions and international

law. Europeans see this from a different perspective due to their own history and experience in sharing

sovereignty. They see the individual state as powerless in the face of global threats and, therefore,

believe in the need for cooperation within international institutions and reliance on international law.

The question is now what structure the transatlantic conflict should be given. Europeans have to keep


in mind that, without the US, Europe would not be what it is. They also have to think about what

Europe is ready to contribute. Member States will have to decide on how much of their sovereignty

they are willing to give up in order to gain more influence as the EU, for example in agreeing on

operating with one seat in the UN.

Enlargement will confront the European Union, at least initially, with new problems. We should not

forget that countries like Poland and the Czech Republic, which took a pro-US stance in the Iraq

conflict, have just won their sovereignty. Poland has taken two important decisions in recent history.

They joined NATO, because they never want Russian troops in Warsaw again, and they joined the

European Union, because they never again want German troops in their country either. Now the new

Member States will have to learn that only shared sovereignty is a guarantee for the sovereignty of the

nation-states. Sharing sovereignty, however, does not mean distancing one’s self to the US, it simply

means existence. The future of EU politics, especially the CFSP, lies in the idea that sharing

sovereignty will be more and more a necessity for every country in Europe.

The US and Europe have a different approach to politics. As is pointed out in the document, A Secure

Europe in a Better World, Europe’s priority is conflict prevention, which has everything to do with

European history. Europe, also, has a certain idea about nation-building. Americans have done so in

the past, with Germany and Japan as successful examples, but seem to have lost interest. The situation

in Iraq tragically shows what happens when a nation-building scenario is absent.

The best positive example is the Stability Pact for the Balkans. It is important to point out that the

idea for it came from Europe, but it is just as important to admit that the situation to arrive there came

through American soldiers. The same is true for Afghanistan. This does and cannot mean that

Europe has no military responsibility, but it should stick to conflict prevention as its priority.

What should be discussed in the context of transatlantic relationships is which type of responsibility

Europe and the US should take.

If the US continues to refuse to take responsibility for managing the results of using force, then it will

almost inevitably underestimate the costs and consequences of the military option. Conversely, if

Europe fails to share in the military and political burdens associated with the use of force, European

voices will tend to downplay the efficacy of force as an option.

It would be a mistake, however, to interpret the recent developments in terms of bipolarity (US vs.

Europe). They should not lead to a situation where “Washington and Brussels will head down the same

road as Rome and Constantinople – toward geopolitical rivalry,” as Charles Kupchan fears in The End

of the American Era. Neither should they be described with Robert Kagan’s astrological observation

that “Americans are from Mars and Europeans are from Venus.” Europe, Kagan claims “is moving

beyond power into a self-contained world of laws and rules and transnational negotiation and

cooperation. It is entering a post-historical paradise of peace and relative prosperity, the realization of

Kant’s ‘perpetual peace.’” Kagan’s home country on the other hand “remains mired in history,

exercising power in the anarchic Hobbesian world where international laws and rules are unreliable and

where true security and the defense and promotion of a liberal order still depend on the possession and

use of military might.” 21

A survey by the German Marshall Fund and the Compagnia di San Paolo, conducted among people


21 Robert Kagan: “Power and Weakness,” in: Policy

review, No. 113, June/July 2002,



from Mars and Venus and published in June 2003 22 , revealed that a majority of Americans want to see

the European Union become a superpower capable of sharing global responsibilities with the US, while

Europeans want to rely less on the United States. When the 37% who favored the EU as a superpower

were asked if this would still be the case if the EU sometimes opposed US policies, 83% of them said

“yes.” It seems that most Americans remain multilateralists and fear the consequences of unilateral

policies. On the other hand, a majority of Europeans appear to want an Atlanticist EU serving as a

partner to the US.

A Pew Research Center 23 survey from 18 March 2003 showed that even after the debacle at the UN in

March 2003, an identical number of Americans (54%), British (54%), and French (55%) said that the

UN was ‘still important,’ and most Americans (54%) wanted a UN Security Council resolution and

more international support before going to war (Pew Research Center, 18 March 2003). Substantial

majorities on both sides of the Atlantic (84% in Europe, 66% in the US) say that economic strength is

more important than military strength in determining a country’s overall power and influence in the

world. 77% of Americans and 75% of Europeans say the UN needs to be strengthened.

The latest Pew survey from March 2004 shows that, a year after the attack on Iraq, a growing

percentage of Europeans want foreign policy and security arrangements independent from the US.

And, while Americans and Europeans are in favor of the United Nations, only the majority of

Europeans thinks that a country needs UN approval before dealing with an international threat.

Fact is that we are at the beginning of a completely new definition of world governance.

Europe and US must identify core elements of a common vision of threats and opportunities and

strengthen the means of cooperation to address common goals. In the broader political and

economic sphere, the United States and Europe must together lead the effort to build the structures

of international governance that are necessary to address the transnational challenges of the

twenty-first century.

There is a commonality of threats as is made clear in the Solana paper: international terrorism, the

transformation of Russia into a stable and cooperative member of the international community,

including the Ukraine, which otherwise risks becoming an important source of WMD technology and

material transfers and a haven for international criminal organizations. Other problem areas are the

Caucasus and Central Africa: Integrating these states into larger communities, like the OSCE,

Partnership for Peace, and the Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council, is crucial in order to prevent these

regions from becoming a haven for and a source of terrorism and instability.

Priorities for Europe are the completion of the integration of the Balkans and the successful emergence

of a secular, democratic, and prosperous Turkey as a model for other countries in the Islamic world and

as a bulwark against the spread of anti-Western Islamic militancy.

Finally, of course, there is the dangerously escalating situation in the Middle East. A solution for the

Middle East crisis, as far away as it seems at the moment, is also crucial in another respect. There is an

international Islamic fundamentalist threat, which is not only a threat to the US, but also to Europe. The

recent bombings in Madrid have made this very clear. In Europe the discussion should be: How to

integrate Islam? How do we get a secular Islam in Iraq, Palestine, Turkey, and Iran. If a secular Islam


does not take root there, we will have a serious problem even within our countries. The world has reached

a dangerous stage in which one interpretation of Islam has become a real threatening negative power. If

these forces win, the situation will become explosive beyond our wildest imagination. If the US does not

succeed in stabilizing Iraq, everybody will pay the price for this defeat.

There have been transatlantic rows before: American opposition of the seizure of the Suez Canal

by French, British, and Israeli troops in the 1950s; the French withdrawal from NATO’s

integrated military command in the 1960s; the battle over Euromissiles in the early 1980s;

and the deep acrimony over how to stop war in the Balkans a decade ago. After the events of

September 11 and Iraq, the United States and Europe must coalesce around a new purpose and a new

grand strategy, one fit to meet a different set of challenges beyond Europe. If they fail to do so, the

greatest alliance in modern history will become increasingly irrelevant.

The US should return to a policy of treating Europe as a partner of choice when building alliances and

make finding transatlantic common ground on the challenges faced a top priority. Washington must

reaffirm US support for a strong, unified, and pro-Atlanticist Europe as a matter of self-interest and

abandon any notion of pursuing a policy of division toward the “old” continent. If Washington wants

Europe to assume real responsibility, it must recognize that only a unified Europe can do so in

a meaningful way.


The transatlantic relationship is, indeed, “irreplaceable.” Transatlantic strategic cooperation is

one reason why the second half of the twentieth century was so much better than the first.

Whether humanity will live safely through the first half of the twenty-first century and beyond

will depend on the willingness and ability of the US and Europe to agree on a common strategy

to meet the challenges of this new era. For this, Iraq has become the acid test. Europeans will

have to understand that Iraq is not Vietnam where US troops could retreat after international

pressure and to international applause in order to contain the damage done. The damage done

in Iraq is no longer to be contained and it is no longer the issue that some European

governments were able to predict what would happen much better than the Bush

administration. Whether we like it or not, Iraq has become our problem, too. The ‘great divide’

on the Iraq war has turned from a matter of survival of transatlantic relations into a matter of

survival of humanity.



Experiences in other areas have shown that only a united Europe is an effective global player. If

Europe is serious about a Common Foreign and Defense Policy (CFSP), if it wants to become in

the words of Joschka Fischer “a strategic entity,” it will have to improve its institutions and

build up a permanent (diplomatic) structure in order to develop a common ethos. Member

States, old and new alike, have to be aware of the fact that the achievements the EU has realized

in the past are fragile and can be undermined. In the words of Jean Monnet, one of the founding

fathers of Europe: “Europe has never existed, it must be created.”

The new EU Constitution would be a step forward in the right direction, but even if the

Constitution is adopted at the summit on 17 June (without too many changes), the CFSP will still

rely on the political will of the Member States to make it happen. Enhanced cooperation would

be an acceptable way of getting there. The CFSP provisions in the new Constitution, especially

the post of a European Foreign Minister, can help to solidify Europe’s position and to provide it

with new perspectives. The powers of the new European Foreign Minister, however, will initially

depend very much on his/her ability to work with discretion and to build up a common European

diplomatic corps.

The CFSP has shown some positive results in the recent past. Its contributions to stability and

security on the Balkans and Operation ARTEMIS are good examples to build upon. But there

are other areas, where Europe must show a stronger commitment.

The EU enlargement shifts the center of Europe further to the east. The EU is suddenly

surrounded by a wide circle of new neighboring countries, among them quite a few failing states

(Belarus, Moldavia, Ukraine) which could form a possible threat, especially to the security of

new Member States. The Commission’s Wider Europe paper and the new European Security

Strategy are major contributions to dealing with these problems, even though neither of these

documents is without omissions or flaws.

One of the regions where Europe has to strengthen its commitment is the Caucasus, which is left

out of the Wider Europe concept. The deployment of an EU Special Representative for the South

Caucasus in July 2003 sent a positive message to the Caucasian countries and gives new hope to

solving the conflicts in the region. The EU could contribute greatly in terms of non-military

conflict solution and conflict prevention, though its success would depend on the existence of a

real and realistic strategy as well as on a fruitful cooperation with Russia and the US.

The wider Europe concept, even with the exclusion of the Caucasus, did not find much accord by

Russia. If Europe is serious about Russia’s “emerging role as a participant in our collective

security,” as stated in the new security strategy paper, it will have to have put its foot down in

matters such as the situation in Chechnya, human rights, and the poor state of democracy in

Russia. The recently expressed concern by Russia about NATO enlargement (and, indirectly,

EU enlargement) is another obstacle for the progress of a relationship that has developed


unexpectedly positively since the collapse of communism, but still looks fragile since it depends

on the Russian perception of threat to their national interests.

A similar situation exists with China. The EU and China have a growing interest to work together

as strategic partners to safeguard and promote sustainable development, peace, and stability.

Interests converge on many international governance issues, notably the importance both

attach to the role of the UN in physical and environmental security and to that of the WTO,

where both have much to gain from further trade liberalization. Europe has to continue to pay

close attention to human rights in the conviction that this is an integral part of ensuring

sustainability of the reforms and long-term stability.

Europe’s role in the major current crisis areas has to be intensified. As far as the Mediterranean

and the Middle East is concerned, the Barcelona Process is still a useful framework to bring

peace, good governance, democracy, human rights, and women’s empowerment to the area, even

though it is seriously impeded by the Middle East conflict. Regarding the Middle East conflict,

Europe played an important role in writing the Road Map to Peace. Europe could now use its

influence even more by speaking with one voice in the United Nations in order to ensure the

recognition of a Palestinian State and in NATO in order to ensure the membership of Israel

linked to the international recognition and protection of a Palestinian state.

In spite of the support of the EU and the rest of the international community, the situation in

Afghanistan is fragile, especially outside Kabul. Human rights and women’s rights continue to

be threatened and the Afghan constitution may not help to improve the situation. It also looks

highly unlikely that the country is prepared for the elections in June. Due to the increasing

problems in Iraq for the US, it looks like the EU will have to (continue to) make the main

contribution to the difficult development of stability and security in the region.

Finally, the transatlantic relationship is, indeed, “irreplaceable.” Transatlantic strategic

cooperation is one reason why the second half of the twentieth century was so much better than

the first. Whether humanity will live safely through the first half of the twenty-first century and

beyond will depend on the willingness and ability of the US and Europe to agree on a common

strategy to meet the challenges of this new era. Transatlantic relations, as Solana remarked,

need a recommitment to four key principles: That we are allies and partners, that both sides

make fair contributions, that the causes are dealt rather than the symptoms and, last but not

least, that both sides act together to sustain a world order based on rules.

Iraq has become the ultimate acid test for the reaffirmation of transatlantic relations. Europeans

will have to understand that Iraq is not Vietnam where US troops could retreat after international

pressure and to international applause in order to contain the damage done. The damage done in

Iraq is no longer to be contained and it is no longer the issue that some European governments

were able to predict what would happen much better than the Bush administration. Whether we

like it or not, Iraq has become our problem, too. The ‘great divide’ on the Iraq war has turned

from a matter of survival of transatlantic relations into a matter of survival of humanity.





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Bernard Wasserstein: Israelis and Palestinians: Why Do They Fight? Can They Stop?

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Jean-Pierre Chrétien: The Great Lakes of Africa: Two Thousand Years of History. New

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London: Zed Books, 2002.

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of Conflict in Ituri. Occasional Paper. Copenhagen: Center of African Studies, October 2003.


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The Heinrich Böll Foundation

A report by Marianne Ebertowski

Published by the Heinrich Böll Foundation EU Regional Office Brussels

Printed in Belgium, May 2004

© by the author and the Heinrich Böll Foundation EU Regional Office Brussels

All rights reserved

Editor: David Fenske

Production: Micheline Gutman

The document does not necessarily represent the views of the Heinrich Böll Foundation,

but is based on the views of the participants of the events described.

To order this publication contact:

Heinrich Böll Foundation EU Regional Office Brussels, 15 Rue d’Arlon, 1050 Brussels, Belgium.

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