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The Development of Security and Operational Doctrine for the EU

erschienen in der Publikation "Europas ferne Streitmacht" (ISBN: 3-8132-0787-0) - November 2002


The Development of Security and Operational Doctrine for the EU

Combined and Joint examines the desirability and feasibility of EU operational doctrine, particularly in the wake of September 11th which has demonstrated that the EU might be called upon to act far more quickly and in a much more robust manner than was hitherto believed likely. To this end, it suggests that European doctrine is essential because without it the ESDP will continue to be inefficient given the challenges posed by combined and joint operations and in light of uncertainties over the future direction of US policy that would be dangerous. However, the nature of the EU means that European security will concern far more than simply the way armed forces do things. The EU security model and the doctrine that it drives will emerge from several complex political, military and civil-military interactions. Moreover, operational doctrine will have to be intrinsically and overtly linked to an European Security Concept to establish guidelines for effective EU action. This will also help to close the conceptual gap that has emerged between political and military interpretations of the utility of military power.

At the operational level variable member coalitions undertaking multiple intensity missions will be the organising principle upon which the EU effort is based. EU doctrine must be developed in this area because NATO doctrine is insufficient, particularly for complex peace support operations involving both military and civilian agencies. Such on approach will call for flexibility from the grand strategic level to the military level because the EU will not always act at fifteen. The Petersberg Tasks whilst providing a useful benchmark for the development of EU operational doctrine must be progressively expanded so that the EU can start to produce a demand-led rather than product-led security and defence policy that can begin to confront security threats in a meaningful manner. Above all, shortfalls and deficiencies must not dictate EU operational doctrine.

Combined and Joint also calls for the creation of an EU command and control culture that includes an EU operational planning and command cell that is NATO compatible built around an EU-NATO Defence Planning Standard. It rejects demands for a European Army at this stage but suggests that the creation of a European Support Force would enable effective support for EU-led coalitions through pooled logistics and other support elements. It suggests that cultural software problems, such as command language and military-bureaucratic resistance to co-operation can be overcome through education and training of European military staffs and because the armed forces of most EU member-states have many years experience cooperating inside NATO.

Ultimately, ESDP will only work if all the Memberstates »invest« in its structures and approaches through reform, modernisation and innovative approaches to combined and joint operations. Establishing an agreed security doctrine, backed up by an effective operational doctrine relevant to the operational needs of European forces in the field will be essential. Europe not only needs to renovate its armed forces but the way it does security.

Eigentümer und Herausgeber: Bundesministerium für Landesverteidigung | Roßauer Lände 1, 1090 Wien
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