TRUMP’S TOUGH TALK WORKS: EU Commissioner Plans To Boost Military Industry and Outgrow US-Dependency on Defense

For the European nations, one of the key takeaways of the two years of war in Ukraine is that their military industrial complex is woefully inadequate, incapable of delivering in a crisis.

So, no, the Brussels bureaucracy is moving on this issue, although it may in the end be a moot point, ahead of European elections that can upend the political power balance in the EU.

The European Commission has proposed to boost its arms industry, shift it to ‘war economy mode’ in response to the conflict in Ukraine.

European industry commissioner Thierry Breton proposes to encourage EU countries to jointly buy more weapons from European companies, and to help such firms increase production capacity.

Reuters reported:

“‘We need to change the paradigm and move into war economy mode. This also means that the European defense industry must take more risks, with our support’, said Breton, previewing the package.”

Breton takes a cue from Donald Trump and proposes that Europe has to do more to protect itself.

“‘In the current geopolitical context, Europe must take greater responsibility for its own security, regardless of the outcome of our allies’ elections every four years’, Breton said.”

EU officials typically argue that ‘purely national’ efforts are less efficient.

They want ‘EU bodies’ to play a greater role in defense industrial policy.

“Analysts say the war has made clear that European industry was ill-prepared for some major challenges, such as a sudden surge in demand for large amounts of artillery ammunition.”

Trump’s no-nonsense comments on Defense have Europeans kicking and screaming into agreeing with him.

They also propose that European weapons firms must be compelled to prioritize European orders ‘in times of crisis’.

“To become reality, the proposals will need approval from the EU’s 27 national governments – which have often been reluctant to cede power on defense and military matters – and the European Parliament.”

In practical terms, Breton’s package includes $1.63 billion in ‘new money’ through the end of 2027 – which by all accounts is a modest sum for such ambitious goals.

Not only that, but agreeing on the proposals will take some time, if it ever comes all – we already mentioned the upcoming European Parliament election in June, that will follow the appointment of a potentially new European Commission.

Even within the present Commission, disagreements lay bare the ongoing power struggles.

“While Commission President Ursula von der Leyen has said she will create a post of defense commissioner if she serves a second term, Breton has argued there is no need for such a role. ‘If the question is that of a Defense Industry Commissioner, it seems to me that we already have one’, he said.”

All in all, the idea of an European Union that is ‘a peace project’ was all but dead even before this proposed European Defense Investment Program.

Politico reported:

“Thierry Breton, the industry commissioner, underlined during the presentation of the strategy that Europe is facing an ‘existential threat’, while foreign policy chief Josep Borrell warned: ‘In response to Russia’s aggression against Ukraine, the EU must bolster its defense capabilities’.”

Will the EU — the world’s second-largest economy — finally start pulling its weigh when it comes to defense?

“Instead of forming a multinational fighting force — something that was considered in the early years of the Cold War — this time it’s all about building up the bloc’s military-industrial complex as well as decreasing Europe’s reliance on American weapons — an especially acute fear as Donald Trump rises in the polls ahead of this year’s U.S. election.

[…] The EU’s executive branch insists it is not overstepping. Defense “must remain a national responsibility,” Breton told French media Monday. ‘It’s not about changing the treaties, it’s about working better together within the framework of the treaties’.”

Read more:

TRUMP’S TOUGH TALK WORKS: Germany Vows To Spend Over 2% GDP in Defense ‘For Decades to Come’, Pressures European Allies To Do the Same

The post TRUMP’S TOUGH TALK WORKS: EU Commissioner Plans To Boost Military Industry and Outgrow US-Dependency on Defense appeared first on The Gateway Pundit.

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