Richard North, 10/11/2004  

In today's Financial Times, Martin Wolf, associate editor and chief economics commentator, writes advocating that "Europe" should have its own military forces.

This is linked to the result of the US election, with Wolf opining that, with the end of the cold war, Europe "is important to the US neither as an arena nor as an actor." He continues:

Many Americans see a collection of states that are neither willing to follow obediently nor able to help effectively. They view the European economy as decrepit and the European future as dismal.
To address this, Wolf, the economics commentator, argues that the "European" economy must be revitalised, but then adds that this is just the beginning. On it must be built two crucial changes:

First, Europe must have military forces able, at the very least, to bring security to Europe and its immediate neighbourhood and, ideally, to act effectively abroad. Only then are the Americans likely to take Europe's voice seriously.

Second, Europe must avoid both the current British policy of slavish obedience and the equally depressing French policy of instinctive opposition. Europeans need to have foreign policies of their own. Frequently, they will be allies of the US; sometimes they will wish to stand aside; and - only occasionally, one hopes - they will find themselves in carefully calibrated opposition.
Readers will note the similarities to the arguments proposed by The Guardian’s senior foreign correspondent, Jonathan Steele, in his opinion piece on Monday.

That piece smelt like part of the covert Europhile campaign to abolish Nato and bring to UK further into the maw of a "European defence identity". That a similar piece should now appear so conveniently in the Financial Times, therefore, does not seem to be a coincidence. There is an "agenda" here, and it ain't pretty.

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