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EU sets up army headquarters and defense fund

The European Union approved a new joint military command centre for civilian and military operations. The day before the European comission had iniated a European Defense Fund of up to €5 billions per year. Latest decisions are based to federalist declarations, which were stamped by the EU parliament in November 2016.

The new EU Army headquarters will first control the training missions of EU armed forces in Mali, Somalia and Central Africa. As its already expected, in the medium term, the headquarters will also oversee “executive” EU military deployments—i.e., comprehensive war operations, such as in Syria or Iraq.

"The European Union approved a new military command centre for foreign training missions on Thursday after Britain dropped its opposition, the latest step in EU efforts to integrate its militaries and defence industries," Reuters wrote on Thursday.

The EU Council adopted the decision establishing of the military planning and conduct capability (MPCC) within the EU military staff (EUMS). The terms of reference of the EUMS, which is part of the EEAS, have also been amended and approved.

"The aim of the measures is the development of the EU as an aggressive great power, able to intervene militarily and conduct war independently of NATO and the United States," writes WSWS on Friday.

The MPCC will assume command of EU Training Mission (EUTM) Somalia, EUTM République Centrale Africaine (RCA) and EUTM Mali. The MPCC will be the static, out-of-area command and control structure at the military strategic level, responsible for the operational planning and conduct of non-executive missions, including the building up, launching, sustaining and recovery of European Union forces.

"The establishment of the MPCC is a very important operational decision to strengthen European defence. It will contribute to make the non-executive European missions more effective and to improve the training of soldiers of partner countries, to guarantee peace and security. This is important not just for our partners, but also for the European Union's security", said the High Representative Federica Mogherini, as reported by 4-traders.

The MPCC It will work under the political control and strategic guidance of the Political and Security Committee (PSC), which is composed of EU member states' ambassadors and is based in Brussels.

The MPCC will be composed initially of up to 25 staff but will also benefit from the support of other departments of the EUMS. The Director General of the EU Military Staff will also be the director of the MPCC. He will exercise command and control over the current three training missions and other possible future non-executive military missions. He will also exercise the responsibilities related to deployment and recovery of the missions as well as overall budgeting, auditing and reporting.

The MPCC will work closely with its existing civilian counterpart, the Civilian Planning and Conduct Capability (CPCC) through a joint support coordination cell.

Up to €5 billion per year to the new EU Army - message is unmistakable!

The European Commission had initiated a European Defence Fund of €5.5 billion per year. This year, the EU will “for the first time offer grants for collaborative research in innovative defence technologies and products, fully and directly funded from the EU budget,” the official press release said. In 2018, the Commission will then propose “a dedicated EU defence research programme with an estimated annual budget of €500 million, making the EU one of the biggest defence research investors in Europe.”

The second level of the fund concerns the “development and the acquisition of defence equipment and technology.” Some €500 million will be spent directly in this area, for example, to “jointly invest in developing drone technology or satellite communication, or bulk buy helicopters to reduce costs.” After 2020, “It could therefore generate a total investment in defence capability development of €5 billion per year.”

The declared objective of the Commission is the massive rearmament of Europe in order to “help keep pace with new trends and generate the technological and industrial capabilities Europe needs to ensure its strategic autonomy.” In 2016, the defence budgets had already been increased, “but the road ahead is still long,” the paper warns. “Moving towards Europe’s strategic autonomy requires spending more on our defences, as well as spending better and spending together.”

The message is unmistakable. Europe must also take part in the arms race in order to assert its global interests militarily against the other great powers. In the section “Europe in 2025—moving towards a Security and Defence Union,” the paper gives an insight into three rearmament scenarios that are being prepared behind the backs of the European population, all of which aim to build a veritable military-police state.

“In this scenario, Member States would deepen cooperation and integration further towards a common defence and security,” the document states. As a result, the EU would “be able to run high-end operations to better protect Europe, potentially including operations against terrorist groups, naval operations in hostile environments or cyber-defence actions.”

New EU Army under German rule

The European elites know that a more independent and aggressive European war policy also requires the internal militarization of the continent.

“Security threats would be systematically monitored and assessed jointly, in close cooperation with national security and intelligence services,” the Commission says. “Contingency planning would be carried out at the European level, bringing internal and external security closer together. The interconnection of national security interests would lead to genuine European security interests.”

As expected, the loudest applause for the European Commission’s plans came from Berlin. The German government regards Brexit and disengagement from the USA as an opportunity to reorganize the EU as a military alliance under German leadership and the starting point of its own great power policy.

“I expressly welcome the Commission’s proposal on the future of European defence policy. It is ambitious and shows how far we have moved towards a security and defence union in the last twelve months,” declared German Defence Minister Ursula von der Leyen (Christian Democratic Union, CDU). We must “now take advantage of the momentum to reach the next milestones, such as the European Defence Fund and PESCO [Permanent Structured Cooperation] with our European partners in the second half of the year.”

Specifically, the German defence minister is working to establish the Bundeswehr (Armed Forces) as a so-called “anchor army” for the European NATO states, to upgrade them and gradually subordinate them to the command structures of the Bundeswehr. One would have to think “again in larger federations,” wrote von der Leyen several weeks ago in a comment in the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung, in which she explained her strategy.

In his new book, New Assessments, German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel (Social Democratic Party, SPD) leaves no doubt that the government is striving to build a European Army under German leadership.

“It is a question of more closely integrating the armaments industry in Europe and concentrating forces. It is about creating a common European security identity that opens the way to a European Army through increasingly integrated structures,” he says in the chapter “Foreign policy following the election of Trump".

DONi News Agency

According to: Reuters, WSWS, 4-Traders, Jane's Defence

Read also: Militarization of Western Europe stamped: "Dawn of new EU Army" (11/23/2016)

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