Opinion: A small step toward a European army

An historic breakthrough or just another attempt doomed to peter out? The EU plans to coordinate EU members’ military capacities with the long-term goal of an EU army. It’s a long road ahead.

The problems of Europe’s armies have long been evident. The new US President wasn’t the first to broach that painful subject.

The armed forces in many EU states lack funding ,are too small, and are not adequately equipped.  Or – as is the case with the German Bundeswehr – combat-readiness is compromised because they are not prepared for present-day missions and digital warfare. All that is supposed to improve with the defence union, even if not all EU member states want to join.

It is high time for this initiative. The EU took 17 years to agree on the basic principle. Back in 2000, at the EU summit in Nice, the EU decided on joint EU defence policies. The planned union doesn’t immediately include a unified integrated European army, however.

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