Meeting in Brussels on Friday, European leaders addressed defence cooperation at an EU Summit for the first time since 2008. The timing of the discussion was propitious, coming at a time when European concerns about America’s commitment to transatlantic security and engagement had grown significantly as a result of Washington’s announced pivot to Asia and President Barack Obama’s hesitancy over Syria earlier this summer.
If ever there was a time when European leaders would need to demonstrate their willingness to do more on defence, this was it. And, indeed, the leaders rightly concluded that “defence matters.” They agreed to cooperate more closely on defence, including by increasing the effectiveness of their common security and defense policy, enhancing defense capabilities, and strengthening Europe’s defense industry. Continue reading »