Vous êtes sur la page 1sur 32

NO 11

Published by Swedish Institute of International Affairs. www.ui.se

From a European Security Strategy to a European Global Strategy:

Ten Content-Related Issues

Lars-Erik Lundin
Research Associate at the Swedish Institute of International Affairs

Introduction .................................................................................................................. 3 Point of departure: The European Security Strategy in the 2011 UI study ........... 4 Political State of Play ................................................................................................... 5 Ten Content-Related Issues ........................................................................................ 8 One: New structures require an updated strategic setting .................................. 9 Two: New budgets require updated strategic objectives ................................. 11 Three: Developing Measurements of Success ................................................. 14 Four: Moving Towards More Comprehensive Strategies ................................ 16 Five: Mainstreaming Other Perspectives into the Geographic Paradigm ........ 18 Six: Geography ................................................................................................ 19 Seven: Crisis Prevention and Response ........................................................... 21 Eight: Mobilising Thematic Capabilities and Deploying Them in Context .... 22 Nine: Towards Effective Multilateralism ........................................................ 24 Ten: From a Security to an External Action Perspective ................................. 25 Final remarks ............................................................................................................. 26 About the author ........................................................................................................ 28

Almost a decade after agreement over the first European Security Strategy (ESS), a debate is evolving over whether, how, and with what content a new security strategy should be devised. In July 2012, the foreign ministers of Italy, Poland, Spain and Sweden proposed the creation of a European Global Strategy (EGS) to expand the discussion beyond security questions. Think tanks in each of their countries were encouraged to take the discussion forward, initiate a process of debate and reflection, and propose ideas for a new global strategy for the European Union (EU) in May 2013. This paper serves as input to that process, although it stems from research carried out via a separate project spanning from spring until autumn 2012. Through personal interviews and document analysis, this project seeks to map different perspectives (amongst officials and within texts) on the main issues confronting any effort to revise the EUs security strategy. As such, this UI Occasional Paper focuses less on why a new effort following on to the European Security Strategy of 2003 may be necessary, and more on issues of content. Discussion of a new security strategy, both pro and con, has thoroughly explored the former but less the latter. 1 This does not mean proposing a new draft strategy but rather indicating some of the key issues of content that will need to be settled in some cases regardless of whether a new strategy document is eventually agreed. The paper begins by summarising a previous study conducted on this topic, in order to show connections between this and previous UI Occasional Papers. It then offers a political state of play regarding the notion of an updated EU strategy document. The remaining section outlines ten content-related issues that must be addressed in an EU strategy revision.

The Egmont institute in Belgium (Sven Biscop, Jo Coelmont and others have made particularly vigorous efforts to keep the debate alive throughout the years - see http://www.egmontinstitute.be which lists recent contributions both as regards the pro and con debate and the issue of scope and content, including commenting on the EGS initiative.

Point of departure: The European Security Strategy in the 2011 UI study

The EU Heads of State and Government in December 2003 after the second Iraq War approved the European Security Strategy (ESS). 2 In 2008, an implementation report was issued. 3 Many argue that it is high time to make a second strategic review, a decade after the initial document. Three options were proposed in a study from 2011 by the Swedish Institute for International Affairs (UI): The European Security Strategy: Reinvigorate, Revise or Reinvent: The first option was to reinvigorate the ESS, preserving the current ESS but making it more effective. This is best achieved through drafting separate sub-strategies, in particular for partnerships, operations, neighbours, EEAS, and for the EU in the global multilateral environment. The second option was to revise the ESS, keeping the structure and orientation of the current strategy yet updating it for new threats, objectives, partnerships, and relevant capabilities. The third and final option was to reinvent the ESS through drafting a new document, perhaps a grand strategy that articulates and sharpens the EUs values and interests as defined in the Lisbon Treaty. This strategy would encompass a broader set of external policies, ranging from conflict prevention to trade and from internal security to humanitarian relief. As such, this document might be more aptly titled an External Action Strategy for the EU. 4 This third option is closest to that proposed recently by foreign ministers, in the form of a European Global Strategy focussing not only on threats but also on opportunities for the EU to play a more important role in supporting EU goals, values and interests globally.

European Security Strategy (2003) A Secure Europe in a Better World, Brussels: 12 December 2003. Available at http://www.consilium.europa.eu/ uedocs/cmsUpload/78367.pdf. 3 Report on the Implementation of the European Security Strategy (2008) Providing Security in a Changing World, Brussels: 11 December 2008. Available at http://www.consilium.europa.eu/ueDocs/cms_Data/docs/pressdata/EN/reports/104630.pdf 4 Available at www.ui.se

This would make it possible to steer clear of laborious discussions of the definition of security. Putting the entire strategy again under the heading of security, yet using a wide scope, would raise difficult issues concerning the relationship of this concept to development, human rights, environmental safety, economy, etc. It would risk diminishing the sense of ownership of the strategy among those not directly dealing with what they perceive as security issues. Communities focussing on developing strategies in these latter areas could become worried about the risk of unduly securitising their policy agendas. It is also important to avoid a bias in terms of prioritising military solutions as opposed to longer-term civilian efforts - including broad-based conflict prevention processes. The issue of capacity building is very much one of budgets, the point of departure must be seen as unbiased in this regard in order to maximise support for engaging in the strategic deliberations. This does not exclude concepts such as human security, which may be discussed and again used in future documents. But experience shows from the debate over the last decade that this and other very wide security concepts also have led to debates about undue securitisation that may be unproductive at this stage.

Political State of Play

To what extent is the ESS/EGS issue on the table of political leaders in Europe and why? EU Foreign ministers met at Copenhagen for the traditional informal Gymnich meeting early March 2012. Not much has been said publicly about the consultations that took place during this meeting on the way forward as regards the European Security Strategy. There is reported to have been a clear emphasis on the human dimension elements of the strategic discourse as well as on sanctions. Efforts will now most likely be made in the short term to define strategic action elements covering the period until the end of the current mandate of the High Representative/Vice President of the Commission. Sub strategies are also likely to be further updated or created, such as already has been done in the area of human rights.

In parallel there seems, however, also to be preparations for a wider exercise, which may come to fruition only at, or shortly after the end, of the HR/VPs mandate. As proposed in the EGS initiative, which recently was welcomed by the HR/VP at the launching press conference 23 July in Brussels, think tanks in Europe will need to cooperate to set the stage for that possibly very wideranging exploration of the external action/security provider potential of the EU. Already a debate is underway on some aspects relevant to the strategy in the context of the preparations for the next financial perspective (covering the budgetary allocations for 2014-2020). This debate addresses the topic from several different perspectives, which in turn relate to important international challenges and trends. The Geographic Dimension. Priorities and action plans need to be set for a number of areas ranging from the EUs neighbourhood including Northern Africa and the Middle East, and in regards to strategic partnerships, where updating and coherence is needed. Crisis Management Capacity. A clear signal needs to be sent that lessons have been learned from the broad spectrum of crises since the 2003 ESS on how the EU should get its act together in future crises, in particular ones which might hit both inside and outside the EU and affect several societal sectors at the same time. New Threats, Challenges and Opportunities. Thematically, new challenges are more acute, ranging from piracy to freedom of the media and the Internet. The financial crisis has further broadened security concerns while at the same time forcing stricter prioritisation as regards the use of financial resources. Globalisation also brings new opportunities. Implementing Effective Multilateralism. In the multilateral context the need to operationalise the notion of multilateral effectiveness (already in the 2003 ESS) is discussed not only in legal representational terms, but also in key substantial areas such as non-proliferation and conflict resolution. Human Rights. The issue of how experiences from the Arab Spring as regards the need to work with civil society, also using modern tools of

communication, including social media, is discussed which has already been done in the human rights strategy. Other issues in the debate include how to update existing sub strategies on WMD, terrorism etc. and how to establish a clearer link to the internal security strategy adopted in 2010. Decision makers need an updated frame of reference to do this. What people across Europe think about security is indicated by the opinion polls periodically taken throughout the EU, the so-called Euro barometers. These further illustrate that an update is needed. Fundamental changes have a taken place in the security Euro barometer of 2011, compared with the one of 2007 with more concern as regards challenges and threats related to economy, including indeed the financial crisis. Taking a decision on how to move on from the existing European Security Strategy is not a small endeavour, however. Different perspectives abound. There has been a considerable debate about the pros and cons both academically and on the political level. Achieving a consensus on such a complex task will of course be difficult. Some might argue that the effort in 2003 was only possible to bring to fruition due to the crisis around the Iraq war. The feasibility of a new overall strategy is contested. It is generally believed to be a more difficult endeavour than was the case in 2003. Many developments have taken place since 2003, and the stakeholders would this time need to seriously include several EU institutions. In 2003 this author was involved from the Commission side and can testify to the lack of interest both in the Commission and in the Council in making the 2003 exercise a full scope endeavour. This time not only the Commission but also importantly the European Parliament are likely to engage fully, as shown in a recent plea from the Parliament to develop a strategic concept for EU foreign policy. What nobody can deny, however, is that the EU will have to find its way forward, with or without a strategy. Even a non-decision on a strategy is in this sense a decision, since a number of key issues will need to be resolved one way

or another. Doing this without strategic perspectives and priorities is not a good idea in a dramatically changing environment, not least in terms of economy. The EU leaders have, as noted above, approved two documents on the external side, the European Security Strategy itself from 2003 and the Implementation report after five years in 2008. Some may argue that the EU should be able to live with these two documents and instead focus on more concrete planning tasks, including the review of the External Action Service in 2013, and key external policies.

Ten Content-Related Issues

From what has been set out above a number of content related discussions can be pursued: The first and second questions focus on structure and budgets, including the need for a strategy that will shape structures and budgets, rather than the other way around. The third question relates to the measurements of success to apply in such a strategy. The fourth question concerns the issue of comprehensiveness, which is partially an issue of codifying what already seems to be happening - a de facto move towards using all the tools at the disposal of the EU to help solve complex problems inside and outside the borders of the Union. The fifth question relates to a discussion, which arose during the preparation for the current financial perspective (2007-2013), regarding the need to mainstream thematic concerns into the predominantly geographically defined programs of the EU a more pressing issue in the light of new external action structures. The sixth question relates to geographic priorities both in terms of strategic partners and regional policies. The seventh question refers to coherence and meaningful crisis management, a concern in the EU especially since 9/11 and reiterated after the Asian Tsunami, Haiti, Fukushima, and Syria.

The eighth question focuses on thematic issues and their relative priority in external action. The ninth issue comes back to a prominent objective set out in the 2003 ESS, namely: effective multilateralism. The tenth issue refers to the opportunities and problems in terms of content that may arise if the next strategy has a full external action scope rather than one dealing with security. The discussion below draws on personal interviews and document analysis (mainly the 2003 ESS and the 2008 Implementation Report, but including other EU documents) and will be further developed in time, following additional interviews and analysis planned as part of this project.

One: New structures require an updated strategic setting

Important changes have taken place in the structures dealing with security and external action in the last years. Before the entry into force of the Lisbon treaty there was what can be described as a triangle consisting of: (a) services situated in the Council Secretariat dealing with CFSP/ESDP issues, (b) external action services situated within the Commission, and (c) Commission services (what may be called line DGs) dealing mainly with thematic issues internal to the EU but with clear relevance also for external action. The political and administrative line of command and legal setting for these systems changed considerably with the entry into force in the end of 2009 of the Lisbon Treaty. At that time some of the Commission external action departments were transferred into the newly formed European External Action Service (EEAS) together with the civil and military entities dealing with CFSP/ESDP in the Council Secretariat. So there still was a triangle, but with a different organisational content and somewhat different line of command. Seen from the perspective of the Member States, the foreign Ministers and as regards the ESDP, also the defence Ministers, from that time found themselves working with one High Representative heading up the EEAS and at the same time coordinating the work of several Commissioners and services in the

Commission external action domain in her capacity as first vice president of the Commission. The latter role was one which she took over from the President of the European Commission during the period 2005-2009 (the first Barroso Commission). Thus Catherine Ashton took over three jobs, from the President of the Commission, from the Commissioner for external relations in the succession Hans van den Broek/Chris Patten/Benita Ferrero-Waldner and from the High Representative function in the Council, Javier Solana. But the foreign ministers and other cabinet members in national governments with external portfolios also retained important counterparts among Commissioners dealing with trade, development, enlargement, neighbourhood policy, humanitarian affairs and certain external financial and economic issues as well as aid implementation, etc. These portfolios were also somewhat rearranged during the last decade, but all stayed in the Commission. In a yet another context, ministers responsible for justice, interior affairs, energy, infrastructure, including informatics, research, etc. worked with Commissioners and Commission services more and more explicitly addressing external and not least security issues, particularly after the 9/11 terrorist attacks in 2001. Commissioners responsible for what often is labelled justice and home affairs, energy and environment (earlier also responsible for some nuclear and civil protection issues) as well as research are of course also very important for external action. It is a well-known truth that reorganisation is a period where effectiveness often is drastically reduced and years are lost before the organisation can come back with new strength. For this to occur, the organisation needs unifying and strategic directions. This is another reason for an updated overall strategy, which often has been overlooked in the debate. Such directions cannot be issued by the Commission alone, or by the President of the European Council or the HR/VP. The only competent body with an overall mandate remains the European Council with the Heads of State and Government.


In order to make such directions effective, the content needs to fit the frame of reference of the addressees of the messages and above all be forward-looking and possible to operationalize in terms of more detailed objectives. This requires strategic overview covering all those EU actors working in different contexts and often with different specific goals. A new strategy therefore needs to be formulated in a way to maximise ownership - a full external action scope should be helpful in this regard but interviews will hopefully further illustrate organisational and legal complexities related to this endeavour. The creation of the post of High Representative/first vice president of the Commission underlines the ambition to increase synergies on the external level and remedy this lack of coherence. Already during the first Barroso Commission in 2005 the need for increased synergies between internal and external security was underlined. However, the unifying elements also in terms of structure are currently vulnerable. Only one political level official is directly involved in all three contexts mentioned above, namely the High Representative/First vice president of the Commission who as a member of the College of Commissioners also has a full collegiate responsibility for Commission decisions on thematic policies.

Two: New budgets require updated strategic objectives

The next financial perspective for the EU starts in 2014 and will cover the period until 2020. Now is therefore the time to start influencing the shape and content of the next generation of EU budgets (the clock is ticking: the debate for the previous round covering the period 2007-2013 began in 2004). The European Parliament, as a part of the EU budgetary authority, is contributing to this through reports, debates and also by commissioning various publicly available studies. But the discussion on the highest strategic level is missing. The financial crisis dominates the picture, making the issue of where to cut more important than the issue where the EU budget could be an effective tool to make overall savings and to be more effective than national budgets.


It is now incumbent upon European structures to do what citizens would expect them to do; namely, to put the horse before the cart. It is not appropriate to take decisions on the European budget for the period 2014 to 2020, to allocate tens or even hundreds of billions of euro, for purposes that have not been clearly set out also on the highest strategic level. The external action side of this debate concerns nine proposed instruments for the coming period amounting according to the Commission proposal to 96,249.4 million over the period 2014-2020 (current prices). See Table 1. Table 1. External Funding Instruments

Pre-accession instrument (IPA): European Neighbourhood Instrument (ENI): Development Cooperation Instrument DCI): Partnership Instrument (PI): Instrument for Stability (IfS):

14,110 million 18,182 million 23,295 million 1,131 million 2,829 million

European Instrument for Democracy & Human Rights (EIDHR):1,578 million Instrument for Nuclear Safety Cooperation: Instrument for Greenland: European Development Fund (EDF, outside EU Budget): 631 million 219 million 34,276 million

In addition, there is the CFSP budget, which is likely to encompass more than 2 billion euros for the period, in addition to the direct contributions from Member States to ESDP. A series of regulations will determine the legal basis for the use of these instruments. These regulations, during the previous financial perspective, severely limited the possibilities of several instruments to be synergetic with others. This was not least the case in the area of security, which was mainly seen in the CFSP/ESDP intergovernmental context. The way various relevant instruments will be referred to in the next strategy will therefore be extremely

important in terms of further developing the legal basis for the use of the instruments themselves. If, for instance, a firewall in terms of governance is built between development and security programs it is obvious that the possibilities for the EU to get its act fully together will continue to be hampered. The development of EU external action, again not least in the security domain, should of course not be dependent upon how skilfully drafters can play with words in order to create a space for comprehensive action where there formally is no such space. This is what to some extent has happened in the area of counterterrorism. Everyone knows, including non-experts, that border management is fundamental for counterterrorism but also for development. Sound border management brings income to a government though customs, etc. It is therefore only natural that Community funds have been used for border management programs. The counterterrorism objective has in many cases had to remain implicit since it has lacked a legal basis in most Community programs. The net effect of this has most likely been to diminish the effectiveness of the programs themselves and on a more general level to contribute to underestimating the importance of the EU as a security actor. A new strategic document could help to determine synergies, which in turn could influence priorities in terms of funding and decisions on the future legal basis for EU actions. As an example, if it were more clearly shown that taking up defence in depth outside the Union when it comes to organised crime, drugs, other forms of trafficking and terrorism this would make the justice and home affairs strategies of the Union more effective and could influence the relative allocation of funding for internal and external programs. Or, if research and other capacity-building programs in the EU were even more clearly related to external security requirements this could also influence priority setting in these domains.


Or, finally, if external security-related programs (ranging from demining to military operations) were more clearly identified as necessary conditions for development, trade, etc., this could also affect funding.

Three: Developing Measurements of Success

The European Security Strategy document from 2003 focussed on a number of priorities, which were set out without much time for discussion about modalities of implementation. In a few areas sub-strategies were developed for this purpose, mainly in the context of WMD proliferation and counterterrorism. It would have been natural to expect the review of implementation in 2008 to remedy this deficit. The absence of clarity on the organisational and legal level in 2008 (would the Lisbon Treaty be adopted?) however made it difficult for decision-makers to be clear about the options to pursue. Leaders chose to approve what had been written in 2003 and to add on a second layer of priorities, which actually rather has increased than decreased confusion. It is high time to remedy this. A strategy must also, in order to be effective, be possible to evaluate in terms of implementation. How can you evaluate the implementation of a strategy if it does not prescribe the way forward in a coherent way but concentrates more on what has already been done and outlines far too many priorities to pursue? And how can a strategy be used which does not fully take into account strategic changes in the environment? Yes, it is possible that this is how some would like to see the current strategy documents - keeping all options open. But then the costs will be several: No true measurement of success can be established and the real decisions will be taken elsewhere, perhaps in the budgetary process itself or in the development of more concrete sub strategies. This in turn will possibly mean that a few EU Member States, perhaps the Big Three 5, may agree among themselves on the real strategy, keeping other member States outside the true deliberations. It should thus be possible to move several steps forward in the combined directions of codifying the need to think in terms of comprehensive solutions

As recently analysed by Stefan Lehne. For more, see http://carnegieeurope.eu/publications/?fa=48759


and at the same time elaborate clearer directions to EU structures on measurements of success. What does this mean? Spending the money, maintaining diplomatic relations, organising meetings, being present in the field, setting up structures, this is all related to capacity building but not necessarily to measuring success. The way the EU sometimes declares what already has been done a success may be useful as a political message but not as a way forward. If one can agree that European policy should be less event driven, focus less on crisis only after it has erupted and more on its prevention, then public diplomacy and strategic documents should avoid focusing primarily on events and more on ideas and processes. To force the High Representative only to be present in meetings and at crisis locations contradicts age-old principles on the role of the hierarchy in crisis management, let alone war. The hierarchy must have time to think, in the words of Daniel Kahneman, not only fast but slow and the High Representative needs to be supported in this role by the European leaders. 6 See Table 2 for examples of success measures. Table 2. Examples of measurements of success.
Some non-strategic measurements of success for: a project implementation official: follow the so called internal control standards implement the project correctly choose large projects with well known partners in as favourable conditions as possible a programmer: propose something that can be implemented make sure to introduce enough flexibility to allow for adjustments a military official responsible for a strategic concept: take limited risks with appropriate resources an official responsible for the implementation of aid programmes: see to it that the statistics for implementation of the budget are satisfactory to the Parliament and Court of Auditors

See Kahneman, Daniel (2011). Thinking Fast and Slow. London: Penguin Books.


an official responsible to formulate mandates for the work of EU delegations dont forget any possible goal an official responsible for security focus on security of information and focus on the development of rules and regulations try to delegate responsibility for implementation an official responsible for crisis management coordination don't take on more responsibility than you can handle a Commission official - dont allow for going back on community principles.

Four: Moving Towards More Comprehensive Strategies

It is often argued that the EU moves forward during times of crisis - not before the crisis erupts and not when the crisis is perceived to be over. The political will to use all available tools is mobilised when there is a manifest need to do so. A case in point is the issue of failing states. The problem was discussed during the seminars preceding the 2003 strategy but the 2003 ESS stopped short in terms of legitimising what kinds of programs that would be necessary in order to deal with the problem. Considerable progress has taken place in this regard in recent years. There is now a need to codify and systematically build upon this progress, as illustrated in the Horn of Africa strategy. The EEAS has recently updated its concept for fighting piracy around the Horn of Africa. It is a very interesting document. Rather than, as would have been the practice in the past to focus on the ESDP naval operation ATALANTA as such and then to refer in general terms to what the Commission is doing, it details a series of interlocking steps including various parts of the programmes also on the Community side, including of course the general program addressing the situation in Somalia. At the same time EEAS has published the even broader picture including all the various aid programs related to the euro 1bn package for Somalia. The spin


off effects of this and other similar programs (such as the Sahel strategy) may be important over time. Such comprehensive programs were not possible to develop 10 years ago. It is not only an issue of lack of capacity at the time. It is also an issue of progress in terms of what social psychologists may call the cognitive frame of reference for European security. Of course, there were always certain legal barriers against a more comprehensive approach. Security was ten years ago (and for some: still) very much seen as an intergovernmental domain where community resources could only be referred to as contextual elements. The European Commission complied to a certain extent by more or less avoiding until 2003 to use the concept of security in its documents. But nothing prevented also at that time people to collaborate across the pillars if they wanted to do so. The initial CFSP/ESDP concentration on military crisis management and the need to focus on capacity building for this purpose was fully warranted, no doubt. But the need to develop civilian crisis management capabilities and to seek cooperation with the United Nations and later also with the African Union was also essential in order to operate first on the Western Balkans and then in Africa. Some initial battles inside the EU structures on who should do what, soon illustrated the need not just to claim competences but also to use them. The 2003 ESS was in many ways before its time pointing towards the comprehensive strategies now being elaborated. It stresses the need for not just looking at military solutions and the need for the EU to cooperate with others, seeking multilateral effectiveness. At the same time it was a document of its time with the focus on WMD and terrorism, which was shared with the US government after 9/11 and in the context of the 2003 Iraq debate. The focus on regional conflicts, organised crime and failing states was not initially conceptualised on the same level as the first two elements of the strategy. It was in the latter areas where the 2003 debate during three think tank seminars in Rome, Paris and Stockholm (with American participation) could add significantly to the document. There was, as mentioned above, a new attempt in 2008 to look into the strategy. As will be indicated below, the 2008 document did some useful work


in mapping progress that had taken place in the first 5 years and also in putting the emphasis on some issues that needed strategic attention in the coming years (such as energy).

Five: Mainstreaming Other Perspectives into the Geographic Paradigm

The main organising principle of the External Action Service is geography: the main departments are geographic and almost all EU delegations are working with geographically-defined mandates. The main budgetary instruments are also geographically-defined and prioritised, and an effort has been deployed already in view of the last financial perspective to reduce the number of instruments by abolishing some of the earlier thematic ones (such as mine action and drugs) and mainstreaming their objectives into the geographic programs and a few broader thematic ones, mainly the Instrument for Stability. But the issue of who is in the lead does not always have an obvious answer. What about crisis situations? When and how should crisis management structures take over? What about important thematic areas such as energy? Who should manage external coordination? And what about multilateral contexts? Who should give instructions? In many situations, all four dimensions geographic, thematic, crisis management and multilateral need to come together in a coordinated and coherent way. This was particularly obvious when looking at the tsunami and the nuclear catastrophe in Japan in 2011, when the reaction reflected thematic concerns (energy, for instance, with nuclear stress tests inside the EU), operational outreach (the need to work both with humanitarian assistance/civil protection assets and at the same time use available specialised mechanisms for dealing with thematic threats), and multilateral engagement (the international community together in the IAEA and in the UN as a whole). There can sometimes be further implications for hard security matters, in terms of terrorism and even military conflicts, such as was the case in Indonesia after the Tsunami in 2004.


The way these different dimensions de facto interrelate and need to be coordinated have only been addressed in a very preliminary way in the 2003 and 2008 documents. This should be a major objective for the next endeavour.

Six: Geography
So in the EEAS, as can be seen from its organigram, geography is and perhaps must be in the lead. There is an important difference between how the Council Secretariat was organised during the years of Javier Solana and the way the Commissions DG for External Relations (RELEX) has been organised during the same period. The main organising principle for Solana was crisis management, while for RELEX it was geographic programs and the management of Commission delegations in some 130 countries. In the EEAS, covering the entire scope of external action, the geographic principle probably needs to dominate because this is what foreign ministers, the main counterpart of the HR, do. As soon as they enter into thematic areas, including defence, other ministers are in the real lead. Already the organigrams of other external Commission DGs dealing with the areas of trade, enlargement, finance or development have far less geographic emphasis. The last organigram in the newly created combined DG of development and aid cooperation illustrates the point. In this new DG, given the acronym DEVCO, the geographic departments are relatively smaller and somewhat differently organised than in the EEAS. In some important respects the way services are organised illustrate what may be paradigmatic differences in how the map of the world is seen. Are Central Asia-related issues for instance to be seen in the context of the former Soviet Union (as in EEAS) or together with Afghanistan and Pakistan (as in the US State Department and DEVCO)? The choice connotes differences in expectations: postmodern conditions are from the perspective of EEAS expected to evolve in the former Soviet Union on the basis of OSCE commitments. But Central Asia is also an area of development and an area affected by the less orderly realities of Afghanistan and Pakistan. The existence of different geographic paradigms for the coordination of policies may look obvious in each specific context:

For trade...to look at the markets, For enlargement...to identify candidates, For aid implementation and development.... to look at needs in terms of assistance, For EEAS...to look at diplomatic relations and political/security challenges. Still, there is a need to clarify the overall geographic paradigm on the highest strategic level. So geography is in the lead and probably has to be in the lead in an operational European Security strategy covering the external side, and even more so if the third option proposed in the recent UI study to develop a grand strategy covering all EU external action areas is chosen. This means that the geographic contexts and priorities have to be clearly set out. This is something which needs to change over time, partly as a result of crisis. It is not unusual that the European Commission has had to implement significant changes in the allocation of resources due to crisis situations in different regions. The methodology for doing this exists since many years although the augmentation of capabilities in a crisis situation is always difficult to decide on and implement. At the same time observers are often surprised how much is possible to do in a crisis situation when the political will is there in a new way. The list of contexts where changes that have taken place in geographic terms since 2003 is long: global vs. regional focus, strategic partners (including BRICS), EU enlargement, neighbourhood policy (notably the Arab spring), strategic shift towards Asia, Russia both as a neighbour and strategic partner, Iraq, Iran, Afghanistan, North Korea, and failing states. The fact is that many or even most of these developments are not covered by the existing documents and that the implementation of policies in many cases is being made in different formats now than was the case when the ESS documents 2003/8 were formulated. The example of strategic partners is illustrative: this is an emerging concept. The notion of strategic partners to the EU is missing in the ESS even in 2008, with the exception of NATO. Since then, nine such partnerships have been defined and some more potential countries are reported to have been mentioned


by the High Representative. The list is difficult to pin down - should countries such as Egypt and Ukraine be included today as was the case in the High Representatives listing a few years ago? And what about enlargement candidates, such as Turkey?

Seven: Crisis Prevention and Response

The strategic perspectives applied to crisis in the 2008 document were significantly more developed than in ESS 2003, given the number of experiences made not only in the area of terrorism after 9/11 2001 but also in terms of more general crisis response from the Tsunami 2004 onwards and in terms of humanitarian intervention through ESDP from 2003 in Congo. As can be expected, the document devoted significant attention to the need for further capacity building in areas ranging from defence industry, headline goals, to early warning and conflict prevention, capacities to fight proliferation and overall more coherent use of resources and more strategic decision-making. In geographic terms links were made in particular to Africa and the Western Balkans. As regards disaster response the focus was on improvements made in the coordination against terrorist attacks as well as civil protection. But the ESS perspective was still mainly an ESDP one, outlining ESDP as an integral part of CFSP, stressing the link between human rights and ESDP and mentioning concrete ESDP operations on the Western Balkans and in Africa. This predominance of the ESDP paradigm in 2008 was natural, given the fact that the document was elaborated before the reorganisation of services which took place after the entry into force of the Lisbon treaty. The main strategic analysis was done in the policy planning unit under Javier Solana. Still apparent, however, is the disconnect between different services dealing with crisis management and crisis response in the EU. Already by looking at the webpages of the EEAS crisis response platform and the corresponding presentation for humanitarian assistance/civil protection under Commissioner Giorgeva, one is struck by the lack of systematic cross-references. Before 9/11 there were different hierarchies dealing with humanitarian assistance, civil protection and civil-military crisis management. Humanitarian assistance was and is - seen mainly in the context of development and needed


to avoid taking sides in crisis situations. Civil protection was developed, thus broadening the cooperation between Member States in areas related to environmental catastrophes inside and later also to some extent outside the Union. Crisis management was seen as a second pillar concept where military and later also police and other rule-of law-related resources needed to be mobilised for deployment in operations in carefully designated contexts outside the EU. In some Member States the distance between the military and the police was small - Italian and French gendarmerie contingents were organised in a military way. In others the experience in terms of international police operations was much more limited. It therefore also took some time before the equivalent to a headline goal in terms of police was developed and in the end it became more qualitative than quantitative. With 9/11, and in subsequent crisis situations inside and outside the EU, it became gradually clearer that these separate approaches needed to interconnect. But this work still has some way to go. The effort to develop a crisis communication system in recent years (given the acronym ARGUS) also needs to become a full scope endeavour; initially it was a Commission exercise with rather weak links to the Council Secretariat.

Eight: Mobilising Thematic Capabilities and Deploying Them in Context

Relations between countries today are no longer defined by a simple dichotomy of peace and war, e.g. diplomatic correspondence in times of peace, military campaigns in times of war. The world is infinitely more complex nowadays due to globalisation and industrial progress, but also due to the situation inside states, including the fact that most military conflicts nowadays are intrastate. Globalisation brings thematic challenges, some of which also can be defined in terms of transnational threats. Some are almost virtual, such as the distribution of financial resources and information. Industrial and scientific progress has led to a significant degree of specialisation in dealing with thematic challenges. In the EU, priority has been put on developing capacities to deal with all of this inside the Union or at its borders. Only gradually has capacity been set aside to defend these interests in depth outside the borders of the Union. One of the


significant difficulties in this regard is of course the divide in terms of competences, budgets and constituencies between the line Commissioners and the Commissioners with primary external portfolios including the HR/VP herself. Already the first Barroso Commission stressed the importance of linking the internal to the external but it has been easier said than done. In this area a strategic document issued by the Heads of State and Government could be particularly helpful. This was a point made already during the preparation of the ESS 2003. Linking thematic capabilities to geographic contexts will now be necessary. This work in conceptual terms has only partially been implemented in the last two documents. Herman van Rompuy has recently argued that the most important basis for EU influence is leveraging the access of other states to the EU internal market. But it could equally be said that the power base of the EU is primarily the resources developed internally. To use them effectively by also taking up defence in depth when challenges to EU security arise (case in point Afghanistan and drugs) makes eminent sense. A strategy can also help to more clearly identify strategic considerations relating to the deployment of ESDP resources; again Afghanistan being a good case in point with its EU Police mission working closely with ISAF there. The state of play in existing ESS documents from 2003 and 2008 in terms of thematics is not the same in all areas. A preliminary analysis shows that in a few areas progress was achieved in the 2008 document in relation to 2003. But in many contexts the thematic challenges are not really spelled out with explicit links to the geographic, crisis management and multilateral contexts. It would appear that the weakest links in terms of thematic challenges in the current documents is the absence of analysis of the impact of the financial crisis. But also a holistic analysis of the relationship of trade and other transnational flows to security as threats, challenges, and opportunities is largely missing. The strong emphasis on issues relating to the freedom of the internet, to cyber security, to the safety of journalists, etc. in the last years is not yet reflected. Issues relating to conventional arms control, confidence and security building measures are also left to other organisations (read: mainly NATO and OSCE) with the exception of WMD and small arms. This is

troublesome in a period when the results of decades of hard work in building up regional and global arms control regimes are now being seriously challenged. On the other hand it should be noted that the 2008 document benefits from the strategic debate inside the EU on energy from 2006 onwards. The relationship between the human dimension (including the wider concept human security) and security is also more extensively elaborated, partly responding to the strong emphasis on these policies made by the European Parliament. This priority has clearly been carried forward by the current HR/VP. A third strong area includes WMD proliferation where the existence of a sub strategy since 2003 has been very helpful. An update in this area is however sorely needed and a large EU think-tank consortium has been formed for this purpose.

Nine: Towards Effective Multilateralism

A perspective extensively developed in the 2003 ESS is multilateralism: an emphasis on a rules and values based international order, with respect for international law and the pre-eminence of the UN system. This was at the time an important element in the discourse with the US with its emphasis on a caseby-case approach to WMD and terrorism, as symbolised inter alia by the notion of rogue states. Multilateralism is given great attention also in the ESS review of 2008. The references are many, ranging from principles, treaties, formats for cooperation, operational contexts etc. Some references seem, however, to be made in passing with unclear operational directives. And some are missing altogether -- such as to the Council of Europe. The crucial relationship to NATO seems less that clearly set out. And the OSCE is referred to mainly in specific contexts rather than as a strategic partner. In multilateral work, the hierarchy of priorities is of fundamental importance for effectiveness. The EU can still improve on this point. Another important aspect in this context is the actor paradigm applied to external action. In many contexts, the main actor in external assistance is


described as the host state whose efforts in order to develop can be supported through international donor coordination. Since many years the EU has chosen to channel large funds through the UN system and developed an overarching inter-institutional agreement for this purpose. Similar agreements exist also inter alia for the Council of Europe and the OSCE. To what extent is working through international organisations a way for the EU to implement its strategic goals -- or are these organisations to be seen mainly as partners - or perhaps even competitors - in the field? This latter perspective was perhaps natural in an initial period of the ESDP, when the need for capacity building through gathering actual experiences in deploying was a very important consideration. But in the second decade, not least against the backdrop of the financial crisis, it would seem important for the EU to benefit more extensively from the fact that the EU member States man and finance large parts of the operations and programs of other, both regional and global, organisations.

Ten: From a Security to an External Action Perspective

In developing ESDP as an integrated part of CFSP, it was perhaps natural to focus on defence capabilities and on the deployment of EU military operations. This had not been done before in the EU and a number of EU Member States wanted EU capability to do this. The historic compromise between UK and France in 1998 in St Malo paved the way. Today this remains a deficit area in the eyes of many. At the same time both public opinion and finance ministers also see many other areas as underdeveloped in terms of external action. Most of these are seen as Community domains, and thus not as sensitive as intergovernmental areas where specific delimitations are deemed to be necessary in order to safeguard the sovereignty of member states. The way justice and home affairs have developed from the third into what used to be called first pillar areas illustrate the point. Some key issues are also not systematically seen in the context of security such as environmental safety, climate change or even cyber or energy security. On the other hand, sometimes, such as in the OSCE, elements relating


to human rights and freedom are being more closely linked to issues of security. In the final analysis, developing an external action perspective, or the EGS perspective, has to do with power, influence and the possibility for the EU to play a role in realising its values and interests.

Final remarks
Foreign and security policy is an area full of hidden motives, where it is difficult to analyse interests in a systematic and structured way. Too often we tend to refer to the recent past and make ad hoc forecasts on that basis about what will be important and what will happen. The well-known CNN-effect makes us, and therefore also the media, focus on what is perceived to be new and what can be documented on the screen. This is unfortunate, especially for conflict prevention efforts. Deadly but familiar catastrophes happening around the world compete for our attention. We are not particularly adept at taking the long view, retaining focus and correcting what has gone wrong in the past. And in democratic societies there is a public focus on local politics, from which delegation seems to be made to a distant international elite who then make decisions in more or less transparent ways. In a globalised world full of transnational and complicated threats, where international cooperation is a requirement rather than a luxury, this assumption must be countered. One way to do so is to profile opportunities and successes. For instance, the last report on the UNs Millennium Development Goals actually shows remarkable progress. What might have been a functioning system from the point of view of rulers in a world where most international problems were proposed to be given military solutions and where most people lived in more or less self-sufficient environments does not work at all with the interdependence we now are experiencing.


And - most of us have taboos built into our cognitive frameworks. One would have thought that it all is rather straightforward: when we are faced with a problem, let us gather enough resources and partners in order to solve it. But on the level of security policy it is all so much more complex. And this goes not least for the EU (and perhaps especially for the EU). European leaders do not take a complete decision on all relevant parameters at any given time. Each decision adds on to an existing set-up, somewhat modifying earlier parameters. How to integrate new priorities into the existing setting is often delegated to lower-level structures. One therefore often tends to forget that the EU itself initially was seen as a peace project and that for instance the enlargement of the EU may be deemed to be an extremely important security action. All of this points to the need for a new strategic setting for external action in the EU.


About the author

Dr. Lars-Erik Lundin Is affiliated to UI as Research Associate and is a former diplomat. His last active duty was as EU Ambassador to the International organisations in Vienna 2009-2011. He became Deputy Political Director of the European Commission 2006 after having served as head of the RELEX Security Policy Unit since 2000. He was appointed Ambassador in the Swedish Foreign Service in 1996. He earned a Ph.D. in 1980 on the basis of research carried out at UI and is an elected member of the Swedish Royal Academy of War Sciences.



NR 11, 2012
UI Occasional Papers granskas av seniora och sakkunniga forskare p institutet. De sikter som uttrycks i denna publikation r frfattarnas.

Publicerat: 10 september 2012 ISBN: 978-91-86704-92-6