Struggle for Global Power Status

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BERLIN/WASHINGTON (Own report) – The United States is preparing sanctions against European companies participating in the construction of the Nord Stream 2 pipeline, according to senior US government officials. German government officials, on the other hand, predict that US sanctions will lead to a confrontation with the whole of the EU. “We will do everything necessary to complete the pipeline.” At the same time, the power struggle over the participation of the Chinese Huawei Corporation in setting up the 5G grid in Germany and the EU is escalating. After the German government indicated that it would not exclude, a priori, Huawei, the US ambassador in Berlin is threatening to reduce cooperation between the two countries’ intelligence services. US President Donald Trump is also considering calling on countries to pay the full cost of stationing US forces on their soil, plus 50 percent more. German government advisors are pleading for a “policy of ‘softer’ or ‘more robust’ countervailing power formation.” Europe’s “strategic autonomy” is at the core of this power struggle. Continue reading

‘Killer robot’ projects eligible for EU defence fund

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Lethal autonomous weapons are already in use, depending on the definition. The Phalanx CIWS is a radar-guided cannon. (Photo: U.S. Pacific Fleet)

 

The EU will allow companies developing so-called ‘lethal autonomous weapons’ to apply for EU funding, negotiators from the EU’s three institutions decided on Tuesday (22 May) evening.

The European Parliament, the European Commission, and the Council of the EU – representing national governments – struck a deal on the specifics of a €500m defence investment programme.

The parliament had originally wanted to bar controversial new weapon types from receiving EU subsidies, but gave up on that in Tuesday’s talks in order to strike a compromise, according to two sources who were in the room. Continue reading

Germany: Trump victory to spur EU military union

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German soldiers on patrol in Afghanistan (Photo: Wir. Dienen. Deutschland.)

 

Donald Trump’s victory, as well as Brexit, ought to speed up plans for EU defence integration, Germany has said.

“Europe needs common political will for more security policy relevance. The outcome of the election in America could provide an additional impetus”, German defence minister Ursula von der Leyen said in an opinion article in the Rheinische Post, a German newspaper, on Thursday (10 November).

“The Brexit decision and the election in the United States have set a new course” for the EU, she added.

She said it was “difficult for Germany and Europe, on the day after the election, to assess what to expect from a Trump presidency”. Continue reading