After years of incremental change, much is afoot in European defense. The EU unveiled proposals earlier this year for a new fund to pay for collaboration on weapons procurement. Member states are moving toward “permanent structured cooperation” on military matters. Brexit may—or may not—deprive the EU of help from one of Europe’s most capable armed forces.

Meanwhile, Donald Trump is making cooperation with the United States, including through NATO, deeply unpopular in Europe. And in Germany, the upcoming election will decide whether Berlin will continue to take on greater responsibility in European defense.

Carnegie Europe, in partnership with the German Institute for International and Security Affairs (SWP), co-hosted a discussion on how the EU can best protect its population, territory, and interests during these turbulent times.

Carnegie’s Tomáš Valášek moderated a discussion featuring Kerry Buck, Canada’s permanent representative to NATO; Paul Johnston, the UK’s representative to the EU’s Political and Security Committee; Claudia Major, senior associate at the International Security Division of SWP; and Zoltán Martinusz, director for Enlargement, Security, Civil Protection, and Foreign Affairs Council Support at the Council of the EU.

This event was held under Chatham House rule. 

Kerry Buck

Kerry Buck is the permanent representative of Canada to NATO.

Paul Johnston

Paul Johnston is the UK representative to the EU’s Political and Security Committee.

Claudia Major

Claudia Major is a senior associate at the International Security Division of the German Institute for International and Security Affairs (SWP). Follow her on Twitter @ClaudMajor.

Zoltán Martinusz

Zoltán Martinusz is the director for Enlargement, Security, Civil Protection, and Foreign Affairs Council Support at the general secretariat of the Council of the EU.

Tomáš Valášek

Tomáš Valášek is the director of Carnegie Europe. Follow him on Twitter @valasekt.