Germany’s next chancellor will have to finally define Berlin’s security and defense interests. That means addressing the future of U.S. nuclear weapons stationed in the country and the desperate need to modernize Germany’s armed forces.
The chaotic U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan has left European capitals skeptical about such missions and critical of American leadership. The debacle should lead to frank discussions about NATO’s role and the EU’s defense ambitions.
Germany and Europe should not focus solely on the Iran nuclear file. Instead, they should develop a coherent and comprehensive approach to regional security that includes securing maritime routes and investing in environmental cooperation.
Blaming NATO and the United States for the West’s failure in Afghanistan won’t help Europe establish a credible security and defense policy. Its continued absence leaves the EU’s citizens and neighborhoods vulnerable.
The fall of Afghanistan to the Taliban lays bare Europe’s lack of strategic foresight and dangerous dependence on the United States. The EU must address its shortcomings or risk losing the ability to defend its values and interests.
Europe must be ready to support the creation of a regional mechanism for collective security in the Persian Gulf when the opportunity arises. Launching initial talks on concrete issues such as maritime security and nuclear safety would be a good first step toward conflict de-escalation and confidence-building.
To fulfill its ambition of becoming an effective geopolitical power, the EU should place ecological security and diplomacy at the heart of its foreign and security policy. This approach should entail practical and innovative strategies that pursue systemic regeneration at home and abroad.
With the election of a hardliner as Iranian president, eight years of European thinking that Tehran could be a partner will come to an end. It’s time for the EU to address not only the nuclear file but also regional security threats.
Climate change will increase the potential for humanitarian crises and instability. To strengthen the EU's capacity to prevent conflict and manage crises, climate security should be integrated into the Common Security and Defense Policy.
At the latest NATO summit, allies jointly identified China as a systemic challenge to alliance security. But diverging views on China’s challenge among the partners hinder a consensus on NATO action.