NATO on the offensive against Russia and European defense aspirations

After the American debacle in Afghanistan this summer, several European leaders brought up to date the desire to acquire, within the European Union, an operational military intervention capacity of its own, complementary to the Atlantic Alliance, allowing it to act independently of the United States if the need arose. For a while, Washington and NATO did not react, or very little, to this, the image of the American ally having been tarnished. The Franco-American crisis over the Australian submarines came to bring new arguments to the pillars of a European strategic autonomy, France in mind, the United States having clearly demonstrated that they were following a specific agenda, in which the Europeans were not seen as partners and allies on an equal footing with Washington.

However, the American response was at work behind the scenes, and these first effects have been felt in recent days, in the first place. by the voice of the departing German Minister of Defense, Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer, already in operation just a year ago for shoot French aspirations for Strategic Autonomy in an article published on the Politico website on the sidelines of the US presidential elections. The minister, also a privileged candidate to take over from Jens Stoltenberg at the General Secretariat of the Atlantic Alliance, once again published, in this same Politico, a vibrant plea in favor of a strong NATO and greater rapprochement. from Europeans to the United States.

German Defense Minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer is seen as the likely runner-up to Jens Stoltenberg as Secretary General of the Atlantic Alliance.

According to her, wanting to conduct military operations between Europeans without the support of the United States is undoubtedly " the wrong direction to take“, And Europeans should ask themselves more about how to strengthen the Alliance, and their participation in it, rather than aiming for ambitions that it already described a year ago as a fantasy. Without irony, she also calls on Germany to increase its defense spending to reach the level of 2% of GDP required by NATO in 2025, minimizing the fact that its own government had announced that he did not intend to achieve this goal by this date, notably under the leadership of the very rigorous Minister of Finance Olaf Scholz, the next chancellor of the SPD, Greens and FPD coalition, who will take over from Angela Merkel in December. In addition, the German minister indirectly condemned in this last article the attitude of France in the Australian case, considering that it was a purely commercial dispute, and that Paris had overreacted to in Washington.

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