Germany wants an integrated European anti-aircraft defence, but without France...

How long ago the time when Emmanuel Macron and Angela Merkel repeated over and over again the benefits of Franco-German cooperation in order to build "the Europe of Defense", and that all subjects were considered in the specter of this cooperation, even when it was neither suitable nor effective. Today, most Franco-German defense equipment co-development programs, such as FCAS, MGCS, MAWS or CIFS, are at a standstill or severely hampered, when they are not purely and simply abandoned. as Tiger III on the German side. What may appear as the emergence of technical differences hampering the progress of these industrial programs could in reality be the expression of deep and conceptual differences as to the very nature of this cooperation and its objectives. This is in any case what is reflected in the discourse given by the German authorities in recent months, showing a clear desire to distance themselves from this cooperation inherited from a bygone period.

The latest thrust from Berlin to this common conception of Defense Europe came from Chancellor Olaf Scholz himself, during a speech given at Charles University in Prague, Czech Republic, this August 29. For the German head of state, it is indeed necessary to build an integrated and coordinated European air defense, to be able to neutralize Russian air and ballistic power, as well as the threat it poses to the countries of Eastern Europe and Central Europe. And to add that Berlin intended to invest massively in this area in the years to come, in order to develop enhanced detection and engagement capabilities, including in the anti-ballistic field, while calling on its European neighbors to join this program. in order to increase its efficiency.

Sholz Germany | Military Alliances | Defense Analysis

But in terms of European partners cited by the German Chancellor, if there are Poland, the Baltic countries, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, the Scandinavian states and the Netherlands, there is no Belgium, Italy, from Bulgaria, Romania, Greece, Spain or Portugal, and no more from the Balkan countries or Hungary, yet a loyal customer of the German defense industry. Admittedly, Rome, Madrid and Bilbao are farther from the Russian borders, so perhaps less vulnerable to possible attacks from the air force and missiles from Moscow. But what about Brussels, the headquarters of NATO and the EU, which is only 175 km from Amsterdam, Romania in the front line on the southern flank, just like Bulgaria and Greece? Above all, France, this key partner at the heart of all the major industrial defense programs which are intended to structure the Europe of La Défense over the next decade, is not mentioned, and it is likely that Paris will not was not even consulted on the subject.

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