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A "European Army" is now a real possibility

This is a discussion on A "European Army" is now a real possibility within the Geo-strategic Issues forum, part of the Global Defense & Military category; 50 countries amassing in the geographical are that is almost equal to China. huge income disparity, many languages, distinct ethnic ...


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Old September 30th, 2012   #76
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50 countries amassing in the geographical are that is almost equal to China. huge income disparity, many languages, distinct ethnic identities, no past experience of living in unified central command structure and finally altogether different geopolitical interests. The amalgamation we have witnessed in the form of EU is the maximum integrated union ever existed in the continent of Europe. Keeping all this in mind i do not see any future of combined European Army in the complex and shifting world. Best scenario for them is to stick under the NATO umbrella.
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Old September 30th, 2012   #77
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Actually, there isn't that much income disparity in Europe. From an intellectual viewpoint anyway. Less than within any European country between different societal strata.
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Old September 30th, 2012   #78
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Income disparities between countries in the EU are less than those between US states at any time from the mid 19th century to WW2. They are less than between Indian states, Chinese provinces, or Russian oblasts.
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Old September 30th, 2012   #79
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Income disparities between countries in the EU are less than those between US states at any time from the mid 19th century to WW2. They are less than between Indian states, Chinese provinces, or Russian oblasts.
It can easily be checked and verified through the IMF & World bank report. The disparity between top 3 and bottom 3 and i have mentioned other points too along with the economy.Due to lesser posts i am not allowed to attach the link with my post.
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Old September 30th, 2012   #80
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i have mentioned other points too along with the economy.
Sure. First off, 50 states? We're talking about the European Union, not the Council of Europe. Different geopolitical interests? There's a common denominator all EU members agree on. There are just local side interests in addition to that, like in every country. Living in a "unified central command structure"? Military-wise, what do you think NATO is? Many languages - sure. Have you ever looked at what percentage of Indians speak Hindi? Hint: It's less than the percentage of Europeans that speak English. Ethnic identities? 70% of Europeans belong to just six ethnicities.
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Old September 30th, 2012   #81
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Sure. First off, 50 states? We're talking about the European Union, not the Council of Europe. Different geopolitical interests? There's a common denominator all EU members agree on. There are just local side interests in addition to that, like in every country. Living in a "unified central command structure"? Military-wise, what do you think NATO is? Many languages - sure. Have you ever looked at what percentage of Indians speak Hindi? Hint: It's less than the percentage of Europeans that speak English. Ethnic identities? 70% of Europeans belong to just six ethnicities.
Thanks for categorical rebuttal, kindly address the below mentioned point from original post.

no past experience of living in unified central command structure and finally altogether different geopolitical interests. The amalgamation we have witnessed in the form of EU is the maximum integrated union ever existed in the continent of Europe
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Old September 30th, 2012   #82
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The amalgamation we have witnessed in the form of EU is the maximum integrated union ever existed in the continent of Europe
The most integrated union in Europe was the Alliance under Napoleon. Hell, our modern societies in Europe are based on what was established back then.

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altogether different geopolitical interests
If you have to reinforce your geopolitical interests by military might that just means you failed at realizing them in proper fashion.
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Old September 30th, 2012   #83
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It can easily be checked and verified through the IMF & World bank report. The disparity between top 3 and bottom 3 and i have mentioned other points too along with the economy.Due to lesser posts i am not allowed to attach the link with my post.
That shows only the disparities between EU countries, not the other disparities I mentioned. Check, & you'll find that what I have said is correct. It's significant because those are states which might be considered roughly comparable.

Brazil also has regional economic disparities at least as great as those of the EU, BTW. Poorest state (Piauí) had 32.2% of national GDP per capita in 2007. Distrito Federal was 281.3, São Paulo 156.7 (data from IBGE). EU in 2011, with three times the population varied from 45% (Bulgaria) to 274% (Luxembourg, distorted by massive cross-border commuting: consumption level was 150% of average). Including only significant states, highest is Netherlands: 131% of EU average GDP per capita (data Eurostat).

As Kato says, 50 countries is too many. The EU consists of only 27. Moldova & the like are, & will for the foreseeable future remain, outside the EU, & the EU is the only framework that exists, or is likely to exist, which could put together any united military.

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no past experience of living in unified central command structure
Apart from over 60 years of NATO in the West, & 40 years of the Warsaw Pact in the East. Both had unified central military commands, & NATO still does.

The EU is more integrated economically than the USA was for many years after its formation, BTW.
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Old September 30th, 2012   #84
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Question is how far a unified EU Military body can contribute to the system already in place.
As to my understanding NATO/EU has already several task forces floating around and they got several Quick Response Groups right?
I mean on paper each nation has its own government and its own say (Within EU limits) but in case of a war / serious conflict the EU has already a working command who can draw units from its members (Or governments lend what they can) to battle a aggressor.
So in terms of security the EU remains one of the best defended and most capable places on earth.

Most bicker about the things that the EU might lack (And true we could do better) but in a war you really do not want to attack a EU/NATO member state because the EU can and will defend itself in that regard it does not matter if your name is Russia or China or Nation X for that matter as you will see the capability of the EU come online, which is imo a formidable one. (Not sure if i say it right or in the right way)

The main problem is that individual nations might not be able to maintain their army due the ever increasing costs while if these armies would be under EU control it would be much cheaper and more streamlined which in terms would benefit the overall capabilities.

And i am not sure if this is correct but to my understanding the EU is fully sufficient and has a self sufficient infrastructure, industry and research industry to be able to maintain such a army while still being able to develop and produce top tier military hardware.

So from a economic point of view it would be great if the EU would have just one army and it would simplify the whole EU structure and security.

Some said its hard to refuel 6 different types of ships and there has been said that a unified army would be a logistical nightmare as there are so many different languages and other issues around.
But to my understanding every nations must be fully integrated to NATO/EU and must meet NATO standards which means communications are being done in English and units must meet NATO Interoperability Standards and Profiles.
Which basically makes sure that units can be supplied seamlessly and that different nations can work with each other like they are working with their own units.

But i could be wrong so it would be nice if someone can comment on what i said and explain me.

Because i personally think that the benefits of a unified army outweighs any individual agenda's
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Old September 30th, 2012   #85
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That shows only the disparities between EU countries, not the other disparities I mentioned. Check, & you'll find that what I have said is correct. It's significant because those are states which might be considered roughly comparable.

Brazil also has regional economic disparities at least as great as those of the EU, BTW. Poorest state (Piauí) had 32.2% of national GDP per capita in 2007. Distrito Federal was 281.3, São Paulo 156.7 (data from IBGE). EU in 2011, with three times the population varied from 45% (Bulgaria) to 274% (Luxembourg, distorted by massive cross-border commuting: consumption level was 150% of average). Including only significant states, highest is Netherlands: 131% of EU average GDP per capita (data Eurostat).

As Kato says, 50 countries is too many. The EU consists of only 27. Moldova & the like are, & will for the foreseeable future remain, outside the EU, & the EU is the only framework that exists, or is likely to exist, which could put together any united military.


Apart from over 60 years of NATO in the West, & 40 years of the Warsaw Pact in the East. Both had unified central military commands, & NATO still does.

The EU is more integrated economically than the USA was for many years after its formation, BTW.

You have rightly stated the statistics of regional disparity with the different Brazilian regions but in my view, we should compare economic diversity of the provinces of one single nation state (as they are used to live under that situation bonded with one motto & one national anthem) with the sovereign countries of Europe where Scottish are mulling to come out from UK federation, Flemish region is seeking independence from Belgium we already have witnessed the disintegration of Check & Slovak.
UK, Sweden, Denmark have opted out of Euro Zone and Romania, Bulgaria, Hungary& Poland are still to adopt the Euro. Keeping in mind the current economic state of Europe in general and EU in particular it is hard to believe the existence of united “European Army” kind of block may be we will have to revisit the medieval crusades to align them again under one banner.

AFA United States is concerned, it is a nascent Nation unlike Europe which has an old history of great empires often fought with each other for ethnic supremacy.
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Old October 1st, 2012   #86
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As to my understanding NATO/EU has already several task forces floating around and they got several Quick Response Groups right?
NATO only has its four naval task forces since AMF(L) died, plus its AWACS fleet.

The EU has a corps-sized military task-force (Eurocorps) and a splattering of independent regimental battlegroups (EUBG) with a total standing layout of about 90,000 combat troops, plus units for command of additional units on land and at sea (Eurofor, EMF) in reaction situations of about 30,000 men additional strength plus a mlitary police brigade (EGF) of about 3,000 men strength to round it out.
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Old October 1st, 2012   #87
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AFA United States is concerned, it is a nascent Nation unlike Europe which has an old history of great empires often fought with each other for ethnic supremacy.
European empires did not fight for ethnic supremacy. That is a modern concept. Consider the Holy Roman Empire, the Habsburg empire (overlapping for many years), the Angevin empire, the territories of the House of Luxembourg, the Crown of Aragon, the Grand Duchy of Lithuania (the administrative language of which was a Belorussian dialect), the polyglot lands of the Duchy of Burgundy in the 15th century . . . .

These were generally states based upon a personal union under a ruling family, which would have a relatively weak ethnic identity. Consider the story that the Emperor Charles V said "I speak Spanish to God, Italian to women, French to men and German to my horse." - and his first language was probably Flemish. The states they ruled might have constitutions which could cause the rulers to be dumped & a new set adopted, or a requirement to uphold traditional rights & laws, or to speak the local language - all the time while simultaneously ruling other states, with other constitutions, languages, etc. Consider Poland, which was a constitutional elective monarchy calling itself a republic (not the contradiction we now think of it as), united in the late 14th century with Lithuania (then the biggest country in Europe) under one monarch, the union made permanent, rather than personal in 1569, & the constitutions & administrations merged in 1791 shortly before it was carved up by Russia (which considered itself to be primarily a religious empire, & only secondarily ethnic), Prussia, & the multi-ethnic Habsburg empire.

Now, tell me where there was scope for fighting for ethnic supremacy in that lot? You are viewing the distant past through the filter of very recent history, & thereby completely misunderstanding it.
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Old October 1st, 2012   #88
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European empires did not fight for ethnic supremacy. That is a modern concept. Consider the Holy Roman Empire, the Habsburg empire (overlapping for many years), the Angevin empire, the territories of the House of Luxembourg, the Crown of Aragon, the Grand Duchy of Lithuania (the administrative language of which was a Belorussian dialect), the polyglot lands of the Duchy of Burgundy in the 15th century . . . .

These were generally states based upon a personal union under a ruling family, which would have a relatively weak ethnic identity. Consider the story that the Emperor Charles V said "I speak Spanish to God, Italian to women, French to men and German to my horse." - and his first language was probably Flemish. The states they ruled might have constitutions which could cause the rulers to be dumped & a new set adopted, or a requirement to uphold traditional rights & laws, or to speak the local language - all the time while simultaneously ruling other states, with other constitutions, languages, etc. Consider Poland, which was a constitutional elective monarchy calling itself a republic (not the contradiction we now think of it as), united in the late 14th century with Lithuania (then the biggest country in Europe) under one monarch, the union made permanent, rather than personal in 1569, & the constitutions & administrations merged in 1791 shortly before it was carved up by Russia (which considered itself to be primarily a religious empire, & only secondarily ethnic), Prussia, & the multi-ethnic Habsburg empire.

Now, tell me where there was scope for fighting for ethnic supremacy in that lot? You are viewing the distant past through the filter of very recent history, & thereby completely misunderstanding it.
You have rightly put forward the character of various medieval European empires and how they ruled the people of different ethnicities and linguistics. The amicable coexistence of the different languages in that period of Europe was also noteworthy. You are right when you said that “you are viewing distant past through the filter of very recent history” as the question we are addressing is best analyzed and judged on the recent past of the region. We must keep in mind the economic turmoil in the Europe and EU and when countries are in distress they choose different path and many a times there priorities vary from each other.
The only values that can supersede the ethno-lingual difference is the religion, since most of the Europe is either atheist or loosely related to Christianity so in my mind it is very difficult to amass the so many ethnicities under one umbrella until and unless they all have common goal. I have colossal doubts about Germany joining the Anglo-French wagon of unified command structure. See the history of Germans (Germanic tribes) from the fall of western roman empires by their hands till today. So in my view there is need of strong superglue that enable the Europe to reign in under one Military command or offcourse a common gigantic enemy can also do the same.
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Old October 1st, 2012   #89
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Great post. Just one question:
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Consider the story that the Emperor Charles V said "I speak Spanish to God, Italian to women, French to men and German to my horse." - and his first language was probably Flemish.
Shouldn’t he have used Latin to speak to god? Or were the Spanish that powerful in the affairs of the Catholic Church at that time?
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Old October 1st, 2012   #90
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Great post. Just one question:

Shouldn’t he have used Latin to speak to god? Or were the Spanish that powerful in the affairs of the Catholic Church at that time?
Well the British, Spain/Portugal, Dutch and France where by far the most powerful nations on earth back then.
Latin, Spanish, France, Dutch/Flemish, British (Or Britannic) where languages spoken by most nobles regardless of origin in medieval Europa.
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