YOU READ IT and get a lump in your throat. But will this email be dropping into your inbox in the not too distant future?
My politics class is split between those who believe we, the European Union that is, should bear arms, have comparable military might with the US, and those who do not.
The question is: if the EU wants to be more credible as a world actor, arguably the next stage in its development, does the EU not only need the pen, but the sword?
Some argue that “we wouldn’t have to use it” or that “we won’t be taken seriously without one”, “everyone else has one” they say. And maybe that is the point. Maybe the young, innovative EU experiment should continue to act through dialogue and negotiation alone. Because nobody else does, and this gives it a certain edge.
An EU army might cement people’s feelings of EU citizenship, maybe create more unity and pride, but there have to be other, peaceful ways of doing this?
If it were created, there could be language barriers, and would recruits be willing or able to sideline their national identities or differences?
Yesterday, Russia announced its plans of rearmament, even in a time of relative peace. I wonder, at a time of crisis, whether having a coordinated response unit would be a useful asset?
I decide against it. I don’t think the EU was ever intended to be a violent monster. I do not think appealing to popularity (we need something because everyone else has one) is a valid argument. And I’d like to think, somehow, that Europe can use its diversity of thought and intelligence to solve problems and intervene without hate and fighting.
The EU has overseen the longest period of peace between its nation states, many of whom were sworn enemies. You only have to look worldwide to see what war does- the price is autonomy and the real cost is human suffering.