Published On: Tue, Feb 13th, 2018

'EU will be diminished – NOT UK!' Former NATO chief's SHOCK warning to Brussels on defence


James Stavridis, former NATO Supreme Allied Commander Europe, said will undermine European defence internationally as the council will lose the expert input of the UK. 

Speaking on BBC Radio 4, the former commander said he was very worried about the future of the European Union from a security perspective. 

He said: “One great advantage of the United Kingdom being in the European Union from a security perspective as viewed from the United States was that your voice was in the centre of those conversations.

“And it was always a voice of stability, sensibility, forthrightness, resoluteness, the things that we associate with your nation. 

“When, as an American, I see that voice come out of the defensive councils of Europe, I think Europe is the one who will be diminished, not the United Kingdom.

“I am very concerned that the Europeans will end up throwing money at the problem and simply buying forces for the sake of purchasing more defence. 

“I am very concerned particularly about decisions that create large standing armies in Europe without having sufficient maritime, aviation, unmanned cyber capabilities, special forces.” 

Last year, the Permanent Structured Co-operation (PESCO)has received the official blessing of heads of state and governments in Brussels. 

The European army in all but name was hailed as a big moment in the history of the EU by European Council President Donald Tusk. 

He said: “The dream was at odds with reality. Today the dream becomes reality. PESCO is good news for our allies and bad news for our enemies.”

25 of the EU’s current 28 members have signed up – Britain, Malta and Denmark are not involved. 

The project did not come short of criticism. Tory MP Daniel Kaczynski said the EU army will be a disaster and Britain will still be forced to intervene if a war sparked on the bloc. 

Speaking exclusively to Express.co.uk, Mr Kawczynski said: “What the French and Germans want to create is a European army. They want to ditch our dependence on Nato. 

“That would be a disaster and Britain has, unfortunately, on two occasions in the past century, been compelled to enter into a European war at great cost to us.” 


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