Volume XLI, No. 3 (July - September 2006)
Is there a European Security Culture in the Enlarged European Union? (PDF, 17 pages, 145 KB) by Geoffrey Edwards
The institutionalisation of security issues within the EU framework has allowed the central institutions, led especially by the High Representative, Javier Solana, and the departments attached to his office, to begin to establish a specifically European discourse on security, the threats posed to Europe and the principles that should underlie European reactions to them. The European Security Strategy agreed in 2003 has, in particular, provided a benchmark for European reactions and attracted constant references. That document, other declarations, and the growing number of EU missions within the framework of the EU's Security and Defence Policy allow for a dynamic interaction of discourse and practice. That dynamism, however, needs to be set against the EU's continuing under-achievement of its own declared defence capability goals, the existence of an alternative security discourse in NATO strongly enunciated by the United States and the continued dominance of national defence discourses.
Montenegro's Referendum by Nicholas WhyteMontenegro's aspiration to independence from Serbia was fulfilled on 21 May 2006, when Montenegrins voted for independence in a free and fair referendum. The European Union exerted itself as a moral and political authority in this process, at first using its soft power to broker a deal between Serbia and Montenegro, and then helping Montenegro's government and opposition to come to an agreement on the referendum. It is questionable, however, if this was a success for European diplomacy; first of all because the process' success was mainly due to Serbia and Montenegro's correct behaviour, and then because the outcome of the referendum was not exactly the one desired by most European policymakers.
Promoting Democracy in the Eastern Neighbourhood - The Limits and Potential of the ENP by Kristi Raik The EU aims to promote democracy in its eastern neighbouring countries through the European Neighbourhood Policy (ENP) launched in 2003. The EU has three types of neighbours in the east: Ukraine, a case of "re-transition"; Moldova, a case of prolonged transition; and Belarus, an outright authoritarian regime. As a result it needs to differentiate between stages of democratisation when designing external support. The ENP has many weaknesses as an instrument for spreading democracy, above all the fact that the conditionality policy included in the ENP is not supported by strong incentives or rewards that would encourage reforms. Some policy suggestions that could make the ENP a more effective tool of democracy promotion include systematic conditionality and an improved mechanism for supporting civil society, in particular pro-democratic groups in authoritarian countries.
European Energy Supply Security
The Conundrum of Energy Security - Gas in Eastern and Western Europe by Enno Harks The recent Russian-Ukrainian gas dispute underlined the necessity of energy market reform in Europe. The gas market has turned out to be the main concern for Europe as it is pipeline bound and demands long and stable relationships between the producer, the consumer and the transit country. Over-dependence on any one specific infrastructure (pipeline), as much as over-dependence on any single producer are bound to create future problems. To avoid future repetitions of the Russian-Ukrainian crisis, the European Union should support the free evolution of market prices, as well as push Russia to firm and ratify the dispute-settlement tool, the Energy Charter Treaty, and diversify gas import routes.
The EU-GCC Relations: Dynamics, Patterns and Perspectives by Gerd Nonneman The emergence of a bloc-to-bloc EU-GCC relationship is constrained by the divergent economic and political interests and foreign policy roles of the member states on both sides; the structural limitations of both organisations; the absence of a "champion" within the EU for collective relations with the GCC; the nature of the Gulf leaders' diplomacy; and the role of the US. From the GCC side, relations with Europe are shaped by a view of the latter as a key market and source of imports, and a means of diversifying the GCC states' economic and security resources. From the European side, the relationship has been moulded by the EU-wide interest in a stable Gulf region both for the security of world energy supplies, and the GCC states' potential contribution to stabilising the rest of the region; pre-existing relationships with particular member states; diverse perceptions of the relationship to the US and US policy; and varying levels of bilateral economic interest. The EU's ostensible pursuit of political reform and good governance is constrained by its own limited ability to develop a common policy on the matter, and limited leverage over the GCC states.
Italian Energy Policy: The Quest for More Competition and Supply Security by Giacomo Luciani and Maria Rita Mazzanti The Italian legal and regulatory framework in the energy sector has been evolving in recent years. In spite of liberalisation and decentralisation, the future course of Italian energy policy is still unclear and in particular there are doubts whether an international side can be revived in the near future. In line with developments at the European level, energy has ceased to be an area in which the government can promote specific national interests, notably in relations with non-EU member countries. The thrust has been to liberalise and open up the Italian market to competition - a thrust that does not allow for the active promotion of specific projects, which inevitably would entail interference with market outcomes.
Italian foreign policy survey
The Prodi Government and Italy-US Relations: The Case for Optimism by Jason Davidson Many expected the April 2006 election of Romano Prodi's centre-left government to lead to a worsening of Italy-US relations. Yet it seems likely that Italy-US relations will remain strong because Italy's left has a record of moderate policymaking and the government should be able to manage challenges from the far left. Moreover, the Bush administration seems to have turned away from some of its more radical policies, which means that there will be more overlap in Italian and American policy preferences. The testbed may well be such contemporary challenges as Italy-US relations in Iraq, Afghanistan, and Iran.
Book Reviews and Notes
Regulating Recourse to the Use of Force: Theories and Practice (PDF, 4 pages, 62 KB)
IAI Library Notes