Chapter

A Role for Europe: Britain and the EU

Nigel D. White

in Democracy goes to War

Published in print June 2009 | ISBN: 9780199218592
Published online September 2009 | e-ISBN: 9780191705595 | DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/acprof:oso/9780199218592.003.0006
 A Role for Europe: Britain and the EU

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The end of the Cold War saw NATO changing and adapting, but also European powers trying to distance themselves from the transatlantic relationship. The UK though remained committed to a special relationship with the United States. Within this complex political web, the member states of the European Community (EC) agreed in the Maastricht Treaty of 1992 to move the newly created European Union (EU) on to the international stage, not simply as an economic organization as has hitherto been the case, but as a security actor. By 2008 the EU has been involved in significant military operations in Macedonia, the Congo, Bosnia, and Chad, as well as developing rapid reaction capability. British troops are part of the EU military infrastructure that is being built up. This chapter focuses on the domestic, regional, and international legal frameworks of this developing example of military action, while maintaining the book's focus on Britain.

Keywords: UK–US relations; European defence and security; Maastricht Treaty; Western European Union; NATO; rapid reaction

Chapter.  11252 words. 

Subjects: Human Rights and Immigration

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