European Union

On European Security from a Russian Perspective

The Ministry of Defence of the Russian Federation organised a conference on European Security in Moscow (MESC 2013) in the third week of May. Drawn from academia and government, the approximately 300 participants came both from Russia and other former Soviet republics as well as NATO and EU member states. The aim of the conference was to present the official Russian view on three topics: missile defence, NATO enlargement, and arms control. Although MESC 2013 was well-organised and achieved its instructive objective, it did not fully provide the opportunities for an open discussion such as the participants may had expected.

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Why and how the “Euro Hawks“ should or shouldn’t fly

The German government has decided to pull a plug on the so-called “Euro Hawk” project – development of the Unmanned Aerial System (UAS) for intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance missions, based on the US-made RQ-4 “Global Hawk” system. The justification for that was that the project stood little chance of satisfying a critical requirement – a certified ability of the unmanned aerial vehicle to safely fly in non-segregated (managed) airspace, sharing it with piloted aircraft – at a reasonable cost and within reasonable time frame. Having sunk in almost 0.5 billion euros into the project and anticipating further delays and financial outlays beyond the original plan, the German government decided that, in the words of the defence minister, “the end in horror was better than horror without an end.”

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Finland and NATO: Inching Towards Membership?

Last week the Finnish Parliament debated the 2012 Defence White Book. It was to be a formal, well-choreographed discussion, with the Kokoomus-led six-party majority government already firmly lined up behind the text. But then something happened: a question was raised as to whether or not Finland could still be called a militarily non-aligned country.

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