Why the EU Will Fail as Ukraine’s Guarantor – Jan Techau, Carnegie Europe
Europe Russia Ukraine
Carnegie Europe bssb.be 22.09.2014
You may believe that the Ukraine crisis was a political earthquake to alter the security landscape in Europe for good. No matter where you stand on the Ukraine crisis, one momentous shift in Euro geopolitics is indisputable: the EU, for the first time in its history, has made itself the de facto guarantee power for another entity’s political success against the declared intentions of a regional rival.
After Euromaidan revolution in Kiev of February 2014 and Russia’s subsequent annexation of Crimea the EU slapped substantial sanctions on Russia and declared that it would support the reforms promised by Ukraine’s newly appointed President Poroshenko.
But now, as immediate crisis management makes way for more long-term considerations, Euro leaders realize that being a guarantee power requires a lot more than dealing with breaking news. Going forward, the EU—or, more precisely, the EU’s member states—must step up in a way it has never done before.
Euro interest that goes beyond merely declaring how important democracy and human rights are – populations and voters across Europe will want to know where their precious tax money is going and what it is worth risking conflict for.
Unity among 28 member states is extremely fragile. And money is scarce. The union simply won’t be able to sustain its newfound part without the resources to underpin it.
How long it will take for this to happen is very hard to predict. But when that time comes, another turning point will have been reached: the moment when the last illusions about the EU as a peace keeping power in wider Europe came to an end.
* Jan Techau is director of Carnegie Europe, the European centre of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace. Techau is a noted expert on EU integration and foreign policy, transatlantic affairs, and German foreign and security policy.
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