Military operations and the EU’s identity as an international security actor

Ben Crum, Trineke Palm

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

For long, its lack of military means served to single the European Union out as a “civilian” or “normative power”. However, since 2003 twelve EU military operations have been launched. On the basis of a comprehensive analysis of all EU military mission so far, this article seeks to establish how these missions have evolved over time and how they have affected the character of the EU as an international actor. For this purpose, the article outlines four ideal-typical conceptions of the EU's international identity and operationalises them along two underlying dimensions: justification (the purpose of military operations) and policy-embeddedness (the coordination between military means and other foreign policy instruments). Analysing the military operations along these two axes, the article suggests that the EU has been evolving towards a “Liberal Power” identity, as is reflected in a shift from value-based to utility-based justifications, while military operations have at the same time become more embedded in the EU's overall foreign policies.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)513-534
Number of pages22
JournalEuropean security
Volume28
Issue number4
Early online date19 Sep 2019
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2019

Keywords

  • Normative Power
  • justification
  • policy embeddedness
  • comprehensive approach
  • EU military missions

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