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The question of burden sharing has always been important in NATO – it has in fact resulted a "crisis literature" on NATO – but it has an acute relevance today because the US will cut its defence budget over a ten-year period and is no longer automatically willing to lead military operations. The Libya mission 'Unified Protector' is a case in point: the US did not want to l The question of burden sharing has always been important in NATO – it has in fact resulted a "crisis literature" on NATO – but it has an acute relevance today because the US will cut its defence budget over a ten-year period and is no longer automatically willing to lead military operations. The Libya mission 'Unified Protector' is a case in point: the US did not want to lead, but was forced to "lead from behind" because allies lacked some of the necessary capacities. Thus, even if Europeans are politically willing, as in this case, they may not be militarily able to use force. This edited collection asks whether Europe, in a current situation of economic austerity and postmodern political values, can play a key role in regional and global security and defence. Hitherto Europeans have been called upon to rise to the occasion of matching the US with minor contributions, ranging from "showing the flag" to militarily important contributions. But when the US signals that its lead role no longer is automatic, what about the European allies? Can they and will they undertake sharp operations on their own, assuming leading roles? Which of NATO's European allies are able militarily, and willing politically, to undertake "sharp operations" and to actually use force for the purpose of policy? This issue is of key importance for policy as well as for scholarship on NATO. In this volume, the ability and willingness to use force for political purposes amongst NATO's European members are explored, firstly considering the important drivers for the use of force, namely history, political culture, economy and threat perceptions, and then scrutinising the use of force in eight European NATO countries: the UK, France, Germany, Spain, Poland, Hungary, Denmark and Norway.


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The question of burden sharing has always been important in NATO – it has in fact resulted a "crisis literature" on NATO – but it has an acute relevance today because the US will cut its defence budget over a ten-year period and is no longer automatically willing to lead military operations. The Libya mission 'Unified Protector' is a case in point: the US did not want to l The question of burden sharing has always been important in NATO – it has in fact resulted a "crisis literature" on NATO – but it has an acute relevance today because the US will cut its defence budget over a ten-year period and is no longer automatically willing to lead military operations. The Libya mission 'Unified Protector' is a case in point: the US did not want to lead, but was forced to "lead from behind" because allies lacked some of the necessary capacities. Thus, even if Europeans are politically willing, as in this case, they may not be militarily able to use force. This edited collection asks whether Europe, in a current situation of economic austerity and postmodern political values, can play a key role in regional and global security and defence. Hitherto Europeans have been called upon to rise to the occasion of matching the US with minor contributions, ranging from "showing the flag" to militarily important contributions. But when the US signals that its lead role no longer is automatic, what about the European allies? Can they and will they undertake sharp operations on their own, assuming leading roles? Which of NATO's European allies are able militarily, and willing politically, to undertake "sharp operations" and to actually use force for the purpose of policy? This issue is of key importance for policy as well as for scholarship on NATO. In this volume, the ability and willingness to use force for political purposes amongst NATO's European members are explored, firstly considering the important drivers for the use of force, namely history, political culture, economy and threat perceptions, and then scrutinising the use of force in eight European NATO countries: the UK, France, Germany, Spain, Poland, Hungary, Denmark and Norway.

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