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EUROPEAN DEFENCE – WHERE NOW MR BLAIR?

02 Jun 05.Is the silence of the once Crown-Prince designate of Europe, Tony Blair, indicative of the disaster of the French and Dutch ‘No’ to the European Constitution. The man who has championed our leadership in all things European is now strangely silent to the latest developments. Has his promise of power in Europe as its next leader designate been shattered by these latest developments? Or is he planning to champion a break-away of new states with the UK, Spain and Italy? But, have his policies, particularly those in defence and industry, damaged the UK economy long-term without an integrated Europe?

For years the U.K. has kowtowed to competition demands form Europe, particularly in defence. The U.K. has allowed an invasion of its industry by European and U.S. companies, supposedly to destroy the ‘BAE-effect’ of monopolistic domination of the industry. But, what the Levene reforms did was to eliminate small and medium businesses from the equation as they could no longer afford to bid and support long-term demands for defence projects, which now include support and production, albeit on a much smaller scale than the USA.

What the DPA in the UK failed to grasp that without a European element to defence procurement, the model proposed by its advisors was bound to fail due to economies of scale in that the industry would decline in the long-term resulting in the loss of high-tech jobs and valuable R&D. A source close to BATTLESPACE has suggested that the drive by the Treasury was to squeeze UK Ltd to such an extent that Defence issues became a European problem and not a UK one thus allowing for the complete eradication of UK defence Plc and its accompanying problematic diplomatic policy of supplying governments not respected by New Labour. This was made particularly apparent by the new-Left Times newspaper article in which the paper described sales of armoured Land Rovers to Uzbekistan. A BATTLESPACE sources supported our article stating that they had had commissions from a number of U.S. Corporations who saw that area as a key defence supply development base.

If the European experiment fails, and the reaction of the City tonight suggests that at least one country may resign from the Euro, then the European Army concept, championed by the ARRC is put into long-term doubt as is the concept of the joint-carrier force as back-stop to any failure of the U.K.CVF project.

Whilst the City and its Institutions have been wise enough to steer away from total European integration, mainly due to common sense and the failure of the French and Germans in particular to liberalise their markets, the U.K. defence industry has been decimated for the European cause to a state where it is unable to stand on its feet in the even of a complete split. If Europe fails, so does European defence policy, leaving the U.K. unable to mount out-of –area operations without European or US support, thus destroying our foreign policy objectives and Mr Blair’s desire for stamping his ego on Africa in particular.
One only has to examine current major European joint defence projects, Typhoon, Meteor and A-400M to see that they have not addressed the needs of world markets in terns of European price and technology and have internal competitors to fight their own corner. Ass long as Europe has to rely on the U.S. for defence technology, it will never compete on the same terms in world markets; more R&D spend is vital. The desire of the Franco/German alliance to unseat BAE from the Airbus wing production is destructive in itself and proves that the European project cannot survive in its current form.

Après le deluge? The U.K. has to make up its mind; its relations with the U.S are strong enough to create a back-stop for industrial participation, but a wholly US industrial policy will not suit Mr Blair and his aspirations, similar to those of the Franco-Scottish alliance of the 17th Century. Without Blair and his lawyer cohorts, the U.K. could lead Eu

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