With some time passing following the terrorist attacks in Paris earlier this month, focus is being directed to the EU and its role in counter-terrorism. Typical suggestions coming from Brussels nowadays are 1) member states must send more and better intelligence to relevant EU agencies, 2) EU agencies must work better together and 3) EU agencies must cooperate better with actors in 3rd countries. Interestingly, these are the very same arguments that was heard in Europe following the 9/11 attacks, after the Madrid train bombings in 2004 and again after the London attacks. Decision-makers in Brussels clearly are not getting what they ask for. Why? Because the practitioners (for several reasons) are less enthusiastic and because some member states are hesitant. I discussed this issue in an article (here) for Intelligence and National Security in 2010, but the problem is the same today.
Together with some colleagues, I also discussed what the EU could do in a resent piece, available here
The Swedish government is working hard to secure a seat at the UN Security Council 2017-2018. I argue that the campaign – emphasising Sweden’s independent voice in international affairs – might risk years of investments in the EU: s foreign and security policy.
Listen to me and several other commentators discussing the issue on Swedish public service radio.
“The governing coalition of Social Democrats and Greens that entered office in October 2014 has presented a foreign policy agenda with a level of ambition rivaled only by the cost of its possible failure.”
I review Swedish foreign policy at Carnegie’s Strategic Europe blog. Read it here!
In a new article in European Foreign Affairs Review, I investigate the foreign policy consequences of the euro crisis. Two distinctive foreign policy areas are investigated: crisis management in North Africa and the negotiation of free trade agreements with the US and India.
The article employs an analytical framework that focuses on three key aspects shaping EU policy: capabilities, cohesion and context. The results suggest considerable changes in each, but not only in one direction: there are mechanisms driving policy in different directions which suggest a nuanced conclusion is required.
The overarching findings of the article, however, are that the foreign policy machinery of the EU has been rather resilient to the financial crisis but that great variation exists both between different foreign policy areas and between the different components that make up the EU as an international actor.
The article is published in European Foreign Affairs Review 19, no. 4 (2014): 483–502
Download the full text here!