Saturday, July 10, 2004

Nuclear Umbrellas

"EU nations worried about the threat of terrorism can rest easy: France's defence minister Michele Alliot-Marie has assured other nations in the union that France would seriously consider protecting them from attack with its nuclear umbrella."

--via Eurosoc

Eurosoc is skeptical of France's efforts. In contrast, I think that any efforts made by Europe to bear the brunt of defense costs against international chaos is welcome. And increased military spending on France's part will only help the US insofar as France will, at least in theory, be able to contribute better technology and increased manpower to international missions. Of course, it would be nice if military spending among Western Allies were more coordinated, so that money and effort were not wasted on duplicate systems and technologies. Perhaps what bothers Eurosoc is that France's generosity with its nuclear weapons may be designed less to combat international scofflaws than to buttress a kind of militant, pan-European "nationalism." At the core of Alliot-Marie's statement may be little more than a vision of Europe as a fortress, protected from diverse threats that include nuclear arms, dark-skinned immigrants, veiled Muslim schoolgirls and American pop culture.