Showing a mirror to oneself and accepting our failures is the first step on the road to developing capabilities. The European Union, which has become a lackey of the US, is under an illusion that it is winning the already lost war against Moscow. However, one of its allies in EU, Sana Marin, chose to speak the truth.
The Prime Minister of Finland, Sanna Marin, has requested the European Union to develop its own defense system in the backdrop of Putin’s military action in Ukraine. She emphasised that the EU is heavily dependent on the US and will be vulnerable without its backing.
Marin said, “We should make sure that we are stronger. And I’ll be brutally honest with you, Europe isn’t strong enough. We would be in trouble without the United States.” She further added that the European leaders have to sincerely build their defence industry and capabilities so that they can deal without Biden’s involvement in the wake of an emergency situation.
EU’s defence spending
Now, the military expenditure of Europe, which comprises the armed forces, peacekeeping operations, defence ministries and other agencies, was estimated at $232.8 billion in 2020, $217.8 billion in 2019 and $216.55 billion in 2018.
According to NATO’s guidelines, member states must contribute 2% of their GDP to their defence budget. However, just nine out of thirty members of the EU meet this mark. Countries like Germany, which is considered the largest economic power in Europe, spend just 1.4% of its GDP on defence, while Italy’s share is 1.6% and Sweden’s is estimated at 1.2%.
However, the defence expenditure of their arch-rival, Russia, increased massively in comparison to the US and Europe. According to the European Defence Agency, between 1999 and 2021, Moscow enhanced its budget by 292% whereas the EU’s spending is estimated to grow at just 20% and the US’s is 66%.
Limiting Biden’s supremacy
As aforementioned before, Macron, Leyen and Scholz are heavily reliant on assistance from Washington. Taking this into account, they decided to curb Biden’s dominance. They established the European Political Community which held its first meeting in Prague on 6th October and was attended by 44 European leaders. The meeting focused on establishing a new and separate forum for dialogue, cooperation and planning.
Nations held talks on the subjects of peace, security, energy, economy and other issues. The most significant aspect of the European Political Community is that it decided not to include Joe Biden and emphasises that the EU will take care of its problems without the US’ interference. Therefore, the members of the forum have unanimously agreed that they will meet every 6 months to review the decisions taken by them in the context of the Russia-Ukraine conflict. The next meeting will take place in Moldova in 2023.
Accepting its flaws
Now, coming back to the statement of Sanna Marin, her criticism of the European Union stems from recent cyber attacks by Russia. In August, Russian hackers took responsibility for hacking Finland’s parliamentary website.
In fact, cyber attacks in Finland increased between February and October. In September, the head of Finnish Security and Intelligence Service announced, “We consider it highly likely that Russia will turn to the cyber environment over the winter.”
Moscow’s cyber attack on the government websites of Finland and the helplessness of Sana Marin to deal with the emergency situation is just a glimpse of the crisis that European leaders are in. Ever since the initiation of the military campaign of Vladimir Putin, every decision of Leyen, Macron and Scholz has to get the approval of the US.
The European Union is compelled to tolerate the interference of Joe Biden in their military, political and economic decisions because they do not have an advanced defence system, unlike Moscow. Washington is taking advantage of the helplessness of European nations to further its propaganda and attacks on Russia.
Although Finland is part of a strategy which will inevitably fail, its decision is to give the spineless EU a reality check. Therefore, in such a situation, Marin, Macron, Leyen and Scholz are moving away from the dominance of the US and developing their own defence and financial capabilities so that they are not rendered susceptible in the wake of an attack.