New threats – different response

Marianne Riddervold has published an article in European Security on how Somali piracy has been dealt with, within the framework of the EU and NATO.

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When the European Union (EU) launched its first military naval mission, EU NAVFOR Somalia, Atalanta, the states who are members of both the EU and the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) made a political choice: to prioritize the EU over NATO in their multilateral military efforts to fight piracy and its consequences. Thereby, Atalanta  challenges the conventional assumption that EU security cooperation will remain limited. It also challenges the widely held belief that the European states will chose to act through NATO if dealing multilaterally with international security issues.

How can we explain this decision? This analysis suggests that it can be explained in two phases where different mechanisms were at work. In the first phase, which can be accounted for from a neo-realist perspective, France, who held the Presidency, used particular favourable geopolitical conditions to put an autonomous EU operation on the agenda. However, agreement on the EU option cannot be explained as a result of strategic bargaining. Instead, in a second phase and in line with an alternative hypothesis building on the theory of communicative action, the EU member states came to support the French suggestion due to legitimacy considerations regarding the legal framework of the two operations.

Full info

Marianne Riddervold
'New threats – different response: EU and NATO and Somali piracy'

European Security, vol. 23, no. 4, 2014, pp. 546-564
DOI: 10.1080/09662839.2014.937337

Published Aug. 26, 2014 3:06 PM - Last modified Dec. 3, 2014 11:32 AM