On Saturday 10th January, RFI welcomed Bastien Nivet, research professor at the EMLV and research coordinator at De Vinci Business Lab, to speak on its geopolitical talk-show about the terrorist attacks that took place in France on the 7th and 9th January 2015.
The radio show raises important questions about the challenges faced by countries around the world. Marie-France Chatin invited experts and researchers to take part in the discussion; the aim is to highlight the different mechanisms that can affect the relationship between societies and their environment.
The attack on Charlie Hebdo: an act of war?
Let’s take a closer look at the questions raised, and the increased threat of terrorism. Do we think of war in a different way? In France, more voices are being raised demanding that the military budget be increased. Is this the most efficient way of confronting contemporary security risks?
- Jean-Pierre Maulny, Assistant director of IRIS (Research Institute on International Relations and Strategies). Director of “Un monde surarmé ou désarmé?” (A world over armed or disarmed?) La Revue Internationale et Stratégique n°96, éd Iris/Armand Colin.
- Bastien Nivet, research professor at IRIS. Research professor at the EMLV.
- Patrice Bouveret, co-founder and director of the “Observatoire des armements” (weapons arsenal)
A podcast of the program from 10 January 2015
Bastien Nivet recently published an artcle “EUROPEAN UNION MILITARY SPENDING: ENDANGERMENT OR HYPER SOFT POWER?” in the Revue Internationale et Stratégique n 96 : “UN MONDE SURARMÉ OU DÉSARMÉ”.
“EUROPEAN UNION MILITARY SPENDING: ENDANGERMENT OR HYPER SOFT POWER?”
Doctor in Political Science, lecturer at the University Pierre Mendès-France de Grenoble, researcher at the CESICE (Centre for studies on international security and European cooperation).
Doctor in Political Science, research professor and research coordinator at the EMLV (De Vinci Business Lab), research professor at IRIS.
“The financial crisis and it budgetary constraints have certainly contributed to Europe’s disarmament. On the whole, Europe only accounts for 18% of worldwide military expenditure, compared to 30% 10 years ago. At the same time, global military expenditure has increased by 65% amounting to $1.75 billion. Europe only spends a third of what America spends on its defenses; developing countries are now entering the arms race. European disarmament has certainly made the world less confident about (…) The threats are very real and are being grossly underestimated.”
These recent words by Jean-Dominique Giuliani, president of the Robert Schuman foundation, reflect a view that is currently dominating modern discourse, particularly with regard to the evolution of European military expenditure as a sign of minimalizing the importance of strategic planning and endangering Europe’s position on a global scale. In a context of acute budgetary constraints and the political priorities that have been given to internal stakes, military expenditure has certainly become an adjustment variable for Europe, whereas other international countries are arming themselves and the threats to the international security are still present. Beyond the legitimate questions about the possibility of European armies becoming obsolete due to insufficient resources, the concerns about the consequences of fluctuation in defense spending overlook how the role of the military in dealing with contemporary security threats will change and what will happen to military expenditure if there is no unified EU military unit.
Are Europeans putting themselves in real danger or have they chosen to turn to a kind of hyper soft power where military strength is not a determining factor?
RIS N°96 – Winter 2014-15
Even if the aim of ensuring international security is the same as it was previously, armament and disarmament lead to contradictory strategies and political decisions. So, should we consider the current period as a phase of disarmament or rather a new arms race between states? It is difficult to fully understand the dynamics of the situation since much of the evidence is contradictory and methods of evaluation are only approximate. The problems concerning armament and disarmament need to be reevaluated – but the solutions are very complex indeed. What are the political, economic, technological dimensions that are relevant to this debate? Who are the key players? If there is one, what is the object of strategic study, and how has the upsurge of civil societies affected the stakes?
A different perspective
“L’utilité de l’inutile” / Interview with Lionel Daudet
Ebola and the failure of public health in Africa / Fanny Chabrol
The Islamic State: anatomy of the infernal machine / Myriam Benraad
The stakes of the Ukrainian crisis in the Black Sea/ Igor Delanoë
Case file: A HEAVILY ARMED OR UNARMED WORLD?
- Armament or disarmament : Let’s find the right way / Jean-Pierre Maulny
- Exact science or ideology? The use of rhetoric in defense strategies / Olivier de France
- European Union military spending: endangerment or hyper soft power? / Delphine Deschaux-Dutard et Bastien Nivet
- Ten years of U.S. defense spending increases: what lessons for the road ahead? / Laurie Dundon
- Why we need to stop ‘robot killers’?) / Mary Wareham
- Cyberwarfare : new developments / François-Bernard Huyghe
- Nuclear disarmament : an overview/ Oliver Meier
- NGOs as a driving force for disarmament/ Patrice Bouveret, avec Sylvie Brigot-Vilain et Baptiste Richardier
- The Ottawa Mine Ban Treaty: an example to follow or an exceptional case? / Philippe Delacroix
- The Arms Trade Treaty : Prospects and Challenges as it ‘enters into force’ / Brian Wood