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Inicio arrow newsitems arrow EuroCorps/NATO RF Generals Kolodziej+Thomson to EF: Libya PeaceKeeping may be Task in Troubled World

EuroCorps/NATO RF Generals Kolodziej+Thomson to EF: Libya PeaceKeeping may be Task in Troubled World

Escrito por ACM
08.01.20
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*Strasbourg/EUROCORPS HQ/Angelo Marcopolo/- The Ceremony marking "EuroCorps"' takeover as NATO's Response Force in 2020 on Land ("LANDCOM"), during which it has to be Ready to rapidly Deploy a HQ of about 1000 Officers, able to Command up to 65.000 Soldiers, for Any Mission, at Any Theater of the World,  offered a good opportunity to Wonder Where might this EU-Core Based, mainly Franco-German Grouping of 5 EU Member and 5 Associated Countries, Headquartered in Strasbourg, and regularly Supported by EU Parliament to become the Cradle of a Future European Army, might, eventually, be called to take Action, either this year (2020) or the Next (2021), when its currently French rotating Presidency may, perhaps, assume an EU Mission, in the midst of the Recent International Developments, particularly Around Europe, which Highlight an Exceptionaly "Hot" Era of manifold Tensions, (See Infra).

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- "Eurofora" spoke, during a Press Conference, Both to EUROCORPS' New Commander, General Laurent Kolodziej of France (2019-2021: See http://www.eurofora.net/newsflashes/news/eurocorps2commanderstoeurofora.html, etc), and NATO's Allied Land Commander, General G.T.Thomson, from the USA, (currently based at Izmir, after leaving nearby Heidelberg), who had just made an Inspired Speech to the Soldiers, Urging them to Be "Ready and Strong", because "Weakness invites Aggression", and even to Inspire themselves from Roman Philosopher ..."Marcus Aurelius"' call to "Prepare" the Future...(Comp. Infra), after Praising their "Great Team"'s Performance at Winning the NRF "Certification", earlier during a contest at Norway, (where they had to Face a quasi-Simultaneous Invasion of several NATO Member Countries by the Armies from a fictitious Adversary Foreign State).

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- Inspired by an Earlier Appeal, from EUROCORPS' Chief, General Kolodziej, on the Need, this Year 2020, to "be Ready and Able to Act, at Any Time, towards Any Area in the World", and, therefore,  ...to be always Well Prepared, and constantly Vigilent", so that, -"the Various Developments, which take place anywhere in the World, attract our Attention", "Eurofora" raised a Question on the Topical Issue of Europe's Neighbour Libya, Divided since 2014, and currently (2019-2020) Facing Armed Clashes around Tripoli and Misrata, where Energy flows, Mass Migration, and Islamist Terrorism, are among the Issues notoriously Affecting also European People.                                                                                                                          

            eurocorpsnato_ceremony_eurofora_400_02                     

- "If there are Developments f.ex. in Libya, would it be possible for "EuroCorps", perhaps, to play the role of a "Peace Keeping Force" in order to Help Respect a Cease-Fire and/or Implement an eventual Peace Plan, while also keeping en eye to the Southern Borders, where Sahel's area (Deadly Islamist Terrorism) problems notoriously persist ? Does it have the right Capabilities ?", "Eurofora" asked in the Press Conference.

 

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- "During 1 Year (2020) We (Eurocorps) are commited to NATO. So, it's, obviously, a Decision of the Alliance, and of its Political Body, which is the Council of NATO's Treaty, to Decide whether we must, or not, Intervene in this area, or another", stressed General Kolodziej, carefully but openly, i.e. withOut Excluding Anything a priori.

- "So, I cannot tell you whether this (Libya) would be a Site for Deployment, (or not), because it is a Political Decision which Belongs to the Alliance (NATO), where All Member States Participate, at a Political Level".

- But, "Once this Decision taken, We ("EuroCorps") will Intervene there where NATO would Send us !", he added, in Reply to "Eurofora"s above-mentioned Question, clearly Indicating that this is technically Possible.

- However, "It's Not at my Level that the Decision will be taken".

Nevertheless, he Later Added also the Possibilities for the EU, UNO, or even "a Coalition ad hoc", to eventually Ask to send "EuroCorps" to Libya from 2021, even if, perhaps, NATO does Not do so, during 2020, (See Infra).

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+ "But, does "EuroCorps have the Military a.o. Capabilities to do so ?", (i.e. Peace-Keeping for Cease-Fire and/or Implementation of an eventualy Agreed Peace Plan),  "Eurofora" Questioned further.

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- "We have a Head-Quarters guiding Brigades Able to intervene Anywhere the (NATO) Alliance will tell us to intervene", EUROCORPS' Chief Optimistally Replied.

- However, "this is a Political Decision, that it's Not for me to take".

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+ Then, "Eurofora" went on to also Ask "EuroCorps'" Commander     about the Particular Characteristics of this New Year's 2020's main Challenges, (evoked Both by NATO Commander Thomson and General Kolodziej) compared to the Previous, Similar Missions for NATO in the Past (2006 + 2010). What's Specific to this Year (2020) ?" we querried.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                            

- "What Changes is, Obviously, the Context", since "we are living in a more and more Dangerous World : The Challenges and the Emergence of certain States, are New, Compared to what we had seen several Years Ago", "EuroCorps" Commander stressed, (Apparently pointing at the current Crisis at Iran, Iraq, Syria, Libya, Ukraine, the Sahel and Islamist Terrorism, etc., all UnKnown Back on 2006 - 2010)...

 

 

eurocorps__nato_commanders_agg_in_press_conf_eurofora_400

 

- But, "the Logic of  Alert vis a vis such Crisis has Not Changed : We ("Eurocorps") are a Head-Quarters belonging to 5 Framework Nations that they offer to NATO (on 2020). They can Offer it to the EU (f.ex. since 2021+). As they can also Offer it to the UN, or to a Coalition Ad Hoc", he added, (particularly as far as it concerns "Eurofora"s 1st Question on "Peace-Keeping in Libya" : Comp. Supra).

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- "So, "EuroCorps"' Existence, its Lending to NATO for an Alert NRF, or to anOther Organisation, (EU, UN, Coalition, etc), this does Not Change", he resumed. (F.ex., Between 1998 - 2012 = 6 Missions for NATO : Bosnia/Herzgovina, Kosovo, Afghanistan - Bis, Response Force - Stand By - Bis. +Between 2015-2017 = 5 Missions for the EU : Mali, BatlleGroup Force - Stand By - Bis, Central Africa - Bis).

- "On the Contrary, what Changes (Now) is the Dangerosity of the International Situation, and Not necessarily for the Better...", he Warned.                                                                

- "But the Principles remain the Same", "Eurocorps"' Commander stressed.

=> In fact, "this Alternance of Missions, shows "Eurocors"' Capacity, its Duality, to Benefit, certain times, to NATO, but also to Benefit, in Other Contexts, to the EU, but not only, in Other Missions...

>>> It has really a Plasticity, that Makes "EuroCorps"' Strength !"

- F.ex., "by Using Standards that are those of NATO, which remains Europe's main Collective Defense reference : We ("EuroCorps") Use those Methods, Also for Other Organisations, in anOther Context. But the Core of Our ("EuroCorps"') Competence is that which is Developed through NATO, thanks to NATO, and inside NATO". It's that Truth which is one of "EuroCorps"' Advantages : I.e., that we are Able, by Using that Core of Competences developed inside NATO, to Act Efficiently for Europe, and others, he HighLighted in Conclusion.

______________________
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 Naturally, such a Positive Appraisal for NATO's alleged Technical Capabilities, could not but Please USA General J.T. Thomson, Commander of "LandCom", i.e. NATO's Allied Land Command., who was Carefully Hearing at that Press-Conference with French Medias, (including "Eurofora", Officially Registered at "la Bibliothèque de France"'s On-Line Press Editions' Catalogue in Paris), through Simultaneous Translation "Live"...

+ Speaking Afterwards to "Eurofora", General Thomson, Smiling, attributed his own, very Stimulating Speech to "Eurocorps"' Soldiers, earlier Today, (Comp. Supra), including, particularly, a Striking Reference even to Roman Philosopher "Marcus Aurelius" (Comp. Supra), as a probable result of the Fact that, when he was Young, he had been Chosen in order to ...Write the Draft Speeches even of the 1st Chief of Staff, back in the USA...

++ Apparently Appreciating particularly this 2020 NATO's Response Force's Experience with "EUROCORPS", General Thomson, who Already holds an Extensive Experience, f.ex., of the "Operation Desert Storm", "Operation Iraqi Freedom", Multi-National Corps (and/or Forces) - iraq, International Security Assistance Force (ISAF), at USA's West Point, NATO's "Resolute Mission", etc, nevertheless, revealed to "Eurofora" that he envisages to consider this 2020 incoming Experience, (of EUROCORS with NATO's Allied Land Command), as a kind of Crowning Achievement for his Military Career.

+++ General Thomson, Also said to "Eurofora" that, in Fact, his own Mother was a European (from nearby Germany), and himself had even Learned to Speak "Deutsch", fairly Well : Something certainly Useful for relations with EUROCORPS too ! (Mutatis-mutandis, as US President Don Trump's Mother was from Scotland, and his Father from a German Vilage, Near Strasbourg)...

=> In that case, wouldn't he Regret former US President Barack Hussein Obama's Strange 2013 Decision to Displace NATO's Allied Land Command for Europe, from its Original HQ, Previously at Nearby ...prestigious Heidelberg's World Famous German University City, at the Heart of Europe, far Away from that, to ...Turkish Asia Minor area of Izmir (Ancient Greek Smyrne, until the 1921 brutal "Pogrom") ?

Nevertheless, at least one EUROCORPs' Press officer, the Kind "Stephan" from Flamish Belgium, looks quite Happy about that nowadays, judging by the Proudness with which he arbors a lot of Honorific Awards, won when he was Serving there during 2013-2018, i.e, practically All the Time Since that NATO's Land Command had been Transfered by Obama from Heidelberg to Izmir, (as he told "Eurofora")...

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+ More Practical, EUROCORPS' New Press Director, Anthony Pfau, from France, revealed to "Eurofora" that he has a Rare Capacity, (reminding f.ex. Napoleon Bonaparte), which Fits Particularly Well the New, 2020 Mission of this landmark European Military body : By a coincidence, while EUROCORPS' New Mission, as NATO's Response Force, implies a Constant "Vigilence" and Readiness, as Both Generals Kolodziej and Thomson pointed out Today (Comp. Supra), Lieutenant-Colonel Pfau, indeed, claims to be Able to ...Sleep Only 4 or 5 Hours per Day, (instead of the 8h. Average), so that he Can really Stay Awake and "Vigilent", much Longer than most Others !

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++ Last, but not least, General Thomson, after Chatting Friendly with "Eurofora" for a while, (Comp. Supra), he Kindly Offered to take a "Selfie" Photo of Both Together... And that's how "Eurofora" was, finaly, Photographed, with a High-Ranking NATO's General, for the 1st Time in Life ! After all, if he's also a little bit European (Comp. Supra), with a Bright Smile, speaks Well, and even likes the Roman Philosopher Marcus Aurelius, Why Not ?...

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(../..)


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Recent developments proved that Europe can suceed to overcome challenges by aiming at great objectives, and this is needed also in 2009, said EU chairman, French President Nicolas Sarkozy.

    - "It's in the name of Great Ideas, Projects, Ambition and Ideals, that EU can overcome" challenges, stressed Sarkozy at EU Parliament in Strasbourg, in conclusion of a dense 7 months EU Chairmanship. "It's even easier for Europe to have Great projects, able to overcome national egoism, instead of limiting itself only to small projects" (unable to do alike), he observed.     

- "Europe must remain Ambitious and understand that the World needs her to take Decisions". "The World needs a Strong Europe", which "thinks on its own, has convictions, its own responses, its imagination" : "A Europe which does not limit itself into following" others, (as it did in the Past, when it followed USA, f.ex. on Bosnia). On the contrary, "Europe should undertake its own responsibilities", he said, after a series of succes in stopping the War between Russia and Georgia, and organizing the 1st EuroZone's Summit in Paris, which incited the Washington DC G-20 Summit to extend similar decisions World-wide.  


    - "When you sweep it all under the carpet, prepare yourself for hard tomorrows", he warned. "What hinders decisions is the lack of Courage and Will, the fading away of Ideals", he stressed before EU Parliament's 2008 debate on Human Rights and Sakharov prize on Freedom of thought attributed by MEPs to Chinese cyber-dissident Hu Jia, followed by an EU - Turkey meeting on Friday.

    - "I don't abandon my convictions" and "I will take initiatives" on EU level also in 2009, Sarkozy announced later. "France will not stop having convictions and taking initiatives" on Europe. + "It's an Error to wish to pass over the Heads of those who are elected in their Countries" : "It's an integrism I always fought against"', he warned.
---------------------
French EU Presidency faced 4 unexpected Crisis :

- An institutional crisis, with the Irish "No" to EU Lisbon Treaty, just before it started. A geopolitical crisis, wth the threat of War between Russia and Georgia risking to throw Europe back to Cold-war divisions, on August. A World-wide Financial and Economic crisis, arriving at a bad moment before crucial 2009 EU elections. And even a Strasbourg's mini-crisis, with EU Parliament's roof curiously falling down, from unknown reasons, in a brand new building on August, provoking an unprecedented transfert of the 2 September Plenary Sessions...

But it wasn't enough to stop Sarkozy ! On the contrary, it stimulated him...
---------------------------------------

- "The better way to deal with the recent problems of EU institutions (as the "3 NO" by France, the Netherlands and Ireland) is to take them as a "Test" in order to find solutions closer to Citizens' concerns", said later in Strasbourg Sarkozy's new choice as Ministe for EU affairs, Bruno Le Maire.

- On the Institutional front, Sarkozy gave Time to the Irish to think about it, and stroke on December a deal including a New Referendum after the June 2009 EU Elections, in exchange of a promise to keep the rule of "one EU Commissioner for each EU Member Country", and some opt-outs on Defence and Fiscal EU policies, Abortion, etc. If the Irish get a "Yes" Majority, then the institutional package could be completed in 2010 or 2011 on the occasion of Croatia's probable EU accession.

He was accused in Strasbourg to upgrade EU Council and downgrade EU Commision, but he replied that "strong Political initiatives by EU Council reinforce also the more technical role of EU Commission, under the political-technical leadership of its President", all 3 "working together with EU Parliament".


- But, meanwhile, Sarkozy energetically spearheaded an Historic 1st Summit of EuroZone's 15 Heads of State and Government at EU's core, exceptionally enlarged to a partial participation of British Prime Minister Gordon Brown, on October 12 in Paris' Elysee palace, which started to tackle succesfully the growing world Financial crisis.

    It also paved the way for its endorsement by a subsequent Brussels' 27 EU Member States' gathering, before it all come to Washington's G-20 Summit. And "Europe was united, it asked for the 1st G-20 Summit, and it will also organise the next G-20 Summit on April in London", he observed.   

 But a Conference with EU, Russia, African and other Developing Countries, hosted in Strasbourg shortly after Washington G-20 Summit by the French EU Presidency, took a Resolution asking to enlarge participation to Global Economic Governance. Many found, indeed, illogic and unacceptable that f.ex. states as Turkey were given a seat at G-20 level, while all African Countries, and even the African Union itself, representing the greatest Continent on Earth, were excluded...


    Meanwhile, even USA''s "Paulson No 3" Plan, was, in fact, inspired by Europe's No 1 Plan", Sarkozy observed, largelly applauded by MEPs.

    And "Europe showed Solidarity" by mobilizing some 22 Billion credit for Hungary, 1,7 billion for Ukraine, as we do nowadays for Baltic States, etc., he added.

    The move on Economy was extended on December by an EU stimulus' plan totalling some 200 billion Euros, including 5 Billions released by EU Commission for big Projects, as well as various parallel National plans for Economic revival, (fex. 26 billions in France alone). They might appear limited, compared to USA President-elect Obama's reported plan to boost the American economy with 800 billion $, but at least succeded to overcome Europe's divisions for the first time on Economic governance, opening new horizons.

- The French President stressed even harder the unique role of an active EU Council's chairmanship, when he moved swiftly and efficiently, at the beginning of August, to succesfully stop War between Russia and Georgia, at the last minute, which threatened to bring Europe back to Cold War division.

"We (EU) also wanted to avoid a situation like in Bosnia, in the Past, when EU was absent, so that our American friends took their responsibilitues, and EU only followed", despite the fact that the conflict took place in Europe. Now, it was the EU who took its responsibilities".

A roadmap towards a new PanEuropean Security policy, before which all unilateral moves to place new Missiles (from USA or Russia) would be freezed, was proposed by Sarkozy after a meeting with Russian president Medvedev, at the eve of Washington DC's G-20 Summit.

Ukraine's "European" character was stressed at a Sarkozy - Jushenko Summit, September in Paris, while EU adopted on December an "Eastern policy", in which, "I'm convinced that our (EU's) future is to find with our Neighbours the conditions for Economic Development. Peace and Security, by explaining them that.. they must respect (Human Rights') Values, and adopt behaviors different from the Past", explained Sarkozy in Strasbourg.

Meanwhile, the "Union for the Mediterranean" was created, since July's Summit if 45 Heads of State and Government in Paris, as "an organisation for a permanent Dialogue, that we need", mainly in order to tackle the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, by bringing together, for the 1st time, Israelis and Arabs, where "Europe must be present, in order to avoid a frontal clash".

- "If Europe doesn't take its part for Peace in the Middle-East, nobody else will do that in our place", Sarkozy stressed.
-----------------------
    Meanwhile, other EU Agreements were brokered during the French EU Presidency on Immigration, (fex. common Asylum rules, etc), and Climat- Energy :

    - On Climat-Energy, the 2007 German EU Presidency had fixed a triple 20% aim for 2020 (20% renewable Energies, 20% reduction of CO2 emmission, 20% energy efficience/economies), and the 2008 French EU Presidecny realized that, making the necessary compromises in order to modernize EU's industry, but without throwing some former Central-Eastern European Countries into abrupt Economic break down risking "social explosion".

    - Defence-Security EU policy was mainly postponed for April 2009, since both German chancellor Merkel and French president Sarkozy want to strike a deal with the new American president Obama in Strasbourg's NATO Summit.

    However, with all these 4 unexpected Crisis diverting attention to other urgencies, People wil wonder now, what happened to the famous deal proposed by freshly-elected French President Sarkozy on Turkey's controversial EU bid, back on August 2007, to continue EU - Turkey negotiations, but on the double condition that core chapters, intrinsequally linked with EU Membership, will be excluded, and that a collective Reflexion and Debate on Europe's future would start before the end of 2008.

    It was meant to reply to the crucial question : What kind of Europe do we want in 10 or 20 Years from now : A large Market, or a Political Europe, with a popular identity ? In Sarkozy's thinking, presented in his 2 landmark speeches on Europe in Strasbourg, shortly before and after the 2007 Elections, (on February and July 2007), Turkey's controversial EU bid would be incompatible with the second choice.

    It's true that EU Commision's Chairman, Jose Barroso, (who had notoriously declared, as former Portuguese Prime Minister, that he found "nonsense" the idea that Europe might become equal to the US), had repeatedly tried to avoid that Sarkozy's criticism on Turkey might start winning a larger audience in Europe, preferring a discrete "wismens' committee" work. And that most of the personalities later chosen in order to participate in a Committee on Europe's Future, are too much linked with Socialist parties and/or American policies, to be really critical of USA's notorious wish to impose Turkey to the EU, as Sarkozy had noted himself since March 2007..

     - "It's on EU Council's presidency to take political initiatives. EU Commission has other competences", stressed Sarkozy. The "European Ideal" is to "build Europe with the States, not against them". "Ask Europeans to chose between their countries and Europe won't work. You don't choose between your two parents : We must add them together".

    "France and Germany have an Historic Duty to work together, precisely because of what happened to the Past. We have to work hand by hand. We cannot be separated.It goes beyond me and Mrs Merkel today, Mr Schroeder and Mr. Chirac yesterday. It's not a choice, it's a duty to Europe and to the World".  "We need Germany, as Germany needs Europe". Compromise is inevitable, here as everywhere, and each one made some steps towards eachother's positions.

    But "it's true that Mrs Merkel didn't chose her Socialist partners, while I chose mine", Sarkozy said, in an indirect hint that the Socialist Minister of Finance in Germany might be a cause of minor past disagreements in Economy, which were overcome in recent negotiations.

    "We (France and Germany) have particular duties in Europe", but "in a Europe of 27 Member States, it's not enough for France and Germany to agree between them.

    "I always thought that Great Britain has a special role to play in Europe. ... Now, everybody "saw what it cost payed the UK for having been too exclusively open towards the US (and) Financial services. Europe needs the UK, but also the UK needs Europe" :- "We were able to face the hardest moment of the Financial crisis because the UK clearly chose Europe", stressed Sarkozy, reminding Gordon Brown's exceptional participation to the Historic 1st Heads of State/Government Summit of EuroZone, October 12 in Paris (See EuroFora's Reportage from Elysee Palace then).

     - "Some look at Europe with old glasses aged 30 years ago. While we must look at her in relation to what it will be in 30 years" in the Future, Sarkozy concluded.

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