Developments int the international security situation since 1993: From unsafe security to insecured safetyOctober 10, 2005 - nr.10
Since the end of the Cold War, the world has undergone a period of great upheaval, the changes difficult to understand and the future hard to predict. Various regions, such as the Balkans and the Middle East, have been subject to growing instability. The AIV believes that the international security situation has certainly not improved since the publication of the Defence Priorities Review in 1993; if anything, the situation has become more complex. This is the background against which the title of this report should be interpreted: ëFrom unsafe security to unsecured safetyí. Whilst the certainty associated with the threat emanating from the Warsaw Pact or the Soviet Union may now have disappeared, it has been replaced by a fundamental uncertainty about how the new security situation will develop.
This uncertainty is magnified by the developments which have taken place in the 1990s in the fields of communication, information and transport. These developments have facilitated a scaling-down process enabling smaller and smaller parties (i.e. small and medium-sized states, as well as non-state actors) to gain access to massive destructive power which they can deploy over increasingly large distances. It is in this context in which the ënew threatsí, such as the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, the abuse of information technology, terrorism and cross-border crime, should be seen. In themselves, these threats are not new, and in certain respects (for example, terrorism with weapons of mass destruction) it remains difficult to say what sort of impact they will have on European security. At the same time, the AIV concludes in general terms that the risks associated with the ënew threatsí are tending to become more substantial as the technology advances.
The Dutch Defence Priorities Review was written in a climate dominated by the geopolitical changes sparked off by the collapse of the Berlin Wall. Today, however, the key factor affecting security policy is the increasing global interdependence. The degree to which various regions depend on each other has become even more marked than at the beginning of the 1990s. Although many Western Europeans may live under the impression that the most relevant security risks are those affecting Central and Eastern Europe, developments in the ëarc of instabilityí encircling Europe (and passing through the Caucasus, the Middle East and North Africa) are just as important. Conflicts which break out there and which are initially confined to a limited region may, if they are not quickly brought under control, evolve relatively swiftly into international or even regional conflicts that may affect not only our economic interests, but also our physical safety.
There has been no change in the alarming economic and social state of the Russian Federation during the 1990s. The quality of the Russian military apparatus has been severely eroded, and this constitutes a risk in itself in the light of the countryís nuclear potential. Russian foreign policy has become increasingly regional in its orientation, whilst a similar trend has occurred in relation to defence policy, where the threshold for the use of nuclear weapons has been lowered (on paper at least). Although the process of fragmentation which the Russian Federation has undergone would appear to have come to a standstill, exactly how the country will develop the future and what effect this will have on international security remains unclear.
The prospects are equally grim in other regions. The deep ethnic divisions in Bosnia-Hercegovina and Serbia, and the potential instability in the neighbouring countries of Albania and Macedonia, harbour a risk of outbreaks of violence in south-east Europe. In the Arab world, old power structures have come under pressure as sources of external support have receded and economic prospects have become uncertain, and this has added an extra dimension to the inter-state and cross-border tensions which have already been afflicting this region for some considerable time. Asia is the scene of a substantial conventional ñ and in some cases also nuclear ñ arms race. The lack of an effective regional security mechanism is a serious shortcoming in this connection. Whatever the causes of the conflicts in sub-Saharan Africa may be, it is a fact that many countries in this region do not have powerful leaders who enjoy both sufficient public support in their own countries as well as sufficient external support from abroad to control unrest and tensions.
Changes in international security instruments
The changes which have taken place in the international security situation since the fall of the Berlin Wall have resulted in changes in the nature of the international security instruments, most of which have occurred during the period after 1993. NATO, to start with, has developed from an arrangement for collective defence into an organisation for security and defence cooperation with the more general aim of promoting stability in Europe. This has been reflected in a number of developments, such as the intensified cooperation with the countries which are members of the Partnership for Peace, the consultation arrangements which NATO has made with Russia and the Ukraine, the structural dialogue with a number of Mediterranean countries and the increasing accent on crisis management. This trend is also reflected in NATOís new Strategic Concept. The allies have made clear that cooperation, dialogue and crisis management are all vital factors, in addition to collective defence, if the alliance is to overcome the threats and risks facing its member states on the threshold of the 21st century.
These various changes have made NATO more open, but at the same time more complex. Similarly, the issues discussed by the NATO allies and the factors which need to be taken into account have also become more complex. The allies are regularly confronted with local frictions, tensions, humanitarian disasters and conflicts (some of which are close to NATOís treaty area) that are capable of developing into international crises and in some cases require action outside NATOís own territor y. This has created a need for a completely different kind of decision-making process than was used during the Cold War for the purpose of collective defence. The key problem here is to reconcile the requisite political consensus within the ranks of the NATO member states with decisive and unequivocal military action. Decisiveness implies that NATO must retain the initiative and not be drawn into taking reactive decisions at a late stage, whilst unequivocality means that crisis management operations should have a clear aim right from the very outset and that the resources committed to such operations should be compatible with the agreed aim. If the allies are not prepared to commit to a particular operation the military resources which it requires, then they should ask themselves whether it would not be wiser to restrict themselves to non-military options. The AIV believes that more decisive action coupled with clear objectives will be critical factors in the success of future NATO crisis management operations.
The AIV stresses the importance of good transatlantic relations. This requires a permanent commitment on the part of both the United States and Canada on the one hand and the European countries on the other. However, the absence of an acute military threat against Western Europe brings with it a risk of US and European interests growing apart. Transatlantic security relations have also undergone certain shifts in emphasis during the past few years. Now that Western Europe is no longer facing an immediate, large-scale threat, the instability in other regions, primarily the Middle East and East Asia, has taken on more importance for the United States. In addition, the bulk of the massive US programme of investment in new military technology has been aimed at the development of small, versatile forces which are capable of bringing massive firepower to bear on targets. This will open up an opportunity for the United States to minimise the number of troops it deploys. Because the European countries are not following the United States in this technological re-orientation, the result may be a highly undesirable imbalance in the division of responsibilities between the Europeans and the Americans. As an additional factor, the importance of the military synergy which underpinned the system of collective defence during the Cold War would appear to be on the wane now that NATO has decided to place more emphasis on crisis management operations. These operations no longer rely on the element of automatic military assistance provided by the system of collective defence. Whether and how the allies participate in crisis management operations has become a matter that is decided on a case-by-case basis, and depends partly on domestic politics. The AIV regards this as an alarming development, particularly in the light of the current US-European military imbalance. After all, recent European experience has shown that a fully fledged US input remains vital in operations where there is a high level of technological sophistication, because the Europeans simply do not have the military capability to handle such operations, even where the crisis in question has a direct impact on European interests. Given that there are no guarantees that the Americans will continue to contribute to such operations, the European countries must be able to assume this responsibility themselves. To this end, they need to possess a more powerful military capability than is currently the case.
In the opinion of the AIV, securing a lasting US commitment to European security hinges on the ability of the European countries to demonstrate to the Americans that they are willing and able to take on more and more security responsibilities of their own. The further development of a European military capability can play a key role in this respect, partly because it will help to bring about a more equal burden-sharing between Europe and the United States. However, there are other reasons why the Europeans urgently need to step up their military capability: there is a risk of European financial and economic integration developing at a much more rapid pace than security cooperation, and this could create an impression that the European countries are not able to accept their own responsibilities in relation to their security.
The EU, the WEU and the ESDI
At the same time, the AIV would like to stress that the development of a European military capability will only be credible if it meets a number of conditions:
ñ Firstly, the European countries need to have access to sufficient resources and these resources need to be harmonised with each other. The AIV emphasises in this connection that there are no grounds for assuming that the concept of Combined Joint Task Forces means that any European operation will automatically have access to NATOís current military capability. This capability is largely American, and is therefore always susceptible to an American refusal to allow it to be used. The
AIV believes, therefore, that the enlargement of Europeís military capability should be seen as embodying a new commitment, requiring not only better coordination of European defence planning, but also a higher level of investment.
ñ Secondly, effective political control is needed in order to achieve transparency and cohesion in European policy. This is not simply a question of forming an efficient institutional framework, but also of defining a set of common European strategic interests. Special attention needs to be paid to harmonising the structures of NATO, the EU, including the WEU, the European security and defence identity ñ which has yet to be defined ñ and the CFSP. The AIV wishes to stress that the integration of the WEU in the EU will lead ipso facto to the institutionalisation of consultations between the European defence ministers in the CFSP.
ñ Thirdly, for reasons of efficiency and cost control, it is important not to create any separate military command structures operating alongside NATO. The decisions taken at the Cologne European Council also hold open the possibility of strictly European operations. The AIV believes that any strictly European operations should remain limited for the time being to small-scale military operations which do not require any separate military structure.
The criteria which the expansion of the European defence capability needs to satisfy are ambitious, and require political resolve and decisiveness. The AIV believes that the Dutch government should give its support to the further expansion of this capability. The government should, in consultation with like-minded countries, argue in favour of the further intensification of military cooperation, on the proviso that it does not conflict with existing NATO structures. The Netherlands should also seek to achieve more intensive European cooperation in the field of defence planning, in order to improve European military capabilities. Firm support for the Defence Capabilities Initiative should form part of this. At the same time, the Netherlands should join forces with like-minded countries in drawing up plans for a common funding basis for European strategic capabilities. The Netherlands should also promote the establishment of common European strategies for enhancing the cohesion of political control. At the same time, the government should conduct intensive talks with the United States in order to prevent any weakening of transatlantic ties.
The United Nations
There have been various large-scale humanitarian emergencies in the 1990s, a number of which have led to interventions, in some cases mandated by the UN and in other cases without such a mandate. In the light of the developments in the 1990s (not only within the Security Council, but also in relation to humanitarian law and inter-state relations), the AIV feels that the time is now right to seek to clarify the legal basis for humanitarian interventions, however difficult it may seem to achieve an international consensus in this area. In this connection, the AIV points specifically to the recommendations made by the International Law Association, the Advisory Committee on Human Rights and Foreign Policy and the Advisory Committee on International Law Issues.
Dutch security and defence policy
The AIV takes the view that the developments which have occurred in the international security situation in the 1990s are bound to have an impact on Dutch security and defence policy. As a result of the developments since 1993, the need for viewing security in a broad context has become even more urgent than was suggested in the Defence Priorities Review of 1993. In many cases, problems which may affect security in Europe are caused by conflicts and tensions which are not of a strictly military
nature. Security risks should be seen as part of a continuum of tensions starting with social and economic difficulties and culminating in outright warfare. This creates a complex picture the intricacies of which are only multiplied by acceptance of the fact that conflicts and crises may have an impact beyond the borders of their country of origin, in the shape of organised crime, terrorism or (as a separate factor) refugee flows. Conflicts in other parts of the world are thus becoming increasingly important for the situation in the Netherlands, even if they are confined physically to an area that is far away from Dutch territor y, or even remote from Europe. We can no longer afford to simply sit back and wait until crises escalate or spill over into other regions, thus posing a direct threat to the security of Europe. In other words, the need to ëget to the crisis before it gets to usí is becoming more and more urgent, thereby creating an overlap between crisis management and the general defence function. It is precisely this development which forms a powerful argument in favour of the further development of a European security and defence identity and the CFSP, and in favour of the Netherlands making a credible contribution to these.
Many conflicts and crises have their own specific dynamics requiring an anticipatory security policy that is capable of responding to new developments or any increase in tension. However, the AIV also believes that greater priority should be given to improving the cohesion in the use of all the various instruments of foreign policy. The AIV urges the government to develop a comprehensive philosophy that is capable of providing momentum and shape to this cohesion. The AIV wishes to stress, however, that the adoption of a comprehensive approach as proposed here should not be at the expense of the unique character of each of the various policy instruments, and that the government should formulate a more comprehensive strategy for dealing with external and internal security problems. This could be encouraged by placing security problems in the hands of a central, supra-ministerial unit in which a wide variety of expertise is amassed. Special task forces could be created to deal with specific issues.
In the absence of a clearly defined, massive threat as existed at the time of the Cold War, it is not possible to measure the impact of changes in the international security situation in terms of changing responsibilities and resources of the Dutch armed forces. For this reason, the 1993 Defence Priorities Review set certain military ëgoalsí, notably in terms of the Dutch contribution to the allied (or other international) military capacity for crisis management. These goals were subsequently endorsed by Parliament and were recently confirmed in the governmentís framework memorandum for the 2000 Defence White Paper. The AIV has assumed that these goals still hold good, although it does wish to point out that this is only feasible and acceptable if the political and military leadership is prepared unequivocally to bear responsibility for the constructive deployment of the armed forces, even if this involves clear risks for the security of military personnel. To this end, the armed forces must be able to rely on their being properly equipped in both quantitative and qualitative terms in order to adequate-ly discharge the responsibilities assigned to them. If the armed forces are not given a clearly defined mission and are not properly equipped, this may undermine public support for them.
Defence planning must be based on the goals which the government has set itself as described above. In practice, this means that the Dutch armed forces must be capable of performing a wide variety of tasks of both a domestic and an international nature, and of operating over large distances and to the maximum level of force. The framework memorandum also argues in favour of the creation of modular units. Whilst this type of structure could certainly enhance the flexibility of the armed forces, the AIV is
concerned that the synergy generated by large forces may be lost if too much emphasis is placed on ad hoc structures. The AIV would like instead to see better use being made of multinational forces, and therefore urges the Minister of Defence to ensure that such forces, and in particular the Dutch-German army corps, are also given more responsibilities in the field of crisis management, in addition to their current collective defence function.
Although the AIV supports the Ministry of Defence in its aim of enhancing the state of preparedness of the armed forces, it takes the view (where improved recruitment methods allow) that the number of additional personnel required is far greater than the figure of 800 proposed in the framework memorandum. The AIV wishes to express its concern at the fact that the Netherlands does not have a single complete, mission-ready mechanised unit at its disposal at present, since all units of this type consist largely of mobilisable troops. One of the consequences of this policy is that the armed forces are compelled to respond to every crisis management operation by using a ëpick ëní mixí formula to put together a suitable force, which raises the likelihood of the force in question consisting of an ad hoc coalition of relatively untrained units. The AIV advises the Minister of Defence, in addition to improving the state of preparedness of units, to make more effective use of the mobilisable component of the armed forces. This component needs to be more flexible, partly so that it can be deployed on crisis management operations. For this reason, mobilisable units should be converted into reserve units, along the lines of the units already existing in the US and the UK. The armed forces should be able to sign contracts with regular personnel on fixed-term contracts setting out the stand-by conditions, the frequency of exercises and the financial arrangements. Clear agreements with their new employers are another prerequisite, and lessons can be learned in this respect from the practical experience gained in the US and the UK.
Against the background of the proposed change from a mobilisable to a reserve capacity, the AIV advises the Minister of Defence to act with extreme caution in disposing of any further mobilisable equipment (which already performs a valuable role in the present circumstances). This would also help to prevent the gradual and insidious imposition of a ëreconstitution modelí, which implies a (temporary) reduction in the military capability for performing the general defence task, on the assumption that the amount of warning that would be given of any new, large-scale threat is now so great as to give the government sufficient time to prepare a general defence capability in good time by ëreconstitutingí the requisite forces. The AIV believes that this model has two serious drawbacks. Firstly, the reconstitution of new units is bound to be regarded as a provocation at a time of rising tension. Secondly, acquiring new equipment and training the necessary personnel (particularly new officers) will be an expensive and extremely time-consuming task.
The AIV feels that more attention needs to be paid to the staffing problems affecting the armed forces. Although the staff of the armed forces have worked to exceptionally high standards over the past few years, both motivation and staff numbers have come under pressure in recent times. The many reorganisations which the Dutch Ministry of Defence has implemented in recent years have not been conducive to staff morale, and the situation has been exacerbated by the growing gap between the terms of employment that have become commonplace in civil society and those offered by the Ministry of Defence. Finally, the long duration of crisis management operations and the high frequency of rotation are also factors to be taken into consideration. The AIV believes that the combination of all these various factors ultimately places a great
strain of the private lives of the servicemen and servicewomen concerned. The AIV therefore advises the Minister of Defence to gradually reduce the frequency of rotation, and to make use of the experience gained in this respect by the UK. At the same time, the AIV is also in favour of offering regular personnel longer contracts, as this could have a beneficial effect on both the preparedness and deployability of military personnel. This applies not only to the mission-ready units, but also to the reserve units which this report proposes should be created. Finally, the AIV recommends conducting a thorough review of the system of recruitment used by the armed forces.
The AIV has concluded that the international security situation has not improved since the Defence Priorities Review was published in 1993. If anything, it has become more complex. Insofar as a link can be established with a general assessment of the security situation, there are therefore no grounds for lowering the targets which the government has set itself in this respect. On the contrary: these targets will have to be raised if the Netherlands is to make a serious contribution towards the strengthening of Europeís defence capability.
The AIV has also concluded that the spending cuts imposed on the Ministry of Defence in recent years have led to financial pressure on the Defence Budget which is not compatible with the tenor of the recommendations made in this report. Resolving the personnel problems, raising the level of mission-readiness, building more mobile and more flexible armed forces, introducing theatre missile defence and building up a military capability for European defence purposes will indisputably cost a great deal of money. The AIV believes that the requisite resources can no longer be generated by undertaking yet another reorganisation of the military apparatus, again postponing investments or deciding on further operational changes. Moreover, no major social organisation can be exposed with impunity to an endless series of ad hoc measures; these are bound eventually to affect its ability to fulfil its objectives. The AIV would therefore like to see a greater degree of stability and long-termism in the policy on the Defence Budget, with the levels of expenditure being set to match the objectives which the armed forces are expected to meet. We already stated in the introduction to this report that the need for having a sufficient number of mission-ready units on stand-by for operations in foreign countries will require an extra level of investment beyond the figure quoted in the current long-term projections. In addition, more money is also needed for the other tasks referred to elsewhere in this report. All this inevitably implies, in the view of the AIV, an increase in the long-term projections for the Ministry of Defence. Without such a political re-orientation, there is a risk that the armed forces will become less able to do their job, and hence lose both public support and their attraction to potential new recruits. In view of the close relationship between these aspects, the armed forces may find themselves caught in a vicious circle the effects of which will be highly damaging.
No. 10, September 1999
On 18 November 1998, the Dutch Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Minister of Defence requested the Advisory Council on International Affairs (AIV) to produce an advisory report on developments in the international security situation since 1993, and their effects on Dutch defence policy and on the role of the Dutch armed forces. Views on the international security situation have consistently played an important role during the past decade, not only in formulating Dutch security and defence policies, but also in shaping the Dutch armed forces on the basis of these policies. The Minister of Foreign Affairs and the Minister of Defence have made clear that an analysis of the changes that have taken place in the international security situation will also play a key role in a defence white paper that will be published at the end of 1999.
The preparation of this report coincided with the Kosovo crisis, in which the Netherlands was involved as a member of the Atlantic alliance. The AIV wishes to stress that it was not asked in this context to give its opinion on topical issues relating to the problems surrounding Kosovo. At the same time, this report does discuss problems affecting the implementation of crisis management operations and their potential long-term impact. Where relevant, reference is also made to problems which have arisen in relation to the international intervention in Kosovo.
The AIV discussed this report during its meeting on 18 June 1999, when it also agreed on a procedure leading to the adoption of the report. The report was prepared by the Committee on Peace and Security (CVV), which consists of the following persons:
A.L. ter Beek* (chair), Professor G. van Benthem van den Bergh* (deputy chair), Dr A. Bloed, Dr P.P. Everts*, Professor F.J.M. Feldbrugge*, Lieutenant-General G.J. Folmer* (ret.), J.G.N. de Hoop Scheffer*, Professor K. Koch*, Dr M. van Leeuwen*,
D.A. Leurdijk*, Rear Admiral R.M. Lutje Schipholt (ret.), L. Sprangers, Professor B.A.G.M. Tromp*, General A.K. van der Vlis* (ret.), E.P. Wellenstein* and Professor F. Wielinga. Those members whose names are marked with an asterisk (*) were members of the working party chaired by General A.K. van der Vlis (ret.) which was responsible for drafting the report. W.K.N. Schmelzer of the AIVís European Integration Committee also contributed to the preparatory work on the report. Assistance was provided by the official advisors of the CVV, Commodore H. Emmens, E. Kwast (Ministry of Defence), Ms S.T. Blankhart, and B. ter Haar (Ministry of Foreign Affairs), and also by H.A. Würzner (the secretary of the CVV) and two trainees, Ms K.M.M. Boeije and Ms E. Eryigit.
As part of the preparatory work for the report, members of the working party attended the conference on ëThe Future of Warí that was organised by the Groningen-based Foundation for War Studies in St. Petersburg from 24 to 27 February 1999. They also visited London to familiarise themselves with the UKís Strategic Defence Review, and the NATO headquarters in Brussels to find out about the latest developments within the Atlantic alliance. A list of the people and organisations consulted is included as an annexe to this report. The AIV would like to thank the people and organisations concerned for their assistance, and also wishes to express its great appreciation for the support it received from the Royal Netherlands Embassy in London and the Dutch permanent mission at NATO in accomplishing its fact-finding missions.
The contents of this report are not restricted to a general assessment of the international security situation. As is clear from the enclosed request for a report, the AIV was asked in particular for its opinion on the latest developments in the Russian Federation, developments in the field of European defence cooperation and the issue of ënew
security risksí, such as weapons of mass destruction and terrorist groups. The AIV decided to structure the report as follows in order to deal with these various aspects in a coherent way. Following a brief introduction setting out the principles underlying the report, Chapter II describes the developments in the international security situation. Chapter III discusses the changes which have taken place since 1993 in the international organisations which play a key role in shaping Dutch security and defence policy. Chapter IV goes on to examine the detail of this policy. The closing chapter, Chapter V, sets out the conclusions and recommendations. There is a separate set of annexes including the letter requesting the AIV to produce a report, a description of developments in the international security situation since 1993, a list of people and organisations consulted by the AIV, and a glossary of abbreviations.
The fact that more and more issues have an international security dimension is of particular relevance to a country like the Netherlands. After all, the Netherlands has a strong international orientation that is only likely to grow stronger in the future. The large volume of goods and services that the country exports and imports as compared with its domestic output shows how crucial foreign trade and international services have become to the wealth of the nation.1 Moreover, thanks to its geographical location coupled with its status as one of the most open economies in the world, the Netherlands also acts as a vital processing and transshipment centre for its European hinterland. This is a position which not only benefits the Dutch economy, but also makes the Netherlands a vital link in the European economic chain.
Because of its international position, the Netherlands has a direct interest in stability and security, both in Europe and in the world as a whole. As a result, a knowledge of how instability is caused and how mechanisms for preventing, removing or controlling these causes can be strengthened is of national importance. In order to make an effective and efficient contribution to stability around the world, the Netherlands needs to make coherent and consistent use of its international policy instruments (consisting of diplomacy, armed force, development cooperation and economic instruments). However, because of the fact that these instruments are limited in their scope, the Netherlands can only achieve success by joining forces with like-minded countries. This it does through the United Nations, its specialist organisations, the international financial and economic institutions (i.e. the World Bank, the IMF and the WTO), and regional organisations and arrangements (i.e. NATO, the EU, the WEU, the OSCE and the Council of Europe).
In addition to the importance of guaranteeing a stable international environment, Dutch security policy is also dictated by a number of statutory and constitutional obligations. These include the duty to defend Dutch territor y and to promote observance of the rule of law throughout the world, as well as certain responsibilities in relation to the Dutch overseas territories. Upholding the international legal order is not simply a question of supporting political stability, but also involves promoting good governance and respect for human rights. Moreover, the principle of the universality of human rights means that the Netherlands is in principle not entitled to make any distinction between different regions or different cultures: the obligation to respect human rights applies all over the world.2 In this sense, there is no fundamental difference between the Dutch contributions to UN peacekeeping operations in Cambodia and Haiti and the role played by Dutch forces in Bosnia-Hercegovina, for example. At the same time, Dutch military capacity is not unlimited, which means that the deployment of Dutch armed forces is subject to certain practical constraints. Moreover, as a member of the regional organisations referred to above, the Netherlands is required to observe special Atlantic and European obligations.
1 Economist Intelligence Unit, Country Profile Netherlands 1998-1999, London 1998, p. 11.
2 Advisory Council on International Affairs, Universality of Human Rights and Cultural Diversity, The Hague 1998, p. 36.
The Advisory Council on International Affairs (AIV) was asked to analyse the changes which have taken place in the international security situation since the publication of the Dutch Defence Priorities Review in 1993, and also to make an assesment of their impact on Dutch defence policy and the role played by the armed forces. In other words, the word ësecurityí is used in this report basically in a military sense and is taken to refer primarily to the use of military action to prevent, help prevent, contain or help end violence. Against this background, the AIV interprets the term ësecurityí as having a much broader definition than simply ëthe absence of violence between nationsí. However, the definition should not be so broad as to include the absence of any risk whatsoever, including economic and ecological risks and to extent to the all-embracing concept of ëhuman securityí.
The 1993 Defence Priorities Review provides the point of reference for the letter requesting the AIV to produce a report. This review is the most recent policy document published by the Dutch government in which defence policy is examined in the framework of an comprehensive security analysis. The relatively short period of time covered by the report (barely six years) ñ plus the fact that the security situation is always prone to sudden and dramatic change ñ means that extreme caution must be exercised in making any long-term predictions. At the same time, anyone recommending changes in the make-up of the armed forces must bear in mind that far-reaching reorganisations, changes in doctrine and the development and purchase of new equipment are matters that take up a great deal of time and cost a lot of money. Given that any change in course takes time and imposes certain restrictions on the armed forces over a period of many years, the AIV takes the view that it has only a limited amount of latitude in which to frame this report.
In the absence of a clearly defined threat such as existed during the Cold War, it is not practicable to translate changes in the security situation into changes in the responsibilities and resources of the armed forces. For this reason, the Defence Priorities Review sets out certain military ëgoalsí, notably in terms of the Dutch contribution to the allied (or other international) military capacity for crisis management. Under these goals, the Netherlands should be capable either of deploying a battalion or units of equivalent size on four peacekeeping operations, concurrently over a period of three years, or of contributing a brigade-sized unit to a single peace-enforcing operation. When the Defence Priorities Review was debated in Parliament, the Lower House accepted these goals as representing, in the light of the size of the Dutch armed forces, a reasonable contribution to the maintenance of the international legal order, stability and security. This was recently confirmed during the debate on a framework memorandum for the 2000 Defence White Paper.
These goals also form the basis on which the AIV has formulated its own arguments. We shall be returning to this later on in the report. However, the AIV wishes to point out at this stage that simply the need for keeping sufficient units on stand-by for deployment on international missions in accordance with the goals set (such that these missions can be properly seen through to completion) requires the commitment of additional financial resources over and above the figures quoted in current long-term Dutch projections. In other words, the AIV believes that these projections need to be revised upwards. If there is no political review of the situation, there is a risk not only that the Netherlands will not be able to achieve the goals, but also that the armed forces will become overstretched and hence lose their attraction both to the general public as a whole and to potential recruits in particular. Because these various aspects
are all closely interlinked, the armed forces may find themselves trapped in a vicious circle that could severely undermine the contribution which the Netherlands is able to make to the maintenance of international peace and security.
Obviously, the AIV has made judgements of its own in drawing its conclusions, without taking account of the points made in the framework memorandum. After all, this report constitutes the contribution that the AIV was specifically requested to make to the preparatory work for the 2000 Defence White Paper. At the same time, we shall be indicating during the course of the report where the AIVís views differ from those set out from those in the framework memorandum published by the Ministry of Defence last year.
Developments in the international security situation since 1993
This chapter discusses the changes which could affect the international security situation at the start of the new millennium. The emphasis is on the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, the growing importance of information technology, the development of cross-border crime and terrorism, and the refugee problem. The chapter concludes by examining a number of issues that are specific to certain regions.
II.1 Changes in the security situation
Due to the rapid dissemination of expertise on military technology and the advances made in the fields of communication, information and transport, it is becoming easier and easier to get hold of weapons. As a result, we have seen a ëscaling downí process in the 1990s: as a consequence of the fact that military equipment has become more readily obtainable, and at the same time more effective and more powerful, the actors who are able to make credible threats of violence, even over a long range, have grown increasingly small in scale (i.e. to include smaller countries and non-state actors).3 As a result, local or regional security problems can escalate more easily or spill over into the international arena. Indeed, with the media providing a steady stream of up-to-date, round-the-clock news on events all over the world, people have become only too aware of just how easily conflicts can affect other countries. In the light of these factors, it is difficult to draw any clear conclusions on the way in which security risks can occur, and on their relative significance. Bearing this constraint in mind, we shall nevertheless attempt to categorise the various security risks in terms of various types of threat.
Proliferation of weapons of mass destruction4
The ending of the East-West conflict following the collapse of the Berlin Wall has led to an increased readiness to reach agreements on arms control. With the exception of China, the major nuclear powers (i.e. the Russian Federation, the United States, France and the United Kingdom) have gradually reduced their nuclear arsenals since the start of the 1990s. Various states have now publicly ended their nuclear arms programmes, surrendered their nuclear arsenals and/or placed their stocks of enriched uranium under international supervision. Despite the progress that has been made, however, there are still more than 30,000 tactical and strategic nuclear warheads in existence, a substantial proportion of which are held by the economically and politically unstable Russian Federation. Even if there is a further reduction in their nuclear armoury, the nuclear powers still possess tremendous firepower. In addition, the issue of the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction is also affected by the emergence of new nuclear powers, even though the latter have only a small number of nuclear weapons at their disposal.
3 M. Shubik, ëTerrorism, Technology and the Socioeconomics of Deathí, in: Comparative Strategy, vol. 16, 1997, p. 407.
4 The AIV stresses that the issue of proliferation should not restricted to weapons of mass destruction.
For a study of the proliferation of light arms, the reader is referred to a previous report entitled Conventional arms control: urgent need, limited opportunities, The Hague 1998, pp. 24-31.
India and Pakistan in particular entered a new stage in their nuclear arms race following the completion of their test programmes in 1998, and this is likely to have a far-reaching impact on the balance of military power in the region. Other states refuse for strategic reasons to publish any information on their nuclear arms programmes.
These developments have been played out against the background of the renewal of the Non-Proliferation Treaty in 1995, when over 170 countries reiterated their intention of not obtaining any nuclear arms, on condition that the five officially recognised nuclear powers should do their utmost to abolish these weapons. Apart from the fact that it is unclear whether all nuclear states are prepared to take this step, there is the further problem of dismantling the weapons themselves. This is an expensive process that will take up a great deal of time and which, because of the nuclear fuel that is released, may itself lead in turn to a further proliferation of nuclear weapons.5
The process of chemical disarmament is both slow and ambivalent. Although the Chemical Weapons Convention has now been ratified by over 110 states, the signatories have been given a lengthy period of between 10 and 15 years in which to dispose of their chemical arsenals. Moreover, the very countries suspected of developing chemical weapons have not acceded to the Convention. There is a great deal of uncertainty about the position of states such as Iran, North Korea and Libya. The remaining part of the Iraqi arsenal would - for the time being at least - appear to have been disabled by the UNSCOM inspections programme and the joint UK and US bombing campaign in December 1998.
Very little is known about the the actual proliferation of biological weapons. Even though 140 countries have ratified the 1972 Biological Weapons Convention (known as the ëBW Conventioní), the Convention still does not have a verification mechanism. It is generally accepted that Iraq and the Russian Federation continued to develop biological weapons for a long time right up to the early 1990s, even though both were signatories to the BW Convention. It is also suspected that a number of other countries, including China, Egypt, Israel, Iran, Libya, North Korea, Taiwan and Syria, either still possess or are still developing biological weapons.6
In addition to the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, there have been alarming developments in relation to delivery systems. The threat posed by the relatively simple Iraqi SCUD missiles during the Gulf War has given rise to increasing concern in recent years about the proliferation of ballistic missiles in Asia, the Middle East and North Africa.7 This concern has been exacerbated by technological developments which have made missiles easier to use and missile sites more difficult to trace with the aid
5 For a wider debate on the pros and cons of the proliferation of nuclear weapons, see: S.D. Sagan and
K.N. Waltz, The Spread of Nuclear Weapons; a Debate, New York 1995.
6 R.A. Falkenrath, ëConfronting Nuclear, Biological and Chemical Terrorismí, in: Survival, vol. 40, 1998, No. 3, p. 46.
7 See, for the Middle East: E. Blanche and D. Lennox, ëShifting Balanceí, in: Janeís Defence Weekly, vol. 31, 1999, No. 10, pp. 59-72.
of radar.8 Syria and Egypt have now purchased the latest type of SCUD missile, whilst Libya still possesses a number of old SCUD missiles. Iran is currently developing a ballistic missile (the Shihab 3) in collaboration with China which should be capable of hitting targets anywhere in Israel. North Korea is said to possess a three-stage missile with a range of 5,000 km9, whilst Pakistan and India are competing with each other to produce medium-range missiles that are capable of carr ying any nuclear payload. There is a clear risk of a further modernisation of such missiles in Asia. A committee set up by the US House of Representatives recently concluded that thefts of American military secrets have given China access to sufficient information to enable it to modernise a great deal of its nuclear arsenal, which is still based on designs dating back to the 1950s.10 With the information now available to it, China should be capable of producing mobile, intercontinental missiles, intercontinental submarine missile launchers and missiles equipped with multiple nuclear payloads. Against this background, it is hardly surprising that many countries have decided to prioritise the development of an adequate defence system for protecting themselves against a ballistic missile attack.
Undeniably, the rapid developments in the field of communication and information technology have also had an impact on international peace and security. An increasing number of both states and non-state actors now have access to information and communication equipment which, just ten years ago, would have been available only to the major powers. This includes increasingly powerful mobile communication equipment, devices for jamming radio communications and other electrical equipment, freely available coders, commercial observation satellites11 and the Global Positioning System (GPS) that is now available to anyone who wants to use it. Moreover, it is now fairly easy to find information on the internet on how to manufacture weapons of mass destruction, purchase weapon systems or recruit mercenaries.
Certain commentators have claimed that the battles of the future will not be fought out solely within physical confines, but will spill over more and more into cyberspace as the struggle for information supremacy becomes ever more important.12 The National Defense Panel, which was commissioned by the US Department of Defense to study security threats in the 21st century, has concluded that this type of development is one of the greatest challenges for US security. At the same time, the Panel accepts
8 Even the old SCUD missiles used by Iraq during the Gulf War were difficult to spot. T. Keany and E.A.
Cohen (Gulf War Air Power Survey (GWAPS), Summary Report, Washington 1993, pp. 84-87) claim that only 15% of the Iraqi SCUD missile launchers were destroyed during the Gulf War. See also V.J. Warner, ëTechnology favors future land forcesí, in: Strategic Review, vol. 26, 1999, No. 3, p.50.
9 Ministry of Defence, framework memorandum for the 2000 Defence White Paper, The Hague 1999, p.9.
10 Report of the Select Committee on U.S. National Security and Military/Commercial Concerns with the
Peopleís Republic of China (Cox Report), Washington 1999, pp. 72-78.
11 ëOrdinaryí commercial observation satellites are getting better and better. The Ikonos 1, which is due to be launched in May 1999, is designed to offer an optical resolution of one metre from an altitude of 300 km. See S. Rispens, ëSpoorzoeken vanuit de Ruimteí, in: Intermediair, 6 May 1999, p. 31.
12 For example, R.J. Bunker, ëTechnology in a Neo-Clausewitzian Settingí, in: G. de Nooy (ed.), The Clause-witzian Dictum and the Future of Western Military Strategy, The Hague 1997, pp. 75-91.
that the threats and opportunities emanating from information technology are both complex and difficult to identify.13 For example, it is not at all clear whether a well-organised military machine could really be manipulated through its information systems. After all, the widespread distribution of data carriers and communication systems means that organisations are less dependent on specific information channels, thus making it virtually impossible for individual outsiders to gain complete control over information flows. Indeed, the problems associated with information technology are more likely to be caused by organisations finding it impossible to cope with the massive quantities of information which they are required to assimilate than by a single information channel being manipulated or disabled.14
Even if the military risks posed by the communication revolution would appear to be limited for the time being, it is clear that civil systems are far less impregnable that they used to be. Because they are all interlinked, an act of sabotage affecting a single civil information system could easily disable adjoining systems, and consequently disrupt society as a whole and perhaps even spark off a disaster.15 The vulnerability of civil information systems means not only that they need to be properly protected, but also that an effective contingency plan needs to be drawn up to deal with the potential consequences of sabotage, including both procedures that are tried out at regular intervals and physical (including military) capabilities.
The emergence of organised crime, which due to the use of modern communication information and transportation technology is becoming increasingly internationalised, plays a key role where the authority of central government has been either undermined or entirely eliminated.16 In a number of cases, violent conflicts or socio-economic tensions have been accompanied by the rise of ëno-goí areas or criminal ëgrey zonesí in which the state either no longer has any authority whatsoever or the authority of the state is scarcely respected and groups of organised criminals find it fairly easy to set up a flourishing trade (such areas include Afghanistan, the border between Thailand and Myanmar, the Bekaa Valley, the Andes, the Xinjiang region of China and certain parts of metropolises such as Karachi, Lima, Istanbul, Lagos, Rio de Janeiro and Los Angeles). The link between political and economic tension and the rise of cross-border crime is also evident in the immediate vicinity of Western Europe. In Bosnia-Hercegovina, for example, a number of paramilitary units have used the ëBalkan routeí since
13 National Defense Panel, Transforming Defense. National Security in the 21st Century, Washington 1997, pp. 13 and 42.
14 L. Freedman, The revolution in Strategic Affairs, (Adelphi Paper 318), Oxford 1998, pp. 49-64.
15 W. Church, et al., ë1997-1998 Infrastructural Vulnerability Reportí, (Journal of Infrastructural
Warfare/Centre for Infrastructural Warfare Studies), San Francisco 1998, illustrates the vulnerability of telephone systems, satellites, the Internet, public utility services and air traffic by listing the accidents and near accidents that have been caused by computer problems.
16 Despite this, there has been only one instance to date in which a criminal organisation has attempted to wrest overall authority from the government of a state. This happened in Colombia in the 1980s, when the leaders of a number of drug rings openly declared war on the state. The drug barons lost the war, and subsequently confined themselves to maintaining control over their limited territories. See C. Basiouni, ëOrganized Crime and New Warsí, in: M. Kaldor, B. Vashee, New Wars, London, 1997, p. 45.
1994 to generate income from drug trafficking.17 Similarly, Somalia has acted as one of the key transit points for shipments of drugs to Western Europe and the United States since the early 1990s, whilst Albania has been a hotbed of large-scale, illicit arms trafficking since 1997. Once this type of criminal activity has taken root, it is often extremely difficult to eradicate, as has been shown by the drugs syndicates in northern Thailand and Burma which were set up over 50 years ago to support the Kwomintang and which continue to prosper. Piracy is a separate type of organised, cross-border crime which has been allowed, thanks to government inaction, to place shipping under increasing pressure, particularly in Asia (e.g. in the Gulf of Bengal, the Strait of Malacca and the China Sea).
In some cases, guerrilla movements undertake criminal activities in the areas they control in order to sustain themselves. Accusations of this nature have been made about organisations such as the PKK (which operates in Turkey and Iraq), the NPA (the Philippines), the Tamil Tigers (Sri Lanka), the FARC (Colombia), Sendero Luminoso (ëShining Pathí, Peru) and the Khmer Rouge (Cambodia). These organisations all operate like criminal organisations: they collect ëprotection moneyí that is used to fund militias and illicit exports (in some cases using exiles living abroad). In all these instances, there is a clear link between instability and criminal activities.
In terms of the threat posed by terrorism to the international security situation, the main risk would not appear to be constituted by the ëtraditionalí terrorist organisations such as the Irish Republican Army (IRA), the Red Brigades, the Japanese Red Army and the Armenian and Palestinian Liberation Organisations. Most of these organisations have a clearly defined political goal for which they try to generate the maximum of publicity, partly with the aid of terrorist activities. Although their public activities consist essentially of spectacular acts of violence, or threats of such acts, they often target individuals. Traditional groups with a political ideology do not aim to kill or maim as many people is possible. Rather, their objective is to win public support for their cause.18 They also generally value the lives of their members and have an interest in the preservation of the group as a whole. Although ëtraditionalí terrorist organisations have caused major problems to governments in the recent past, there is some degree of logic to their objectives and tactics, which gives the establishment an opportunity to devise an effective counterterrorist policy.
More threatening, and also more difficult to combat, are the mystical or religiously motivated groups which have emerged since the 1980s. They differ from the traditional organisations in two important ways. First of all, their prime objective is not to win support for their cause among ordinary mortals. Instead, their activities appear to be aimed at an immortal audience or a select band of converts. It is for this reason that they often do not even bother to publicly claim responsibility for their acts of terrorism, however ësuccessfulí they may be. This makes them relatively difficult to trace. Secondly, there are certain religiously motivated groups whose intention seems to be
17 A. Politi, European Security: the New Transnational Risks, Chaillot Paper 29, Paris 1997, p. 23. The
Kosovo Liberation Front (UÇK) can probably be added to the list of Bosnian groups.
18 B. Roberts, ëHas the Taboo been broken?í in: B. Roberts (ed.), Terrorism with Chemical and Biological
Weapons, Alexandria 1997, p. 127.
to kill or injure as many people as possible, as is shown, for example, by the attacks on the World Trade Center in New York and on the US embassies in Nairobi and Dar es Salaam.
Some commentators have claimed that these ënewí terrorist groups would have no qualms about using nuclear, chemical or bacteriological weapons19, as is illustrated by the poison gas attack perpetrated by members of the Aum Shinri Kyo sect in the Tokyo underground in 1995. And yet this has been the only practical instance of such terrorism to date. For this reason, it is too early to start talking about the growing popularity of weapons of mass destruction among terrorists. At the same time, the potential ramifications of terrorist organisations using non-conventional weapons are so serious that there is already a need to take action to prevent non-state actors from gaining access to such weapons. This is not simply a question of intensifying cooperation between the armed forces and civilian investigative services; it is also clear that the issue has a bearing on general policy on non-proliferation and counter-proliferation.20
Migration and refugees
The Final Declaration signed at the close of the International Conference on Population and Development in Cairo in 1994 suggested that there were some 125 million migrants in the mid-1990s, half of whom were to be found in developing countries.21 Although most international migrants head for a country bordering their own, interregional migration is on the increase, particularly to the relatively wealthy countries of the West.22
The AIV does not wish to claim that this report sets out to analyse the nature and gravity of the refugee and migration problem. However, we do believe that, as the world population becomes increasingly mobile, so there is undeniably a correlation between the degree to which civilians are affected by conflicts and the difficulties faced by Western countries in accommodating the ever growing numbers of migrants and refugees. This can be seen inter alia from the origins of the groups of people who have come to the Netherlands during the past decade, which is a clear reflection of the countries affected by conflicts or political tensions at any given time.23 There is also a
19 See, for example, Falkenrath, Confronting Nuclear, Biological and Chemical Terrorism.
20 See, for example, B. Hoffman, Inside Terrorism, London 1998, pp. 87-130.
21 United Nations, ëReport on the International Conference on Population and Development, Cairo 5, 13 September 1994í, A/Conf. 17/113.
|Number of requests for asylum:||1986||1993||1997|
|European Union:||191,020*||516,710*||Not available|
|* Based on UNHCR figures|
|** Based on figures from Vluchtelingenwerk Nederland (Dutch Refugee Council)|
23 See inter alia J. Wets, ëInternationale Migratie aan het eind van de twintigste eeuwí, in: B. Bomert, H. de
Lange (eds.), Jaarboek Vrede en Veiligheid, Nijmegen 1998. According to figures published by Vluchtelingenwerk Nederland (Dutch Refugee Council), the largest groups of asylum-seekers entering the Netherlands in 1997 came from Iraq (9,641), Afghanistan (5,920), the former Yugoslavia (1,652), Sri Lanka (1,497), Somalia (1,280), Iran (1,253), China (1,158) and Turkey (1,135).
possibility that such groups may have an adverse influence on the security situation in their host countries because they are carr ying with them problems and frustrations caused by the crises from which they are fleeing. Whilst this type of influence has indeed had a limited effect on a number of Western countries, it may cause an acute security problem if the balance of political power in the host country is upset by a massive flow of refugees (as has been the case, for example, in Macedonia and in the Great Lakes region of central Africa).
To date, the political debate in the Netherlands on asylum and migration has been largely reactive, with little public discussion of the actual causes of migration. However, whether it will be possible to control such flows in the future will not depend on the quality or capacity of Dutch policy on asylum-seekers and refugees, but to a much greater extent on the opportunities for people to lead a full life in their own countries. Whilst one can of course simply sit back and wait until conflicts start having an effect on other regions, in the form of either refugee flows or perhaps cross-border crime or even terrorism, it makes much more sense to adopt an active approach in finding an effective solution to the causes of the crises themselves.
II.2 Continuity in the security situation
As in 1993, the world today is still the scene of dozens of violent conflicts causing many tens of thousands of fatalities every year and forcing tens of millions of people at the very least out of their homes and in some cases out of their countries.24 Some studies suggest that there has been a sharp increase in the number of conflicts since 1993.25 If this is true, it is due not to a rise in the number of new conflicts, but to a much greater extent to the fact that existing conflicts are tending to last much longer.26 There are good reasons to conclude, therefore, that the conflicts and tensions which have formed the seedbed for many security problems in the 1990s have remained more or less the same. Most of todayís conflicts and tensions started before the 1990s.27
24 A number of conflict studies have been published in recent years. See, for example, M. Sollenberg, P.
Wallensteen, ëArmed Conflicts, Conflict Termination and Peace Agreements, 1989-1996í, in: Journal of Peace Research, vol. 43, No. 3, 1997; C.P. Scherrer, Ethno-Nationalismus im Weltsystem, Münster 1997; and B. Jongman, ëOorlog en Politiek Geweldí, in: B. Bomert, H. de Lange (ed.), Jaarboek Vrede en Veiligheid 1998, Nijmegen 1998. All these studies confirm the general picture of a world ravaged by a multitude of conflicts. Opinions differ, however, on the precise number of conflicts, the course taken by the conflicts, and their typology.
25 B. Jongman, ëOorlog en Politiek Geweldí, p. 33.
26 The average duration of a conflict rose from just a few months in 1945 to over 14 years in 1995. J.G.
Siccama and A. Oostindiër, Veranderingen in het Conflictpatroon na de Koude Oorlog; Misverstanden en Feiten, The Hague 1995, p. 7.
27 Some studies claim that most of the conflicts that started after the Cold War had been either subdued or terminated towards the end of 1997. See in this connection the findings of the Uppsala University Conflict Data Project, discussed in: NOD and Conversion (Non Offensive Defence International Research Newsletter), No. 48, 199, pp. 36-37.
Annexe 2 to this report contains a more detailed analysis of the main trends in each region during the past few years. These are summarised below.
II.2.1 The security situation in and around Europe
Despite the uncertainty as to how precisely the Russian Federation will develop in the coming ten to fifteen years, it remains a fact that, today, Western Europe no longer faces an immediate and massive military threat. This threat has receded and in its place has come a range of conflicts, tensions and potential crises. The problems in some of the Balkan states illustrate how difficult it is to control these tensions, as well as how costly any solution is likely to be. There has been nothing to suggest that the tensions in this region will ease in the foreseeable future. On the contrary, the humanitarian problems in Kosovo, the divisions in other parts of Serbia and Montenegro
(i.e. in the Vojvodina and Sandzjak regions and between Serbia and Montenegro themselves) and the instability in the neighbouring countries of Albania, Bosnia and Macedonia represent a continuing risk of the existing political and ethnic tensions spilling over into other regions. Moreover, Europe is encircled by an ëarc of instabilityí comprising not only parts of the former Soviet Union, but also the Persian Gulf, the Middle East and North Africa. Because of the potential spill-over effects of crises in these areas, and because the weapon systems held pose a considerable threat, in terms of the range and destructive power, any crises and conflicts which affect these regions are of direct interest to the security of Europe.
The Russian Federation and the CIS
As was stated earlier, the Russian Federation continues to form an unpredictable factor for European security in the long term. Although it now appears less likely that the Federation will undergo further fragmentation than it was just a few years ago, the countr yís uncertain economic prospects, opaque power structure and lack of legal certainty suggest that it may still be many years before there is any reversion to domestic stability. As far as Russian foreign policy is concerned, it is difficult to make any firm predictions, even for the short term. The Russians seem to feel rather powerless at the moment, and this has led them to adopt an increasingly critical attitude to the West and to seek to strengthen their ties with the CIS states. This heightened level of interest in the CIS may be regarded as being part of an inevitable process of ëregionalisationí that is overtaking Russian foreign policy, now that Russiaës domestic problems are hampering its ability to make its mark on global or supra-regional issues. Indeed, it is scarcely able to come up with a suitable response to conflicts affecting only a limited region (as in the Caucasus). Russian defence policy is undergoing a similar process of adjustment: under the 1997 National Security Concept, nuclear arms form the mainstay of Russian security (at least on paper), even if it is threatened by regional conflicts involving the use of conventional arms. Russia hopes that, by lowering the nuclear threshold in this way, it can still maintain a ërealistic deterrentí that it is apparently no longer able to guarantee with conventional means alone, now that its armed forces have lost much of their strength.
Although the Russians still have tremendous firepower at their disposal, in terms of their strategic nuclear arsenal, whether they will be able to maintain their stocks at current levels is a completely different matter. More than 60% of the Russian strategic missile capacity has now passed its ësell-byí date and is therefore not as reliable as it was intended to be. The process of replacing these missiles with new SS-27s is proceeding so slowly that, regardless of whether Russian parliament ratifies the START treaties or not, the countryís practical capability will effectively fall not just below the
ceilings imposed by START II (i.e. 3,000 to 3,500 warheads), but actually under the ceilings provided for in START III (i.e. 2,000 to 2,500 warheads).
At present, however, the greatest security threat is posed not by the size of Russiaís military capability, but by poor management of army equipment, the increasing unreliability of weapon systems and early-warning systems, and by the desire of government bodies and arms manufacturers to find new export markets for Russian products. Russiaís stocks of enriched uranium are poorly guarded, nuclear weapon systems switch to combat mode of their own accord, and the staff responsible for maintaining Russiaís nuclear arsenal (who used to enjoy special privileges) have already gone on strike more than once. In addition, there is also the problem of the enormous quantity of military waste and the weapons of mass destruction which the Russians have dismantled but have not been able to process.
Conditions in the other former states of the Soviet Union are so divergent that it is difficult to draw any general conclusions that would apply equally to all of them. What they do share in any event are certain compelling reasons for remaining members of the Russian-dominated Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS). These include the continued existence of a Moscow-oriented infrastructure, domestic political instability, difficult economic conditions and the fact that, apart from the Russian Federation, there is not a single country that is willing and able to enter into an effective aid relationship with one of these states. The question is whether the CIS will be capable of evolving into anything more than its current form, which is basically an economic and legal arrangement. There are many problem areas within the CIS, of which the Caspian Sea region is a particularly egregious example. The political and ethnic tensions there are more complex and more violent than in other regions. Never-ending crises are afflicting an area that is of vital importance to the states involved on account of its huge oil and gas reserves. However, as long as it proves impossible to find a lasting solution to the conflicts in the region, oil and gas production figures will be confined to their current modest levels, thus stemming the flow of a potentially key source of income that is needed to solve the present problems.
North Africa and the Middle East
According to authoritative sources such as the World Bank, the Arab world (which is taken to consist of North Africa and the Middle East) is one of the most unstable regions in the world. The economic outlook is poor and power structures are fragile. A combination of external support provided during the Cold War and high oil prices have helped to sustain many regimes which would otherwise have faced insuperable problems a long time ago. In addition, a rising number of Arab countries are now confronted with Islamic fundamentalism, which thrives on the sense of hopelessness that has taken grip of large numbers of the Arab underclass. The authority of the state is also at risk of being undermined by cross-border tensions (e.g. affecting the Kurds and Palestinians, and pitting Shiëite against Sunni Muslims), whilst inter-state tensions between Israel and a number of its neighbours (e.g. Iran, Iraq and Syria), many of which are also at loggerheads with each other, continue to provide a seedbed for new, open conflicts. Finally, tensions between Turkey and its Arab neighbours also have to be taken into account.
II.2.2 Regions elsewhere in the world
European security interests will not always be immediately threatened by changes in the stability of more remote regions. At the same time, it is becoming increasingly common for faraway conflicts to have an impact in other parts of the world (in the
shape of terrorism, crime or refugee flows), despite the large distances involved. Moreover, certain security risks in these regions may definitely be regarded as potential global problems because of the nature of the weapon systems which the warring factions have at their disposal and the scale of the economic disruption which these weapons can potentially cause.
One of the main factors that is capable of leading in due course to grave problems with both regional and global ramifications is the rivalry between China and the United States and the Chinese attempts - prompted by this rivalry - to secure a dominant position for themselves in Asia. Chinaís conventional arms build-up and the modernisation of its nuclear capacity should also be seen in the light of the power vacuum in the south and east of the Russian Federation, the tensions in and around the China Sea
(i.e. affecting Vietnam and the Philippines) and the constant friction between China and a number of its neighbours, i.e. Taiwan, South Korea, India and Japan. In this framework, China has helped Pakistan to develop medium-range missiles and has probably also provided North Korea with the know-how it needs in order to develop long-range missiles. Despite the apparent willingness shown by the Asian states to engage in economic cooperation, their main interest in the field of security would appear to lie in bilateral relations. The weakness of the regional security mechanisms in Asia should also be regarded as a serious shortcoming, particularly in the light of the massive conventional (and, to a certain extent, nuclear) arms race.
The security situation in sub-Saharan Africa revolves primarily around intrastate conflicts and the emergence of ëfailed statesí. The region has lost much of its strategic value to the big powers since the end of the Cold War. African leaders who, ten years ago, could count on foreign support in their efforts to curb domestic unrest and tension, now find themselves bereft of any such aid. This has given irregular, armed organisations an opportunity to establish a local power base and generate income from the sale of raw materials or the pursuit of criminal activities. Key external players in the region (e.g. the US, France and the UK) have tried to compensate for the decline in their direct involvement in African conflicts by encouraging African regional organisations, or African countries, to take on more responsibility for crisis management themselves. It is unclear, however, even disregarding the problems which these countries are bound to encounter in assembling the necessary military and other resources, whether they share enough common interests for such an approach to be effective.
In South America, where the economic cooperation created by the establishment of the MERCOSUR common market has led to an easing of military tensions, recent developments have been much more encouraging. Nevertheless, the South American democracies (many of which are still relatively young) remain at risk from the effects of the drugs trade, international crime and illicit sales of natural resources. The intensive trading in cocaine with North American and European criminal organisations shows that distance is becoming increasingly irrelevant to such non-state actors, thanks to the benefits offered by modern transport and communication equipment.
Changes in international security instruments
Although there were critics who claimed at the end of the 1980s that NATO had lost its raison dëêtre, there are very few people today who would doubt the allianceís value. This shift has been due largely to a general consensus that security cooperation within NATO remains of vital significance to Europeís security, both now and in the future. This applies not only to NATOís ability to project an image of stability in Central and Eastern Europe, but also to NATOís integrated military structure, which has played a key role in managing crises, for example in Bosnia-Hercegovina, and Kosovo. As a final factor (and in view of the uncertain future of Europeís security), this structure continues to be important for the general defence role.
NATOís influence now extends wider than ever. The recent enlargement of NATO following the accession of the Czech Republic, Hungary and Poland is important not only in military, but more particularly in political terms, as it means that a larger number of countries are committed to maintaining a stable and democratic Europe. The latest expansion does not mean, incidentally, that the door is now closed to other new members. In other words, the Washington Summit (1999) should be seen as an halfway stage in a process that has not yet come to an end.28 In order to strengthen relations between NATO and Russia at the same time, in part in the light of Russiaís critical stance on the expansion of NATO, the two parties have set up a Permanent Joint Council (PJC) as a means of fostering a structural dialogue between them. Differences of opinion have at times made the work of the Council exceedingly difficult, as was very clearly the case during the Kosovo crisis in the spring of 1999. Nevertheless, the AIV believes that the PJC continues to be a vital instrument for fostering mutual under-standing. In addition to placing its relations with Russia on a more systematic footing, NATO has also intensified cooperation in the framework of the Partnership for Peace. This is a process which has been given an important political dimension with the establishment first of the North Atlantic Cooperation Council (NACC) and later of the Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council (EAPC). The alliance has also entered into a separate partnership with Ukraine and has started a dialogue with a number of Mediterranean countries.
Thanks to the use of partnerships and dialogues, NATO has evolved in the 1990s from an organisation whose prime concern was the defence of its own territor y into a broad-based security organisation that seeks to promote wider stability in Europe. This new NATO is both more open and more complex. Whereas, in the old days, consensus had to be achieved among sixteen countries, today, there are nineteen allies who all need to be brought into line. Moreover, security policy itself has become more complicated. The allies are regularly confronted with local frictions, tensions, humanitarian disasters
28 All potential member states are cited by name in the communiqué issued at the close of the Washington NATO Summit (24 April 1999). These countries will be included in the Membership Action Plan that is intended to provide support and advice for countries wishing to join the alliance. The communiqué states that all European countries that are capable of contributing to NATOís objectives will be regarded as candidates for membership of the alliance, irrespective of their geographical location. The matter will be re-examined at the next NATO summit, which is due to be held no later than 2002.
and conflicts (some of which are close to the convention area) that are capable of developing into crises with an international impact. This has changed the considerations taken into account in relation to out-of-area operations. Whereas the allianceís prime concern in the past was with protecting vital interests, humanitarian arguments are now starting to play an increasingly prominent role. This has also had an impact on the decision-making process at NATO, as became clear during the Kosovo crisis. The nature of the threat, the interests of the NATO member states and hence the factors that affect their domestic politics may vary from one conflict to another.
In this new constellation, the core objective is to reconcile the requisite political consensus within the ranks of the NATO member states with decisive and unequivocal military action. Decisiveness implies that NATO must retain the initiative and not be drawn into taking reactive decisions at a late stage, whilst unequivocality means that crisis management operations should have a clear aim from the outset and that the resources committed to such operations should be compatible with the agreed aim. If the allies are not prepared to commit to a particular operation the military resources which it requires, then they should ask themselves whether it would not be wiser to restrict themselves to non-military options. This problem was illustrated by the very public decision that was taken during the Kosovo crisis to rule out any use of ground forces in advance. However understandable such a step may have been in the light of the domestic political pressures affecting various allies, the AIV believes that announcing such a restriction beforehand led, from a military viewpoint, to an undesirable tension between the aims of the military operation (i.e. putting an end to the humanitarian tragedy in Kosovo) and the available options for the use of military resources. Whilst the use of NATO air power may have put an end to Serbian brutalities in Kosovo, it was unable to prevent Serbian military and paramilitary units from feeling safe enough over a period of many weeks to undertake a large-scale, organised campaign directed at expelling Kosovars and committing human rights violations. Moreover, it also meant that, when the time came to fill the power vacuum that had been left in Kosovo, the response came too late and was backed by insufficient forces.
The new Strategic Concept
NATOís new Strategic Concept, which was adopted at the Washington Summit on 24 April 1999, seeks to provide a response to the changes which have taken place in the international security situation during recent years. It also provides a common view of the allianceís ëfundamental security tasksí at the start of the 21st century. The allies have made clear that, alongside collective defence, cooperation, dialogue and ëcrisis management tasksí are all vital in order to counteract the threats and risks facing the member states.
The allies still regard the collective defence task imposed under Article 5 of the North Atlantic Treaty as forming the cornerstone of the alliance. According to the Strategic Concept, the non-Article 5 ëcrisis management taskí requires an ability to conduct a wide range of operations, varying from a low to an extremely high level of force. This is defined as an ability ëto stand ready, case-by-case and by consensus, in conformity with article 7 of the Washington Treaty, to contribute to effective conflict prevention and to engage actively in crisis management, including crisis response operations.í The geographical boundaries set by the Strategic Concept are the same as the ëEuro-Atlantic areaí that is open to a wide variety of interpretations. This means that, in principle, NATOís range of operation is a question of what the allies decide among themselves, as is the issue of the legitimacy of the use of force outside NATOís treaty area.
The Concept refers in this connection to the ëprimary responsibilityí held by the Security Council for the maintenance of international peace and security, and claims that the alliance ëis committed to the Washington Treaty and the UN Charterí, and to international law in general. Section III.3 discusses the issue of the legitimacy of military operations in more detail, now that the Kosovo crisis has brought the matter to the forefront of public attention.
The Strategic Concept devotes special attention to the development of a European Security and Defence Identity within NATO, stressing its desirability and even necessity. In the text of the new Strategic Concept, NATO localises the European Security and Defence Identity as lying either with the WEU ëor as otherwise agreedí. The aim of this wording is to leave the door open for an EU role, as is clear from the press communiqué which was issued at the same time and which refers to ëEU-led operationsí. The AIV will be returning to this issue in Section III.2.
The Defence Capabilities Initiative
The Washington Summit also adopted a Defence Capabilities Initiative (DCI) in addition to the Strategic Concept, and established a High-Level Steering Group to implement it. This initiative is needed in the light of the increasing importance of crisis management operations which the NATO member states believe necessitate a further flexibilisation of NATO armed forces. Among the critical comments made during the debate on the DCI was that a number of NATO member states have shortcomings in relation to its ability to maintain an operational presence, as well as in relation to the swift deployment of its forces: NATO armed forces do not include enough rapid-deployment units, and also do not have enough logistical support and combat-support units. It has also been claimed that NATO needs to devote more energy to the fields of strategic transport capacity, intelligence capacity, protection against weapons of mass destruction, and communication and information systems.
Although the DCI has had the effect of placing the question of the adequacy of NATOís military strength on the political agenda, it is not clear whether this will be enough to encourage the allies to close any gaps that need closing. This applies particularly to the European member states, where the greatest problem lies in persuading them to surrender part of their national political and military independence in favour of collective effectiveness.29 This can be achieved only if there is maximum political cohesion among the allies and if wider European security interests are accorded a more prominent place in the debates on national defence budgets.
The AIV stresses the importance of good transatlantic relations. This requires a permanent commitment on the part of both the United States and Canada on the one hand and the European countries on the other. However, the absence of an acute military threat against Western Europe brings with it a risk of US and European interests growing apart. The United States and the European Union (or, as the case may be, certain members of the European Union) have frequently found themselves at loggerheads with each other during the 1990s, particularly on certain trade questions. These have
29 As a further factor, increased effectiveness is necessarily associated with a higher level of collective
NATO charges. This may prompt a debate on rises in NATO contributions. See: D.M. van der Zwan, ëNATO Common Funded Resourcesí, in: Militaire Spectator, vol. 168 (1999), No. 8, p. 444.
included disputes about the US laws on sanctions with an extraterritorial effect (i.e. against Iran, Libya and Cuba), about bananas and about the use of hormones in cattle farming. However, there have also been disagreements on political issues, for example on the role played by the United Nations, the ban on the production of land mines and the establishment of an international criminal court.
Despite such disagreements, the Western European countries and the United States have proved reliable allies in the field of security because they share a common set of values and vital interests. This is underscored by the fact that the United States, both during the air campaign at the time of the Kosovo crisis and during the decisive phase in the conflict in Bosnia, took charge of operations and accounted for the bulk of the military action.
At the same time, transatlantic security relations have undergone certain shifts in emphasis during the past few years. Now that Western Europe is no longer facing an immediate, large-scale threat, the instability in other regions, primarily the Middle East and East Asia, has taken on more importance for the United States. In addition, the United States regards the development of increasingly sophisticated missile systems in China and North Korea as posing a threat to the territorial integrity of some of its partners in Asia (i.e. Japan, South Korea and Taiwan) and even to part of the United States itself. Just how worried the United States is about these developments is evidenced by the governmentís plan to study, despite tremendous resistance from the Russian Federation and China, new defence systems that are capable of protecting the country against ballistic missile attack.
Future transatlantic defence relations should not be seen simply in geostrategic terms, but also in the framework of new developments in military technology. It is quite possible, for example, that massive US investment in new military technology will lead to a sea change in the nature of US and European cooperation. According to the US defence study entitled Joint Vision 2010, US defence policy in the medium term will no longer revolve solely around relatively large combat units, but will focus as well ñ and to increasing degree ñ on smaller, more versatile units which are capable of bringing massive firepower to bear on targets.30 This will open up an opportunity for the United States to limit its military activities in crisis management operations to the supply of firepower and thus minimise the number of troops deployed. The European countries have neither the political conviction nor the financial resources to follow the US in this technological re-orientation. If there is a further widening of the gap between the US capability to deploy more sophisticated resources and the European capability in this area, this may create a highly undesirable imbalance in the division of responsibilities between the Europeans and the Americans.31
As an additional factor, the importance of the military synergy which underpinned the system of collective defence during the Cold War would appear to be on the wane now that NATO has decided to place more emphasis on crisis management operations.
30 Joint Chiefs of Staff, Joint Vision 2010, Washington 1996.
31 Some studies suggest that there is more or less bound to be some sort of functional distribution of military responsibilities between the US and Europe. See, for example, M. van Heuven, G.F. Treverton, Europe and America. How will the United States adjust to the new partnership? (Rand Issue Paper), Washington 1998, pp. 4-5.
These operations no longer rely on the element of automatic military assistance provided by the system of collective defence. Whether and how the allies participate in crisis management operations has become a matter that is decided on a case-by-case basis, and depends heavily on domestic politics. The AIV regards this as an alarming development, particularly in the light of the current differences in US and European capabilites. After all, the most recent experiences with crisis management operations have shown that NATO (at least where there is a high level of technological sophistication) depends greatly on US military potential. For example, the ratio of US to European missions during the air campaign in connection with the Kosovo crisis was at least 7 to 1. This figure points to a serious deficit in terms of the ability of the European countries to conduct technically complex military support or preparatory operations on their own, even where the crisis in question has a direct impact on European interests. Given that there are no guarantees that the Americans will continue to contribute to such operations, the European countries must be able to assume this responsibility themselves. To this end, they need to possess a more powerful military capability than is currently the case.
Notwithstanding the above, the European NATO member states have demonstrated that they are still capable of taking the lionís share of the military role in the SFOR and KFOR peacekeeping operations.
The AIV is concerned about the imbalance between US and European military power, as this could create the impression that Europe is continually shifting its military responsibilities to the US and is not prepared to accept an equal share of the burden. This could, in turn, play into the hands of those political forces in the US which are keen to see a further reduction in American involvement in European security. The AIV is convinced that the Americans can be persuaded to remain involved only if the European countries succeed in showing the Americans that they, aware of the significance of transatlantic ties, are willing and able to take on more and more security responsibilities of their own.
III.2 The European defence capacity
In recent years, an increasing number of member states of both NATO and the European Union have endorsed the desirability of a European military capacity for crisis management operations. The AIV believes that the development of such a military capability is not only desirable, but also both necessary and urgent. We have already underlined the need for the European allies to try and achieve a greater degree of balance in transatlantic military relations. However, the presence of such a capability is also intrinsically important for the European Union itself. To date, the European Unionís foreign and security policy has remained inadequate and unable to keep up with the pace of European financial and economic integration, thus preventing the Union from assuming its responsibilities in an effective manner.
It was the inadequacy of the European Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP) and the poor results of the European input in the Balkans that prompted the UK government to conclude that the adjustments made to the CFSP under the Treaty of Amsterdam were not sufficient for an effective European security policy. The UK-French St. Malo declaration (issued in December 1998) concludes that, in addition to the CFSP, the European Union must possess credible military force and an appropriate and decisive political decision-making process. France has for some time been in favour of
strengthening the CFSP in this way. At the same time, the French attitude to NATO is becoming increasingly pragmatic, apparently as a result of the experiences gained with the coalition during the Gulf War, with IFOR/SFOR in Bosnia, and with the military operations in and around Kosovo. This attitude is reflected inter alia in Franceës member-ship of the Combined Joint Planning Staff and the Capabilities Coordination Cell in NATOís International Military Staff, which has made it relatively easy for France to join NATO-led crisis management operations.
Since the St. Malo declaration, other EU member states have expressed their support for the UK-French standpoint on increasing Europeís military power, resulting in the conclusions which the Cologne European Council drew on the issue in June 1999.32
Conditions for a European military capability
At the Cologne summit, the European heads of government stated that the European Union must have a credible military capacity at its disposal and that a number of basic conditions need to be met to bring this about: sufficient military resources should be available, the military structures must be adequate, and political control must be effective. Such objectives are ambitious and can be achieved only if they are backed by genuine political resolve and decisiveness. The problem is whether the EU member states will be willing to surrender part of their national sovereignty on defence in order to secure greater multinational effectiveness. If they are not, the European Union will simply find itself muddling on, thereby undermining not only its own credibility, but also transatlantic relations and hence the effectiveness of NATO itself.
A) Military resources The European countries cannot properly shoulder responsibility for defence as long as they are not prepared to commit the necessary resources. Even now, a shortage of European resources is making it difficult to sustain military operations, especially now that European forces are active in both Bosnia and Kosovo. Both operations look like representing long-term commitments, because of the complexity of the problems and the intensity of the emotions felt by the parties involved. This is bound to draw heavily on Europeís ability to relieve its forces.
The question now is how to set about improving Europeís military capability. One of the options is to make more efficient use of European resources by dividing responsibilities, intensifying multilateral cooperation and setting up joint programmes for funding European defence procurement. The AIV believes that such military cooperation will be indispensable in any event if the European countries wish to continue to have access to ever more expensive weapon systems which they feel are essential to their defence, in a political climate generally characterised by shrinking defence budgets.
The problem is, however, that such cooperation inevitably encounters practical problems, in that countries wish to retain full control over how their armed forces are equipped and deployed. Discrepancies in national industrial interests form an
32 See Appendix III to the Conclusions of the Presidency of the Cologne European Council (ëDeclaration of the European Council on the strengthening of the common European policy on security and defenceí).
additional stumbling block.33 In the absence of other forms of coordination, the NATO planning system therefore remains for the time being the most important tool for coordinating national decision-making and international cooperation. It has become clear during the course of the 1990s that this system is in need of improvement now that the allies are equipping their armed forces more for crisis management tasks. This is yet another reason for supporting the Defence Capabilities Initiative.
In order to make a European defence capability more effective, the EU member states will at least have to demonstrate a willingness to work closely in organising their armed forces. This also means committing the necessary financial resources. After all, any form of military coordination is more likely to result in additional expenditure (in the form of investments in adjustments) than in savings, even if it leads to closer multilateral cooperation or to some form of burden-sharing. Insofar as a more efficient system of European cooperation generates financial benefits, these will be the product of additional investment up front. Another factor to take into account is that, if certain European countries decide to link cooperation to a programme of spending cuts, this may easily give other countries the impression that they are more eager to shift their responsibilities onto others than to share them.34 Such a development will be counterproductive, in that it will make countries less willing to extend their cooperation and hence make it difficult to improve the European defence capability. In the AIVís opinion, this line of argument means that strengthening the European defence capability will necessarily mean setting new goals. This is bound to affect the level of defence expenditure among the European countries concerned.
B) The military structure The decisions on the European defence capability that were taken at the Washington Summit and at the Cologne European Council hold out the prospect of a Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP) and a common EU defence policy being developed in close consultation with NATO. The alliance has demonstrated a willingness to make its resources available for ëEuropean operationsí in the form of Combined Joint Task Forces (CJTF).35 NATO has now made the necessary preparations, which means that a European command structure headed by the deputy SACEUR36 can be used for operations conducted by European countries. The key point about making use of NATO is
33 A recent study performed by McKinsey & Co. into 75 joint European defence projects showed that
European industrial cooperation in this field is riddled with so much bureaucracy, on account of the great emphasis that is placed on national interests, that project costs are 30 per cent higher than is the case with domestic projects. See J. Dowdy, ëBureaucracy is killing Europeís Defense Industryí, in: Wall Street Journal Europe, 26 May 1999.
34 See inter alia J.J.C. Voorhoeve, ëDefensie: een Instrument van Buitenlands Beleidí, in: Socialisme en
Democratie, No. 3, 1998, p. 101.
35 The aim of the CJTF concept is to able a ëcoalition of the willingí, consisting of a limited number of allies, to conduct a military operation within NATO structures. The concept opens up the possibility of using NATO structures to form ad hoc headquarters and related operational units. These forces should be multinational in composition (i.e. ëcombinedí) and the various branches of the armed services should operate in an integrated fashion (ëjointí).
36 Strategic Allied Commander Europe.
that it enables complex military operations to be performed. Moreover, it also prevents the expensive and unnecessary duplication involved in building up an autonomous European defence force. The Cologne European Council also held open the possibility of strictly European operations, i.e. without the use of NATO resources. The AIV believes that this option would not necessarily be incompatible with the approach outlined above, given that strictly European operations will remain limited for the time being to small-scale military operations which do not require any separate military structure.
The integration of the WEU in the European Union (as was decided in principle in Cologne) will provide the European Union with a modest military apparatus for supporting the decision-making process in the Council of Ministers. It should be remembered, however, that a number of problems still need to be resolved before any final decision can be taken on this integration at the end of the year 2000. What action, for example, needs to be taken about the forms of association between the WEU and various countries which are not members of the European Union, such as Turkey, Norway, Iceland and former Warsaw Pact states? Will it be acceptable to NATO for EU member states which are members neither of NATO nor of the WEU to also be allowed to make use of NATO resources? Are these states themselves actually interested in using NATOís resources, and are they actually prepared to perform the whole range of the WEUís Petersberg tasks?37 Although these are all points which still need to be worked out, new forms of consultation are nevertheless beginning to emerge that could provide suitable channels in the future for harmonising the various international structures
(i.e. NATO and the EU, including the WEU, the European security and defence identity ñ which has yet to be defined ñ and the CFSP) during crisis management operations. For example, the Ministers of Defence of the European Union have held one session of informal consultations in Vienna (in the autumn of 1998), and have also met informally in Bonn on one occasion with the Ministers of Defence of other European NATO member states (in the spring of 1999). It is possible that further informal meetings along these lines will be held in the future, and that these may eventually form the basis for a new consultative structure. The AIV wishes to stress that the integration of the WEU in the EU will lead ipso facto to the institutionalisation of such consultations in the CFSP.
The CJTF concept, which is key to the development of a European defence capability within NATO, has now been tested twice in exercises (Allied Effort in 1997 and Strong Resolve in 1998). In addition, core units have been established in three NATO headquarters which can be used for forming CJTF headquarters for two large-scale operations and one small-scale operation. The exercises have shown that the concept is indeed suited for combined operations, but that it also has its limits. This was illustrated by the course of events surrounding the NATO-led operations in Bosnia, in which national interests continually led to major ad hoc adjustments in pre-defined staff structures. Indeed, virtually all countries which have supplied troops to IFOR/SFOR to date have demanded a corresponding degree of influence in the line of command. Any future CJTF combined operations will therefore have to take account of such national claims, as these are bound to be made.
The next constraint imposed on the CJTF concept is the fact that NATO as an organisation has hardly any capabilities of its own. The alliance only actually ëownsí a limited
37 These comprise humanitarian tasks, evacuation, peacekeeping and crisis management.
number of collective resources such as military staffs, the CJTF headquarters, a number of pipelines, some communication systems and various AWACS aircraft. NATOís main strategic capabilities lie in the hands of the United States, which always makes some form of American involvement inevitable.38 Moreover, it is reasonable to assume that the Americans will wish to remain part of the lines of command, even if the resources which they have lent their allies are used in a purely supportive capacity. The United States has made no secret of this wish. The Americans are keen to maintain the Single Strategic Process Concept under which NATOís North Atlantic Council first reaches a consensus on the conditions under which resources are to be deployed before actually committing them.39 There is no reason to expect any ëautomaticí delegation of equipment for European operations or a firm guarantee that the necessary resources will invariably be made available on any occasion on which they are needed.40 Until now, the best that the US waa willing to offer as regards the use of American NATO resources in European crisis management operations was a presumption of access. The AIV nevertheless feels it is important that it is made clear in good time what this presumption of access actually means. The clearer the definition, the less risk there is of parallel military structures being developed outside NATO.
C) Political control In their St. Malo declaration, France and the United Kingdom stated that they first wished to improve practical cooperation before moving on to discuss the issue of political control and the institutional aspects of a European defence capability. Whether practical cooperation will lead in future to the unambiguous use of a European defence capability will not only depend on the willingness of these two countries. It will depend first and foremost on the ability of the European Union as a whole to formulate a common definition of its strategic interests. As long as there is no such consensus, there is unlikely to be any coherent European action and European operations will probably be nothing more than simply ad hoc ëcoalitions of the willingí.
In turn, a European strategic consensus is closely bound up with the development of an effective European institutional framework that is capable of responding swiftly, intelligently and decisively to international developments. The Treaty of Amsterdam included various institutional adjustments for this purpose, such as the appointment of a High Representative for the CFSP. The recommendations made by the Cologne European Council suggest that the Union is also thinking of establishing a permanent committee for political and security issues that would take its instructions from the various EU capitals. This committee would be responsible in the first instance for the day-today implementation of the CFSP, the development of common strategies and the political command over European operations. The High Representative and his staff would play a coordinating role here. However, if the High Representative does not also chair this committee for political and security issues, the AIV believes that this could lead to
38 P. Cornish, Partnership in Crisis: the US, Europe and the Fall and Rise of NATO, London 1997, p. 92, note 34.
39 L. Hill, ëNATO still wrestles with All-European Crisis Mission Planí, in: Defense News, 15 February 1999.
40 De Decker, The Organisation of Operational Links between NATO, WEU and EU (WEU document 1624), Brussels 1998, p. 19. It should be pointed out that there will be more or less automatic access to NATOís operational planning capacity.
disastrous confusion and rivalry. By appointing retiring NATO Secretary-General Solana to this new office, the EU member states have in any event made clear that they wish to see the CFSP closely harmonised with NATOís security policy.
The Dutch contribution
The AIV believes that the Netherlands should contribute in a number of different ways to the formation of a European defence capability. The government should, in consultation with like-minded countries, argue in favour of the further intensification of military cooperation, provided that it does not conflict with existing NATO structures. The Netherlands should also seek to achieve more intensive European cooperation in the field of defence planning, in order to improve European military capabilities. Firm support for the Defence Capabilities Initiative should form part of this. At the same time, the Netherlands should join forces with like-minded countries in drawing up plans for a common funding basis for European strategic capabilities.
The Netherlands should also promote the establishment of common European strategies for enhancing the cohesion of political control.41 At the same time, the government should conduct intensive talks with the United States in order to prevent any weakening of transatlantic ties. The Netherlands has a key role to play in this respect on account of the good security relations between the US and the Netherlands. This is particularly true now that, in the wake of the St. Malo declaration, the United Kingdom also needs to take account of the French desire for a more autonomous European defence policy.
III.3 The United Nations and the OSCE
Both the United Nations (UN) and the Organisation for Security and Cooperation in Europe (OSCE) are umbrella organisations with a particular responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security. The UN is the only global forum in which security and stability, human rights, sustainable social and economic development and environmental problems are all discussed in relation to each other. The UN is the only conflict management instrument that is capable of producing results in those regions in which there is no adequate regional security arrangement. As a regional organisation under Chapter VIII of the UN Chapter, the OSCE is the prime European forum for conflict prevention and preventive diplomacy.
The special position of the UN Security Council as the organ with primary responsibility for the maintenance of international peace and security has once again come under pressure, following the temporary atmosphere of euphoria in the wake of the collapse of the Berlin Wall. This has been a consequence of the debates on intervention which have been sparked off by a number of acute humanitarian emergencies characterised by massive violations of human rights in predominantly domestic political conflicts. In a number of instances, such emergencies have led to coercive action with humanitarian aims being authorised by the Security Council, and these have cast a new light on the classic principle of non-intervention. The examples include the UN operations in Soma-lia, Rwanda and Bosnia-Hercegovina. However, there have also been a number of
41 The AIV has noted in this connection the suggestion made by Jozias van Aartsen, the Dutch Minister of
Foreign Affairs, during a lecture on security cooperation which he gave for the Dutch International Affairs Society on 9 March 1999, that the European Union should develop a common security concept based on NATOís Strategic Concept.
non-UN interventions, including the action taken by the ECOWAS regional organisation in Liberia (1990) and operation Provide Comfort in northern Iraq (1991). The decision to intervene in Kosovo (1999) was also taken outside the Security Council after various unsuccessful attempts had been made to reach a consensus in the Council on the use of military force, in accordance with Resolutions adopted earlier under Chapter VII of the UN Charter. Although the modalities of these operations are highly divergent, it cannot be denied that the readiness of the ëinternational communityí to interfere in domestic conflicts has prompted a fundamental debate on issues such as the political basis for such action, its legal basis, and the relations between the UN and regional organisations or arrangements.
Humanitarian interventions take place at the borderline between the constantly evolving international law on human rights and international humanitarian law on the one hand, and the limitations imposed by the UN Charter on the unilateral use of force against states on the other (Article 2.4).42 Apart from situations of individual and collective self-defence (Article 51), the Charter prohibits the use of force unless explicitly mandated by the Security Council. Because the Security Council may find itself locked in a stalemate, however, this requirement may sometimes form a serious impediment, not only when humanitarian disasters strike, but in all situations of an exceptional and urgent nature. Despite this, the AIV believes that this does not give NATO or any other organisations or states a right to do just as they like. The fact that the UN and its related security systems have continued to thrive in spite of all the tensions during the Cold War has been largely thanks to the readiness of states to respect the UN Charter. For this reason, the future of the organisation requires great restraint and prudence in this sensitive area.
In the light of developments in the 1990s (both in the Security Council and in humanitarian law and state practice), the AIV feels that the time is now right to clarify the legal basis for humanitarian interventions, however difficult it may seem to achieve an international consensus in this area.43 In this connection, the AIV points specifically to the recommendations issued by the International Law Association in 1970 and to the recommendations made by the Advisory Committee on Human Rights and Foreign Policy and the Advisory Committee on International Law Issues in 1992.44 These commit-tees formulated a number of basic principles:
ñ intervention is permitted only in an emergency in which basic human rights are being violated, or there is a threat of basic human rights being violated, on a massive scale;
ñ the action taken should be commensurate with the gravity of the situation; ñ the effect of the intervention on the state structure of the country in question should be limited to whatever is needed in order to accomplish the intervention;
42 See, for example, A. Pradetto, ëDie NATO, humanitäre Intervention und Völkerrechtí in: Aus Politik under
Zeitgeschichte. Beilage zur Wochenzeitung Das Parlament, 12 March 1999, p. 32.
43 For a similar argument, see C. Guicherd, ëInternational Law and the War in Kosovoí, in: Survival, vol. 41,
No. 2 (summer 1999), pp. 19-33.
44 Advisory Committee on Human Rights and Foreign Policy and Advisory Committee on International Law
Issues, Het Gebruik van Geweld voor Humanitaire Doeleinden, The Hague, pp. 15-16.
ñ the intervention may not itself pose such a threat to international peace and security as to be capable of causing a greater loss of human life than the emergency itself would have caused.
The developments in Europe in the field of crisis management operations have also underlined the importance of creating a network of divergent and complementary security organisations. The OSCE has a unique role of its own to play in this respect. The organisation continues to provide an important framework for regional action and mutual agreements in a number of areas, including from a military viewpoint (CFE). The AIV believes that the OSCEís role can be extended in those fields in which it holds a comparative advantage. This applies, for example, to activities in relation to elections, support for political processes, minority rights issues and forms of temporary international governance (as in Bosnia), verification and the establishment of democratic institutions (as in Kosovo), and monitoring (as in the CIS).
Dutch security and defence policy
At the time of the Cold War, the position occupied by the armed forces in Dutch politics centred on their mission of preventing or withstanding, in conjunction with their NATO allies, a massive attack aimed at the NATO treaty area. The responsibilities assigned to the armed forces and the resources allocated to them were designed with this objective in mind. The position changed, however, following the collapse of the Berlin Wall. Since the 1993 Defence Priorities Review, crisis management has become one of the armed forcesí key responsibilities alongside the defence of the alliance and the traditional tasks relating to the defence of all parts of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. Today, therefore, the armed forces are regarded to a much greater extent than before as one of the range of instruments available to the government in implementing its foreign policy. This shift in emphasis means that the tasks and resources allocated to the armed forces depend to an increasing degree on the objectives of Dutch foreign policy as this is shaped in various international fora.
IV.1 Security policy
Many of the security risks and potential threats described earlier in this report emanate from tensions caused by a wide variety of political and socio-economic factors. Because of their complexity, the most effective way of dealing with these factors is a combination of development cooperation, diplomacy, economic instruments and, where necessary, military force. Close international cooperation can also help to enhance the effectiveness and efficacy of such action. It goes without saying that every crisis requires its own particular strategy and mix of instruments: in some cases, a military input is unavoidable and the emphasis has to be placed on the prevention of any escalation of violence. In other cases, however, there is little point to any military intervention, which means that the accent must be placed on encouraging political dialogue, promoting reliable judicial process or fostering economic development. Many crises have their own specific dynamics requiring a coherent package of policy measures that are also capable of responding to any increase or decrease in tension.
In the netherlands, the importance of a coherent policy was signalled early on in the 1990s. For example, policy documents such as the Defence Priorities Review and the policy document published by the Directorate-General for International Cooperation entitled Een Wereld in Geschil (ëA World of Disputeí)45 stressed the fact that an effective foreign and security policy requires better coordination of policy instruments, including development cooperation, diplomacy, economic instruments and, if necessary, military force. The 1995 Review of Foreign Policy46 argued in favour of more than just the complementarity suggested by previous policy documents, claiming that the growing inter-dependence of international problems required more than simply good coordination between military and non-military aspects of security. The foreign policy review suggested that the various instruments of foreign policy should be ëcombinedí, ëclusteredí or ëfusedí. However, in the event, the main focus was on achieving greater cohesion in
45 Minister for Development Cooperation, A World of dispute. A survey of the frontiers of development cooperation, The Hague 1993.
46 Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Review of Foreign Policy, The Hague 1995, p. 30.
policy, whilst there was less interest in changing the actual substance of policy.47 The AIV believes that it would be to the advantage of the countryís external security policy if the process of enhancing the cohesion in the instruments of foreign policy was based on a philosophy embracing all the various facets of policy such that this philosophy was capable of providing momentum and shape for this process. In the AIVís opinion, the formulation of such a philosophy requires a more detailed political and interdepartmental elaboration of the priorities set out in the ësecurity clusterí48 of the foreign policy review.
Note: This request for advice is shortened. To read the full request, download the total advice.
This document is not yet available
No press release has been published for this advice.