TEPSA Brief: Libya: A wakeup call for CSDP?, March 2012

By Nicole Koenig

In the past couple of years, there has been recurrent talk of ‘CSDP fatigue’. In the wake of the Libyan crisis, some even declared the death of the CSDP. Current developments indicate that the CSDP is not dead, although the Libyan crisis highlighted some of its existing flaws. These flaws include the lengthy and cumbersome planning process, the continued reticence of the Member States to use the EU’s rapid reaction instruments, internal coordination problems and military capability gaps. The on-going lessons learnt processes should be seen as an opportunity to tackle some of these weaknesses and to circumvent existing obstacles. This brief proposes measures to:

(1) increase the EU’s capacity for comprehensive, timely, and rapid planning;
(2) encourage a more proactive use of the EU’s rapid reaction instruments;
(3) learn the lessons for internal coordination; and
(4) ‘get real’ about pooling and sharing military capabilities.

If the EU misses this opportunity, there is a real risk that the CSDP will go back to sleep.

Please feel free to contact Nicole Koenig to discuss and to learn more on the future developments about this issue.