By launching a war against Ukraine, right on the borders of the European Union, Russia has unleashed the strongest push to strengthen Europe’s defence since the end of the Cold War. Only its initial, 2014 invasion of Ukraine came close to having such effect. NATO has activated its defence plans and deployed forces on the borders with Russia. Just about every state in Europe has announced increased defence spending. And the EU finalised its Strategic Compass, its first ever defence strategy, with a much increased sense of urgency and purpose. The role of the EU in linking up national announcements and NATO targets is crucial, in fact, by providing a framework to align the efforts of the EU Member States, and by ensuring that the EU’s own indispensable targets are incorporated.
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