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Ashton's cabinet will no longer have a defense adviser

The cabinet of the High Representative, Cathy Ashton, could soon no longer have an advisor specifically dedicated to “common defense”. Until now, it was the Frenchwoman Alice Guitton who was responsible (among others) for this file. But his departure is now certain. And, so far, there are no plans for a replacement to be hired to handle this matter.

The idea that predominates at the firm is rather to share defense skills between the different advisors, by geographical area, following the principle of the “global approach”. Each of the advisors will be in charge of the missions deployed in the area they cover (Africa, Middle East, etc.). And, for the rest, we will call on the skills deployed in the diplomatic service. In fact, no one will cover common defense issues in a political manner. But Robert Cooper, now “advisor” to Cathy Ashton, could provide “good advice”.

Even if it may seem good policy for a cabinet to use internal skills, this lack of political coverage is another sign of the desire for renationalization and NATOization of the common defense policy of the European Union.

Nicolas Gros Verheyde

Chief editor of the B2 site. Graduated in European law from the University of Paris I Pantheon Sorbonne and listener to the 65th session of the IHEDN (Institut des Hautes Etudes de la Défense Nationale. Journalist since 1989, founded B2 - Bruxelles2 in 2008. EU/NATO correspondent in Brussels for Sud-Ouest (previously West-France and France-Soir).

One thought on “Ashton's cabinet will no longer have a defense adviser"

  • Yannick Hartstein

    Up to a certain point, I can appreciate the desire for a “global approach”, insofar as the CSDP must be part of the integrated “policy” of the EU, and not replace it. Except that our practice shows that it is more than difficult to implement – ​​complex decision-making processes between working groups, specific expertise (particularly in CSDP). Paradoxically, I think that wanting “consciously” to implement the global approach hinders its effective implementation. Hopefully the arrival of the EEAS will improve things – but I have my doubts…

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