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“Europe Can Die”: Macron Calls for Strengthening Defense Amidst Global Threats

The main danger to European security is the war Russia is waging against Ukraine, French President Emmanuel Macron stated. Russia must not win this “aggressive war,” he added.

French President Emmanuel Macron warned that Europe faces an existential threat due to Russia’s war against Ukraine, calling on the continent to adopt a “reliable” defense strategy that is less dependent on the United States. He made the remarks on Thursday, April 25, during a speech at the Sorbonne University in Paris.

“There is a risk that our Europe may die. We are not ready to face the risks,” Macron said. According to him, over the next decade, there is a huge risk that Europe will be weakened or even pushed back.

Macron emphasized that the continent finds itself “surrounded” by other regional powers, notably pointing out the risk of Iran acquiring nuclear weapons.

Macron called for the creation of a “strong Europe” that “commands respect, guarantees its security,” and restores “strategic autonomy.” Macron stressed that in the past, Europe had been overly dependent on Moscow in energy matters and on the U.S. in security matters. “We must build this strategic concept of reliable European defense for ourselves,” Macron said, adding that Europe cannot be a “vassal” of the United States.

Additionally, Macron called for a “revision” of the EU’s trade policy to protect European interests. He blamed China and the U.S. for no longer respecting the rules of global trade.

At the same time, Macron called for strengthening Europe’s cybersecurity potential, closer defense ties with the UK post-Brexit, and the establishment of a European academy to train military officers. “There is no defense without a defense industry… we have had decades of underinvestment,” he said, adding that Europeans should prefer to buy European military equipment.

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