Belated (and Short-Lived) Enthusiasm. Poland vis-à-vis the Common (European) Security and Defence Policy in 2008–2014
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Uniwersytet Warszawski
Publication date: 2015-06-30
Stosunki Międzynarodowe – International Relations 2015;51(2):137-152
The article addresses the issue of Poland’s attitude to the Common (European) Security and Defence Policy as well as its contribution to the development of this form of cooperation in the European Union. It focuses on the period after the PO– PSL coalition took over governance in Poland, that is when the government started exhibiting a greater interest in the development of this EU policy, launching a number of initiatives and intensifying its activity under this policy. In this article, after briefly outlining Poland’s attitude to European cooperation in security and defence issues and its evolution in the period from the establishment of the European Union to the formation of the government by the PO–PSL coalition, the author attempts to determine the reasons behind this ‘pro-European surge’ that started in 2008. At the same time, he emphasises that the source of this trend was disenchantment with the alternative forms of international cooperation aimed at increasing national security (NATO, bilateral relations with the United States) rather than faith in the opportunities offered by cooperation within the EU. The article further contains a presentation and analysis of the key initiatives undertaken in this respect by Poland after 2008 as well as a discussion of the reasons for their failure or partial success. The text is concluded with an evaluation of Poland’s attitude to the future of the CSDP in light of the decisions of the European Council for security and defence issues of December 2013 and the reaction of the EU and its Member States to the Russian–Ukrainian conflict in 2014, which suggested a radical decrease in the expectations and hopes the Polish elites and society had of this cooperation and growing scepticism about the chances for further development of the CSDP.
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