Everything Should Be Made as Simple as Possible, But Not Simpler*

Andreas W. Prengel
2013 Critical Care Medicine  
All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form, or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopying, recording or otherwise, without the prior permission in writing, from the author. Cover image by Caroline Gyllensporre: The EU flag with the globe embedded on it depicts the global reach of the CSDP. In the margins a 'war hawk' and a 'peace dove' are shown, representing the influences of Realism and Idealism,
more » ... vely. ISBN 978 90 8666 172 5 Published by Boekenplan, Maastricht. Abstract vii overall output ratio of 65%. Significantly, this criterion is one of the most common arguments advanced by scholars in arguing for a realist perspective of the CSDP. This inconclusive result must also take into account that the four most 'realist-prone' missions were subjects of the study. A synthesis of the findings suggests that the EU pursues crisis management based on an evenly balanced mix of realist and idealist influences. CSDP missions are as much about satisfying vital self-interests as advancing universal value interests. Responses are based on realist perceptions of the security environment and tailored to address statecentric threats in the neighbourhood of the EU or in former colonies of Member States. These actions are guided by idealist principles, often involving non-coercive measures. Responses tend to provide assistance through civilian instruments rather than military force. Employment deliberations also involve considerations of the enhancement of the political weight of the EU, including the Council, along with the aspiration to ensure effective multilateralism. Furthermore, the EU prefers intervening in post-conflict situations or preventive engagements without applying deterrence. It is hard to contend that the EU is a soft power, while, on the other hand, the explanatory power of Realism is weak. The EU is not advancing the CSDP to challenge American dominance in international security. On the contrary, it prefers complementary efforts. Nonetheless, the EU is influenced by a desire to reduce its security dependence on the USA. Realist drivers for the EU are generated primarily by Member States. The motivation for deployment of CSDP missions is affected by national interests, in particular, those of France, as well as a desire to secure EU borders, while the EU bureaucracy also contributes to the shaping of EU behaviour based on Realism. It does so for prestige, a desire to promote the CSDP, and to demonstrate the EU's ability to act. None of these aspirations by the EU bureaucracy have a strong influence on EU behaviour, but combined they constitute a driver for Realism. Since empirical investigation reveals a lack of convincing correlation with the analytical framework and the realist criteria examined, it is inferred that the explanatory power for explaining drivers for Realism is, to borrow an adjective often used for the CSDP, soft. To summarise, the EU thinks like a realist but acts as an idealist. It is a soft power with a hard core. The Council is predisposed to operate on the basis of idealistic principles in tailoring the mission mandate and timing the intervention, but its considerations are still underpinned by a realist calculus. It responds to state-centric threats and makes geopolitical priorities in the neighbourhood. This project has been an intellectual journey involving a multitude of crossroads and roadblocks, and I wish to thank all those who helped me to move forward, without whom, I could not have completed this project. Their friendship and professional collaboration have meant a great deal to me. In this regard, I am deeply indebted to my supervisor, Professor Dr. Chris de Neubourg, whose encouragement, guidance and support from initial ideas to the final manuscript, enabled me to develop a scientific mindset. With each of his reviews, the manuscript took a quantum leap forwards in terms of quality and clarity. I am indebted to my co-supervisor, Lieutenant Colonel Dr. Håkan Edström, for his persistence and constructive contributions. Throughout the project he has acted as my intellectual sherpa, guiding me to new heights of scientific understanding. With his support I have safely avoided numerous detours that I was all too ready to follow. He has a remarkable ability to find structure and make complex matters appear simple and understandable. I have been exceptionally privileged to have such a talented and dedicated mentor and a PhD fellow could not ask for more.
doi:10.1097/ccm.0b013e31829ec84d pmid:24275390 fatcat:xgn2bprpvffgvlyn2dcvnjezva