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The European Security Myth

Does being in the EU really make us safer?

Alex Alley

Naked Politics Blogger 

My father is a plasterer. He builds the sets on movies, and a little while ago he said that he was working on the new Kingsman movie and that for some reason I thought about the EU. It appears that MI5 will become like Kingsman if we leave. It wouldn’t be too bad the suits are nice and what monster has a gripe with Mark Strong and Colin Firth? But unfortunately, the truth is far from the fiction.

Since the Second World War, intelligence agencies has made it clear that they are able to act nigh autonomously, this is before the existence of the EU. Special intelligence service later to be MI5 and MI6 worked with the Polish, the CIA’s forebears worked with the Romanians to counter Soviet expansionism and the Americans and British had been supporting each other since the beginning, in fact, it’s inferred that the CIA owes its creation to us. Even before the EU, information sharing and joint operations were conducted, because Intelligence services work with relationships instead of treaties and agreements. So where does the EU fit in?

They don’t. The truth is the EU doesn’t really have any powers over security. They have no army, no real police force or intelligence agency. For threats they require their member states to pick up the slack from one EU country to another, and Europool. Their significance is marred by Interpol, which does the exact same job but internationally.

So the policing argument doesn’t hold up to scrutiny, does the peace argument? “Europe has been peaceful since the second world war because of the EU”. No, NATO was the reason for their being no major wars in Europe, that and the mutually assured destruction of the West and Soviet Union thanks to Nuclear weapons. The argument of economic co-dependence ushering peace also is put into question with the existence of something called a, “Civil War”. But what about terrorism, surely the EU does something about Terrorism?

The EU holds dialogues, no spies, no drone strikes or even surveillance. Let’s use an example of how effective the EU is at keeping us safe. These are relatively insignificant yet the EU has no binding legislation or office to combat domestic terrorists. Spain every year have a number of bombings and shootings, I could write a litany of the attacks by ETA, the IRA or any terrorist organisation yet for as long as these issues have existed countries have had to unilaterally combat them, they are effectively on their own.

Europe has been called the soft underbelly of the West, and Belgium the soft underbelly of Europe. Poverty and gang culture is a concoction that ensures extremism as a symptom. How does the EU deal with this threat? They don’t really. There is a reason why Belgium proportionately has the largest sum of volunteers for ISIS, and the Bataclan attacks were by Belgian Islamists, the Americans warned the Belgians of an attack the day before the bombings. To put it into perspective, it emerged that during the lockdown as they hunted for the Paris terrorists, Belgian security personnel were quite busy having a umm . . . get together. “Stupid” and “Children” were the words used to describe the Belgians in their lethargic response to terrorism.

We don’t just face the risk of being tethered to incompetent security forces, as we can see the EU’s activities with the migrant crisis has endangered us, the threat of ISIL and the Schengen area make us ripe for our enemies to attack our “underbelly”. Weapons that were used by the Charlie Hebdo gunmen were purchased in Slovakia, and there’s is a good chance that the Bataclan attack was supplied the same way. Even a gang in Kent made the journey to and from Slovakia carrying an arsenal of weapons and they were arrested in Britain not by the Europol but by British police. The EU’s reaction to this issue? They aim to standardise the deactivation procedures for all firearms. This is literally all the EU can do, they regulate and standardise, this is because the EU is not a state. They are at best a regulatory body.

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We blame the EU for a lot but it’s not their fault, it’s like chastising a dog for not meowing. The EU is not meant subsidise our security, it regulates and legislates on fishing hauls and inflation rates although you could be forgiven for thinking otherwise, considering the lengths politicians go to convince us otherwise. However, if there are any arguments to be had, I would argue that the EU puts us in more jeopardy. EU countries, countries that allow the unchecked movement of people across their borders, some of those countries with large sums of weapons and corruption that with free borders accommodates those who would harm us. With this in mind, is it honest to perpetuate a claim that the EU keeps us safe?

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