The Bruges Group spearheaded the intellectual battle to win a vote to leave the European Union and, above all, against the emergence of a centralised EU state.

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Bruges Group Blog

Spearheading the intellectual battle against the EU. And for new thinking in international affairs.

Don't Do It! Any form of Defence union is a very bad idea

I outline in my book The Occupation of Britain about the EU's military plans of an EU army. That has always been their plan. In fact this was a plan that stretched all the way back to the 1950s. Even in the 1970s, Prime Minister James Callaghan regarded NATO as the only way of ensuring European security instead of a European army. It is worth notin...
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Ireland and EU Defence Integration

​ There's been a lot of talk about something called PESCO and whether it breaches the Irish constitution or the concept of neutrality. What is Irish neutrality and what does the Irish constitution say about it? First there's whether Ireland takes part in activity outside of its own territory and second there's whether Ireland permits other countrie...
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Lobby Your MP: EU Control Over UK Defence

​ The UK has continued to enter defence agreements with the European Union following the 2016 referendum, ensuring that the UK will remain closely bound to the EU. The EU, in fact, has been pursuing the establishment of an 'EU Defence Union' to include the UK even after Britain leaves the EU. Send an email to your MP to call for a full Brexit for d...
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May, Munich, and Military Structures

Theresa May's Munich speech suggests UK's continued involvement in EU security structures post-Brexit Author: David Wilkinson Never mind the £350m on the NHS, the fundamental promises of Leave have just been betrayed. Saturday 17th February 2018 will be remembered as the date when all hope, all pretence, that Theresa May had any intention, let alon...
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British Involvement in EU Security Structures

British Involvement in EU Security Structures
​This short video introduces the series, which discusses various scenarios for defence and security post-Brexit, and the implications not only for Britain, but for the remaining EU member states as well. It provides context on the history of Britain's role as a "friend among nations," recalling specifically Britain's assistance in the Estonian war ...
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European Defence after Brexit - a conversation with Ants Laaneots

European Defence after Brexit - a conversation with Ants Laaneots
Ants Laaneots was commander of the Estonian Defence Forces and is now a member of the Riigikogu, the Estonian Parliament. Theresa May's visit to Poland just before Christmas reminded us of the big realities of Brexit and the EU, realities which are often strenuously ignored. Some of the reporting has, maybe, been wishful of an adoption by HMG of a ...
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EU Defence and Military: An Analysis of PESCO and Other EU Security Initiatives

.       In November 2017 25 leaders signed up to the Permanent Structured Cooperation (PESCO). For the last few years the EU has been building up to a fully operative EU military and realigning member states funding of core projects to permit that to happen through the European Defence Fund (EDF). This is not a new con...
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James Coghlan
https://www.irishnews.com/opinion/letterstotheeditor/2017/06/29/news/eu-policy-could-lead-to-conscription-1070735/ If it leads to... Read More
Thursday, 11 January 2018 07:27
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Government must scrap its compromises over EU military schemes

Veterans for Britain, supported by the Bruges Group, bring an urgent message to Manchester on Monday 2 October: we need full Brexit for defence and an end to recent UK commitments to the EU that have a nasty sting in the tail.Since the Brexit vote, the UK has given a green light to the juggernaut of EU military schemes on the understanding we would be outside of them.However, government position papers incredibly propose STAYING IN joint EU schemes on military finance, research and assets.The schemes, which have never been voted on by MPs, would mean the UK staying in EU Common Defence Policy, the European Defence Agency and even EU defence procurement directives. Norway is the only non-EU country in the schemes and was obliged to accept these rules.The PM has rightly declared the UK’s unconditional commitment to Europe’s defence via NATO.However, we fear that MPs and ministers are not aware of the full implications of a Norway-style military union agreement. Many civil servants are aware of these implications and are pushing for UK entry relentlessly.At the same time as these new EU military finance and structure schemes are being agreed, the EU is growing the remit of its Common Security and Defence Policy in a way that consolidates its control over EU Council-agreed military responses. The EU’s new military HQ, the MPCC, which UK diplomats tried in vain to change, is just a small part of this.The EU is also tightening defence asset production rules to make an EU defence market in which member state governments will find it impossible to protect domestic defence jobs and industry eg Scottish shipyards in the UK’s case.Sadly, the Government’s National Shipbuilding Strategy of September 2017 fully adheres to the latest EU rules in cross-border defence tendering – clearly anticipating a future where the UK would need to comply.It is essential that at the Conservative Party Conference in Manchester delegates are made aware of the risk to Scottish shipyards, particularly Ruth Davidson and her Scottish Conservatives team. The UK is heading towards a scenario where it is dictated by these EU procurement rules which will only become more assertive when the UK is fully committed to them.‘Dodging the EU bullet’

Speakers: Major-General Julian Thompson, Colonel Richard Kemp, Captain Will Carver & Geoffrey Van Orden MEP

Monday 2nd Oct 11.00 at Manchester Town Hall, Albert Square, Manchester, M60 2LAFor more info on the commitments made by the UK to the EU military juggernaut and the risks posed from the proposal to stay in them, see: http://veteransforbritain.uk/dexeus-defence-partnership-paper-is-a-grave-mistake-and-gives-the-eu-control/

and

https://www.brugesgroup.com/blog/the-uk-is-stuck-in-a-quagmire-over-eu-defence-union

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The Five Eyes - Security after Brexit

The UK will continue to thrive due to its existing linguistic and intelligence connections

1st August 2017
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I come from a family who have served on Five Continents for their country in both military and civilian platforms. As such, I became aware of the Five Eyes as a youngster.  The Five Eyes is a joint intelligence community comprising of Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the UK and the United States.   Initially the Five Eyes or FVEY was formed in 1941. It is therefore arguable, given the geographical locations of its members and their historical endurance, that no amount of pressure from the EU will cause it to falter.

 

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Government Agrees to EU Military

Five concerns for the UK arising from the EU Defence Union

14th June 2017
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There are five main areas which the EU has been pursuing in order to establish what it calls an ‘EU Defence Union’ across the 28 EU countries, including the UK.

1. Procurement policy and incentives

2. Finance

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Robert Oulds
You may also be interested in this article: http://www.brugesgroup.com/blog/the-uk-is-stuck-in-a-quagmire-over-eu-defence-union M... Read More
Wednesday, 28 June 2017 11:07
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EU security and counter-terrorism control after Brexit

Dominic Grieve, the Conservative Chairman of the Commons Intelligence and Security Committee, argues that the UK must retain membership of the EU’s law enforcement agency (Europol) after Brexit, even if this means “accepting EU rules and judicial oversight for the European Court of Justice (ECJ).” This is not real Brexit and nor will it make us safer, in fact quite the reverse.

5th June 2017
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Security is the new defining issue of both British and European politics. Even the United States is concerned that Europe’s problem is a danger for us all. It will also form the key issue in the Article 50 Brexit negotiations, or at least so the Government hopes. According to The Daily Telegraph, the Cabinet meeting of 7th March 2017, which approved the strategy for PM Theresa May’s opening gambit in her soon to be sent Article 50 letter mentioned security no less than 11 times.

 

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Co-operation after Brexit in the spheres of Justice and crime prevention

The UK should not seek full Europol membership or participation in the flawed European Arrest Warrant scheme.

30th May 2017

Introduction

One unavoidable fact about the modern world is that criminal gangs and terrorist groups work across national borders.

 

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The UK is stuck in a quagmire over EU Defence Union

EU Defence Union has gathered pace since late 2016 and the UK is deeply involved. Ministers have so far failed to explain why they are agreeing to the plans and how they will regain control.

15th February 2017
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A senior EU Commission official boasted in January that the EU "has done more in defence in the last seven months than in the previous decades".

 

It certainly looks like they have stepped up the pace since the Brexit vote.

 

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EU Militarisation: A Dangerous Future

Protect our defence and security – Vote to Leave the EU
21st April 2016
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According to Colonel Richard Kemp Britain would be forced to join an EU army within five to 10 years if people vote to Remain in the EU.

“An EU army is inevitable. As the EU has declared, it is moving to ever closer union,  it intends to become a fully fledged superstate. That’s the plan.”

“We would essentially be giving up our right to sovereign self-defence. Control of the EU army would not rest with us but in a collective EU decision.”

“There would never be consensus for an EU military operation  to retake the Falklands. It could not happen.”

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