European Union External Action

CEUMC keynote speech at the European Defence Agency (EDA) Annual Conference

03/12/2018 - 16:09
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The Chairman of the European Union Military Committee (CEUMC), General Claudio Graziano, gave a speech at the EDA Annual Conference on unmanned and autonomous systems in defence.

"Security and Defence are difficult and costly to build, but very easy to lose. The latter, we have witnessed appening. Security and Defence never come cheap." The Chairman said, starting his intervention and pointing out that the EU Global Strategy offeres the vision of a "stronger Europe".

"The European Union – stressed General Graziano - should be credible, responsive and joined-up. What is noteworthy in the Global Strategy is the acknowledgement of the need for the European Union to further develop its Hard Power and, as a result, its military instrument. EU Member States, and the EU as a whole, clearly identified the need for a technological revolution, with its great opportunities and, at the same time, challenges, namely the exploitation of unmanned and autonomous systems."

"Technological superiority – the Chairman stated - is a must for the European defence and an essential requirement if we are to realize the potential of the European Global Strategy and ensure the superiority of European Forces”.

"EU Military Committee – General Graziano added - has been active and heavily engaged in the evolution of the Common Security and Defence policy. In doing so, the Military Committee acknowledges, from a conceptual and operational stand point, the need to provide a "complete package" in order to capitalize unmanned and automatic systems in CSDP operations."

"Through PESCO, EDF, and other European mechanism we should not limit the package concept to the system itself, but also provide for an overall upgrade of military training, mentality, protection of systems and integration, with full trust and avoiding any cultural resistance. We cannot stop the Progress. Instead, we need to look at the future with optimism, considering the unmanned and autonomous capabilities with great sense of responsibility. Thus, any further technological advancement in this realm will involve the necessity of new regulations in terms of doctrine, training, legal and operational measures.

Therefore, the challenge will be to exploit these high performing systems, but keeping, at the same time, the possibility for humans to take full control of the mission in case of specific, unpredictable events." the Chairman concluded.