The European Union, counter terrorism and police co-operation, 1991–2007

The European Union, counter terrorism and police co-operation, 1991–2007: Unsteady foundations?

David Brown
Copyright Date: 2010
Pages: 256
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  • Book Info
    The European Union, counter terrorism and police co-operation, 1991–2007
    Book Description:

    This volume examines the underlying foundations on which the European Union's counter-terrorism and police co-operation policies have been built since the inception of the Treaty on European Union, questioning both the effectiveness and legitimacy of the EU's efforts in these two critically important security areas. Given the importance of such developments to the wider credibility of the EU as a security actor, this volume adopts a more structured analysis of key stages of the implementation process. These include the establishment of objectives, both at the wider level of internal security co-operation and in terms of both counter-terrorism and policing, particularly in relation to the European Police Office, the nature of information exchange and the 'value added' by legislative and operational developments at the European level. It also offers a more accurate appraisal of the official characterisation of the terrorist threat within the EU as a 'matter of common concern'. In doing so, not only does it raise important questions about the utility of the European level for organising internal security co-operation, but it also provides a more comprehensive assessment of the EU's activities throughout the lifetime of the Third Pillar, placing in a wider and more realistic context the EU's reaction to the events of 11 September 2001 and the greater prominence of Islamist terrorism.

    eISBN: 978-1-84779-273-0
    Subjects: Political Science

Table of Contents

  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-vi)
  3. List of tables
    (pp. vii-vii)
  4. List of abbreviations
    (pp. viii-ix)
  5. Acknowledgements
    (pp. x-x)
  6. 1 Introduction
    (pp. 1-14)

    On 11 September 2001, terrorism was seared into the global consciousness, as the world watched live the horrific images of hijacked planes being crashed into the World Trade Center and the Pentagon. In the years that followed, Al Qaeda and Osama bin Laden have become household names, dominating the airwaves and making full use of what Margaret Thatcher once called ‘the oxygen of publicity’.¹ The 24-hour global media has beamed pictures of death and destruction into our living rooms, while commentators and analysts scrutinise bin Laden’s taped proclamations, with their references to contemporary political events and their calls for continued...

  7. 2 A question of JHA objectives
    (pp. 15-53)

    Any discussion about the nature and scale of a given decision-making process should begin with an examination of the stated objectives of the process. Without a consideration of the initial process of objective setting, the analysis lacks a benchmark against which to judge progress. As the former US Secretary of Defense, Donald Rumsfeld, once laconically noted, ‘if you don’t know where you are going, any road will get you there’.¹ No reasonable implementation process should resemble a ‘road to nowhere’ scenario; most analysts would accept that the decision-making and subsequent implementation process should be directed to some extent. In fact,...

  8. 3 A question of objectives: police co-operation and counter terrorism
    (pp. 54-74)

    In Chapter 2, the overarching declared objectives of the Third Pillar – from the confusion of means and ends at Maastricht to the declared but not fully defined ‘Area of Freedom, Security and Justice’ – were placed under the microscope. While the record in terms of both clarifying and prioritising such metapolicy objectives was uninspiring, it is only part of the overall picture. There is a need to complement such an analysis with a similar examination of the megapolicy objectives in the two specific areas of interest for this volume – counter terrorism, particularly the thorny issue of achieving an agreed and nationally...

  9. 4 A question of commonality
    (pp. 75-101)

    In the TEU, the main features of the new internal security arrangements – including counter terrorism – were labelled as ‘matters of common interest’. While this label has been reproduced in both official and academic analysis on the subject since, there has been little examination of what this term actually means. Although it conjures up connotations of solidarity and shared interests, it remains to be seen whether this is actually the case. By considering both the empirical scale and the nature of the developing terrorist threat, both in terms of more traditional terrorist groups – with secular political aims and objectives – and the...

  10. 5 A question of credibility: legislation, agencies and the implementation gap
    (pp. 102-146)

    The first half of this volume has been primarily concerned with the development of process, in terms of establishing key priorities to guide and shape overall activity, both within JHA more generally and specifically in the fields of counter terrorism and police co-operation, and the nature of the threat posed from a variety of terrorist groups. While, on occasion, specific reference has been made to key outputs of such deliberations, such as the 2002 Framework Decision on Combating Terrorism – which enshrined the first agreed definition of terrorism at an EU level (considered in more depth in Chapter 3) – or the...

  11. 6 A question of credibility: information exchange
    (pp. 147-182)

    Complementing the previous chapter, which looked in specific detail at aspects of the EU’s legislative and operational agency activity, this chapter will consider the area of information exchange, assessing the EU’s attempts to ‘add value’ to preexisting bilateral and multilateral exchanges between member states. Maintaining a comprehensive approach, the chapter will address both the pre-and post-11 September eras, with a particular focus on Europol. Europol is only part of the overarching web of nodes, networks and contact points created in the last fifteen years,¹ attempting to link policing agencies and other ‘competent authorities’ across the EU and wider. There is,...

  12. 7 Looking back, looking forward
    (pp. 183-202)

    Although referring to a different area of EU security co-operation, namely the CFSP, Richard Whitman, in concluding that ‘all the bricks are added together, but they are not structured in a way that bears much weight’,¹ has raised similar concerns to those highlighted in this volume. In considering in a structured fashion the first fifteen years of internal security co-operation, both within the Third Pillar more widely and more specifically in terms of developments in police co-operation and counter terrorism, it is difficult to conclude that the EU has been building thus far on entirely secure foundations. While the overall...

  13. Index
    (pp. 203-206)