Inside Story

Can Europe have a military power of its own?

The war in Ukraine has pushed many countries on the continent into ramping up their defence spending.

Russia’s invasion of Ukraine has triggered several policy shifts across Europe.

Among them, a change in Germany’s military spending.

For more than 30 years, the defence budget has been a low priority for German politicians.

But in the words of German Chancellor Olaf Scholz, Russia’s actions on the continent marked a turning point in how his country views itself in Europe.

Scholz committed to supplying Ukraine with lethal weapons, and in doing so, opened the door for many of its allies to do the same.

Under military agreements, Germany had previously banned the weapons it sold to its partners from being transferred into conflict zones.

And in another historic shift, he said Berlin will increase its military spending to 2 percent of its GDP – more than $111bn – to revive its own military.

But is that enough to counter external threats?

Presenter: Hazem Sika


Maria Avdeeva – Specialist on EU-Ukraine relations and head of research for European Expert Association

Andreas Krieg – Author and senior lecturer in the Defence Studies Department at King’s College London

Theresa Fallon – Director at the Centre for Russia Europe Asia Studies