The Western European Union: institutional politics between alliance and integration
AbstractThe Western European Union was the product of a debate regarding the best means of securing Europe. Born at the interchange between the two `ideas' of collective defence and European integration, WEU was to be a `hybrid' organisation committed to the support of Alliance and Community throughout its existence. Through a full-life examination of the institution, this thesis demonstrates that WEU was to provide a vehicle for compromise between tensions resultant from divergent perspectives on the desired nature and scope of integration and the form and function of alliance. Evolving and devolving its functions according to the requirements of maintaining the primary organisations of NATO and the EC/EU, WEU's ambiguity as an instrument of alliance and integration enabled it to satisfy diverse interests at the highest point of compromise. A life-span analysis of WEU's role serves to demonstrate its essential and consistent nature, identifying key areas of tension and the means of satisfying them through the development of function. As such, this thesis contributes to the understanding of WEU's role over time, whilst illuminating the causes of tension between states and providing insight into the means of tension resolution. The thesis concludes that WEU was to play a central, if understated and largely unacknowledged, role in the maintenance and adaptation of the European security order.
PublisherUniversity of Wolverhampton
TypeThesis or dissertation
DescriptionA thesis submitted in partial fulfilment of the requirements of the University of Wolverhampton for the degree of Doctor of Philosophy
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