EWI Senior Fellow Franz-Stefan Gady spoke at “Fifth Forum of Commanders of European Land Forces” held on September 17-19 in Graz, Austria. Gady presented his research in front of the commanding generals of over 26 European land forces including the commanding general of U.S. Army Europe and the chairman of the European Union Military Committee.
Gady discussed the need for more autonomy and a more flexible composition of European land forces to better meet the manifold new challenges on the modern battlefield. Gady insisted that the main task of European land forces, despite a recent uptick in hybrid threats, has to remain conventional deterrence.
"The bottom line remains that Russia, as well as other near peer competitors to the United States and Europe such as China, seeks to develop full-spectrum military capabilities backed up by nuclear weapons arsenals to underwrite both conventional and nuclear deterrence," said Gady in his remarks. "Consequently, while having to pay some attention to non-military aspects (e.g., disinformation campaigns, the manipulation of democratic elections, etc.), the main task for conventional European land forces against Russia must remain conventional deterrence."