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Normative Powers and Military Means: The Study of the EU's Involvement with the FYR Macedonia

Trineke Palm

Have military missions changed the character of the EU's foreign involvement? This study answers this question by empirically assessing the EU's external policy instruments and its pursued objectives in the case of the FYR Macedonia. This way it contributes to the debate between three contrasting theories on how military means will affect the character of the EU's foreign policies: anti-military Normative Power Europe, pro-military Normative Power Europe and Realist Power Europe. The study, on the basis of extensive document analysis, secondary literature and interviews, gives an in-depth account of the EU's involvement with fYROM over time, and concludes that Operation Concordia has not fundamentally changed the character of the EU's involvement with fYROM. With that established, it calls for refinement of existing theories as it, on the one hand, raises doubts on the claim of anti-military Normative Power Europe and Normal Power Europe that military means necessarily indicate a (further) emphasis on the EU's narrow self-interest, while on the other hand, the claim of both types of Normative Power that the EU without military means was a normative power already is criticized as well.

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