Tel. +44 (0)20 7287 4414
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The Bruges Group spearheaded the intellectual battle to win a vote to leave the European Union and, above all, against the emergence of a centralised EU state.
The Bruges Group spearheaded the intellectual battle to win a vote to leave the European Union and, above all, against the emergence of a centralised EU state.

Bruges Group Blog

Spearheading the intellectual battle against the EU. And for new thinking in international affairs.

Think Tanks and Maginot Lines

EU Strategic Funding of Defence and Security Analysts 

This research looks at the EU's strategic funding of defence and security analysts and groups in the UK and more widely across Europe. This has important implications for the debate in the UK over the UK's involvement in the EU's swiftly evolving defence, security and military plans. The alarming reality is that influential groups that have been encouraging the Government to be fellow travellers in these EU schemes, or at least not take issue with them, are funded by Brussels.

Even the most pro-EU analyst would admit that this raises serious risks of dependency that need to be discussed and addressed. Meanwhile, whilst these groups are influencing decision makers from Whitehall officials to members of select committees, MPs are never told of the paymaster link.

This funding is especially important as these policies undermine our foreign and defence policy, undermines the UK's defence industry and diverts important resources from NATO. The EU funding of British organisations that are lobbying for the UK to take part in these EU defence projects may well go some way towards explaining why Theresa May's administration supports these EU military schemes.

Of particular concern is the EU's influence over the Royal United Services Institute (RUSI). This has recently received more than €8 million from Brussels.

Other organisations that have also lobbied for the EU and have received money from Brussels include;
- The Royal Institute of International Affairs, otherwise known as Chatham House.
- International Institute for Strategic Studies (IISS)
- The Centre for European Reform (CER)
- The Foreign Policy Centre
- The Fabian Society.

Those who should be putting Britain's security and defence industry first are acting as proxies for a Brussels takeover. They are taking funds from the EU and pushing its agenda at the heart of government in the UK - essentially taking British taxpayers' money, and using it to subvert Britain's independent defence and foreign policy.


 The Author

Dr Lee Rotherham has been engaged in Brexit prep since before it was fashionable. He has been an adviser to three Shadow Foreign Secretaries, to the Conservative delegate to the Convention that drafted the Lisbon Treaty, to MEPs, a delegate to the Council of Europe, and a range of front benchers. During the referendum, he was Director of Special Projects at Vote Leave. He has been very extensively published by many think tanks, writing on issues across the full spectrum of EU policy.

Lee fought the 2001 General Election as Conservative Candidate in St Helens South - with its infamous butler - and fought the then Europe Minister in Rotherham in 2005.

He has twenty years' service in the Reserves, including three operational deployments and time spent within Whitehall on Defence and Security work. He is Director of the Brexit think tank The Red Cell, is Executive Director of Veterans for Britain, and Chairman of the project to set up a Museum of Sovereignty. He tweets as @DrBrexit

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