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Anglo-German intelligence relations and Brexit

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)95-99
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Intelligence History
Issue number2
Early online date8 Jun 2017
Accepted/In press1 May 2017
E-pub ahead of print8 Jun 2017

King's Authors


Security and intelligence matter to the state; they also matter to theEuropean Union (EU). Germany is a driving force behind the EU,which most naturally also includes support of EU security policy andinstitutions. However, there is also a long-standing bilateral traditionbetween the United Kingdom (UK) and Germany in this regard.Anglo-German intelligence and security relations have seen manyups and downs, but at the end of the day they have always provento be effective in the right moment, withstanding political crisis.Brexit means that the UK will be leaving the EU but not Europe– a simple fact often ignored in heated discussions. The UK willcontinue to share European security interests; she has to. Havingsaid that, the current paper argues that current threats to nationaland EU security can in fact have soothing effect amid politicalturmoil around Brexit. The underlying argument is that commonstrategic interest is likely to lead to a cool-headed pragmaticapproach. Intelligence and security relations, liaison and sharing,should, after all, continue to exist and not severely be affected byBrexit. It remains to be seen whether the UK will stay a permanentmember of the respective EU security institutions; however, evenif technically the answer is no, some sort of arrangement ensuringconstant exchange is highly likely. This, after all, leads to theconclusion that from the Anglo-German intelligence and securitypoint of view Brexit will not be a very dramatic affair.

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