Document Type



This Article examines the historical evolution of the Western European Union (WEU) within the context of its relationship to NATO and to the European Union (EU) in order to explain Europe's failure to devise and implement collective security measures during the dissolution of Yugoslavia. This Article concludes that, under the limitations of its present legal and political framework, the WEU is not a realistic alternative to NATO in the "post-post-Cold War era" and that continued failure to craft a European defense identity and to meld it to effective European security institutions will prevent the EU from generating cohesive force in international relations and, ultimately, will threaten the project of European integration.