European Military Space Policy
European nations deal with a complex set of issues in developing space-based intelligence systems. Many of the operational and proposed systems have bilateral information sharing agreements, such as France providing ELINT to its radar MASINT SAR and its IMINT partners. SIGINT capability, however, is fairly rare, with France in the Western European lead.
Quite a number of issues are driving European needs for intelligence policy. During the 1991 Gulf War, France's dependence on US assets convince it that it needed its own, or at least European, space-based intelligence. Balkan operations and both dependence on US assets, and exclusion from certain information, further pushed the desire, although the topmost levels of government had not yet been convinced.
In 1998, a British-French meeting in St. Malo, France, produced a declaration that the EU needed "a capacity for analysis of situations, sources of intelligence, and a capability for relevant strategic planning (emphasis added). This was a major change in British policy toward the EU, in that Britain had wanted the EU to stay out of defense issues, leaving them to NATO. At a 1999 meeting in Cologne, Germany, while Kosovo was being bombed by NATO, the EU leadership repeated the St. Malo declaration, including having EU military forces not dependent on NATO. They also called for " the reinforcement of our capabilities in the field of intelligence/"
Read more about this topic: Signals Intelligence Operational Platforms By Nation, Satellite Platforms
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