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Sunday 11 December 2011
Senior Course 119 Field Study III - France
On 9th December Senior Course visited the "Ecole Militaire" which was the first location of the NATO Defense College in Paris.
Rear Admiral Pascal AUSSEUR, Chief of the EU/NATO/UN Division, French Joint Staff, opened the session providing a valuable insight of the French perspective of the political and military relationship with the EU and highlighting the crucial cooperation with the United Kingdom and with Germany as an historical partner. He also gave a comprehensive explanation of French security and defence policy.
The second presentation was delivered by Rear Admiral Frank BADUEL, Deputy Chief of the Coordination and Planning Centre, French Joint Staff who provided details of ongoing French operational commitments with an emphasis on the Lybia operation. He underlined the importance of the role of the French Chief of Defense Staff as a military-political advisor to the President of the Republic of France and his key role in planning and commanding all overseas operations.
The last briefer was Mr Maxime LEFEBVRE, Chief of the Direction for International Relations of the Administration National School who gave a very interesting historical analysis of French International Relations, underlining the importance of French culture and language, He stressed the key role of France ‘dans la construction de l’Europe’ and provided a detailed and clear view of the pillars of the French foreign policy. He also offered an expert opinion on the changes in French foreign policy made by President SARKOZY.
The visit concluded with a cocktail generously hosted at the Cercle de l’Ecole Militaire, Rotonde Gabriel where the Commandant and Senior Course were warmly welcomed by Major General Jean-Jacques BART, Deputy Chief of International Relations, French Joint Staff. This was a fascinating venue and an excellent opportunity to interact better understand our French colleagues.