Merkel calls for a ‘real, true European army

French President Emmanuel Macron welcomes German Chancellor Angela Merkel at the Elysee Palace before the commemoration ceremony for Armistice Day 100 years after the end of World War One

Until now. The calls for an European Union army from President Macron of France and Angela Merkel, the German chancellor, leave little room for doubt.

Merkel's renewed calls for such a force, which were an endorsement of Macron's statements to that effect over the weekend, were met with a mingling of loud applause and boos at a meeting of the European Parliament, German daily Die Welt reported.

"I hope that it will become a matter of course for men and women to share work, child-raising and housework equally and that no one will be forced into a role or a specific task because of his or her gender", said Merkel.

"Europe must take our fate into our own hands if we want to protect our community", she said. She was setting out her vision for the European Union, as a dozen European leaders had already done before her.

Merkel added that the proposal could be run in parallel to trans-Atlantic cooperation within the NATO military alliance, but underscored that "only a stronger Europe is going to defend Europe".

The French and German proposals to create a European army are controversial within North Atlantic Treaty Organisation and the EU, where many member states are reluctant to give up national sovereignty on defense issues.

Invoking a need to act induced by the global financial crisis a decade ago, she added: "I'm not saying "unfortunately we don't have a crisis", but rather "unfortunately the need to change things is not there"."Merkel has made fixing Germany's digital deficiencies a priority for her fourth and nearly certainly final term, saying the country's future prosperity depends on it".

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In her speech, Merkel emphasized that member countries should meet their economic responsibilities in the eurozone.

"No wonder we spend an bad lot on the military", said Social Democratic Party (SPD) leader Andrea Nahles, who also supports the idea for a European Army.

Mr. Trump also used social media to deride Mr. Macron's leadership in France since winning the presidency last May, and the country's history during World War I and World War II.

We should protect ourselves when it comes to China, Russia and even the United States of America.

Merkel very freely explained she is the German Chancellor. European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker was widely criticized after suggesting the creation of a European army; notably by Britain, a staunch ally of the United States.

"The European Project was set up to stop German domination; what you've seen today is a naked takeover bid", he added.

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