November 3, 2001
European reaction to the War on Terror has been mixed.
@ Britain is proud of its role and achievements, noting that its aerial tanker fleet (second only to the US Air Force's) is playing a key role. Other British aircraft flying in the war include E-3D AWACS, Nimrod-R1 surveillance planes, and Canberra PR9 recon planes. Three British submarines are in the area: HMS Superb, HMS Trafalgar, and HMS Triumph (the last two carry Tomahawk cruise missiles).
@ NATO's Standing Naval Force Mediterranean (seven frigates and a destroyer) has been sent to the eastern Mediterranean.
@ Many European nations have expressed concern that the US may not have the stomach for a serious ground campaign, and could rely on air forces alone as it did in the Kosovo War. Air-Only is generally regarded as an ineffective plan unlikely to bring a resolution to the conflict. If the US expends a lot of firepower and political capital without a recognizable victory, the Europeans are convinced it was a bad idea to launch the war in the first place.
@ Italy has called for the US to declare victory and stop the bombing quickly.
@ France has said it will take part in "selective actions" and will avoid getting "bogged down" in a "quagmire". France has confirmed that the US has asked it to send special forces units into Afghanistan for recon and raid missions, as well as recon aircraft. France has agreed to send some units to the Balkans to relieve US units (aerial radar and medical units) being sent to the Afghan War.
@ The Czech Republic is only one of many European countries where the government is seeking new laws that would allow fighters to shoot down hijacked airliners that posed a direct threat to important ground installations.--Stephen V Cole