This study analyzes the debate in Italy on defence matters, with regards to two main themes: international missions and military expenditures. The debate is influenced by five structural factors: the scarce public consideration for the concept of national interest and the potential need for Armed Forces to defend it; the limited Italian experience as a colonial power; the perception of an absence of threats to national security in the post-Cold War era; the impact of the Italian politico-institutional system on defence policy; the effect of the international and particularly transatlantic context. In the debate, Italy's participation in international missions is often presented by emphasizing the humanitarian tasks over the combat ones. Military expenditures are debated mainly in light of budgetary considerations, because of the austerity measures, rather than in relation with defence policy goals. Many actors participate in different ways to the debate, including but not limited to institutional and political ones.
Study produced within the framework of the project "Defence Matters", with the support of NATO Public Diplomacy Division.
See also the revised and updated English version: The Italian Debate on Defence Matters, 15 November 2013 (Documenti IAI 1307).
1. I fattori strutturali che influenzano il dibattito
2. L’andamento del dibattito sulle missioni internazionali
3. L’andamento del dibattito sull’acquisizione degli F-35
4. I punti deboli del dibattito italiano sulla difesa
5. I soggetti che partecipano al dibattito
1. Partiti politici
2. Ministro della Difesa e ministro degli Esteri
3. Presidente del Consiglio dei ministri
4. Presidente della Repubblica
5. Forze armate
6. Movimenti pacifisti
7. Chiesa cattolica
8. Industria della difesa