On 28 June 2016, after a one-year-long public consultation process, the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy and Vice-President of the European Commission (HRVP) tabled a new European Union Strategy for Foreign and Security Policy (European External Action Service 2016a), replacing the European Security Strategy (ESS) of 2003 (European Council 2003). The first strategy, written by a small team around the EU High Representative, Javier Solana, bore the characteristics of its historical context. It was elaborated during optimism about the Union’s evolution, in the euphoric backwash of the successful introduction of the Euro as common currency and on the eve of the ‘big bang’ enlargement of 2004. A famous and, from today’s perspective, overly confident or even self-congratulatory opening statement set the scene: ‘Europe has never been so prosperous, so secure nor so free. The violence of the first half of the century has given way to a period of peace and stability unprecedented in European history’ (ibid.: 1). With the ESS, Solana and the Council Policy Unit ventured for the first time into strategizing at the level of the EU’s Common Foreign and Security Policy (CFSP) in a globally favourable climate for Europe, and, equally important, before the end of the ‘permissive consensus’ (Norris 1997; Hurrelmann 2007; Hooghe and Marks 2009) within the EU Member States and the negative referenda on the EU Constitution (in France and the Netherlands in 2005) and on the Lisbon Treaty (in Ireland, in 2008). Despite a persisting and heavily debated ‘capabilities-expectations gap’ (Hill 1993) in the realm of the CFSP, it was then quietly assumed that the European model was the ideal to emulate for the 16 neighbouring countries on their way to association with, or even integration into, the Union (Smith 2004; Lavenex 2004; Manners and Whitman 2003).