On Monday, member states of the European Union will reach a formal decision as to whether or not the organization will establish a joint command center for future military operations, furthering their efforts toward establishing a joint European military and reducing their reliance on NATO and the militaries of the United States and England.

While members of the EU have tossed about the idea of establishing a joint military force for years, the military annexation of Crimea by Russian forces in 2014 and President Trump’s critical statements about NATO nations failing to live up to their obligations to the alliance have promoted a resurgence in concerns about European defenses, and some real conversations about the future of the continent if the United States were to limit its involvement in NATO operations in the future.

Last December, EU leaders decided that it was imperative that they consider new ways to establish “a permanent operational planning and conduct capability at the strategic level.”  Monday’s vote will permit the twenty-eight EU member nations to cast their ballot in favor or against doing just that, with the creation of a “Military Planning and Conduct Capability (MPCC)” center hanging in the balance.

While the actual effect such a center would have immediately is negligible, the step itself would be symbolic, further dissolving the boundaries between European nations and taking a step further toward reducing the continent’s reliance on the United States.