SDA Discussion Paper

“Re-launching NATO, or just re-branding it?”

SECURITY & DEFENCE AG ENDA

A Security & Defence Agenda Discussion Paper Editor: Giles Merritt Coordinator: Pauline Massart Credits: NATO

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SECURITY & DEFENCE AG ENDA

SDA Discussion Paper

“Re-launching NATO, or just re-branding it?”

CONTENTS
Introduction Giles Merritt NATO at Sixty Ilana Bet-El NATO and the Muslim World Pascal Boniface An unbalanced partnership Edgar Buckley NATO, the EU and the New U.S. Administration Alain De Nève and Pieter-Jan Parrein p.4 p.6 p.8 p.10 p.12

Making NATO’s comprehensive approach work: Ensuring interoperability between defence and security systems and actors Thomas Gottschild p.15 NATO’s core purpose Joylon Howorth Factors shaping the future of NATO-ESDP relations Nik Hynek and Vit Stritecky As goes the West, so goes NATO Soeren Kern NATO’s “Whack-a-Mole” World Daniel Korski NATO and a new security agreement Fyodor Lukyanov Let change come to NATO Jacques Rosiers p.17 p.19 p.21 p.23 p.25 p.27

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SECURITY & DEFENCE AG ENDA

and emphasises the need for clarification of how the Allies can most effectively cooperate with non-Alliance actors. including France’s return to NATO’s military command. NATO now faces a host of new security challenges. Alain De Neve and Pieter-Jan Parrein of the Belgian Royal Institute for Defence highlight the EU’s need to become a more credible partner in transatlantic security and stress the In this Security and Defence Agenda discussion paper. No longer tasked exclusively with transatlantic security. brings to light the importance of interoperability for military. consensus. the relationship between NATO and European security and defence policy (ESDP). questions the European commitment to the current ISAF mission in Afghanistan and advocates a reinvigorated transatlantic relationship based on equal burden-sharing. Director of the Institute for International and Strategic Relations (IRIS). sees NATO’s future relationship with the Muslim world as its most pressing challenge and calls for a broader strategic vision within the Alliance. Edgar Buckley. and the Obama Administration’s own security and defence agenda. Op-Ed editor of the European Voice. Pascal Boniface. entitled “Re-launching NATO. Thomas Gottschild. NATO and European Cooperation at Thales. or just re-branding it?” Introduction by Giles Merritt ATO’s 60th anniversary summit sought to redefine the Alliance’s strategic concept and determine NATO’s role in the post-Cold War world. looks at the non-traditional threats faced by NATO today. Page 4 SECURITY & DEFENCE AG ENDA . and what sort of a role the Alliance should play in the coming years.“Re-launching NATO. The major questions are precisely which security challenges fall under the auspices of NATO. Director for EU Defence Policy and NATO at EADS. police and civilian staff. or just re-branding questions it?” over experts NATO’s tackle new critical strategic importance of dialogue amongst all involved parties. Ilana Bet-El. Senior Vice President for Defence and Security for EU.

SDA Discussion Paper Jolyon Howorth. and Britain’s Turkish strategic europersistent Anders Fogh Rasmussen. outline their thoughts on France’s reentry into NATO. President of Belgium’s EuroAtlantic Association sees France’s return to the NATO military command as a catalyst for redefining the Alliance’s strategic concept. calls for a change in NATO’s functions and focus. Editor of Russia in Global Affairs. Senior Fellow for Transatlantic Relations at the Madrid-based Grupo de Estudios Estratégicos says that NATO needs not just a new strategic concept but a new legitimising ideology. question Obama’s commitment to NATO and compare NATO member states’ views on strategic consensus. Visiting Professor at Yale University. Soeren Kern. Senior Policy Fellow at the European Council on Foreign Relations. Nik Hynek and Vit Stritecky. Jacques Rosiers. Although NATO’s core purpose remains collective security. Giles Merritt Director SECURITY & DEFENCE AGENDA Page 5 SECURITY & DEFENCE AG ENDA . tackles what he believes to be the three main challenges to the progress of the Alliance: German aloofness. Fyodor Lukyanov. scepticism. Research Fellows at the Prague Institute of International Relations. Daniel Korski. points to what he describes as NATO’s lack of internal coherence and also examines the controversy he claims surrounded the appointment of its new Secretary General unilateralism. Howorth argues that its core business has become crisis management.

but the problem has already spilled over into Pakistan. be the event upon which its permanence is ensured. This is a somewhat curious situation given that NATO’s mission in Afghanistan.“Re-launching NATO. and due to the chronology of action by the US post 9/11. are all industrial in nature – but its enemies. amassing capabilities becomes increasingly complex. It is a core mismatch that is far from being resolved – especially in Europe in which many states have an aversion to the use of During the Cold War there were no doubts or divisions over strategy or vision: the enemy was clear (the Warsaw Pact). or purpose. The enemy is now an ever changing array of “non-state actors”. nor can the attacks on Madrid or London be seen as a threat to Spain or the UK. militants and just plain criminals. is its biggest ever: this could. leadership obvious (the US). and the Page 6 SECURITY & DEFENCE AG ENDA . Created for a specific event and purpose – the Cold War – the alliance has lived on another twenty years. threats and conflicts are those of wars amongst the people. Under current circumstances. For this is not intended as a drafting exercise in long term planning. Then there is the matter of a new “strategic consensus” – which is an apt but painful choice of term. that will make it relevant – and permanent. NATO as an alliance. yet there is an evergrowing impression that it could actually be the one that buries the alliance if it does not do better there. or should. It is a constant threat. The threat posed by these enemies is also of a different nature: it is to the security of our people. Al Qaeda did not destroy the US by the horrors of 9/11. but rather as an attempt – possibly a final one – to deal with a fundamental issue that has dogged NATO since the end of the Cold War: the absence of an agreed vision for the alliance amongst its members. and elsewhere around the globe there is potential for ever more conflicts of this kind. NATO is fighting these enemies in Afghanistan. the threat absolute (nuclear war). With intangible threats and non-state enemies who more or less by definition do not fight with a regular army. and as such is a more difficult sell to civilian populations. ISAF. but far less tangible than the absolute one of nuclear annihilation. None of these four basic issues are clear cut today. not our states. from terrorists to insurgents. or just re-branding it?” NATO at Sixty By Ilana Bet-El ATO’s sixtieth anniversary reflects the old dictum that there is nothing more permanent than a temporary structure. yet it still seems to be in search of the event. and the militaries of its member states. the capability and commitment unquestioned (mass industrial armies maintained by all member states).

there may be a basis for a new strategic consensus in NATO – which is a necessary first step towards addressing the four core issues of the alliance. and an allocation labour organizations. Finally. President of France. © NATO Page 7 SECURITY & DEFENCE AG ENDA . the EU or a single state. If this happens. it.SDA Discussion Paper force. regardless of whether it is wielded by NATO. it is unclear who or what the current leadership is. NATO Secretary General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer and Nicolas Sarkozy. but it will enable a properly orchestrated European caucus within Ilana Bet-El is Op-Ed editor of the European Voice. To this end it is of crucial importance that France has fully recommitted to NATO – and pledged to do so within the context of a full EU defence capability. April 2009. it is no longer the case that the US is the undisputed leader of the alliance – however. France will not lead the alliance. at the Strasbourg/Kehl Summit. and therefore of a proper between and the more two substantiated dialogue with the US.

“Re-launching NATO. These will probably be managed without useless dramatisation. Of course. NATO and the ESDP will increasingly work hand in hand. such as: is NATO the most convenient Western structure to deal with the Muslim world? Are there no risks in giving a military response to a very sensitive. There are still a few debates to be held. For example. Obama has accepted not to make a case concerning the incapacity or unwillingness of European countries to send additional troops to Afghanistan. what should its role be regarding this peerless strategic challenge? designation of a new secretary general (Turkey lifting its veto on Rasmussen). The new strategy (a more civilian-oriented approach) is not certain to prevail but the previous one Page 8 SECURITY & DEFENCE AG ENDA . In the near future. Usual sources of dispute among members seem to be under control. Ben Laden and others who want to set fellow Muslims against the Western world do so by emphasizing the "double standard factor". The future of NATO is at stake in Afghanistan. NATO is the military alliance that brings most Western countries together. it is obvious that a large part of the Muslim world’s anger at the West is linked to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and to a strong feeling of a policy biased by a pro-Israeli approach. It is better to agree to disagree and hopefully the “either with us or against us” attitude is over. or just re-branding it?” NATO and the Muslim World By Pascal Boniface he NATO summit has been widely seen as a success: a new and popular American president without (a welcome among change). public (no and the reintegration of France into military structures opposition on opinion public the (largely due to the Obama factor). Addressing the way to deal with radical Islam in NATO’s future Strategic Concept will also raise a few questions depending on how terrorism is tackled. a large consensus transatlantic every point misunderstandings). Obama is by conviction and self-interest a multilateralist. The most important challenge for the Western world is the future of its relationship with the Muslim world. Wisely. (which sought military victory mostly through military tools) was a recipe for defeat. political challenge? Is there not a risk for a collective defence body to appear aggressive? The risk is for NATO to scrutinise the effects of the problem and to look to its roots. Therefore. disagreements and contradictory interests will emerge from time to time between some European members and the USA. Will it only propose a security-based approach – according to which the way to fight terrorists and potential terrorists It would be wrong to think that NATO has entered into an era of clear skies.

intelligence some Arabs are fighting us for what we are. police cooperation and military tools – or will it also encompass a political answer – the goal of which is to limit the attractiveness of radical Islamism. it should have a broader vision of strategic affairs emphasizing political aspects. or if we should understand its roots beforehand.SDA Discussion Paper requires judicial cooperation. If NATO wants to deal adequately with this challenge. Why is there more terrorism now in the Arab world than two or three decades ago? While Pascal Boniface is Director of the Paris-based Institute for International and Strategic Relations (IRIS). The core of the debate is to decide whether we think of terrorism as something which cannot be explained and must be blindly fought. many others are fighting for what we have done or what we are doing. Page 9 SECURITY & DEFENCE AG ENDA . gathering.

fundamentally reshaping the U. NATO’s main military tasks remain non-Article 5 crisis response operations.” This is not the way to build up Afghan resistance to the Taliban and Al Qaida. French reintegration and the accession of Croatia and Albania showed that NATO remains central to our security. they will be asking what America is getting in return for its guarantee of our security. as we saw at the Summit. But the notion of true partnership between Europe and North America is no longer valid today. We see ourselves and our leaders as nearly equal partners in a transatlantic Alliance which has preponderant power and can determine security outcomes around the world. Defense Secretary Robert Gates’ budget briefing speech. He left with only assurances and temporary easements. According to one anonymous European diplomat at Strasbourg: “No one will say this publicly. but in U. Europeans for the most part have neither the means nor the will to back up their commitments in Afghanistan. NATO crystallises that view. This is not the mindset which made NATO the most successful alliance in history. It may take a couple of years. it was hard to discern any notion of common responsibility. Article 5 alone will not sustain it. whose Declaration on Alliance Security offered little new.S. Obama arrived in Strasbourg with a simple agenda: explain his new strategy and persuade the Europeans to join the United States in committing more resources there. but the true fact is that we are all talking about our exit strategy …. Its credibility depends President upon success in Afghanistan. The most important strategic initiative this year came not from NATO.S. differences over the choice of a new Secretary General were resolved. analysts in Washington will undoubtedly have concluded that any additional heavy lifting in Afghanistan will have to be done by the United States or by close Allies with stronger bilateral ties. It must be a community of security interest and common values or it is SECURITY & DEFENCE AG ENDA . defence programme to match short and long-term security priorities. Strasbourg/ Kehl was a success. Despite the angst about NATO’s territorial security following the Georgia conflict. or just re-branding it?” An unbalanced partnership By Edgar Buckley uropeans still tend to overestimate their role and importance in global security. Seen through most European eyes. Page 10 But NATO must be useful or it will wither. but we are all looking to get out. Gates gave a better indication of the radicalism NATO needs to adjust to its new environment. It is the privileged forum for security discussion with the world’s superpower. An incoming President confirmed continued US engagement.“Re-launching NATO.

SDA Discussion Paper nothing. The “Obama effect” at Strasbourg/Kehl was welcome and necessary but it was not sufficient. We need a stronger transatlantic partnership based on more equal commitment. even over the long haul. The alternative is a progressive unravelling which will leave Europe dangerously exposed. President of the United States. and with the EU and European defence. at the Strasbourg/Kehl Summit. Edgar Buckley is Senior Vice President for Defence and Security for EU. with his counterparts and NATO Secretary General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer. It must have real capabilities attuned to today’s challenges and the will to use them. Barack Obama. must share burdens and hold its members to account when they fall short of common expectations. It must engage with its It members’ civil as well as military resources. It must have the strength and determination to succeed in what it embarks upon. NATO and European Cooperation at Thales. © NATO Page 11 SECURITY & DEFENCE AG ENDA .

ever since.“Re-launching NATO. September 11th halted the debates about the choice between a local and a global NATO. For example.S. drug trafficking) and the growth of domestic instability with an impact on regional security (Central Asia. the presidential campaign’s document entitled Barak Obama Page 12 SECURITY & DEFENCE AG ENDA . During the Cold War NATO was there to defend a free Europe. the development of criminalised types of war (piracy. hopes of a more mature relationship between the EU and the U. The NATO and EU process came together in an enlightened Europe that saw itself as an example to the rest of the world. in the nineties NATO was there to help contain threats like ethnic violence and nationalism. A local NATO would have remained focused on Europe.” How the new President Barak Obama will leave his political footprint on the agenda of the Alliance remains unclear. U. the EU and the New US Administration By Alain De Nève and Pieter-Jan Parrein lthough the Strasbourg/Kehl NATO’s new Summit and Joe Biden on Defense Issues is very elusive on NATO’s place in world politics. Far from having realised a radical break from the past. more capable European defense capacity. or just re-branding it?” NATO. the brand new Obama Administration has taken pragmatic steps to confirm changes that were in fact initiated one year ago by the Bush Administration. still have to be confirmed. it has become clear that Washington shifted its traditionally sceptical view of ESDP to point out the need for “a stronger.S. Huge challenges remain to be addressed and differences between allies’ strategic postures are still to be resolved. Horn of Africa and Sub-Saharan Africa). At the same time NATO made it possible to protect Europe from external security challenges. The possible emergence of a true two-pillar NATO with the EU as an equal partner alongside the US has been much debated. Though his apparent firm resolution to anchor US foreign policy in a new relationship within NATO seems to offer European allies some guarantees about American engagement (see A Stronger Partnership with Europe for a Safer America). However. NATO is only mentioned once in the document. at the London School of Economics on 25 February 2008. confirmed orientation. we have to ask ourselves if this is not European wishful thinking and a way to stay in the centre of gravity . Ambassador to NATO at the time. other signs invite us to be more cautious about US investment in European security affairs. This allowed reconciliation in Europe to be formalised and perpetuated through the EU.or perhaps attention . A global NATO would address the rise of both emergent and resurgent powers (with a new era of competition). One must remember the famous speech made by Victoria Nuland.of a NATO that is sliding away from the European dimension.

Besides them NATO will also need regional partners if it wants to confirm itself as a true global organization. precision-guided weapon systems and unmanned platforms with an increasing radius of operation. it is difficult when people are reluctant to engage in dialogue or for whom dialogue occurs without tangible results. Meanwhile. However. as the US military is pursuing the development of stand-off. the way in which NATO could be used in the near future. the EU has clearly demonstrated its desire to play a constructive role outside its ‘bubble of Page 13 Afghanistan will test NATO’s transformative capacities and will give some indications about SECURITY & DEFENCE AG ENDA . Washington could be tempted to focus exclusively on rapid and strictly defined high intensity operations abroad – in other words. The problem is that although dialogue and soft power are. NATO will pursue its renovation by developing into a network in which the European Allies are nonetheless only one pillar with. ethically speaking. NATO’s European militaries have developed critical skills in the fields of post-conflict reconstruction. preferable to (military) coercion and hard power. transformation. In such a systemic approach to strategy.SDA Discussion Paper Given its strategic culture and the legacies of the Cold War era. NATO will have to cope with two At main the processes operational of level. humanitarian aid and police missions. next to them. At the political level. before the threat reaches the American homeland (a lesson learned from the 9/11 terrorist attacks). Such a division of labour between the US and EU inside NATO could be a means to address the old transatlantic burden-sharing issue. follow the security agenda of Washington only. while maintaining a polite dialogue with the Europeans. Since the implementation of ESDP. NATO would be deemed both as a force toolbox at an operational level. especially in COIN contingencies. partners (PfP) and friends (the contact countries). Though these kinds of assets will prove to be useful for a global NATO. the EU will offer the international system a political model based on dialogue and mutual exchange. the US has developed some specific military capacities mainly dedicated to forces-to-forces contingencies. However it could be argued that European armies appear to be relegated to troop suppliers. In such a view. The difficulty for Europe to confirm itself as a credible partner in managing the world has led some observers to speculate about the possibility of a NATO shift away from Europe to In the coming decades. they must be complemented with other kinds of military capacities and competencies. and as a partners network at a political level.

The EU has shown its will to become a real partner with the US but it must still develop credible military capacities to fulfil a global mission. Alain De Nève and Lieutenant Pieter-Jan Parrein are researchers at the Belgian Royal High Institute for Defence. Page 14 SECURITY & DEFENCE AG ENDA . or just re-branding it?” peace’. not only inside NATO but in cooperation with regional and international partners.“Re-launching NATO. As such the EU and Europe can do more than only “the dishes”.

for a successful translation of the comprehensive approach into practice. Here. Since then. or the other way around. A transparent division of labour is needed between the different actors with a focus on pooling resources and making use of specific expertise and synergy effects. military. governance and the rule of law in a concerted and coordinated way.SDA Discussion Paper Making NATO’s comprehensive approach work Ensuring interoperability between defence and security systems and actors By Thomas Gottschild t is widely accepted that longer-term governmental organisations. besides the political will of all NATO member states. Hence. these efforts resulted in the tasking of the NATO Council to facilitate the implementation of the corresponding Action Plan as devised at the Bucharest Summit. including governmental and non- Until now. NATO urgently needs to focus more deeply on how the Alliance is going to shape its relations with partners. integrated civilmilitary crisis management and well-organized post-conflict reconstruction and peacebuilding. When it comes to the latter. be it the EU. reconstruction and development. At the Strasburg/Kehl Summit in April 2009. as well as with local actors in the field. the Alliance is in need of better and more adequate capabilities to ensure interoperability between defence and security systems. NATO's new strategic concept should NATO acknowledged this principle during the Riga Summit. the UN or a group of nations. This is especially relevant in times of scarce resources. NATO should concentrate on its military added value and work out how it will be capable of “plug and play” with the other actors in the field. To this end. police and civilian staff are not equipped with interoperable command. when it adopted the Comprehensive Approach as a basic concept for the Alliance’s crisis response operations in 2006. important steps have been taken towards of reaching the a common defining understanding concept. security and stability can only be achieved by effective conflict prevention. regional and local actors is needed. bringing together military assets. a high degree of collaboration between the different international. NATO should focus particularly on how it will more effectively manage the transition from a military mission to a civilian-dominated mission. doctrines and implementing procedures. However. To this end. humanitarian assistance. control and communications systems and often do not even have compatible radio systems. the existing tools and dses Page 15 SECURITY & DEFENCE AG ENDA . address both traditional Alliance defence and crisis response operations in conjunction with the comprehensive approach. national.

capabilities to be compatible with other actors. systems to protect the hard won gains of its military operation.“Re-launching NATO. these capabilities are also a solid foundation for a successful transition from a crisis to longer term stability and security. should clarify how the Alliance will in the future interact and cooperate with non-Alliance actors and how it can adjust its concepts. or just re-branding it?” However. Hence. would support such a shift. it is vital that military and civilian actors are able to communicate and coordinate. Page 16 SECURITY & DEFENCE AG ENDA . both sides should benefit from the existing tools and databases already deployed and should contribute to an improved situational awareness. NATO’s new strategic concept Therefore. beyond the military importance of C4ISR. This is especially relevant to better exploit synergies between the European Security and Defence Policy (ESDP) and NATO. In summary. the joint utilisation of professional mobile radios. which are already widely used in NATO Member States. most importantly. during the transition of missions and beyond. processes and. it is essential that NATO invests in these capabilities ensuring the interoperability between defence and security Thomas Gottschild is Director for EU Defence Policy and NATO at EADS. In addition. Consequently.

Of course. since its fortieth birthday. even more than at the height of the Cold War. NATO has changed beyond all recognition in two important ways. In any future conflict within the Euro-Atlantic area. has demonstrated – both highly divisive and relatively ineffective.SDA Discussion Paper NATO’s core purpose By Jolyon Howorth cursory reading of Summit the NATO nervousness we have recently witnessed from the newer member states suggests that. many argued. it is not clear whether even the 1949 message is still valid. and it remained valid throughout the Cold War. One main purpose of the growth of ESDP is precisely to move towards a situation where the US no longer needs concern itself with stability in Europe. Firstly. the United States would be engaged from day one. from The truth is that. by “going global” – the alternative. given much of the re-posturing of forces which has taken place since the 1990s. the real value of article 5 is in the believing rather than in the enacting. No longer designed to guarantee American commitment to European security. the more one is forced to ask the question: what exactly is the Alliance’s core purpose in 2009? In 1949. NATO looks more and more (at least to many Europeans) like it is intended to drum up European support for US global strategy. its core business has become crisis management and collective Page 17 SECURITY & DEFENCE AG ENDA . The reality is that there is no political consensus within the Alliance to underpin such a project. to ranging training from the war in Afghanistan cooperation. either within or (especially) outside the Euro-Atlantic area. its first test. All of these activities are vitally important. but it is – as Afghanistan. from arms control to concerns about the “High North”. to “going out of business” – the Alliance has turned its initial raison d’être on its head. and that reality will only worsen with any further enlargement. Strasbourg/Kehl Declaration cannot fail to give the impression that the Alliance is indeed “busier than ever”. Although NATO’s core purpose remains (for the vast majority of its member states) collective defence. This has proven to be increasingly the case as NATO has enlarged geographically. But some of the The second change has to do with functional focus. Mediterranean dialogue to missile defence. there is no equivalent message. but the more one delves into the sub-text. This is a perfectly valid objective. Today. the key message behind the North Atlantic Treaty was crystal clear. That was a vitally important strategic message. Indeed. Article 5 still binds the 28 member states together in existential embrace. The list of its activities covers no fewer than sixtytwo articles. both in Europe and in the US.

continued exclusion from the integrated command had become a serious liability. for whom John Howorth is Visiting Professor of Political Science at the University of Yale. But its different member states understand that mission in very different ways – and they act accordingly. Page 18 SECURITY & DEFENCE AG ENDA . it could well prove to be something of a Trojan Horse. The aim of reintegration is to exercise influence from the inside. which has been in suspended animation ever since 11 September 2001. is unlikely to generate a document featuring lucid prose. Militarily. there is no consensus on what that means in practice. What is certain is that the conversation over the future course of NATO is now set to become much more animated. The Alliance is present in Afghanistan in part because that mission was perceived as an Article 5 mission.“Re-launching NATO. France. it is clearly the return of the prodigal son. Yet here again. It is not at all clear whether there would be a consensus for crisis management missions in any of the other world hot spots. at least since the end of the Cold War. Whatever neo-Gaullists and their socialist disciples may think. The debate on a “new strategic concept”. But politically. France’s return to the fold has entailed two potentially contradictory processes. exercised zero influence over the Alliance from the outside. Whether that will prove to be the case remains to be seen. or just re-branding it?” security.

Page 19 SECURITY & DEFENCE AG ENDA Barack Obama. Although for very different reasons than under George W. there has been no link between rejoining NATO fully and the focus of ESDP. even though political tensions can be expected to persist for the foreseeable future. when still a presidential candidate. France has hinted that NATO and ESDP are complementary enterprises. created expectations that the U. one needs to critically examine the basic premise implied by the question. France has long relied on its own autonomous deterrence strategy against rogue states. Obama has used NATO only to pressure the allies into contributing more troops to the mission (to reinforce the US’s surge strategy). Not only did France help to forge the consensus view on the decision.e. To re-join NATO fully. . To begin with. underestimate the role and strategic importance of NATO. What is crucial in terms of interpreting Obama the president is to distinguish between two ever more distant levels: rhetoric and practice. and a good example is the future plan to link NATO’s Active Layered Theatre Ballistic Missile Defence programme (ALTBMD) with that of the U. Two issues clearly show that Obama may To answer the question of whether or not NATO-ESDP political tensions ended even before France’s return to NATO. Afghanistan and the triangular issue of the relationship with Russia within the context of nuclear arms-control and missile defence. In Afghanistan.S. In none of these has NATO been the primary or relevant platform for strategic planning.SDA Discussion Paper Factors shaping the future of NATO-ESDP relations By Nik Hynek and Vit Stritecky rance’s return to full membership of NATO is important. to be found in the Bucharest Declaration of 2008. under his leadership would promote a new round of multilateralism in the security domain. French President Nicolas Sarkozy has been trying to create an improving political relationship with the US after the disastrous Chirac era. the zero-sum relationship between NATO and ESDP. while its position within NATO has been considerably overestimated. but it is unlikely to be the catalyst for the Alliance’s long-awaited new “strategic consensus”. So far as the strategic dimension is concerned.S. but our understanding of the relationship between France’s membership of NATO and ESDP is that they are complementary. mainly resulting from policies left-over from the De Gaulle era. but it did so despite having traditionally disagreed with such a strategy. Ballistic Missile Defense (USBMD). There can be no doubts that France has long punched above its weight within ESDP. i. France has been much more pragmatic within NATO than is generally realised.

or just re-branding it?” Bush (freeing hands for Iraq). three new member states Poland (the New Atlanticist). As for the triangular issue. So the Rumsfeldian distinction of the New versus Old Europe is not the most productive lens. the Czech Republic (the Flexible Pragmatic) and Slovakia (the Unpredictable Trouble-Maker as the issue of missile defence suggests). without being able to shape US strategic thinking. without consulting the Czech Republic or Poland. Strategic disputes tend to be issue-specific. Germany and the UK do not – as one might expect of three major countries with different strategic cultures and preferences – Nik Hynek and Vit Stritecky are Research Fellows at the Prague Institute of International Relations.“Re-launching NATO. smacks of strategic condominium. Obama has consistently preferred to work bilaterally with Russia. However. share the same view of a new strategic consensus for NATO with NATO’s new member states. often without any consultation of the allies. also have very different views of a strategic consensus. NATO’s role has once again been relegated to that of an executive agency. the idea of Obama’s letter to Russia’s President Medvedev. Page 20 SECURITY & DEFENCE AG ENDA . Surprisingly. making any generalisations difficult. in which the issue of missile defence was used as a bargaining chip to bring Russia closer to the idea of nuclear arms-control and disarmament. France.

This post-Cold War. Europe and the United States are now incapable of agreeing upon even the most basic strategic priorities. much less engage. came to epitomize the larger question of establishing the borders of Western civilisation. the steady increase in immigration from nonWestern countries has led to the rise of multicultural ideologies which at the core are hostile to the idea of Western civilisation. The abandonment of Western civilisation by its strongest defenders. The end of the West has also had major negative consequences for NATO. combined with important shifts in the transatlantic balance of power. Western civilisation seem too narrow. the rise of deconstructionism and postmodern philosophy especially displaced as it the core to intellectual and spiritual base of Western civilisation. strategic threats. because it has deprived the Atlantic Page 21 But somewhere along the way. that is to say. pertains Christianity. the spread of economic interests throughout Asia and Latin America. the West stopped believing in the idea of Western civilisation. in the throes of a profound identity crisis. the West is now essentially postWestern.SDA Discussion Paper As Goes the West. And in both America and Europe. The issue of enlarging NATO. In the United States. NATO’s original raison d’être was nothing less than the defence of Western civilisation against what was at that time portrayed as Eastern tyranny. however. In Europe. And NATO evolved from its origins as a defensive alliance to become part of an offensive vanguard that sought to spread the ideals of Western civilisation. post-Western West is. its founding vision involved more than just the defence of Europe and America against the Soviet Union. made the concept of SECURITY & DEFENCE AG ENDA . both morally and intellectually. So Goes NATO By Soeren Kern ATO has always been more than just a traditional military alliance because it has always been about more than just traditional military security. the ensuing decades of the Cold War clarified and crystallised the political and intellectual division between the West and the East. When the Atlantic Alliance was established 60 years ago. for example. outside of the boundaries of the West. If anything. They remain unable to define. It is weak and divided. to other parts of the world. has contributed to a fundamental breakdown of the Euro-Atlantic security order. such as political freedom and democratic capitalism. much less defend its values and face up to the challenges that threaten its way of life. As a result. It was much bigger and far more compelling than that. It is in crisis. It is adrift and unable (and seemingly unwilling) to define.

NATO has been primarily at the mercy of bureaucratic momentum.“Re-launching NATO. which is why it generates so little enthusiasm and political support from European and American citizens. Since the end of the Cold War. and NATO in particular. Historically. a grand overarching vision that clearly and effectively confronts the grim security realities the world now faces. At transatlantic summit after transatlantic summit. Soeren Kern is Senior Fellow for Transatlantic Relations at the Madrid-based Grupo de Estudios Estratégicos (GEES). the West has not been given to fatalism and a good step in the right direction would be to confidently and articulately reaffirm support for the timehonoured values and principles of Western civilisation. European and American political leaders seem content to paper over problems instead of solving them. will remain an open question. or just re-branding it?” Alliance of its main legitimising mission. Still missing at this historical crossroads is leadership that is up to the task of turning vision into reality. If NATO is to survive another 60 years. Page 22 SECURITY & DEFENCE AG ENDA . Otherwise the future of transatlantic relations in general. it needs more than just a new Strategic Concept. It needs to conceptualise a new legitimising idea.

Turkey’s strategic detachment and Britain’s persistent Euro-scepticism.the engine of military transformation .the French military has led NATO’s KFOR mission in Kosovo on several occasions –. For even though France has participated in NATO military operations since the mid-1990s –. prevent NATO from moving into areas that Paris thought properly belonged to the EU. neither the Page 23 SECURITY & DEFENCE AG ENDA . 60-year overcomes long-standing problems it faces at least three new and potentially even more intractable challenges: Germany’s dovish unilateralism. it has been replaced by a potentially even more damaging German “Nein” in at least two policy areas. be underestimated (even if it is a lot less dramatic than most French people seem to believe).and become a goad for NATO reform. The brouhaha As typified the NATO’s old current alliance dilemma. Though it has deployed almost 5. France’s role looks more bad than good. This is now likely to change.000 troops.SDA Discussion Paper NATO’s “Whack-a-Mole” World By Daniel Korski hen Nicolas Sarkozy and Angela Merkel joined hands across the Passerelle des Deux Rives. Forging effective policies towards Europe’s large eastern neighbor is therefore very difficult. the event was almost ruined by the problematic appointment of Jaap de Hoop Scheffer’s successor as NATO Secretary-General. Until the last minute. In each one of these. Berlin prevents its soldiers from moving as freely as necessary amongst the population even though they patrol the quietest part of Afghanistan. France’s re-entry into NATO should not. Whatever NATO Russia does. of course. In the end. Equally important has been Germany’s relationship with NATO’s Afghan mission. Sending Germans to the insurgency-racked south is out of the question and Berlin resists many of the reforms necessary to make the alliance capable of counter-insurgency operations. with France expected to be given command of Allied Command Transformation . With a general election this autumn. however. the gesture was meant to underline the importance of France’s full re-entry into NATO. Germany seems unwilling to confront Moscow.French diplomats reserved the right to slow down NATO decision-making and Part of this is down to electoral timing. But though the French “Non” has disappeared. Turkey threatened to veto Danish Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen. which crosses the Rhine between Strasbourg and Kehl. Berlin regards friendly relations with Russia as key.

“Re-launching NATO. prospect because of France’s opposition to its membership. argues: “Germany has become more unilateral in an incremental and unconscious way rather than as a result of any plan. slated for spring 2010. In many ways. Britain has not changed its sceptical position. intentions to "enter" the Black Sea. This time. Ankara joined Russia at the height of its war on Georgia in suggesting a "Caucasus Stability and Cooperation Platform". Paradoxically. SECURITY & DEFENCE AG ENDA .” The reportedly bad personal chemistry between Angela Merkel and Nicolas Sarkozy has done little to move Germany’s debate. But alliance politics is beginning to look like the fairground game of Whack-a-Mole: bash down one mole and another pops up elsewhere. Daniel Korski is Senior Policy Fellow at the European Council on Foreign Relations. If Germany’s unilateralism weren’t a problem enough. It should also be seen in the light of Turkey’s move towards a kind of non-aligned status. Turkish officials have been expressing concern about U. Britain is likely to become increasingly euro-sceptic (possibly even more than the Major government). But despite having the most pro-European foreign and defence ministers for decades. Ankara’s threat to veto Anders Fogh Rasmussen’s appointment as NATO chief was not only about the Danish cartoon crisis and the potential impact on East-West relations. and has hosted Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmedinejad and Sudan's Omar al-Bashir. in all three areas France’s role is problematic. Nicolas Sarkozy’s open championing of ESDP awakens basic British fears. three have popped up at once. who leads the Center for European Reform. As Charles Grant. which saw European leaders agree on modest institutional ESDP innovations. Should the Conservative Party win the next general election. the Labour government has not moved beyond the Hampton Court “baseline”. In other words. or just re-branding it?” Christian Democrats nor the Social Democrats are willing to take bold steps. France’s reentry into NATO’s military structures was meant to pave the way for the further development of ESDP and a consequent improvement in NATO-ESDP relations. NATO is now wracked by Turkey’s increasing strategic detachment from the alliance. The final problem lies in London.S. Turkey seems to want to keep NATO at arm's length and to have concluded that European integration is no longer a serious Page 24 France’s “return” to NATO is significant. But the problems are more deep-seated. Though they recently played host to Barack Obama. and with the US being openly supportive of ESDP.

This decision was aimed to strengthen the European component (in other words – to balance American domination) of NATO. Political diversification NATO’s policeman where new centres of power with different emerging task as makes global hypothetical problem of the alliance’s internal coherence is not limited to differences of strategic visions that exist between the U. highlighted a number of the problems it faces.SDA Discussion Paper NATO and agreement By Fyodor Lukyanov he NATO Summit of a new security in Kehl and European organisation without far-reaching ambitions.S. challenges. It consequently may be disturbing for Central and Eastern European states which in the end do not trust NATO. new member experiences with Russia. now even less so than before. and that will certainly not help NATO in these regions. failed because the majority of members are not ready to take global responsibility and to act outside Euro-Atlantic interests impossible. so the alliance will remain a regional organisation that lacks clear priorities because there are no obvious security challenges in the Euro-Atlantic zone today. would like to reinstate a more traditional NATO designed several decades ago to counter the threat from Moscow. Strasbourg. but the Muslim community remains apprehensive about his position on a number of key issues. Meanwhile. at which the allies celebrated the 60th anniversary the alliance. NATO's enlargement was a way to imitate successful development of an alliance. Western Europe tends to focus on new soft security states. Attempts to make NATO a universal security organisation. which had seemed natural after the end of the Cold War. the allies clearly showed that NATO will remain a Neither re-launching. And the US will need to find another institution to support its efforts worldwide. The alliance proclaims that major challenges in the years ahead will come from the Middle East and Northern and Central Africa. The symbolic embodiment of NATO’s unwillingness to move beyond its traditional area was the selection of its new Secretary General. Another contradiction exists amongst NATO’s European member states. but eventually turned into a Page 25 SECURITY & DEFENCE AG ENDA . France’s return to NATO’s integrated command structure will hardly contribute to the unification of the alliance. are zone. Former Danish Prime Minister Anders Fogh Rasmussen is a brilliant politician and manager. nor re-branding NATO is in sight. and Europe. By – consciously or unconsciously – disregarding this. some with although troubled traditionally historical NATO has not. The NATO is still unable to formulate a new strategic mission.

appointed as the new NATO Secretary General at NATO 60th anniversary summit. Both Russia and NATO need to adopt a new and innovative approach that would involve the re-launching of European. we can’t separate economic cooperation from security. don’t have a general security structure deemed trustable by all concerned. we can’t expect to guarantee energy security if we Fyodor Lukyanov is Editor of Russia in Global Affairs. It is therefore important to understand that. and any resistance from the outside makes the allies even more disunited and renders the alliance dysfunctional. After NATO entered that area. and indeed Eurasian. For example. potential for peaceful expansion was exhausted.“Re-launching NATO. security. Europe’s security can only be ensured by involving Russia in a major new security agreement. © NATO Page 26 SECURITY & DEFENCE AG ENDA . or just re-branding it?” source of growing instability in the post-Soviet space. Jaap de Hoop Scheffer and Anders Fogh Rasmussen.

. the worrisome status of weapons control treaties and regimes. and adaptation will be required. NATO in Strasbourg & Kehl. President Obama has been in office for 100 days. the ever more exposed “cyber problems” of our networked societies. energy security issues (with unstable markets and supply problems). the “media crisis” and renewed international involvement around last years’ Gaza events. piracy at sea. It is urgent that we renew and reform the transatlantic partnership. Jr. risk of a pandemic. From now on. action. Georgia events amidst the Beijing Olympic summer games. to cite only these! We are in another century! Those who doubt it have just to scan the long list of risks and Transformation of NATO -a NATO “buzz word” and a tenet for militaries since more than a decade . yet forming fast. So it is high time to take a fresh and unbiased look at our planet. with urgency. US and Asia. layer by layer. unresolved nuclear issues. of illterrorism. for the world we have known is fading away. he festive lights of the big international “come together events” of spring 2009 are dimmed! The summits of the G20 in London. information and knowledge. and the real future for strategists in 2030 plus. EU and USA in Prague. Page 27 SECURITY & DEFENCE AG ENDA . & policymakers.. Turkey and USA in Ankara. international the ever-present failing threat states. US and the Americas are now past events. regulation. health. Transformation of our mindsets and our “modi operandi” is not only necessary. It is now time to take off from sea level and pragmatically engage. indeterminate. it will be an ongoing process. Old recipes won’t work. in such numerous and different finance. remember all the the unexpected events since mid 2008: challenges we face. and they will easily acknowledge from our daily media reports that we have to face them all now. strategists economy. sciences. controlled international migration and trafficking problems. food and poverty issues.is now to be understood and implemented matters as by all. . correction. sociology.SDA Discussion Paper Let change come to NATO By Jacques Rosiers. and since there are both long term and short term issues. A new world is rising: uncertain. as described by recognised authorities. the new 21st century in a holistic approach. History teaches us that times of great change are difficult to apprehend and that wrong assessments are paid in cash at the end. and the recently well documented existential problems around climate change. with the immediate future being the next 5 years or so to come. the “future” is down to the 2010 timeline. the financial crisis and the subsequent economic storm (still not under control). a thorough and continued analysis. monitoring.

These platforms must be political and empowered to implement actionable solutions. The utility of this use needs to be redefined or at least revisited. with the Declaration on Alliance Security stating: “We are committed to renovating our Alliance to better address today’s threats and to anticipate tomorrow’s risks”. even for countries with different interests”. It brings us closer to an Alliance that is “de facto” evolving into a “2-pillar NATO” in which. We have to value dialogue and to engage. President Obama said in his inauguration speech: “Change has come to America”. by acknowledging the limits of our power. European military capabilities must be further developed. NATO has the knowledge and political. Change should come to NATO by implementing the long awaited changes in the EU. show we can actually solve a problem. this means making the EU and Europe speak increasingly as “one”. the EU and the US are the primary actors of decision-making. In a global world.“Re-launching NATO.our own or those of partners. when cleared away. Resistance may turn out only to be based on old preconceptions or ideological dogmas that. for a human. SECURITY & DEFENCE AG ENDA . that we can find strengths through unconventional means. balanced and sustained peace and development. It is necessary to tackle the world’s global and regional challenges pragmatically and efficiently. next to the individual governments. in the context of ESDP and NATO. In NATO. we must again make the Allies willing to help each other and. to guarantee the autonomy of ESDP while evidently serving full integration for NATO operations when required. keeping our public opinions on board and guaranteeing security and stability to all. through various forms of cooperation and pooling. From a European standpoint. shared. there must be different platforms at different levels for different issues to be addressed in different regions or on a global scale. or just re-branding it?” security and defence. as well as tactical and technical skills for the use of (military) power. than not to cooperate. strategic. in balance with the other elements of power . in the words of President Obama: “make them more willing to cooperate Page 28 Jacques Rosiers is President of Belgium’s Euro Atlantic Association. As Vice-President Biden said: “consultation and cooperation”! France’s return to full NATO membership is a catalyst for NATO’s long awaited new “strategic consensus”. That’s what NATO is committed to now. We also know that sometimes the easiest solutions are the hardest to recognise. by listening and reducing fear. At the EU level therefore.

Prime Minister of the United Kingdom. Chancellor of the Federal Republic of Germany. and Angela Merkel. President of the United States of America. Nicolas Sarkozy. Obama. From left to right: Gordon Brown. Jaap de Hoop Scheffer. Barack H.SDA Discussion Paper Aft er NAT O’s 60th anniversary Summit.NATO Secretary General. © NATO Page 29 SECURITY & DEFENCE AG ENDA . President of France.

By offering a high-level and neutral platform for debate. academia and NGOs gather to discuss the future of European and transatlantic security and defence policies in Europe and worldwide.“Re-launching NATO. specialised and international media. the SDA sets out to clarify policy positions. stimulate discussion and ensure a wider understanding of defence and security issues by the press and public opinion. industry. NATO. and how transatlantic challenges such as terrorism. cybercrime. SDA Activities: · · · · Monthly Roundtables and Evening debates Press Dinners and Lunches International Conferences Reporting Groups and special events Page 30 SECURITY & DEFENCE AG ENDA . national governments. or proliferation can be met. Building on the combined expertise and authority of those involved in our meetings. the SDA gives greater prominence to the complex questions of how EU and NATO policies can complement one another. think tanks. or just re-branding it?” About the Security & Defence Agenda The Security & Defence Agenda (SDA) is the only specialist Brussels-based think-tank where EU institutions.

Centre for Studies in Security and Diplomacy (University of The SDA gratefully acknowledges the generous support from the following governments: France Romania United States Russia Netherlands Turkey Czech Republic Italy Finland Belgium SECURITY & DEFENCE AG ENDA .The Security & Defence Agenda would like to thank its members and partners for their support.

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