From Anders Fogh Rasmussen, NATO: Recently, President Obama announced a new focus in the US defence posture towards the Asia-Pacific region. Some are concerned this will take place at the expense of Europe and the transatlantic relationship. But I see it differently.
It is not just the economy that has globalised. Security has globalised too. And it is in Europe’s interest that the United States, with whom we share our most fundamental values, contributes to upholding global peace and stability by engaging in the Asia-Pacific region.
The new American defence posture seeks to address this. But these profound, strategic challenges are just as relevant to Europe as they are to the United States. This is why Europe must also play its full part to rebalance the transatlantic Alliance. By investing sufficiently in our common security – militarily as well as financially and politically. By remaining engaged in making this continent whole, free and democratic. And by keeping an outward looking and global perspective on security.
As our global economy becomes ever more integrated, local, regional and global security and stability become ever more interrelated. We all depend on a free and diversified energy supply. Free and secure sea lanes and air space. And free and secure information and communication networks.
This is why the global rule of law, and global governance, within the principles of the United Nations’ Charter, remain central to stability of our world. Why the ability to participate in, and contribute to, international crisis management is essential to our security. Why we must keep a global perspective in Europe, as in North America. And why we must invest sufficiently in the transatlantic relationship to maintain our common security in this global order.
Obviously, an American military presence in Europe is crucial for security cooperation across the Atlantic. But America’s commitment to its European allies should not be measured merely by the number of troops or bases here. It should be measured by how much we do together. By where we do it. And by how effectively we do it. . . .
In less than two months’ time we will hold our next NATO Summit in Chicago. It will be a unique opportunity for European nations – right at the heart of America — to join their North American Allies shaping their shared future in their shared Alliance. . . .
NATO already has an impressive history of success. At Chicago we will ensure that success continues into the future – to the end of this decade, and beyond.
Excerpts from ”NATO 2020 — Shared leadership for a shared future” speech by NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen at the Brussels Forum . (photo: Getty)