Senator John Kerry, Chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, with NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen, Nov. 7, 2011

 From NPR:  Robert Siegel interviews NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen

SIEGEL: Are you encouraged by what you’re hearing, or is that simply not where Europe’s politics are now?

RASMUSSEN: Well, we’re going to discuss this at the upcoming NATO summit in Chicago. I have launched a project called Smart Defence, a smarter way of spending defense money. And the smarter way is to go for multinational solutions, instead of purely national solutions, to help each other, to go for collective solutions, to pool and share resources. That’s a more efficient way of spending defense money. I think that’s the way forward during a period of economic austerity.

SIEGEL: One question raised also by Libya is if it worked there, if it was so successful, why shouldn’t it or why wouldn’t it work in Syria? What’s the big difference between Libya and Syria?

RASMUSSEN: Libya and Syria are two different countries. And we took on the responsibility for the operation in Libya because we had a very clear United Nations mandate to protect the civilian population, and we got clear and active support from a number of countries in the region. None of these conditions are fulfilled in Syria.

SIEGEL: But to be fair, the leading members of the alliance haven’t gone to seek that support of the United Nations. What if they did?

RASMUSSEN: I think they have. But until now, it’s not been possible to pass a resolution in the United Nations Security Council. But let me stress that NATO has no intention whatsoever to intervene in Syria.  (photo: NATO)