NATOSource|Daily News of the World's Most Powerful Alliance

From Civil Georgia: "Robert Simmons, NATO’s special representative for South Caucasus and Central Asia, received from the Georgian government in Tbilisi on May 25, the country’s Annual National Programme (ANP).
The document, which is not public, is, as NATO diplomat said, “a roadmap” for Georgia’s eventual NATO membership."
From RFE/RL: "Medvedev also tried to press his advantage at the summit by urging the EU to back his plans for a new 'security architecture' for Europe. At the press conference, he sharply attacked NATO -- which includes as members most EU member states.

'We have partnership relations, for example, with the North Atlantic bloc. But, despite what seems to be a special form of relations, this form turned out to be weak when these relations were put to the test,' Medvedev said.

'And the ongoing attempts now to rebuild ties between Russia and NATO are encountering quite serious difficulties.'"

From BBC: "Europe's largest military exercise - Joint Warrior - is to be
extended from two to three weeks this October.
Held twice a year in spring and autumn, it sees some of the training of Nato armies and navies held in Scotland and in the sea off its coast."
From the Washington Institute for Near East Policy: "The AKP's Econo-Islamist foreign policy orientation has turned Turkey into a country which has as good, and sometimes even friendlier, relations with Iran, Russia, Syria, Sudan, Hamas, Hezbollah, Qatar and Saudi Arabia, as it enjoys with the United States, the EU, and Israel. Ankara will likely opt out of a NATO consensus on Iran, clash with the United States on how to handle Hamas and Hezbollah, and disagree with the EU and the U.S. on Russia."  via, (graphic: European Voice)

From Hurriyet: "Greek newspapers express concerns about a NATO restructuring under which Greek and Turkish commanders will take turns heading the alliance's Larissa military headquarters. Some Greeks say the appointment of a Turkish commander will make it easier for Turkish warplanes to fly in Greek airspace"

For background see Turkish general to command NATO center in Greece.

Claudio Bisogniero, NATO's Deputy Secretary-General, takes advantage of the precise language in the Washington Treaty to limit the pool of potential new members. Fortunately, Article 10 includes Canada and the United States as signatories, because it appears they could not join now.

From Gulfnews: "Do you think that an Arab country could one day become member of Nato?
Theoretically, many countries would like to be members of Nato. Discussions on how far Nato membership should extend are discussed in academic circles. But it must be considered, however, that Article 10 of the Nato Treaty [which describes admission procedures for other nations] clearly states that membership is open to only to European countries that share the same values and the same approach and are willing to contribute to the Organisation . . .

What about the rumour that Israel will join Nato?
As I mentioned to you, Article 10 of Nato Treaty is very clear. It contemplates the offer for membership to European countries and to the best of my knowledge, Israel is not a European country."
Surprisingly, just one step by NATO against the Taliban's opium networks has not been enough.

From AFP: "Mullen said NATO-led forces have stepped up operations against drug networks after the alliance last year eased rules for targeting narcotics rings.
'Recent rules of engagement have allowed us to go after labs, people
associated with labs,' he told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.
'That's a step in the right direction but until we are able to execute a
comprehensive agricultural strategy, it's going to be very difficult to really have a strategic impact on that.'"

In describing Dalia Grybauskaite, the Economist raises the questions, how can you tell if you are a fervent Atlanticist and is that a bad thing?

From the Economist: "In 1991 she was talent-spotted by an American programme for high-fliers in eastern Europe. But she does not seem to share the fervent Atlanticism usual among Lithuanian politicians."
Excerpt from "Khomeini's Ghost" by Con Coughlin.

From book review in Asharq Alawsat: "'Tehran took the view that its own strategy of fueling the insurgency {in Iraq} by all means at its disposal was working. The longer the United States and its allies were bogged down in Iraq, the less likely they were to act over Iran's nuclear program.' He adds: ' By the spring of 2007 senior NATO commanders found compelling evidence that the Revolutionary Guards had set aside their traditional antipathy towards the Taliban and were supplying them with roadside bombs and rockets to attack NATO positions, particularly British forces deployed in southern Afghanistan.'"
From Turkish Weekly: "On May 21, the military base in Vaziani in a suburb of Tbilisi will host the second phase of field training exercises within the NATO program 'Partnership for Peace', which is called the 'Cooperative Lancer 09. The Georgian Defense Ministry, thousands of soldiers from 14 countries - nine NATO countries (USA, Albania, Canada, Croatia, Spain, United Kingdom, Greece, Hungary, Turkey) and five partner countries (Georgia, Ukraine, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Macedonia and Azerbaijan) will attend the exercises."