Transatlantic Security Initiative

  • NATO at Seventy: Filling NATO's Critical Defense-Capability Gaps

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    As NATO reaches its seventieth anniversary in 2019, the Alliance is facing new challenges both externally and internally. The reemergence of Russia as a strategic threat has led to the reexamination of NATO’s warfighting capabilities and the gaps that exist to adequately defend and deter. At the same time, both renewed US focus and the emergence of new security threats have placed increased pressure on member states to reach established spending targets.

    The need to outfit and equip NATO for great power competition, as well as increased pressure to invest more in defense,...

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  • Transatlantic Air Power and What to Do Now

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    As a great power competition with Russia plays out in Europe, the United States and its Allies in NATO must reassess the role and importance of the air domain to transatlantic security. While NATO has made notable strides in strengthening defense and deterrence in the land domain, more must be done in the air domain. Reemerging adversaries, including Russia, continue to invest in advanced assets and pursue strategies and risky behavior that test the Alliance and its ability to respond. Russia also poses significant challenges to allied air superiority, including A2/AD networks in...

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  • Former NATO Ambassador Urges Congress to Protect the Alliance

    “NATO is both indispensable and in crisis,” Douglas Lute, a former US ambassador to NATO and Atlantic Council board director, told the House Foreign Affairs Committee on March 13. He described the nearly seventy-year-old alliance as “a cornerstone” of US foreign policy “that we all too often take for granted.” He argued that lawmakers should do more to reaffirm Washington’s commitment to its allies and to enact legislation requiring congressional approval before any alteration or withdrawal of the Untied States from the Alliance.

    “The United States Congress can play a role to reassure allies and check and balance the president,” Lute said.


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  • Twenty Years Later, NATO Allies Remain Strong Members of the Family

    When the foreign ministers of Poland, the Czech Republic, and Hungary finally signed documents completing their nations’ accession to NATO it marked the beginning of a new era for the transatlantic alliance. Twenty years ago, the ceremony held in Independence, Missouri—the hometown of US President Harry S. Truman, who oversaw the creation of NATO—marked the first time former-Communist adversaries had joined the alliance of democracies.

    Damon Wilson, executive vice president of the Atlantic Council, was a junior desk officer at the US Department of State when then US Secretary of State Madeleine K. Albright travelled to Missouri to finalize the new enlargement. “For me, less than a year on the job, I was on a professional high,” Wilson recalled. “After watching Washington for years exude ambivalence about whether to welcome more allies into NATO, the compelling case presented by these nations’ extraordinary spokespeople won the day. The determination of Czechs, Hungarians,

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  • Binnendijk in Defense News: German F-35 Decision Sacrifices NATO Capability for Franco-German Industrial Cooperation


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  • Permanent Deterrence

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    North Central Europe has become the central point of confrontation between the West and a revisionist Russia. Under President Vladimir Putin, Russia is determined to roll back the post-Cold War settlement and undermine the rules-based order that has kept Europe secure since the end of World War II. Moscow’s invasion and continued occupation of Georgian and Ukrainian territories, its military build-up in Russia’s Western Military District and Kaliningrad, and its “hybrid” warfare against Western societies have heightened instability in the region have made collective defense and deterrence

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  • Atlantic Council Names Christopher Skaluba as Director of the Transatlantic Security Initiative

    WASHINGTON, DC – Today the Atlantic Council announced that Mr. Christopher Skaluba will join the Atlantic Council as Director of the Transatlantic Security Initiative (TSI) in the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security. Mr. Skaluba served for 15 years as a civilian defense official in the United States Department of Defense and, since leaving government service, has worked as a Washington-based Adjunct Professor of International Relations at the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs of Syracuse University. At the Council, Skaluba will direct the Scowcroft Center’s transatlantic security portfolio, with responsibility for strategy and policy analysis concerning NATO and European security — core issues of the Council’s founding mission.

    Atlantic Council Senior Vice President and Director of the Scowcroft Center Barry Pavel said, “We are extremely fortunate to have Chris Skaluba joining...

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  • Permanent Deterrence: Enhancements to the US Military Presence in North Central Europe

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    North Central Europe has become the central point of confrontation between the West and a revisionist Russia. Under President Vladimir Putin, Russia is determined to roll back the post-Cold War settlement and undermine the rules-based order that has kept Europe secure since the end of World War II. Moscow’s invasion and continued occupation of Georgian and Ukrainian territories, its military build-up in Russia’s Western Military District and Kaliningrad, and its “hybrid” warfare against Western societies have heightened instability in the region have made...

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  • Atlantic Council Welcomes Hans Binnendijk as Distinguished Fellow and Ambassador Timo Koster as Ambassadorial Fellow

    WASHINGTON, DC – The Atlantic Council is excited to announce the addition of two new fellows to the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security. Dr. Hans Binnendijk, formerly a NSC Senior Director for Defense Policy, will join as a distinguished fellow, and Timo Koster, Dutch ambassador-at-large for security policy and cyber, will join as an ambassadorial fellow. Both will greatly contribute to the Scowcroft Center’s core work on transatlantic security issues and NATO.

    Said Scowcroft Center director Barry Pavel, “We are delighted that both Ambassador Koster and Dr. Binnendijk, two highly distinguished and widely experienced experts, are joining our team to contribute their expertise at such a critical time for the NATO Alliance. We look forward to engaging Ambassador Koster and Dr. Binnendijk across a wide range of strategic issues, particularly as we approach NATO’s seventieth anniversary.”

    Hans Binnendijk...

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  • Trident Juncture: NATO's Crisis Response Put to the Test

    Trident Juncture 2018, one of NATO’s largest  exercises in recent years, got underway on October 25 in and around Norway in the context of a heightened security environment in Europe. With renewed Russian assertiveness on both sides of the Atlantic, including interference in democratic elections, the use of a chemical nerve agent on British soil, targeted cyber-attacks, and violations of...
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