Article 5 and Strategic Reassurance

Edgar Buckley and Ioan Mircea Pascu, members of the Strategic Advisors Group (SAG), discuss the implications of the use of force, preemption, and assessment of new risks as it relates to the Strategic Concept in the SAG issue brief “Article 5 and Strategic Reassurance.”

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As a declaration of strategic reassurance, Article 5 of the Washington Treaty could hardly be clearer: “an armed attack against one [of the allies]… shall be considered an attack against them all and … if such an armed attack occurs, each of them … will assist the Party or Parties so attacked by taking forthwith, individually and in concert with the other Parties, such action as it deems necessary, including the use of armed force, to restore and maintain the security of the North Atlantic area.”

But words alone are not enough. In NATO, it has always been recognized that they must be backed by military capabilities, strategies, deployments and postures to provide a credible deterrent appropriate to the threat.

Strategic Advisors Group:

To tackle the tough issues facing NATO and the transatlantic community, the Atlantic Council created the Strategic Advisors Group (SAG). Co-chaired by Atlantic Council Chairman Senator Chuck Hagel and Airbus CEO Tom Enders, the SAG is comprised of North American and European preeminent defense experts. Founded in 2007 by then-Atlantic Council Chairman General James L. Jones, General Brent Scowcroft, and former Norwegian Minister of Defense Kristin Krohn Devold, the SAG provides timely insights and analysis to policymakers and the public on strategic issues in the transatlantic security partnership through issuing policy briefs and reports, hosting strategy sessions for senior civilian and military officials, and providing informal expert advice to decision-makers.

The SAG and its activities are generously sponsored by the Scowcroft Group, EADS North America, and Airbus.