The NATO Summit
NATO leaders gathered in Madrid for what Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg has deemed a “historic and transformative summit” to address “the most serious security crisis we have faced.” Our experts break down everything you need to know, from the expansion of the Alliance to the plan for its strategic future.
Inflection Points Jul 2, 2022
Special dispatch from Madrid: At NATO’s historic summit, good scores points on evil, but it’s not enough to stop Putin’s Ukraine war
By Frederick Kempe
Despite the successes of the NATO summit, Russia’s missile strike on a Ukrainian shopping mall put the brutality of Putin’s war into stark relief.
New Atlanticist Jun 29, 2022
Blinken: NATO is ‘more united, more focused’ after historic summit
By Nick Fouriezos
The Atlantic Council teamed up with civil society organizations at the NATO Public Forum, convening top US and global leaders for their take on NATO’s priorities in a changing security environment.
Watch the NATO Public Forum
This section is part of the Transatlantic Security Initiative’s Stronger with Allies series, which charts the course forward for the Alliance in conjunction with the 2022 NATO Summit.
The NATO summit agenda
Stronger with allies
As the NATO Alliance prepares for its summit in Madrid at the end of June, our experts analyze the key issues on the table, including NATO’s next grand strategy, the Strategic Concept; how to further address the war in Ukraine; potential membership for Finland and Sweden; and what the future of transatlantic security will look like.
Issue Brief Jun 13, 2022
NATO priorities: Initial lessons from the Russia-Ukraine war
At the June 2022 NATO summit it will be important to implement four key operational priorities, each derived from initial lessons underscored by the Russia-Ukraine war, to maintain the Alliance’s long-term capacity for defense and deterrence.
New Atlanticist Jun 16, 2022
How NATO can stick together and keep the pressure on Russia, according to four former Alliance chiefs
By Katherine Walla
Four former NATO chiefs gathered at the Atlantic Council to weigh in on the Alliance’s response to the war in Ukraine, enlargement, and the next plays in its playbook.
Report Apr 21, 2022
Climbing the ladder: How the West can manage escalation in Ukraine and beyond
By Richard D. Hooker, Jr.
Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and NATO’s response increase the possibility of purposeful or inadvertent escalation in Europe. Understanding how these dynamics might impact the war and further degrade transatlantic stability is critical.
Visualizing NATO’s priorities
Issue Brief Mar 4, 2022
Europe’s security architecture, transformed: Why Finland is now on a path to join NATO
By Rasmus Hindrén
Finland is now on a prudent approach to NATO membership that is likely to build on its post-Cold War approach of continuity yet also to adapt to a new European security environment.
Visualizing burden-sharing data
Subscribe for the latest on NATO
Sign up for updates from the Atlantic Council’s Transatlantic Security Initiative, covering the debate on the greatest security challenges facing the North Atlantic Alliance and its key partners.
In-depth reports on NATO’s agenda
New Atlanticist Jun 10, 2021
The best defense: Why NATO should invest in resilience
By Jaclyn Levy
Policies emphasizing resilience should minimize damage, restore stability quickly, and generate improved strategies. To this end, there are several steps NATO can take to build a preventive, resilience-based approach to emerging global challenges.
New Atlanticist Mar 24, 2022
‘All options are on the table’ for eastern flank, says US Permanent Representative to NATO
By Katherine Walla
At an Atlantic Council Front Page event, Julianne Smith laid out ways the United States and its allies can face up to Russia and strengthen European security.
Modernize the kit and the message
by H.E. Dame Karen Pierce DCMG
NATO will only remain successful over the next seventy years if it modernizes its capabilities, takes command of emerging technology, and harmonizes its strategic messaging.
Open a bank
by Max Bergmann and Siena Cicarelli
NATO can fund critical defense investments by bringing the necessary financial tools in house.
Design a Digital Marshall Plan
by the Hon. Ruben Gallego and the Hon. Vicky Hartzler
NATO allies, led by the United States, must cooperate in securing national 5G communications systems in Europe and beyond against malign Chinese influence.
Rethink and replace two percent
by Derek Chollet, Steven Keil, and Christopher Skaluba
NATO’s two percent metric is reductive and politically fraught but offers lessons for better ways to measure burden sharing.
Build an Atlantic-Pacific Partnership
by James Hildebrand, Harry W.S. Lee, Fumika Mizuno, Miyeon Oh, and Monica Michiko Sato
NATO is the only institution capable of organizing transatlantic and transpacific stakeholders to address China’s political, military, and information threats.
Disband the NATO Response Force
by John R. Deni
Replacing the NRF with a plug-and-play interoperability model increases the chance that NATO will employ its high-readiness forces.
Build resilience for an era of shocks
by Jim Townsend and Anca Agachi
NATO needs a fourth core task to protect allied populations from nontraditional threats like COVID and climate change.
‘Game out’ decision making
by AM Sir Christopher Harper, KBE, RAF (Ret.)
In an era where the distinction between peace and conflict is increasingly complex, NATO should retain its competitive advantage by using synthetic environments and virtual worlds to support rapid, efficient, and effective strategic decision making.
Digitalize the enterprise
by Jeffrey Reynolds and Jeffrey Lightfoot
If NATO is to unlock new frontiers of innovation and harness emerging technology, digitalizing how it does business is the key.
Listen to women
by Lisa A. Aronsson
Twenty years after its creation, NATO should affirm the strategic significance of the Women, Peace, and Security Agenda and define what it means for an era of great power competition.
Ramp up on Russia
by Amb. Alexander Vershbow
NATO needs to increase the costs for Russian aggression while building back crucial dialogue if there is any prospect for improved relations with Moscow.
Put NATO back in the narrative
by Bridget Corna and Livia Godaert
NATO can recapture the imagination of allied publics by telling its own story better and in new ways to new audiences.
Seek membership for Mexico
by Christopher Skaluba and Gabriela R. A. Doyle
Mexico’s membership in NATO may be the key to keeping a rapidly changing America invested in European security.
by Safa Shahwan Edwards, William Loomis, and Simon Handler
NATO should adopt a digital .2 percent policy whereby member states commit to spend .2 percent of their gross domestic product on cybersecurity and digital defense modernization.
Christen a carrier strike group
by Michael John Williams
Using the HMS Queen Elizabeth and HMS Prince of Wales as its backbone, a NATO carrier strike group is an opportunity for high-end interoperability under European leadership.
End the Russian veto on Georgian accession
by Luke Coffey and Alexis Mrachek
Admitting Georgia to NATO without extending an Article 5 guarantee to Abkhazia and the Tskhinvali Region can fulfil the promise of the Bucharest Summit.
Threaten decisive nuclear retaliation
by David Gompert and Hans Binnendijk
NATO should thwart Russian use of nuclear weapons by threatening certain retaliation.
Revitalize NATO’s grand strategy
by Amb. Timo Koster and Ivanka Barzashka
Collective strategic analysis is the pathway to a more inclusive, transparent, and systematic process for creating NATO’s next strategic concept.
Set NATO’s sights on the High North
by Jim Danoy and Marisol Maddox
Security in the Arctic is waiting on no one. NATO needs a strategy for defense and deterrence in the High North before it is outflanked.
The Transatlantic Security Initiative, in the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security, shapes and influences the debate on the greatest security challenges facing the North Atlantic Alliance and its key partners.