A U.S. Air Force Detachment in Poland Presents a Strategic Opportunity

By Andrew A. Michta

Ever since NATO’s initial post-Cold War enlargement, the absence of U.S. military assets in Central Europe has been seen as indicative of the new NATO members’ second-tier status. The perception has endured, even though the Barack Obama administration pushed through NATO contingency plans for the defense of Central Europe and the Baltics. The administration’s “reset” with Russia, the new strategic guidance of 2012, the so-called “pivot” to Asia, and U.S. public relations missteps in Poland only deepened the sense of disconnect.  READ MORE

Could Syria Be a Test of France’s Reemergence?

By Martin Michelot

French President François Hollande faces no shortage of domestic problems following the unveiling of his government’s controversial budget. But at a November 13 press conference, Hollande diverted attention to foreign policy by announcing France’s recognition of the National Coalition for Syrian Revolutionary and Opposition Forces as the legitimate representative of the Syrian people, making it the first Western country to embrace that organization. This decision was celebrated as a crucial step toward the end of the regime of President Bashar al-Assad, and as a symbol of Hollande’s ability to make tough decisions.  READ MORE

''Switzerland and NATO : Partners in security''


Speech by NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen at the Churchill Symposium in Zürich, Switzerland.  READ MORE

Catalan elections: What alternative to secession?


By Joan Marc Simon

The results of the Catalan elections of November 25 show that a majority of Catalans are likely to vote in favour of independence in case a referendum is organised. However, this majority is not very ample and suggests that the high expectations that were put on these elections by national and international media were exaggerated. READ MORE

Kukan: Separatism alone cannot lead to creation of a state


By Georgi Gotev

Asked to compare Czechoslovakia's Velvet Divorce two decades ago to today's separatist tendencies in Europe, Slovak MEP Eduard Kukan says separatism alone cannot lead to the creation of a state. READ MORE

Can Obama get Afghanistan right in second term?

By Javid Ahmad

The war in Afghanistan was largely ignored in the lead up to the U.S. presidential election. But with a second term now confirmed for President Barack Obama, Kabul is once again vying for Washington’s attention. READ MORE

Why we need to invest in defence

Defence spending is declining across the Alliance due to the economic crisis. Yet freedom, security and stability do not come for free. In fact, investing in defence underpins the stability needed for sustainable economic growth. In an uncertain security environment, NATO must have the right forces and capabilities needed to deter and defend against any threat, as well as to play an influential role in international developments. Only in this way can it continue to protect its members’ vital security interests, as well as promote and defend the values that are at the core of our Alliance. READ MORE

China and the U.S., Frenemies Forever

By Clive Crook

This week China’s ruling elite appoints new leaders for the next decade. The incoming president, Xi Jinping, and his colleagues face such fearsome challenges that, in their moment of victory, one almost sympathizes. Understanding their difficulties and calibrating U.S. policy accordingly will be among the biggest tests for the new Obama administration. For everybody’s sake, Beijing and Washington both need to do some rethinking. READ MORE

Panetta says US supports Patriot deployment in Turkey

US Defense Secretary Leon Panetta has said the United States supports the deployment of Patriot missiles along Turkey's border with Syria. READ MORE

'Have to come up with convincing foreign policy'

Horst Teltschik, the former national security advisor to Chancellor Helmut Kohl and former chair of the Munich Security Council, sees a need for action in Germany following Obama's re-election. READ MORE