NATO is once again in the spotlight. A NATO summit concluded on Monday 14 June 2021 in Brussels, ending with important decisions charting the Alliance’s path over the next decade and beyond. NATO has served as a pillar of stability and security for more than seven decades, while the world has become more complex, with a host of new players, threats, and challenges. Allied leaders endorsed an ambitious NATO 2030 agenda to ensure that NATO can meet the challenges of today and tomorrow. While the Alliance concluded to improve NATO’s political consultations, collective defense, and resilience, leaders agreed upon providing better training and capacity building to its partners in order to stand up for the rules-based international order. In light of these commitments, TPQ’s Summer 2021 issue serves as a starting point for a well-informed debate by synthesizing and comparing expert discourses from a wide range of NATO member and non-member states on key issues concerning NATO's future. As we address the issues at stake, we also seek a better mutual appreciation of divergent geographical, historical, and political perspectives. This special and timely issue has been published in collaboration with NATO, our longstanding partner.
Mircea Geoana, NATO Deputy Secretary General, expresses that the security environment has never been more uncertain and contested than it is now, due to the emergence of global competition and a wide variety of complex threats. He underlines the importance of NATO summit in Brussels last June, at which the Alliance's leaders made bold decisions to adapt to a more unpredictable world and to ensure that its one billion people will be safe for the next decade and beyond. In his view, the Transatlantic Alliance will remain capable of coping with today's challenges and future-proof against ones yet to come through an ambitious and forward-looking agenda.
When President Biden visited Brussels in June, he declared, "America is back." According to Jamie Shea, a former Deputy Assistant Secretary General for Emerging Security Challenges at NATO, this also means that NATO is back, as Biden reaffirmed the U.S.' solemn commitment to the defense of its European allies and Washington's willingness to once again lead a transatlantic alliance that was heavily criticized during the Trump years. He writes that at first sight, this is all good news for NATO; but could it turn out to be a mixed blessing for the Europeans in the longer run? He analyzes whether the NATO 2030 initiative is up to the task and if it provides the right answers.
Due to NATO's reliance on space assets for operational effectiveness and the increased vulnerabilities of those assets, the militarization of outer space presents a range of policy and legal challenges. Having to rely on space-based assets and services to conduct military operations has proven to be NATO's Achilles heel as rivals work on counter-space techniques. Aurel Sari, Associate Professor of International Law at University of Exeter and Hitoshi Nasu, Professor of International Law at University of Exeter ask given the vulnerability of space-based assets and services to hostile interference, under what circumstances the collective defense commitment as set out in Article 5 of the North Atlantic Treaty (NAT), arises in space.
An important acknowledgement goes to our premium corporate sponsor Yapı Kredi. In addition, we would like to thank our online sponsor, and the sponsor of this issue, Monaco Economic Board. We would also like to express our appreciation for our media partner, Duvar English, and for the continuing support of our other sponsors: EQA, Gordon Blair, Şekerbank GYO, TEB, and Turcas.
As always, we look forward to your feedback.
The TPQ Team