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Operations

  • Mark Webber
  • James Sperling
  • Martin A. Smith
Chapter
Part of the New Security Challenges Series book series (NSECH)

Abstract

As we saw in Chapter 2, during the Cold War the operational and geographic scope of the Alliance was limited to the so-called Article 5 tasks of collective defence. NATO thus played no role of any consequence ‘out of area’. The disappearance of the Soviet threat required a fundamental rethink of this posture. During the 1990s, NATO engaged in a thoroughgoing strategic reorientation, one continued along even more radical lines after 9/11. NATO’s operational character has, in short, fundamentally changed. This chapter charts that process and examines its implications for NATO’s long-term development. In so doing, it reinforces themes already apparent in Chapter 1. There we saw how issues relating to Bosnia, Kosovo, Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya have shaped debate on NATO’s relevance. The cumulative impact of operations (whether actual or mooted) has resulted in some stark views being offered of the Alliance. NATO, according to Sten Rynning, has a secure future insofar as it is able to generate broad consensus on the types of operation it undertakes and develops a flexible framework of participation through which these are carried out.1 Julian Lindley-French, somewhat more pessimistically, has suggested the Afghanistan mission is a forewarning of the types of operation NATO will (or, in his view ought to) confront. A half-hearted engagement with such problems will, he suggests, ‘tip the Alliance into terminal decline’.2

Keywords

Security Council Crisis Management Conflict Management African Union Security Sector Reform 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

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Notes and References

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Copyright information

© Mark Webber, James Sperling and Martin A. Smith 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Mark Webber
    • 1
  • James Sperling
    • 2
  • Martin A. Smith
    • 3
  1. 1.School of Government and SocietyUniversity of BirminghamUK
  2. 2.University of AkronUSA
  3. 3.Defence and International AffairsRoyal Military AcademySandhurstUK

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