An Evaluation of the Wales Summit: NATO builds coalitions for conflict on multiple fronts

By Ian Davis and Nigel Chamberlain, NATO Watch 
  • NATO leaders plan to protect eastern members from a resurgent Russia, pledge to reverse the decline in their defence spending, and form an embryonic coalition to combat Islamic militants in Iraq
  • Afghanistan post-2014 strategy remains uncertain without a legal framework
  • Alliance proposals for evolution towards global network of active partners
This was the first NATO Summit on UK soil since 1990 and one of the largest ever organised. More than 60 countries and organisations were represented. In his ‘doorstep statement’ at the start of NATO’s 26th Summit, Secretary General, Anders Fogh Rasmussen described it as a "crucial Summit at a crucial time" He said: "To the East, Russia is attacking Ukraine…. to the Southeast, we see the rise of a terrorist organization, the so-called Islamic State... the South, we see violence, insecurity, instability." He pledged that the Summit "will take important steps to counter these threats and to strengthen the defence of our allies". These steps include: 
  • Adopting a Readiness Action Plan;
  • Reversing the trend of declining defence budgets;
  • Discussing what "individual allies and what NATO can do" to counter the threat from Islamic state;
  • Enhancing cooperation with Ukraine;
  • Enhancing cooperation with other partners;
  • Strengthening the Transatlantic Bond; and
  • Opening a "new chapter" in NATO's relationship with Afghanistan.
Overall, the Secretary General claimed that the Summit "will shape future NATO". How did the Summit match up to the Secretary General’s expectations? Read the attached pdf briefing to find out