The 2010 NATO Summit in Lisbon produced a bold vision for NATO’s future. With one week to the Chicago summit, not nearly enough progress has been made. To avoid the Chicago summit ending up as a total bust, Obama must push NATO leaders to address three key issues.
Coming off the heels of a very successful NATO summit in Lisbon, Portugal, in November 2010, it looked like President Obama would make the coming NATO summit in Chicago May 20 and 21 – an election-year meeting of America’s strongest allies on American soil – a centerpiece of his campaign, highlighting great successes in his foreign policy.
The Lisbon Summit had produced an ambitious strategic concept with a bold vision for NATO’s future, including a renewed commitment to the fight in Afghanistan, a robust agreement on missile defense, and deepened cooperation on emerging challenges such as cyber security. Eighteen months later, not nearly enough progress has been made – and certainly not enough for Mr. Obama to tout.
To avoid the Chicago summit ending up as a total bust, Obama must push NATO leaders to address those three major issues on the agenda.
First, a slew of recent events in Afghanistan appears to be hastening a rush for the exits. In Lisbon, NATO leaders agreed on a robust operation through the end of 2014 that would be followed with an indefinite training and support commitment. Now, the talk is about getting many forces out by 2013.
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