• “Is NATO Relevant?” Sarwar Kashmeri with UK MP Mike Gapes, on Skynews

  • What’s Next For NATO: A “Reboot or Delete?” Robin Young, host of Here & Now asks Sarwar Kashmeri

  • Sarwar Kashmeri & NATO 2.0 on Fox News

  • To preserve NATO bridge it to the EU

    NATO used to be the world’s most formidable military alliance. But, its original reason for existence, the Soviet Union, disintegrated years ago, and its dreams of being a world cop are withering in the mountains of Afghanistan.

    Meanwhile, the European Union’s Common Security & Defense Policy (CSDP) has deployed twenty-seven successful military/civil missions from Africa to Asia in the last ten years. Through CSDP, Europeans are increasingly taking charge of managing their own foreign and security policy. NATO is no longer the sole and preeminent Euro-Atlantic security actor.

    But watching NATO fade into irrelevance would be a mistake. It is a tried and true platform to harness the resources of North America and Europe. NATO’s future usefulness depends on its willingness to accept its reduced role, to let the EU handle the day-to-day security needs of Europe, and to craft a relationship with CSDP that will allow North America and Europe to act militarily together, should that ever become necessary.

    It is time for NATO 2.0, a new version of NATO, to fit the realities of an ever more integrated Europe in the twenty-first century.

“America should withdraw its credit card underwriting Europe’s defence within 3-4 years”

America should say to Europe that they will cease to underwrite the security of Europe and its periphery in just three to four years, after which America will only serve as a catastrophic security layer

This was  central message I tabled for debate at a private dinner hosted by the Bertelsmann Stiftung in the center of Brussels during the events surrounding European release of  “NATO 2.0: Release or Delete?” June 14-18, 2011.

The shock of this proposal would galvanize EU leadership, I said, to tackle reforms to the EU’s defense establishment that presently spends $300 billion (equal to America’s defense budget prior to 9/11) but is rife with duplicate weapons systems and other inefficiencies.

The 20 people around the table included one of the four Directors General of NATO, the former special advisor to Baroness Ashton, EU High Representative for Foreign & Security Policy, and a series of European defence experts, politicians, commentators and academics specialising in security matters.

The lively views expressed included:

  • The shock will come from the US within three years but the shock will come before that from young Germans.
  • Is Germany going to put up with France and the UK driving foreign defence policy?
  • Germanyunderstands that there needs to be a common European army and is prepared to contribute, but GB and France stand in the way of EU strategic thinking.

<Read the full press release from the dinner here>

NATO 2.0: Reboot or Delete ——> Advance Praise…

 A once-great alliance, NATO has long since lost its bearings. For anyone concerned with getting things back on track, Sarwar Kashmeri provides a detailed and eminently sensible road map


— Andrew J. Bacevich, professor of history and international relations, Boston University, and author of Washington Rules: America’s Path to Permanent War (2010)


This brilliant analysis leaves no doubt that diminished resources, sheer neglect, and strategic differences among NATO’s partners have weakened this long-standing pillar of Western defense. Sarwar Kashmeri urges the United States and the European Union to align their thinking and combine their resources to ensure that the ‘world’s most successful military alliance’ will live on

—James F. Hoge, Jr., counselor, Council on Foreign Relations


This book provides extraordinary insights into NATO and the future of the transatlantic alliance. Every person concerned with the future of this vital alliance has much to learn from Sarwar Kashmeri’s highly readable and compelling analysis

—Noel V. Lateef, president and CEO, Foreign Policy Association 


 Sarwar Kashmeri’s views on the Atlantic alliance are widely respected, and NATO 2.0 demonstrates why. It is a meticulously researched, wise, and lucid book that is enriched by Kashmeri’s wide-ranging interviews with American and European leaders (past and present) and foreign policy experts. Kashmeri does not pull punches in discussing the serious problems NATO faces in developing a compelling raison d’être in the 21st century, but he also points the way forward by offering creative proposals for cooperation between the alliance and the European Union through the latter’s European Security and Defense Policy. Those who believe that NATO still has a purpose would do well to read his impressive book

—Rajan Menon, Anne and Bernard Spitzer Chair in Political Science, City College of New York/City University of New York and author of The End of Alliances (2007)


NATO’s New StratCon had no impact on markets. Brown Brothers Harriman’s Chandler explains why

The long-awaited NATO Strategic Concept, revealed last month at the Lisbon Summit, had very little impact on global financial markets. In the latest installment of the New Atlanticist Podcast Series Atlantic Council senior fellow Sarwar Kashmeri interviews Marc Chandler of Brown Brothers Harriman to discuss this issue, China’s financial leverage on the US, and the Euro’s future.

Skeptical about the missile shield, but need to pay attention to American phobias!

In the latest installment of the New Atlanticist Podcast Series ,Atlantic Council senior fellow Sarwar Kashmeri interviews Dmitry Rogozin, Russia’s Ambassador to NATO. For this podcast, Kashmeri asked Ambassador Rogozin for his interpretation of the Lisbon Summit’s outcomes regarding missile defense and what it means for the future of NATO-Russia relations. Frank and forthright, Rogozin sheds fresh light on Russian strategic thinking re a partnership with NATO.

Listen to MP3>


The G-20 Challenge and its Implications on NATO

George Magnus, UBS

 In the latest installment of the New Atlanticist Podcast Series Atlantic Council senior fellow Sarwar Kashmeri interviews George Magnus, Chief Economist of UBS Investment Bank.

Listen to MP3>

Atlantic Council, DC Forum: Blueprint For NATO Post Lisbon


NATO Forum – November 17, 2010
 12:00 P.M. – 1:30 P.M.
“The Obama Administration’s European Agenda” 
A Conversation with
The Honorable Philip Gordon 
Assistant Secretary of State for European and Eurasian Affairs


Moderated by
Mr. Frederick Kempe
President and CEO, Atlantic Council

1:30 P.M. – 2:15 P.M.
Luncheon reception with heavy hors d’oeuvres
2:15 P.M. – 3:30 P.M
“A Blueprint for NATO Beyond Lisbon”
A Panel Discussion with
General Bantz Craddock (USA, Ret.)
Former Supreme Allied Commander Europe
The Honorable Robert Hunter
Former U.S. Ambassador to NATO
Mr. Sarwar A. Kashmeri
Atlantic Council Non-Resident Senior Fellow
Author of forthcoming book: “NATO 2.0: Reboot or Delete?”
Moderated by
Mr. Damon Wilson
Vice President and Director, International Security Program

12:00 P.M. – 3:30 P.M.

Atlantic Council
1101 15th Street, NW, 11th Floor
Washington, DC 20005
To attend, please RSVP with name and affiliation (acceptances only) to isp@acus.org.
This NATO Forum is sponsored by BAE Systems.


Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Russia & NATO, Reading The Tea Leaves–Juurd Eigsvoogel, NRC Handelsblad



Russia’s considers NATO to be a mortal threat, but is still willing to attend NATO’s Lisbon Summit this month and discuss joining NATO’s anti-missile shield.  What is the meaning behind Russia’s contradictory messages. My conversation with Juurd Eijsvoogel, the well known International Affairs Columnist of the Dutch newspaper NRC Handelsblad.


Merge NATO with CSDP

To Save NATO we should merge it

with Europe’s CSDP

NATO isn’t working, warns Sarwar Kashmeri,


who advocates a U.S, Canadian and EU joint project thatwould “bridge” the Atlantic alliance with Europe’s

fledgling defence and security framework…< Read The Europe’s World Article here: >

If Your grandmother grows whiskers, would you call her your grandfather?!

What is this fixation that NATO has with making an anti-missile shield the center-piece of NATO and inviting Russia to join in this “shield.” Here’s a Reuter’s report on a planned speech by NATO’s Secretary General, Friday, September 17, 2010:

SM-3 Launch from USS Shiloh

Missile defense key to boosting Russia ties: NATO

(Reuters) – Russian participation in a planned missile defense shield in Europe could open the door to progress in other areas such as reducing nuclear and conventional weapons, the head of NATO will say on Friday.  <Read full Reuters story>

Here’s an organization that can’t find a few hundred trainers for Afghanistan, an Alliance that is about to see its biggest members cut out of the war in Afghanistan and go home, and it proposes setting up a missile defense network to protect half the planet!!! Who is going to pay for this “shield?” The big NATO countries are about to slash their defense expenditures 15%-20%

As for getting Russia to throw in its lot with NATO, I’m reminded of a recent conversation I had with Dmitri Rogozin, the Russian Ambassador to NATO. His reply to my question of the chances of Russia joining the new “Russia-friendly” NATO, was:

If your grandmother grows whiskers, is it now a grandfather?


NATO needs to figure out how to be relevant and live within its means. It would be a disaster for Euro-Atlantic security if NATO were allowed to fade away. But that will happen if it dreams these unrealistic, empire building dreams like setting up a missile defense project from Vladivostok to Vancouver.

NATO’s Mission? Je ne sais pas

NATO works on a pay as you play formula. Meaning, if a country deploys with NATO, the country pays all its expenses. And that is a real problem for Eastern European countries such as Poland that bend over backwards to please the United States and want to be out front in any American led war.  Poland has over 2000 troops in Afghanistan and they have been putting up quite a fight. But Poland cannot afford its ISAF commitment any more. <Read full story in Siffy News>Polish Mi-24 heavy attack helicopter

Poland’s participation in the NATO-led mission in Afghanistan is so expensive, about USD 1 billion a year (10% of Poland’s defense budget) that it is hampering efforts to modernize the country’s armed forces, Polish President Bronislaw Komorowski said Wednesday, on his first visit to NATO headquarters.

Poland has also had it with out-of-area operations such as the NATO mission in Afghanistan. President Komorowski wans NATO to focus on defending its members, not playing at being world cop. Though he did not say it, that means watching the Russians who still scare the Eastern Europeans more than any Taliban in Kandahar. The problem is, playing world cop is what the Western members of NATO want to do.

Is there a meeting ground? I don’t think so. NATO has a lot of soul searching to do before that fateful November meeting in Lisbon. The moment of truth is around the corner.