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    NATO Review: NATO – Will it Still Be Here in Another 65 Years?

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    Lord Robertson was the NATO Secretary General on 9/11. He is the only Secretary General to have ever invoked the Alliance's Article 5. NATO Review asked him for a review of how the Alliance has done in its first 65 years - and whether it will make another 65.

    00.08: What has NATO learned from recent events in Ukraine?

    00.12 – Lord Robertson – Former NATO Secretary General
    It was perfectly foreseeable that the Ukrainian crisis was going to come. We have to start inventing the wheel every time something comes along. We went through the cold war, we went through Bosnia, then we went through Kosovo, then we had a crisis in Macedonia, then we had Afghanistan. In each case we produced voluminous lessons learned. And we put them on the shelf and each time something came along, we started from square one.

    00.41: Is NATO still too dependent on the US?

    00.45– Lord Robertson – Former NATO Secretary General
    I think there are some people who live with delusion that if the challenge comes in the future in the security world, then essentially the Americans will be there. The Europeans better abandon the delusion that they’ll always be there because they might not, and that there will be circumstances where they certainly will not. So they’ve got to make the capacities and the thinking and the strategies that encompass a very new world where they’re going to have to show much bigger responsibilities then they were willing to do in the past.

    01.24: What does this mean for defence budgets?

    01.28 – Lord Robertson – Former NATO Secretary General
    There’s a huge problem about declining defence budgets. You either make the case or you lose the cash. And what you do with the cash is also important because the public are increasingly frustrated by the desire for capabilities that don’t arrive or are flawed, overtime, over cost… So we’ve got to be more prudent with how we buy things. They’re being bought for yesterday’s enemies and not tomorrow’s threats.

    02.00 - What are these new threats?

    02.04 – Lord Robertson – Former NATO Secretary General
    I went to speak to a local Rotary Club, in my own locality recently. So I outlined to them my catalogue of current threats: cyber, terrorism, extremism, failed states etcetera. And you know, they were sort of saying: You are getting us depressed.

    I said: Well, if you look at it all, this catalogue of problems that are out there, each one of which can suddenly erupt upon us just as the events of the last weeks have done, yes, you can get depressed, but there is an answer and that is good, robust defence capabilities.

    02.42: How confident are you in NATO’s capabilities today?

    02.46 – Lord Robertson – Former NATO Secretary General
    So when I came to NATO headquarters in October of 1999 I said my three priorities were capabilities, capabilities, capabilities… Well, if I was arriving now, and somebody will be by the end of the year, it’s exactly the same. I hate to say that maybe it will take another crisis for people to start thinking soberly and sensibly of what is needed and often that’s maybe the only way that you get the politicians and the Alliance to think about it properly, but without them, you know, we in general, never mind NATO in particular, are not going to be equipped to make our populations as safe as they think they are.

    03.30: Following Ukraine’s crisis, what’s NATO’s role?

    03.34 – Lord Robertson – Former NATO Secretary General
    One of the great dangers of this present crisis is that NATO goes back to the idea of territorial defence. That’s of course essential, but it’s not NATO’s future. NATO’s future is dealing with the broad range of challenges that we’re going to face in the future, whether that is terrorism or resource conflicts or climate change and cyber warfare, you know, all of these different things that are now facing the world, they will not make people safer.

    04.09: Will NATO still exist in another 65 years?

    04.13 – Lord Robertson – Former NATO Secretary General
    I absolutely believe that NATO will be around in 65 years’ time because it’ll still be necessary. The problems, the threats, the challenges, both in security and the wider political context, won’t have gone away. So, that kind of organisation will be required in the future and that has been hugely successful in stopping Stalin, stopping the bloodbath in the Balkans, you know, stabilising Afghanistan…

    04.42: What will future NATO look like?

    04.45 – Lord Robertson – Former NATO Secretary General
    It’ll be a bigger NATO in the future. I hope just as effective, but it’s going to have to encompass people at the moment who themselves don’t think they want to be part of NATO, but whose people will eventually say: That’s the way. We’ll have a safer country and a safer world as well.

    There’s no security in Europe, unless there’s an eventual perspective of an organisation that says: We stand for values, stand for liberal values, and that has to include Russia, whether under the present leadership or a future leadership, because the previous leadership, when president Putin was first president, believed in exactly that objective. And I think that’s what we’ve got to aim for. So, yeah, in 65 years time somebody, not me, will be saying: What about the next 65 years?

    NATO Review

    The opinions expressed in NATO Review do not necessarily reflect those of NATO or its member countries.

    This video contains footage from ITN. While this video may be reproduced and used in its entirety, ITN footage cannot be used as part of a new production.



    Date Taken: 11.25.2014
    Date Posted: 11.28.2014 14:48
    Category: Package
    Video ID: 377865
    Filename: DOD_102115302
    Length: 00:05:51
    Location: BRUSSELS, BRU, BE 

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