NATO and Russia: managing the relationshipedit
In light of the sustained damage that has been done to NATO-Russia relations by Russian military aggression, discussion is sorely needed on the way forward for the relationship.
NATO and Russia: managing the relationship
Wednesday 21 – Friday 23 October 2015 | WP1437
In annexing Crimea and intervening militarily in Eastern Ukraine, Russia fundamentally altered the relationship between it, NATO, and the Alliance’s member states. The Summit declaration that was agreed at Newport in the autumn of 2014 laid the foundations for robust deterrence, and confidence building amongst those member states on the Alliance’s eastern flank.
Of central importance is the hybrid threat posed by Russia. With the exception of Crimea, no Russian boots have been declared on the ground. Instead the threat has been across the hybrid spectrum; propaganda across all platforms, covert troop deployments, tacit support for rebel movements, destabilising sovereign states on NATO’s periphery, and so on. As most policy professionals agree, hybrid conflict is an amorphous term to pin down, but one knows it when confronted with it.
Building on the foundations laid at Wales, the Alliance now needs to think about how to manage the relationship in the medium to long term. What conversations could and should take place between NATO and Russia? How do member states balance the need for a robust and united deterrence posture, while also managing such external crises as Syria, IS (Daesh), and climate change that require multilateral agreement in other forums?
These and many other questions will be addressed at our forthcoming meeting on NATO and Russia: managing the relationship at which we will be convening a conversation between Alliance representatives, member state officials, and policy experts.