Executive SummaryTransatlantic and European political, economic and military institutions are essential to the success of our effort to create a new European security system. Each of the four major institutions on which we rely-the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), the European Union (EU), the Organization for Cooperation and Security in Europe (OSCE) and the Western European Union-are the vehicle through which that new system will be created and will themselves be transformed as a result of the effort.
The transformation of these institutions will be fundamental in character: New members will be added; new responsibilities accepted; new organizational structures created; new requirements for coordination among institutions and new demands on publics are needed to support all of the above. These transformations will require national leaders, institutional directors and political elites to seek the consent of the people of the states represented in those institutions to the proposed changes. And because this transformation is required to complete the new security system, an expression of consent by citizens to institutional changes is by extension, an expression of consent on the full range of the plans and programs for the new European security system. Issues that have been discussed in private, within the councils of government and among the professionals who conduct the business of our institutions, must now be presented to publics.
That presentation must include three elements:
This short paper will take on two tasks: (1) describe the progress made by leaders, directors and elites in developing the presentation of these elements; (2) suggest topics that need further development in public fora so that the rationale and risks associated with creating a new European system will be fully understood by the citizens in Europe and North America. These topics include the rationale for NATO expansion, the relationship between NATO and the EU, and the appropriate tasks for the WEU and the OSCE.
The Transformation of the Major InstitutionsNATO, the EU, OSCE and WEU are the principal institutions around and through which a new security system for Europe will be built. Each has already undergone substantial changes in order to take on the new tasks of the post-Cold War era, but each will require additional and fundamental changes to address the post-Cold War geopolitical landscape.
North Atlantic Treaty Organization
The transformation of NATO began from the moment of the fall of the Berlin Wall and has continued down to the present moment. Its transformation has been driven by the need to adapt its missions and force structures to:
As part of its transformation the alliance has reduced the total level of forces deployed (including a substantial reduction in nuclear forces), streamlined its integrated command structure, created affiliated organizations whereby states not members of NATO could consult on a high political level with NATO on security matters (the NACC, soon to be replaced by the Atlantic Partnership Council), devised the Partnership for Peace (PFP) so that these same states might prepare themselves for membership in the alliance and work with NATO to develop their armed forces so that they might participate in NATO operations, developed the concept for the combined joint task force (CJTF) that will allow the WEU to make use of NATO assets for missions authorized by the WEU and recognized by the NAC.
In the context of its decision to extend an offer of membership to one or a number of states of Central Europe at its summit meeting in July, 1997, the alliance has committed itself to two further tasks. The first is to continue the internal adaptation of the alliance to assure that the NATO command structure truly reflects the responsibilities for security and stability on the continent that have been assumed by the European members of the alliance. The second is to conclude a "charter" between NATO and Russia that establishes means for the two to cooperate on matters of security and stability and assures Moscow that the alliance is no threat to its legitimate security concerns.
The EU has undergone substantial development since 1989. In fact, the EU did not come into being until 1992 when the Maastricht Treaty came into effect. At that time the EU succeeded the European Community (EC) and the "common market" was transformed into a political and economic union.
Over the ensuing years the EU has succeeded in:
The EU is presently conducting an intergovernmental conference (IGC) that aims at adapting the EU's structures and procedures so that it might be better positioned to begin its own expansion into Central Europe. Toward this end the IGC is giving consideration to changes in the way member states' votes are cast on matters related to economic, political and social, and foreign and security policies and programs. In recognition that as the EU membership expands, and the issues before the Council (where each state is represented) cannot reasonably be expected to be resolved by consensus (unanimous votes), the IGC is attempting to devise methods for majority voting.
The IGC is also struggling to devise methods by which subgroups within the EU who agree on matters affecting them, but either not of interest to others or outside the concerns of others, might be pursued by the subgroups. This search for "flexibility" is meant to recognize that among member states interests will differ in their particulars from time to time and that the concerns of one or a small number ought not retard the progress others feel they can make toward specific economic, political or foreign and security goals. In addition, the IGC is seeking methods by which the authority of the EU on matters of immigration, asylum, international crime, terrorism and drug-trafficking can be increased
The IGC is also addressing the creation of the mechanism for the EU to develop and pursue a common foreign and security policy (CFSP). Because matters of foreign and security policy are at the heart of national sovereignty, the EU is seeking methods of voting with respect to a CFSP and participation in foreign policy programs and military operations that strike a delicate balance between providing the EU with the authority and responsibility it needs to conduct a credible CFSP and need to respect the sovereign prerogatives and national interests of member states.
The work of the IGC is aimed at preparing the EU for expansion into Central and Eastern Europe. It has already committed itself to beginning accession talks with prospective members six months after the end of the IGC, which on the current schedule will mean in early 1998. The IGC is considering how those talks will be structured and the criteria that will be applied in assessing an applicants readiness for admission.
At the same time, the EU is considering the steps needed to create a single European currency. The talks on European monetary union (EMU) have themselves reached the penultimate stage. It has been agreed that the EMU will be effective as of January 1, 1999. At the December, 1996 EU summit the members also agreed on the mechanisms by which the stability of the new currency, the "Euro," will be maintained. What remains to be determined is which states will join the EMU. On current expectations, the initial members will include Germany, France, Belgium, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Denmark, Spain and Italy.
Western European Union
The Western European Union predates the formation of NATO. But with NATO's formation and the substantial commitment of the US to Western Europe's defense in the early 1950s the WEU became a dormant institution. With the end of the Cold War, a growing determination among European states to develop a European defense identity (EDI) and the evident need of the EU for a military organization to supplement the EU's CFSP, new life was breathed into the WEU.
In the years since 1989 the WEU has:
These measures have given rise to suggestions that the WEU take on a more active security role, perhaps as an integral part of the EU.
Organization for Security and Cooperation In Europe
The 55 member OSCE, like the EU, started to gain some institutional momentum after 1989. "The Charter of Paris for a New Europe" (November 21, 1990) was an attempt to shift the CSCE from a forum for discussion to an "institution" charged with formalizing the adoption by CSCE members of the principles of the Helsinki Agreement of 1975. Three permanent or standing components were created (a Secretariat in Prague, the Office of Democratic Institutions and Human Rights, and the Conflict Prevention Center in Vienna), and two political bodies (the Ministerial Council and the Senior Council).
At the Budapest summit in December of 1994 the CSCE was upgraded to organizational status as the OSCE. This occurred in the wake of increasing tensions between Russia and the West over the potential enlargement of NATO, the crisis in the former Yugoslavia, and Russia's role in the "near abroad." The US orchestrated this change primarily to address Russian concerns. Moscow had been seeking a permanent institution other than NATO or the EU to oversee security affairs in Europe.
The OSCE is intended to serve as a broadly based mechanism for the resolution of crises and for the conduct of preventative diplomacy. These additional responsibilities have included:
In practical terms, the OSCE has discharged its responsibilities by:
Topics in Need of Further DevelopmentThe foregoing briefly describes the transformation made by each of the major institutions associated with security in Europe since 1989. Until now, however, these efforts have been undertaken absent extensive, formal coordination among these institutions. The only exception of note was the coordinated announcement of the change to the status of the OSCE in December, 1994 in the wake of the NATO summit of January 1994 when the alliance announced the PFP, the CJTF and its determination to admit new members. As noted, this coordination was sought primarily as a way of assuaging Russian concerns about NATO's intentions by showing a willingness to upgrade the status of the OSCE, an organization to which Russia said it attached great importance for addressing its security concerns in Europe.
But as we approach this next stage in the creation of a new security system in Europe, it is critical that the relationship among the programs of the institutions and the institutions themselves is clearly presented to publics. The reasons for this are:
This demonstration of transatlantic commitment, balance and openness is of critical importance because:
Accomplishing these tasks and engendering the commitment, balance and openness required is made more difficult by the following facts:
Developing a Presentation for CitizensLeaders, directors and elites will have little difficulty impressing their citizens with the efforts made to transform institutions with an aim to making them relevant to the security environment as it has evolved since 1989. They need now to concentrate on formulating coherent responses to the following questions: