Partners - who needs them
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NATO Review
Partners - who needs them?
Partnerships in alliances are not new. The simple refrain that ‘my enemy’s enemy is my friend’ shows the logic of linking up with like-minded people, organisations or countries. And NATO has been taking advantage of partnerships since the 1990s. But now, with security challenges becoming increasingly diverse, NATO Review asks: is this the moment when partnerships have become more important than ever?
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Why partners matter: four foreign ministers explain
What are partners? And why are they important? NATO Review asked four foreign ministers past and present to explain why partners have a key role in security, where they can help and what the partners get out of their involvement.

The changing Arctic: how involved should NATO be?
A global challenge requires a global approach. And the melting of the Arctic ice is certainly an issue whose effects will be felt around the world. But how much is this a NATO issue? What role could – or should – the Alliance play? NATO Review interviews the Norwegian Foreign Minister, Espen Barth Eide, to see why he invited NATO to take a closer look at the issue.

Ashton and Paloméros: why the EU and NATO need partners
NATO Review asks two of NATO and the EU's top officials how they see partnerships. And whether they could see a way to partnering with each other more.

What are partners? And why are they important? NATO Review asked four foreign ministers past and present to explain why partners have a key role in security, where they can help and what the partners get out of their involvement.
A global challenge requires a global approach. And the melting of the Arctic ice is certainly an issue whose effects will be felt around the world. But how much is this a NATO issue? What role could – or should – the Alliance play? NATO Review interviews the Norwegian Foreign Minister, Espen Barth Eide, to see why he invited NATO to take a closer look at the issue.
NATO Review asks two of NATO and the EU's top officials how they see partnerships. And whether they could see a way to partnering with each other more.
Ireland has been a partner of NATO since the 1990s. So how has this sat with the country's famed neutral status? And what benefit does it bring to either side? NATO Review interviews Ireland's Defence Minister to find out.
Afghanistan is not the only operation where NATO has teamed up with partners. This photostory shows a few examples of partners working side by side with NATO.
Stanley Sloan takes a deliberately provocative view of whether all sides benefit equally from neutral countries partnering with NATO. Here he looks at the pros and cons of the arrangement for the countries and the Alliance.
Sweden's forces haven't been involved in a combat mission for over 50 years. But they have stood ready to assist in many NATO operations since the 1990s. Ryan Hendrickson here makes the case for Sweden to be called a special partner to NATO.
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In 1999, NATO held its 50th Summit in Washington. The heads of state included Bill Clinton, Tony Blair and Jacques Chirac. Against a backdrop of tackling the humanitarian disaster unfolding in Kosovo, the leaders endorsed a report entitled ‘Towards a partnership for the 21st century’. Little could the leaders know at that time how important that issue would become.

In 1999, NATO held its 50th Summit in Washington. The heads of State included Bill Clinton, Tony Blair and Jacques Chirac. Against a backdrop of tackling the humanitarian disaster unfolding in Kosovo, the leaders endorsed a report entitled ‘Towards a partnership for the 21st century’. Little could the leaders know at that time how important that issue would become.

Last year NATO held its biggest ever summit in Chicago. The numbers were swollen due to the number of partners attending. Indeed there were more representatives from non-NATO countries than there were from NATO members. These ranged from Japan to El Salvador. From Mongolia to Switzerland. And from Sweden to Uzbekistan.

And it wasn’t just countries. The UN was represented by Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon. The EU by President van Rompuy.

It was partnerships like these that had made the event so key. And the range of issues discussed – from the effects of liberation in Libya to the impact of the global financial crisis – had diversified too.

When you look at the difference between the Washington Summit and the Chicago Summit, it can be difficult to remember that they are separated by little over 13 years. But partnerships – and how best to use them – had made the two summits a world apart.

In this edition of NATO Review, we look into how partnerships could progress. We hear the thoughts of the EU’s High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, Baroness Ashton, and NATO’s Supreme Allied Commander Transformation, General Jean-Paul Paloméros. And we look at some special cases – such as Ireland and Sweden – and see if and how partnerships have benefited both sides.

Paul King

quotes
Winston Churchill (1874 – 1965)
British politician and former Prime Minister of the United Kingdom.
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