Future of NATO

February 28, 2003 • Volume 13, Issue 8
Is the alliance still viable?
By Mary H. Cooper

Introduction

A NATO peacekeeper from Portugal stands guard in Srebrenica, Bosnia, in July 2000. NATO troops were sent to the beleaguered town to ensure a safe environment for the return of Bosnian Muslims to their homes.  (AFP Photo/Elvis Barukcic)
A NATO peacekeeper from Portugal stands guard in Srebrenica, Bosnia, in July 2000. NATO troops were sent to the beleaguered town to ensure a safe environment for the return of Bosnian Muslims to their homes. (AFP Photo/Elvis Barukcic)

President Bush's Iraq policy has exacerbated longstanding tensions between the United States and its allies in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO), established after World War II to counter the Soviet Union. The administration's go-it-alone stance in foreign policy has prompted France and Germany to lead efforts to thwart Bush's plans to attack Iraq. Some experts say the rift is proof that the alliance has outlived its mandate, while NATO supporters say it remains a vital bulwark against terrorism and other threats to democracy. Meanwhile, some critics are asking whether America's allies should speed up weapons modernization to better collaborate with the Pentagon's technologically sophisticated equipment. Others say NATO is fast evolving into little more than a political forum.

ISSUE TRACKER for Related Reports
NATO
Jan. 2009  Future of NATO
Feb. 28, 2003  Future of NATO
May 16, 1997  Expanding NATO
Aug. 21, 1992  NATO's Changing Role
Mar. 22, 1974  Faltering NATO Alliance
Nov. 18, 1964  Reconstruction of NATO
Oct. 24, 1956  Future of NATO
BROWSE RELATED TOPICS:
Alliances and Security Agreements
Regional Political Affairs: Europe