NATO Chiefs of Staff gather to discuss integration and Ukraine conflict
This week, the Chiefs of Staff from NATO countries met at headquarters in Brussels to discuss the integration of NATO and national military planning. For the first time ever, military leaders from the new member country Finland and invited Sweden also participated in the meeting. The aim of the gathering was to further integrate the NATO-level planning with the national-level planning of the Allies, and to rapidly increase the readiness of the Allied forces.
The meeting discussed the current situation in Ukraine and the challenges faced by the country in combating the Russian invasion. Admiral Bauer, head of NATO’s Military Committee, stated that Russia’s war against Ukraine is the biggest threat to Euro-Atlantic security to emerge in recent years and that Moscow wants to extend its ambitions beyond Ukraine’s borders. Bauer also noted that Russia is deploying a large number of untrained but not well-trained soldiers and is using outdated equipment due to the sheer numbers of resources needed to maintain the conflict. In contrast, Ukraine is focusing on enhancing the quality of its forces by taking help from the West.
The meeting also discussed the new force model of NATO, which aims to focus on defending every corner of NATO’s territory. It is called the ‘ability to move forces to the right place at the right time.’ General Christopher Cavoli, Supreme Allied Commander Europe noted that this model will transform NATO from an optimized alliance to a fit-for-purpose alliance with large-scale operations to defend every corner of NATO territory. NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg hopes to see this new model accepted at the upcoming Vilnius summit in July.
The meeting was crucial in bringing together the Chief Military Officers of NATO members and partner countries to address the security challenges that Europe is facing. The discussions also gave valuable insights into the NATO’s current approach in dealing with the Ukraine conflict and its future plans for enhancing its military capabilities.