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Policy brief | 24 August 2012

NATO, Russia, and the Nuclear Disarmament Agenda: Reflections Post Chicago

Image of Des Browne

Des Browne |Chair of the ELN, Vice Chairman of the NTI, Convener of the TLG and former UK Defence Secretary

Defence Deterrence NATO Nuclear Disarmament Nuclear Weapons Russia Russia-West Relations Euro-Atlantic Security

This ELN Policy Brief by Ian Kearns and Des Browne discusses the strategic and defence realities that accompanied NATO’s Deterrence and Defence Posture Review.

The first two sections of the paper provide an overview of the context in which the Chicago Summit took place, including the strategic realities and requirements that the DDPR needed to consider. Noting the window of opportunity the DDPR offered in relation to re-thinking NATO’s capability requirements the subsequent sections of the paper discuss concrete steps that could and, in the view of the authors, should have been taken to allow for a more progressive NATO nuclear policy position and a strengthening of the NATO-Russia relationship.

The paper goes on to call on Central and Eastern European states to reconsider their positions with regard to nuclear policy, and uses the hypothetical scenario of a nuclear terrorist attack on the United States to expose the ways in which nuclear threats, beyond those emanating from Russian non-strategic nuclear weapons, could threaten the core national security interests of those in the region.


The opinions articulated above represent the views of the author(s), and do not necessarily reflect the position of the European Leadership Network or any of its members. The ELN’s aim is to encourage debates that will help develop Europe’s capacity to address the pressing foreign, defence, and security challenges of our time.