Defense

May 18, 2012

Pentagon details decisions NATO faces at Chicago summit

Tags:
by Jim Garamone
American Forces Press Service

George Little, acting assistant secretary of defense for public affairs, briefs reporters on the upcoming NATO summit in Chicago and other issues during a Pentagon news conference on May 17, 2012.

NATO leaders and those of partner nations will finalize major decisions about Afghanistan and the future of the alliance during the NATO summit in Chicago this weekend, George Little, acting assistant secretary of defense for public affairs, said May 17.

Little told reporters at a Pentagon news conference that the situation in Afghanistan is not bleak. “We are seeing a narrative of success” in the country, he said.

President Barack Obama will host the May 20-21 summit in his home city, and Defense Secretary Leon E. Panetta will be part of the U.S. delegation to the talks. Panetta will participate in discussions with heads of state and government, and will attend three North Atlantic Council sessions, Little said.

The first session will look at the capabilities the alliance needs in the 21st century. The second, on the International Security Assistance Force in Afghanistan, will include representatives of non-NATO partners as well as NATO members. The third session is with NATO partners who participated in Libya operations.

Participants in the summit will discuss how to work better with partner nations in future operations, Little said.

“This summit comes at an important and historic time for the alliance,” Little said. “NATO nations have come a long way together in recent years, and allies and partners can take stock of that and look for ways to strengthen cooperation in the future.”

Afghanistan will be the major focus of the summit, Little said, and Panetta is confident the alliance will demonstrate its commitment in finishing the job there. That means revalidating the principle agreed to during NATO’s November 2010 summit in Lisbon, Portugal: “In together, out together,” he added.

Last year was a turning point in Afghanistan, and NATO and Afghan forces are building on that progress, Little said. “The Taliban have been weakened,” he said. “Al-Qaida’s organization has been decimated, and violence levels are down across the country, including in Helmand and Kandahar provinces in the south.” The southern provinces are the traditional home of the Taliban.

Last weekend, Afghan President Hamid Karzai announced the third tranche of regions that will transition to Afghan security forces control. When it’s complete, more than 75 percent of Afghans will be under the security provided by Afghan soldiers and police.

“All of that has sent a clear signal that the campaign is on track and that the international community remains committed to helping Afghanistan secure and govern itself,” Little said.

Summit participants, he added, will discuss how to continue the transition to Afghan security lead, will detail plans to support sustainment of the Afghan national security forces, and will determine the long-term relationship NATO will have with Afghanistan.

“All of these steps will help define how we can responsibly conclude the war in Afghanistan while achieving our objectives and building a long-term partnership with the Afghan people,” Little said.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
Army photograph by SFC Walter E. van Ochten

U.S., Ukraine, Romania, Bulgaria train together at Rapid Trident 2015

Army photograph by SFC Walter E. van Ochten U.S. soldiers, of the 3rd Platoon, 615th Military Police Company, 709th Military Police Battalion, react as they conduct reacting to contact training as part of their situational trai...
 
 
Army photograph by Sgt. Juana M. Nesbitt

Estonian, US forces receive new jump wings

Army photograph by Sgt. Juana M. Nesbitt Pvt. Kalmer Simohov, of Parnu, a volunteer with the Estonian Defense League, receives his U.S. Army Airborne wings following the joint airborne operations exercise at a drop zone in Nurm...
 
 
Air Force photograph by SrA. Thomas Spangler

Red Flag offers B-52 crews training that ‘can’t be beat’

Air Force photograph by A1 Class Rachel Loftis A B-52 Stratofortress assigned to the 69th Bomb Squadon, Minot Air Force Base, N.D., taxis for take off during Red Flag 15-3 at Nellis Air Force Base, Nev., July 15. The B-52 is a ...
 

 
navy-decommission3

Final West Coast frigate, USS Gary, decommissioned

Navy photograph by POCS Donnie W. Ryanl The guided-missile frigate USS Gary (FFG 51) arrives at Naval Base San Diego after completing its final deployment before decomissioning. During the seven-month deployment Gary operated i...
 
 
Air Force photographby A1C Mikaley Towle

‘Thunder’ rolls at Fort Irwin

Air Force photographby A1C Mikaley Towle An Airman assigned to the 22nd Special Tactics Squadron, Joint Base Lewis-McChord, Wash., observes as an A-10 Thunderbolt II circle before landing in support of Green Flag West 15-08.5 o...
 
 
DT2

‘Blue’ forces power through Red Flag 15-3

U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Siuta B. Ika An F-16 Fighting Falcon assigned to the 480th Fighter Squadron, Spangdahlem Air Base, Germany, flies during a Red Flag 15-3 sortie at Nellis Air Force Base, Nev., July 17. Red Fla...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>