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.


 
 

 
Navy photograph

Triton has first cross-country flight from Palmdale

Northrop Grumman photograph The MQ-4C Triton Unmanned Aircraft System takes off from Northrop Grummanís Palmdale, Calif., facility Sept. 17 for its first cross-country flight to Naval Air Station Patuxent, River, Md. PALMDALE,...
 
 
Air Force photograph by Michael J. Pausic

Future of NATO: Adapting to a new security environment

Air Force photograph by Michael J. Pausic Gen. Phillip Breedlove informs the assembled crowd about the results of the recent NATO Summit and the areas of instability that affect Europe that have regional implications. Seated in...
 
 
Air Force photograph by Scott M. Ash

AFRL commander describes Air Force’s technology vision

Air Force photograph by Scott M. Ash Maj. Gen. Thomas Masiello takes a question from an audience member after discussing Air Force Research Laboratory breakthrough technologies during the 2014 Air Force Association’s Air ...
 

 
Air Force photograph by SrA. Timothy Young

F-35 on time to deliver global security, Air Force official said

Air Force photograph by SrA. Timothy Young An F-35A Lightning II, assigned to 59th Test and Evaluation Squadron, takes flight July 18, 2014, at Nellis Air Force Base, Nev. Work leading up the completion of the multinational F-3...
 
 
Navy photograph

Navy’s Triton unmanned aircraft completes first cross-country flight

Navy photograph The Navy’s unmanned MQ-4C Triton prepares to land at Naval Air Station Patuxent River, Md., Sept. 18 after completing an approximately 11-hour flight from Northrop Grumman’s California facility.   The M...
 
 
Air Force photograph by SSgt. Christopher Ruano

F-16 collision-avoidance system could save lives

Air Force photograph by SSgt. Christopher Ruano The Air Force Research Laboratory Automatic Ground Collision Avoidance System will automatically take over an aircraft’s flight controls if a crash is imminent. The technolo...
 




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=""> <strike> <strong>