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.


 
 

 

Headlines April 18, 2014

Business: Lockheed to Lose 17 F-35s Under Automatic Pentagon Cuts - Pentagon will cut 17 of the 343 F-35 fighters it planned to buy from Lockheed Martin in fiscal 2016 through 2019 unless Congress repeals automatic budget cuts, according to a new Defense Department report. DOD looking for ways not to break MH-60R helo deal - The...
 
 

News Briefs April 18, 2013

U.S. military deaths in Afghanistan at 2,177 As of April 15, 2014, at least 2,177 members of the U.S. military had died in Afghanistan as a result of the U.S.-led invasion of Afghanistan in late 2001, according to an Associated Press count. At least 1,802 military service members have died in Afghanistan as a result...
 
 
LM-F35-hours

F-35 fleet surpasses 15,000 flying hours

The Lockheed Martin F-35 Lightning II fleet recently surpassed 15,000 flight hours, marking a major milestone for the program.  “Flying 15,000 hours itself demonstrates that the program is maturing, but what I think is e...
 

 
nasa-cassini

NASA Cassini images may reveal birth of new Saturn moon

NASA’s Cassini spacecraft has documented the formation of a small icy object within the rings of Saturn that may be a new moon, and may also provide clues to the formation of the planet’s known moons. Images taken w...
 
 

NASA completes LADEE mission with planned impact on Moon’s surface

Ground controllers at NASA’s Ames Research Center in Moffett Field, Calif., have confirmed that NASA’s Lunar Atmosphere and Dust Environment Explorer spacecraft impacted the surface of the moon, as planned, between 9:30 and 10:22 p.m., PDT, April 17. LADEE lacked fuel to maintain a long-term lunar orbit or continue science operations and was intentionally sent...
 
 
Photograph courtesy of NASA Ames/SETI Institute/JPL-Caltech

NASA’s Kepler telescope discovers first Earth-size planet in ‘habitable zone’

Photograph courtesy of NASA Ames/SETI Institute/JPL-Caltech Kepler-186f resides in the Kepler-186 system about 500 light-years from Earth in the constellation Cygnus. The system is also home to four inner planets, seen lined up...
 




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>