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East European Perspectives: August 7, 2004

7 August 2004, Volume 6, Number 16

NATO's Partnership For Peace: Charting A Course For A New Era

By Jeffrey Simon

When NATO completed another enlargement this year and added seven former East-Central European communist countries as members, the North Atlantic Alliance grew to 26 members. It also meant that 10 of the two-dozen Partnership for Peace (PfP) partners had thus achieved full alliance membership. This marks the end of an era, and raises questions about the PfP's direction and long-term viability.

Key Points

The original strategic rationale for the PfP, enhancing stability among, and practical cooperation with, the countries along NATO's periphery has become even more compelling in the context of NATO's further enlargement, the war on terrorism, growing Western interest in Southwest and Central Asia, and the rise of authoritarian and neoimperialist sentiments in Russia. That said, one of the key incentives that animated partner engagement in the program -- the lure of NATO membership -- has diminished since the remaining partners are either not interested or not likely to enter the alliance for many years.

To retain its relevance and effectiveness, PfP must be transformed, adequately resourced, and better integrated with bilateral AND regional efforts that are also essential to addressing new security challenges such as terrorism, the proliferation of sophisticated conventional arms and weapons of mass destruction, and other transnational threats. New, tailored PfP programs need to be promoted in the Balkans, the greater Black Sea region, and Central Asia. These should include military education and training, security-sector reforms, border security, and subregional military cooperation.

Successful programs of subregional cooperation in Southeastern Europe could be adapted to or extended across the Black Sea. For example, NATO allies could help sponsor the creation of a Black Sea Defense Ministerial and Black Sea Task Force to deal with civil emergency contingencies and interdiction operations.

NATO should also devise a strategy to link the Balkan Membership Action Plan (MAP) partner accession to the completion of specific NATO "acquis," with a time horizon of between five and eight years, and offer intensified dialogue with Ukraine as a prerequisite to joining MAP.

Finally, the alliance also needs to look at redirecting NATO infrastructure funds to improve the necessary infrastructure and bases in support of NATO-led operations in Afghanistan and Iraq.

PfP: Genesis And Evolution

The collapse of the Soviet Union and Warsaw Pact posed a strategic problem for NATO in the early 1990s: How could it shape the post-Soviet reform process in Central and Eastern Europe in ways that would turn former adversaries into partners and foster greater stability? Its answer was to create the North Atlantic Cooperation Council (NACC) in December 1991 to bring former adversaries together to talk and to begin multilateral cooperation. The NACC dialogue helped Central and East European politicians to better understand that defense requirements incorporate the principles of political democracy into their defense structures. They slowly began to comprehend that defense encompassed more than just the military, but also included civil-emergency planning and broader security issues. This dialogue also illuminated opportunities for practical cooperation on mutual-security concerns.

PfP has undergone enormous change since it was launched at the January 1994 Brussels Summit. The original program was initially launched to deal with aspirants for membership in an alliance that was not yet ready to accept new allies. Though many aspirants initially saw PfP as a "policy for postponement," it did move them beyond dialogue into practical partnership with NATO.

PfP developed a framework and process; it established the norm that partners should be security "contributors" and marked a shift from purely multilateral dialogue to bilateral (partner and alliance) relationships. These occurred in the form of Individual Partnership Programs (IPPs) and self-differentiation. It marked the establishment of a broad environment of cooperation to include participation in the Planning and Review Process (PARP) and peace support operations in the Partnership Coordination Cell (PCC). Continued partner pressure for membership and political shifts in the West, led NATO to initiate a study on NATO enlargement that was briefed to aspirants in September 1995. This study incorporated into NATO "acquis" the principles of political democracy, free enterprise, equitable treatment of ethnic minorities, good neighborly relations, and democratic oversight of the military as essential elements of being a "producer" of security.

During this period, NATO allies and PfP members (partners) wrestled with the issue of what kind of cooperation would be most useful. One clearly was cooperation in military exercises and training. Initially, roughly a dozen "partners" participated in the PCC at Mons, Belgium to coordinate and plan military exercises for search and rescue, humanitarian assistance, and peacekeeping operations. The PCC's terms of reference expanded to include "peace-enforcement operations" after the December 1995 Dayton Accords and NATO's decision to allow partners to deploy peacekeepers in the Bosnia Implementation Force (IFOR and the follow-on Stabilization Force, or SFOR). The following 14 (out of 26) PfP partners participated in IFOR: Albania, Austria, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Finland, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, Russia, Sweden, and Ukraine. Later Ireland, Slovakia, and Slovenia also joined SFOR. Another focal point was internal defense reform -- that is, the so-called PARP. The first PARP cycle launched in 1995 had 14 participants: Albania, Bulgaria, the Czech Republic, Estonia, Finland, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden, and Ukraine.

The July 1997 Madrid Summit issued invitations for Poland, Hungary, and the Czech Republic to join the alliance and "enhanced" PfP to be more relevant and operational. It also replaced the NACC with a new Euro-Atlantic Partnership Council (EAPC) and created the NATO-Russia Permanent Joint Council (PJC) and the NATO-Ukraine Commission to keep Russia and Ukraine engaged in the PfP. The second PARP cycle, launched in October 1996, introduced interoperability objectives to permit partners' forces to operate with allies; 18 partners signed up.

By the April 1999 Washington Summit, Poland, Hungary, and the Czech Republic had already joined an alliance that was heavily engaged in Operation Allied Force, the air campaign in Serbia. In the follow-on Kosovo Force (KFOR), 16 PfP partners (Austria, Azerbaijan, Bulgaria, Estonia, Finland, Georgia, Ireland, Latvia, Lithuania, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, Slovenia, Sweden, Switzerland, and Ukraine) contributed to the operation in addition to NATO's three new allies. The summit also approved the new Alliance Strategic Concept, which underscored the importance of partnerships; launched a Defense Capabilities Initiative (DCI) to improve operability among alliance forces, and (where applicable) between alliance AND partner forces in non-Article 5 operations through an operational-capabilities concept and Partnership Goals.

The summit also approved a third PARP cycle that further enhanced partner force planning procedures to make them more closely resemble the NATO Defense Planning Questionnaire. In essence, Partnership Goals (PGs) for Interoperability and for Forces and Capabilities would replace the old interoperability objectives in 2000. The new PGs sought to develop specific armed forces and capabilities that partners could offer in support of NATO operations and permit partners in the EAPC greater participation in deliberations involving exercise planning.

Finally, the 1999 summit also introduced the MAP as a practical manifestation of NATO's "Open Door" (Article 10) policy. The MAP identified five partner areas (political/economic, defense/military, resources, security, and legal) that were necessary to develop the capabilities needed for membership. The MAP Annual National Plans (ANPs) generated by the nine (Croatia only joined the PfP after the Washington Summit on 25 May 2000; in May 2002 it joined the MAP) aspirant partners would allow each to set its own objectives and targets in preparation for future membership.

PfP Challenges After 11 September 2001

NATO's first post-9/11 challenge involves building the right defense capabilities to deal with the new terrorism risks. In response to the 2001 terrorist attacks on the World Trade Center and Pentagon, the U.S. increased defense expenditures by $48 billion in fiscal year 2002 (a sum equal to the entire U.K. defense budget), while most of the NATO allies' budgets have remained unchanged. The gap would only increase. Overall, the DCIs proved to be a disappointment and the capabilities gap continued to grow.

And yet, NATO committed itself to an even broader functional and wider geographic area of engagement! After invoking Article 5 on 12 September 2001, NATO AWACS flew over the United States while its naval forces operated in the eastern Mediterranean. NATO's North Atlantic Council began to "plan" operations in and around Afghanistan, and PfP demonstrated its utility in the Caucasus and Central Asia.

At its first meeting after the 9/11 attacks, the EAPC defense ministers on 19 December 2001 reaffirmed their determination to increase PfP cooperation and capabilities against terrorism. Consistent with NATO's realization that it must place greater emphasis on meeting the challenges of asymmetric warfare, as discussed below, the EAPC approved new PARP ministerial guidance and adopted the Action Plan 2002-2004 and the Civil Emergency Action Plan regarding possible chemical, biological, or radiological attacks. At that time 19 partners were participating in PARP, as Uzbekistan and Kazakhstan followed Azerbaijan, Georgia, and Armenia into the program.

Although the International Security Force Operations in Afghanistan (ISAF) commenced in January 2002, NATO assumed ISAF command in August 2003 with the participation of many allies and six PfP partners. The six were Austria, Finland, and Sweden; MAP-member Albania; and NATO invitees Bulgaria and Romania. In addition, in Central Command's (CENTCOM) Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) in Iraq, many NATO allies and six PfP partners (Uzbekistan, Ukraine, Slovakia, Romania, Kyrgyzstan, and Bulgaria) rendered substantial assistance, while new NATO members Poland and the Czech Republic directly participated in the operation. Finally, in Iraq NATO provided intelligence and logistical support assistance to the Polish-led multinational division that comprised many (to include the three new) allies and 11 partners (MAP member Macedonia; MAP invitees Slovakia, Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia; Ukraine, Romania and Bulgaria on the Black Sea; Azerbaijan and Georgia in the Caucasus; and Kazakhstan in Central Asia participated in OEF). Thus, the Supreme Headquarters Allied Powers Europe (SHAPE) assisted with Warsaw's orientation and force generation conferences, the NATO School at Oberammergau, Germany, helped train the multinational staff, Allied Forces South (AFSOUTH) supported the Warsaw planning staff with logistical planning, and NATO assisted the Poles in establishing a secure satellite communications link and provide intelligence sharing and information management (see "NATO Press Release," No. 93, 3 September 2002).

Terrorism And Emergency Management

The November 2002 Prague Summit endorsed the "Concept for Defense Against Terrorism" that calls for "improved intelligence sharing and crisis response arrangements [and commitment WITH partners] to fully implement the Civil Emergency Planning (CEP) Action Plan against possible attacks by chemical, biological or radiological (CBR) agents" ("NATO Press Release," No. 127, 21 November 2002). The European-Atlantic Partnership Council adopted the Partnership Action Plan Against Terrorism (PAP-T) that commits partners to: intensify political consultations and information sharing on armaments and civil emergency planning; enhance preparedness for combating terrorism through security-sector reforms and force planning, air defense and air traffic management, and armaments and logistics cooperation; impede support for terrorist groups by enhancing the exchange of banking information and improving border controls for arms ranging from weapons of mass destruction (WMD) to small arms and light weapons, enhance capabilities to contribute to consequence management of WMD-related terrorism and civil emergency planning, and provide assistance to partners' efforts against terrorism through the Political Military Steering Committee (PMSC) Clearing House mechanism as well as the creation of a PfP Trust Fund.

A Path Forward

For the PfP to remain relevant, it needs to focus on developing capabilities to combat terrorism and other transnational threats. New programs could focus on making interior ministries, police, and border guards more effective. A revived partnership also now needs to improve its intelligence cooperation to include the sharing of interior (police and border control) and financial (banking) information. Finally, PfP's budget and functions need to be reexamined and updated to support future counterterrorist operations to include the counterproliferation efforts and missile-defense systems outlined in the PAP-T.

Added to the broader functional and wider geographic challenges facing the alliance, the relationship between NATO members and partners is changing dramatically. With seven MAP partners having joined NATO in 2004, members (26) now outnumber partners (20). NATO is now struggling with the transformation of its own armed forces and security-sector institutions and with completing the integration of the 10 newest members. The 20 remaining partners have diverse security interests, and the majority of them have much weaker defense establishments and governmental institutions than those who have joined the alliance.

A Strategic Vision For PfP's Revival

Clearly, this situation requires a new strategic vision for PfP. For NATO to succeed in reviving PfP, the program must be tailored to the needs of the new PfP membership, which falls into the following eight distinct groups with very diverse needs, interests, and capacities:

Five "advanced" partners: Austria, Finland, Ireland, Sweden, and Switzerland, which have no interest in joining the alliance.

The three MAP partners: Albania, Croatia, and Macedonia, which do aspire to membership and for whom NATO must keep its "Open Door" credible.

Ukraine, which claims to be an aspirant with an "Action Plan," and aspires to join the MAP.

Russia, which does not aspire to membership but maintains a special relationship in the NATO-Russia Council established in May 2002.

Two relatively inactive partners: Moldova and Belarus.

Three Caucasian partners: Armenia, Azerbaijan, and Georgia.

Five Central Asian partners: Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan.

Two Balkan PfP aspirants: Bosnia-Herzegovina and Serbia and Montenegro.

The incentives for PfP participation vary widely between Russia, with no interest in formal membership, and Ukraine, which aspires to join NATO. PfP also provides incentive for Bosnia-Herzegovina and Serbia and Montenegro because it remains their one path to Euro-Atlantic structures and the legitimacy that comes with it. While Moldova and Belarus remain relatively inactive in PfP, their role could change as they adjust to their altered geostrategic environment after enlargement. The remaining 16 PfP partners comprise the following four groups:

A) Advanced Partners: the five "advanced" (in terms of criteria for NATO membership as outlined in the 1995 "Study on NATO Enlargement" ( These partners (except Switzerland) are already in the EU and remain outside formal NATO membership by choice. Sweden and Finland were early PfP signatories, joining on 9 May 1994. Austria joined on 10 February 1995, Switzerland on 11 December 1996, and finally Ireland on 1 December 1999. Their increased participation in PfP in recent years primarily focused on the Balkans and serves as an example of partnership participation as being important in its own right, and not necessarily being a route to membership.

The five "advanced" partners (along with NATO members) should be encouraged to establish a "buddy" system (as Sweden and Finland have already done with the Baltic states) with Caucasian and Central Asian partners (similar to what Lithuania has been doing with Georgia). It will be a challenge for diverse reasons to keep the "advanced" partners engaged in NATO's wider geographic interest. One way might be to make preparation of NATO exercises in the Caucasus and Central Asia more flexible and allow the non-aligned partners to take a greater part in their planning and encourage their security-sector expertise in a "revived" PfP.

B) Balkan Stability and Security -- Enlargement, MAP, and PfP Aspirants: NATO enlargement, the MAP process, and PfP continue to play a very important but underappreciated role in enhancing Balkan stability and security. Slovenian, Romanian and Bulgarian membership in NATO forms a stable security foundation. The MAP (as long as Article 10 remains credible) keeps Albania, Croatia, and Macedonia positively engaged in activities consistent with NATO principles; and the incentive of joining PfP keeps Serbia and Montenegro and Bosnia-Herzegovina productively focused. Their continued successful engagement has become increasingly important in light of the transfer of NATO's operation Allied Harmony in Macedonia to the EU (Concordia), and will become even more important after the likely transfer of NATO's SFOR to the EU in the future.

If PfP were to become moribund and lose credibility, Balkan security will be severely undermined because some nations might be tempted to move in nonconstructive directions.

Therefore, NATO should establish more precise criteria that need to be achieved in order to keep its "Open Door" credible for the three remaining MAP members. This is likely to become an issue for Albania and Macedonia, who have been in PfP for almost a decade and whose patience may eventually wear thin. If NATO is unprepared to offer membership soon it needs to establish the PROSPECT of it. NATO might consider some version of a "regatta" to maintain Article 10 credibility for the remaining MAP partners. The "regatta" concept entails extending an invitation contingent upon the completion of specific predetermined acquis; if multiple invitations are extended, actual accession dates could likely vary. While the "regatta" concept was rejected for the 2002 Prague Summit invitees because many politicians claimed that accession is ultimately a political issue (which it is), Albania and Macedonia have been in PfP for a decade and have had five years of MAP and ANP experience. It seems reasonable to expect NATO to develop a "regatta" strategy to link Balkan MAP partner accession to the completion of specific well-defined NATO acquis built into the MAP ANPs and with a notional time horizon of the aforementioned five to eight years.

Additionally: PfP programs should be coordinated with EU assistance to security-sector reforms to tackle the new security threats outlined in the PAP-T.

PfP also needs to be linked to the successful subregional Southeast European Defense Minister (SEDM) process (which should also be broadened to include interior and intelligence functions), the Southeast European Cooperation Initiative (SECI) to combat transborder crime, and the Southeast European Brigade (SEEBRIG) in the Balkans. If this proves difficult in the Balkans (as it likely will be), then PfP's mandate, consistent with the Prague Summit's Action Plan Against Terrorism, ought to be broadened to include PGs with police activities as it already has been with border guards. The objective here is to improve interagency coordination and cooperation within and among Balkan states.

This could be accomplished within the annual SEDM meetings that began in 1996 and have succeeded in enhancing transparency and building cooperation and security in Southeastern Europe. SEDM initial members included Albania, Bulgaria, Greece, Macedonia, Slovenia, and Turkey (with the U.S., Italy, and, more recently, Ukraine as observers). Croatia joined SEDM in October 2000. In 1999 the SEDM approved the creation of the SEEBRIG, which comprises a 25,000-troop force that can be assembled as needed by the brigade's commanders.

It is now time to build further upon SEDM's successes to deal with the new risk environment consistent with NATO guidance. SEDM should be broadened to include civil-emergency planning and interior and intelligence ministers to become an annual Southeast European Defense, Interior, and Intelligence Ministerial (SEDIIM). The "new" SEDIIM should be encouraged to further coordinate its work with the Southeast European Cooperation Initiative (SECI). Launched in December 1996, the U.S. initiated and supported the SECI to encourage cooperation among the states of Southeastern Europe on economic transportation and environmental matters as a way to facilitate their access to European integration. The SECI Center in Bucharest supports the common transborder crime-fighting efforts of the participating countries. SECI presently includes all 10 Balkan countries from Slovenia to Turkey plus Hungary and Moldova. Since Moldova is in SECI and Serbia and Montenegro and Bosnia-Herzegovina are PfP aspirants, they should all become SEDM observers with the goal being their ultimate membership in the broadened SEDIIM process.

C) Greater Black Sea Defense Ministerial and Caucasian Partners: The Black Sea has acquired increased strategic importance since NATO assumed command in Afghanistan (ISAF) in August 2003 and assisted the Polish-led division in Iraq. Coupled with the fact that NATO is now actively engaged in the out-of-area beyond the Balkans, in the greater Black Sea region, and that all the Black Sea defense ministers have NEVER met together, it is time to apply Central European and Balkan "lessons" to the greater Black Sea region. The first step to stabilize the region is to build understanding through a discussion of security risks, and then to build greater regional cooperation through the implementation of military activities in support of a transparent agenda. For example: The SEDM (and potential SEDIIM), SECI, and SEEBRIG groupings can serve as models to further expand to the greater Black Sea littoral area beyond merely the formation of a Black Sea Force (BLACKSEAFOR) that was established in April 2001 among the six Black Sea states (Bulgaria, Georgia, Romania, Russia, Turkey, and Ukraine) for search and rescue humanitarian operations, clearing sea mines, protecting the environment, and promoting goodwill visits. One can envision the creation of a Black Sea Task Force to deal not only with civil emergency contingencies (e.g., the aftermath of earthquakes and the management of potential chemical, biological, and radiological attacks), but also to interdict the trafficking of drugs, weapons, and humans across the greater Black Sea region. As continued engagement of Ukraine in PfP is important, commencing an intensified dialogue with Ukraine as a prerequisite to joining the MAP would be a step in the right direction.

The Central and East European experience provides numerous successful examples of combined peacekeeping and/or civil-emergency units that should be explored for possible adaptation to improve interstate relations in the greater Black Sea region. These include Romanian-Hungarian military contacts to improve otherwise cool political relations in the early 1990s, the continued deployment of the Czech-Slovak battalion in UNPROFOR and UNCHRO during and after the January 1993 "Velvet divorce," the Polish-Ukraine battalion in Kosova (and now Iraq), the Baltic battalion in nurturing regional cooperation, and SEEBRIG in the Balkans. Adapting some of these experiences as models for application within the Caucasus and with NATO's three new Black Sea allies (after 2004) and partners and other willing NATO allies (coupled with a U.S. Black Sea presence) under a revived PfP can go a long way in advancing greater Black Sea cooperation and stability, as well as advance NATO's security interests.

In addition to interstate cooperation, U.S. policy can also help improve Black Sea cooperation and stability. The likely new U.S. presence in Bulgaria and Romania can be leveraged to improve interoperability through the development of joint training and logistics facilities and in building a joint expeditionary Black Sea Task Force. Along with Romania, Bulgaria, and Turkey -- NATO's three Black Sea allies with rich experience in SEDM and SEEBRIG -- the U.S. presence could be beneficial in fostering wider Black Sea cooperation under a revived PfP program.

Although all three Caucasus partners were 1994 signatories of the PfP, their participation has varied considerably and only recently has become more prominent. This has been particularly evident with the PARP, which remains the core of transparent defense planning, accountability, and democratic oversight of the military and provides the foundation to enhance subregional cooperation. After 9/11, all three Caucasian PfP countries joined the PARP.

Though Armenia participates in PfP, NATO membership remains controversial for it because of unresolved problems with Turkey and Azerbaijan. Armenia has close relations with Romania, Greece, and Bulgaria and remains very close to Russia. An original signatory of the 1992 Tashkent CIS Collective Security Treaty with Russia, Armenia is the only Caucasus state that renewed its commitment for another five years on 2 April 1999.

While Azerbaijan and Georgia signed the CIS treaty in September and December 1993, respectively, they withdrew from it in April 1999. Azerbaijan feels insecure due to its conflict with Armenia over Nagorno-Karabakh and problems with terrorism, drugs, crime, and human trafficking. Azerbaijan cooperates with the U.S. in counterterrorism and participates in KFOR, Afghanistan, and Iraq. Georgia participates in KFOR and Black Sea regional cooperation, wants NATO to play a role in solving the Abkhazia and South Ossetia conflicts, and in September 2002 its parliament adopted a resolution endorsing the goal of NATO membership. The U.S. has assisted the Georgian armed forces through the Train and Equip program and in establishing control over the Pankisi Gorge near the border with Russia.

The U.S. has greater influence among Caucasian (and Central Asian) partners than NATO (and EU) structures per se because the alliance has had greater difficulties in terms of what assistance it can offer. (For over a decade the U.S. has been working closely with Georgia -- and Uzbekistan in Central Asia -- on training forces to deal with their internal requirements). But this can change if the NATO Security Investment Program (NSIP) were more directly focused on the region and the PfP Trust Fund was made more robust.

NATO needs to make sure that the NATO Trust Fund becomes more than just a rhetorical commitment. Hopefully the PfP Trust Fund -- which has allocated $4.2 million to destroy antipersonnel mines in Albania, Moldova, and Ukraine and dispose of missile stockpiles in Georgia -- will be expanded.

The NSIP is a much larger program with an annual budget of over $600 million ($681 million in 2004) to cover installations and facilities dealing with communications and information systems, radar, military headquarters, airfields, fuel pipelines and storage, harbors, and navigational aids ("Financial and Economic Data Relating to NATO Defence," 2000). Under the heading of "Crisis Response Operations" (CRO) in the NATO military budget and NSIP, NATO is already spending NSIP in Afghanistan and is about to spend even more in the operation of Kabul Airport. NSIP funds have also been used to cover eligible requirements for NATO-led SFOR, KFOR, and ISAF "peace support" operations that include repairing airfields, railways, and roads. Since NATO has assumed the lead in Afghanistan's ISAF in August 2003, NSIP funds ought to be eligible for the ISAF operation and be applied to the broader Black Sea region to augment NATO air, road, and rail support. NSIP funds should be made eligible to improve facilities in PfP countries in direct support of ISAF (and after Iraq?) and authorize NATO Secretary-General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer to restructure the NATO International Staff yet again to consolidate PfP into one directorate, perhaps headed by its own assistant secretary-general. This would symbolize the alliance's commitment to a revived PfP, and highlight the program's renewed importance in fulfilling NATO's wider geographic and broader functional commitments.

After PfP's launch in 1994, when it became obvious that necessary resources were lacking, the U.S. started its Warsaw Initiative with $100 million in annual funding. By now, most of the Warsaw Initiative's key recipients are members of the alliance, with the program achieving enormous success. But the remaining 20 partners, particularly around the greater Black Sea, in the Caucasus, and Central Asia, have significantly weaker political, economic, social, security, and defense institutions. In addition, the challenges that these partners face, consistent with the broader post-9/11 civil emergency planning and counterterrorism direction taken by NATO since the Prague summit, require greater assistance in order to bring their personnel and institutions closer to NATO standards.

In order to support this effort, the U.S. ought to launch a "New Initiative" funded at roughly the same amount as the current Warsaw Initiative (Department of Defense contributed $40 million and a State Department Foreign Military Financing [FMF] share of $40 million) to focus on a more sophisticated program that stresses the basics. The Department of Defense share would be used to train and educate civilian and military partner personnel, assist in developing a rational partner military force that would be capable of cooperating with its border troops, police, and intelligence institutions, refine and develop civil emergency planning procedures that will be interoperable with immediate neighbors, and promote the development of a Greater Black Sea Defense, Interior, and Intelligence Ministerial to work with NATO and the United States. The State Department's FMF share of the "New Initiative" should also be used to upgrade air, ground, and sea facilities and build the required infrastructure to support the Greater Black Sea Defense Ministerial and Greater Black Sea Task Force.

D) Central Asian Partners: While it was hoped that the NACC and partnership participation by Central Asian states would help them maintain their ties with the West and encourage democratic developments, the results have been mixed. The PfP facilitated access for the United States and other allies in Central Asia to support operations in Afghanistan in 2001; however, the politics of the region remain largely authoritarian. Security cooperation was also complicated by the fact that four of the five Central Asian states (Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, and Uzbekistan) were among the original signatories of the 15 May 1992 CIS Collective Security Treaty with Russia and Armenia. When the protocol extending the treaty was signed on 2 April 1999, Uzbekistan dropped out of the treaty. Four of the Central Asian states (Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan) were among the 1994 signatories of the PfP, but Tajikistan did not join until after 9/11. Kyrgyzstan and Uzbekistan also joined the PARP in December 2001.

Though none of the Central Asian partners participated in any of the Balkan operations, they have supported U.S. and NATO-led operations in Afghanistan and Iraq. Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan have provided basing rights and overflights for U.S. and coalition forces in Operation Enduring Freedom, and Kazakhstan supported Poland with demining troops in Iraq and permitted the overflight and transport of supplies and U.S. troops in Uzbekistan and Kyrgyzstan. Increasingly these activities have irritated the Russians. Hence, encouraging the active participation of Russia in a revived PfP and in the Russia-NATO Council will be important to reduce the inevitable frictions and explore options for cooperative Russian engagement.


The foregoing analysis illustrates the increasing importance of effective cooperation with PfP partners for NATO's ability to meet its wider geographic and broader functional needs. Rejuvenating PfP would provide opportunities to promote democratic governance, defense, and security-sector reforms, and subregional cooperation in the greater Black Sea Region and Central Asia. While PfP must continue to adapt, its original charter to promote good neighborly relations, democracy, free enterprise, equitable treatment of ethnic minorities, and democratic oversight and effective management of the armed forces, has enduring value.
* The author is senior fellow at the Institute for National Strategic Studies, National Defense University. This is an updated version of an article originally published in "Strategic Forum" in March 2004.