Rebuilding Washington's Transatlantic Alliance

The next president will have to redesign the U.S. relationship with Europe.

Looking ahead, dealing with terrorist threats and other international security challenges requires more tools than just those available in the U.S. and NATO military tool kits. To improve the West’s ability to respond to future security challenges, the United States should propose stronger and more effective coordination with its allies of nonmilitary instruments of security policy. Such stronger cooperation could include a wide range of instruments, including diplomacy, economic and financial measures, police cooperation, intelligence sharing, public information coordination, development assistance, and the like. A new consultative Atlantic Community Organization, including all NATO and EU members and representatives of both organizations, could be established to coordinate the nonmilitary responses to security challenges now and in the future.

A progressive U.S. foreign policy in transatlantic relations can and should be based on the wide area of common values and interests reflected in the 1949 North Atlantic Treaty and sustained through cooperation in NATO. The relationship can be strengthened in the future with firm and reliable U.S. leadership, matched by allied defense efforts that reflect a shared appreciation of the threats to Western security and society.

Stanley R. Sloan served as an officer in the U.S. Air Force, Deputy National Intelligence Officer at the CIA, and the Senior Specialist in International Security Policy for the Congressional Research Service. He currently is a Visiting Scholar in Political Science at Middlebury College and a Nonresident Senior Fellow at the Atlantic Council of the United States.

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