Revitalizing the Transatlantic Security Partnership – An Agenda for Action

A Venusberg Group and Rand Corporation Project

Report written by F. Stephen Larrabee and Julian Lindley-French

The election of Barack Obama as the new U.S. president provides an opportunity to overcome many of the divisions that have bedeviled U.S.-European relations in recent years and give the transatlantic partnership new dynamism and vision. In the coming decade, the United States and Europe face a daunting array of challenges. These challenges are so complex and demanding that neither the United States nor Europe can manage them on their own. They require close and sustained collective action.

To manage these challenges successfully, the transatlantic relationship needs a new mindset based on the premise that a multipolar world is emerging—one that will affect foreign policy options and consequently the ability of Americans and Europeans to shape others. To that end, a new transatlantic security partnership must be crafted that reflects both the new global realities and the political realities in Europe and the United States.

Central to such a partnership will be shared interests and values and a mutual commitment to the projection of stability and the anchoring of emerging powers in effective multilateral institutions underpinned by a strong commitment to the international rule of law. Specifically needed is a new architecture founded on a strong U.S. involvement in NATO, NATO-EU relations aimed at promoting and projecting effective civil-military security beyond the Euro-Atlantic area and an EU-U.S. security relationship that assures the protection of the home base.

This report is aimed at furthering that goal. It seeks to define the substance and parameters of a new security partnership between the United States and Europe as well as to outline an Agenda for Action for the new partnership.

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