The drawdown this year of NATO’s combat mission in Afghanistan will create new challenges and much soul-searching for the alliance. In addition to the recent conflict in eastern Ukraine and deepening crisis in Iraq, NATO cannot afford to ignore other issues such as cyberattacks, instability south of the Mediterranean, Iran’s nuclear program, and China’s strategic ambitions. Yet NATO has no credible strategies for dealing with them, and this must change.

Ahead of the NATO summit in Wales, Carnegie Europe hosted an event to launch visiting scholar Judy Dempsey’s new paper, “Why Defense Matters: A New Narrative for NATO.” The paper highlights the threats and challenges facing the disjointed alliance and examines the implications of the Ukraine crisis for NATO and the West.

Dempsey was joined for a lively debate by Fabrice Pothier, head of policy planning in the private office of the NATO secretary general. Jan Techau, director of Carnegie Europe, moderated.

Judy Dempsey

Judy Dempsey is a nonresident senior associate at Carnegie Europe and editor in chief of the Strategic Europe blog.

Fabrice Pothier

Fabrice Pothier is the head of policy planning in the private office of the NATO secretary general.

Jan Techau

Jan Techau is the director of Carnegie Europe. Techau works on EU integration and foreign policy, transatlantic affairs, and German foreign and security policy.