Your Opinion

Short opinion pieces (500-700 words) with a strong thesis and policy recommendations are the core of the Open Think Tank. Some advice on how to write and submit a great op-ed. We also encourage you to comment on the articles by fellow members.

The best arguments from the articles and comments will be summarized in Atlantic Memos that are presented to decision-makers.

Redefining Relationships Inside and Outside the Alliance

Memo 51: In order to learn from past mistakes, NATO should seek to bring Russia into the fold of European security, refrain from humanitarian missions better conducted under UN auspices, sanction non-compliance to the 2% defense spending promise, and strengthen its democratic norms. View
 

Georgia and Russia: Smoldering Conflict at a Geopolitical Intersection

Georgia can be a strategic pillar of stability in an otherwise volatile region and we should consequently place it much higher on our political agenda. Georgians want nothing more than NATO membership and the West cannot deny the evident successes of democratization and economic reform. The internal logic of realist politics however demands other factors also be considered. Georgia joining NATO would further exacerbate the conflict with Russia. View
 

Future-Proofing NATO: A Forthcoming Decade of Change

Memo 50: NATO must adopt hybrid models of national defense, coordinate efforts on economic and electronic warfare, and secure its space-based infrastructure. The Alliance should also establish a partnership with China and strengthen its presence in the Arctic. View
 

NATO Energy Security Strategy Crucial to Checking Russian Aggression

Russian gas supplies are dividing Europe on sanctions. Recognition of the security implications of climate change are becoming widely recognized. NATO can and should play a key role in driving positive on both by building energy security for its members. Including specific, targeted mandates to enable mutual energy security in NATO’s mission moving forward would be to both recognize the key challenges of our time and bolster longstanding alliance precepts. View
 

Making NATO More Institutionalized

NATO can only improve the cohesion and strengthen consensus among the member countries if the right tools and framework are introduced. Member nations will not voluntarily focus on the common good of NATO. They need to be persuaded by initiatives and measures that serve their other national interests. It is thereby important to create an independent NATO body or institution that can make some recommendations for the political agenda and reward member nations. View
 

Making NATO More Popular for Everyone

To increase empathy and solidarity between the publics of NATO member countries, the organization must start with the education of their citizens and promotion of the Alliance’s. The general knowledge of ordinary people in society needs to be increased by incorporating more information about NATO related activities into their daily lives. Providing this information only to interested people or narrowly focused university students is not enough. View
 

NATO Needs to Make Itself Heard

NATO's strength is based on the cooperation and support of many nations. Member nations however seem to be less willing to protect one another as diverging threat perceptions arise. NATO must begin creating ways for member citizens to interact and associate thereby increasing unity and cohesion in the face of future challenges. View
 

To Enhance Cohesion, NATO Should Change Its Name

As former Soviet states joined the Alliance, a problem of unity emerged for conceptions of order and military thinking differed. Today, NATO is facing increasing pressure to cope with multiple challenges. A lack of cohesion may have disastrous consequences for world peace. What I therefore proposed is not concerned with the internal structure of the alliance. Instead, I recommend changing NATO’s name as a way of enhancing cohesion through meaning. View
 

NATO: Solidarity Through Diversity

To improve cohesion, NATO must accept that consensus will rarely be found at the operational level. While all NATO members must be united in their grand strategic desire for peace and security within the NATO framework, the 21st century presents too many threats at different levels for all member states to share the same intensity of concerns at the same time. NATO must accept that solidarity will come from a willingness to accept diversity. View
 

How Europe and the US Can Usher in a New Age of Solidarity

Faced with multiple potential threats, NATO allies must ensure they remain united. This is made more problematic by US retrenchment from Europe. To prevent this, European members will have to achieve the 2% target, and deploy some of their forces to the Pacific. In addition, Eastern and Southern members should work alongside each other more frequently in order to foster greater solidarity and friendship. View