NATO's Prague Capabilities Commitment: origins and prospects
Kugel, Joseph P.
Yost, David S.
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This thesis analyzes the origins and prospects of NATO's Prague Capabilities Commitment (PCC). Following the end of the Cold War in 1989-1991, NATO's conventional military capabilities rose in importance as the Allies undertook crisis management operations in the Balkans. Capability shortcomings, particularly among the European Allies, led NATO in 1999 to approve a Defense Capabilities Initiative (DCI). However, the DCI's disappointing results, the terrorist attacks on the United States on 11 September 2001, the subsequent American military action in Afghanistan in cooperation with NATO Allies, the leading role of NATO Allies in the International Security Assistance Force in Kabul, and other factors convinced the Allies to make a new effort to improve capabilities. The Allies decided at the November 2002 Prague Summit to endorse the PCC. The PCC's prospects for success may not be greater than those of the DCI unless the European Allies commit greater resources, pool assets in multinational frameworks, pursue specialization in military missions, and modify their procurement priorities. Moreover, the PCC's success hinges on closely related initiatives: the NATO Response Force and the new command structures.
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