Generals, Flag Officers & Ambassadors’ Course (GFOAC) 2018-2
Entitled “NATO: Beyond the Brussels Summit”, and starting on Monday 12th November for five days, the NATO Defense College hosted the latest edition of the GFOAC: the Generals, Flag Officers & Ambassadors’ Course (GFOAC 2018-2), bringing together 47 military and civilian high-level participants from 31 countries.
On Monday, BGEN Rolf WAGNER (DEU A) Head of the NDC’s Academic Planning and Policy Division, together with COL James HUBER (USA A), greeted the audience in the Main Auditorium, introduced participants to the Course, after which, NDC Commandant LGEN Chris WHITECROSS delivered the welcoming remarks. Prof Christopher COKER (GBR) provided the first lecture by addressing “Cultural Dialogue: the Western Encounter with the Rest”. He was followed in the afternoon by Dr Richard HOOKER (USA) who dealt with “The Transatlantic Link: the Cornerstone of the Alliance”.
Tuesday’s panels began with a lecture by Mr Michael RÜHLE (DEU/NATO), focusing on “NATO Strategic Guidance”; followed, in the afternoon, by Prof Mustapha BENCHENANE (FRA), who spoke on “The Middle East and North Africa”.
Wednesday’s lectures faced eastwards, with presentations by Prof Jonathan HOLSLAG (BEL), who addressed “The Security Implications of the Rise of China” and Dr Dmitry SUSLOV (RUS), who together with Dr Keir GILES (GBR), dealt extensively with “Russian Foreign Policy and Military Outlook”.
On Thursday morning, participants heard about “Technological Development: Risks and Opportunities” from Prof Dr Holger MEY (DEU) and “The Future of NATO” by Prof Julian LINDLEY-FRENCH (GBR).
On the final day, General Sir James EVERARD (GBR), Deputy Supreme Allied Commander Europe (DSACEUR), provided the concluding lecture for the GFOAC, before the closing remarks and conferment of certificates by BGEN Rolf WAGNER.
The GFOAC is a high-level course aiming to reinforce mutual understanding on current politico-military issues, NATO's interests and capabilities among Generals, Flag Officers and high-ranking civilians, including ambassadors from NATO, the Partnership for Peace (PfP), the Mediterranean Dialogue (MD), the Istanbul Cooperation Initiative (ICI), Partners across the Globe & China. The GFOAC also provides unique opportunities for networking between one- to three-star officers and civilians of equivalent rank on current and prospective issues facing NATO.