Modular Short Course (MSC 138-5) on: “NATO 360 Degrees; Global Security Challenges”
The Modular Short Course took place at the NATO Defense College from 21 to 25 June 2021. The Course is designed to analyse the role and character of NATO, including its organization, policies and activities, to consider the contribution of the Alliance to security and the adaptations necessary to remain relevant to the changing security environment and the demands of current operations. The issues presented to MSC138-5 aim to provide Course Members (CMs) with an overview of some of the global security challenges identified as “NATO 360 Degrees”.
The Course began with the Welcome Address and NDC Brief by NDC Commandant, LGEN Olivier Rittimann, and NDC Dean, Dr Stephen J. Mariano. The programme followed a pattern of lectures, Q&A sessions and Committee discussions throughout the 5-day Course, focusing on one topic each day. Day 1 was entirely devoted to Asia-Pacific Challenges, with three panel lectures delivered by: Dr James Boutilier, Special Advisor (ret.) in International Engagement at Canada’s Maritime Forces Pacific (MARPAC); Dr Yu Jie, Senior Research Fellow on China at the Royal Institute of International Affairs, Chatham House; Prof. Jonathan Holslag, International politics and Asian affairs at the Free University of Brussels; Ms Meia Nouwens, Research Fellow for Chinese Defence Policy and Military Modernization at the International Institute for Strategic Studies in London; Dr Hon-min Yau, from the International Journal of Taiwan Studies; Dr Ashley Tellis, Senior Fellow at the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace; and Mr Daniel Blumenthal, Resident Fellow and the director of Asian studies at the American Enterprise Institute.
Day 2 focused on Strategic Communications; Course Members were briefed by Ambassador Baiba Braže, Assistant Secretary General for Public Diplomacy, during her official visit to the NDC. Preceded by a preparatory discussion, Day 3 kicked off with an enriching lecture on Strategic Thinking by NDC Dean, Dr Stephen J. Mariano, followed by the usual Q&A and Committee Discussion. Day 4 was devoted to Space, with lectures provided by Prof. David Burbach, from the US Naval War College; and LTC Stephanie Vrac, Chairperson of the NATO Bi strategic command Space Working Group. On the final day of the Course, Prof. Theresa Sabonis-Helf, from the National War College in Washington; and Dr Gonzalo Escribano, Head of the Energy and Climate Programme at the Elcano Royal Institute, discussed Energy Security.