NATO Military Partnerships: The US National Guard State Partnership as the driving force for pre-accession and long-term cooperation

The United States National Guard State Partnership Program (SPP) aims to strengthen partner states in support of the security cooperation objectives of U.S. regional combatant commanders. In Europe and elsewhere, potential or real weakness in transitional states jeopardizes both regional security and the democratization process. U.S. Security cooperation through assistance in counterinsurgency, foreign internal defence, and training advisory missions seems much more relevant today than traditional State-to-State high-intensity operations. To engage in such cooperation, U.S. Combatant Commands and NATO structures could have an interesting approach at their disposal that combines national and allied security programs. The SPP/PfP case examined in this chapter shows that the Nordic/Baltic armed forces have been influenced by this approach and could play a sustaining role for the NATO Partnering approach with regard to the future regional/global stability challenges to be tackled on the short- and long-run in different parts of the world.

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