Monthly Archives: March 2017

The United States and European Armed-Forces in Transatlantic Bond

Defense Secretary Mattis met with NATO Secretary General Stoltenberg at the Pentagon on March 21. The Two leaders discussed range of Defense and Security issues including, countering the emerging challenges, fighting with ISIS and strengthening the Transatlantic Relations.      






Washington DC, March 21, 2017 © US Mission to NATO

But I just also want to say thanks to you personally for your leadership, for the moral example that you set.  NATO, under you, is evolving to defend against aggression and respond to terrorist threats along the southern flank in the Mediterranean and the Turkish border.  
I look forward to engaging with the coalition members who are here this week on the counter-ISIS fight.  And I’m confident that NATO will, as always, be one of the leaders as we deal with this threat.” Highlighted Defense Secretary Mattis during his meeting with the NATO Secretary General Stoltenberg at the Pentagon. March 21, 2017 © DoD Press Office

Emphasizing the importance of the Transatlantic Relations, NATO Secretary General Stoltenberg during his meeting with the Defense Secretary Mattis expressed  : 

“Thank you so much. And thank you for welcoming me and my delegation. It’s great to be here in Washington, and to meet with you. And I also commend you for your strong personal support and leadership when it comes to NATO and the trans-Atlantic bond.”

“I think we all understand that in times of turmoil, in times of uncertainty, the need for strong international institutions as NATO is even greater.  So therefore, we need to adapt.  We need to strengthen NATO in response to the challenges and the — and the unpredictability we see surrounding us today.
Strong NATO is, of course, good for Europe, and we are also grateful for the commitment of the United States to the security guarantees to Europe.  But strong NATO is also good for North America because stability in Europe is good for all of us.  Two world wars and the cold war have taught us all that peace and stability in Europe is important for Europe of course, but also for North America.
So I’m looking forward to go through the whole NATO and U.S. agenda, and discuss how we can continue to adapt NATO to a new and more demanding security” Pentagon,  March 21, 2017 © DoD Press Office

Defense Secretary Mattis, on the same day, met with  Defense Minister Niinisto of Finland at the Pentagon. 

“Minister, you’re very welcome here in the Pentagon.  We appreciate you taking your time to visit Washington and to meet here at the Pentagon — two democracies on opposite sides of an ocean, but we share a love of liberty and especially of independence.”

Our democratic nations can collaborate in defense of our values.  And in this regard, I look forward to joining you later this week and discussing our coalition effort against ISIS.  And I thank you for your contributions — the contributions of your elite forces to that fight against ISIS, to the NATO missions that you’ve contributed to and continue to, and of course to the U.N. missions which go even beyond just the purely military.”  Stated Defense Secretary Mattis during his meeting with Defense Minister Niinisto and Ambassador Kauppi of Finalnd. Pentagon, March 21, 2017 © DoD Press Office

Excerpts from the remarks by Defense Minister Niinisto during the meeting with Secretary Mattis at Pentagon:

“Thank you, Mr. Secretary, for receiving our delegation.  Finland takes its defense very seriously, and we see ourselves as providers of security, not consumers.”

“And I must emphasize that U.S.-Finnish bilateral defense relationship is on a strong basis.  The signing of the bilateral statement of intent last October in Helsinki was a concrete step to take the relationship even further.
Active bilateral training and exercise program has been an effective way to increase the interoperability of our forces.  And we look forward to continue this cooperation also in the future.  And I also look forward to a good discussion today.” Pentagon,  March 21, 2017 © DoD Press Office

Defense Secretary Mattis also met with Minister of Defense Maria Dolores de Cospedal of Spain on March 23.                                                                                                                                                                                                             And with Greek Defense Minister Panos Kammenos at the Pentagon on March 24.

Addition: Vice President Pence Re-assured Europe the United States’ Commitment

Sources: U.S DoD Public Affairs/NATO Public Affairs/               Follow us: @USEUWAffairs   


By Catherine Stella Schmidt  (Copy righted material)


U.S Naval Force in NATO Maritime Exercise Dynamic Manta 2017

The United States Naval Force in Europe maintains a crucial role in most NATO Maritime Joint-Training…… Maneuver and Exercises — as of recent time in Dynamic Manta in the Mediterranean Sea, the southern coast of Italy.  

The exercise accentuates the aims on increasing the interoperability and proficiency in multi-dimensional-facet of the Naval capacities,  Anti-Submarine and Anti-Surface Warfare in NATO member states.  Dynamic Manta was also carried out in 2015 and 2016, with the similar objectives.                                   This time it is hosted by Italy,  led by NATO and being executed from March 13 to 25.  

    USS Porter (DDG 78) transits the Mediterranean Sea, March 9, 2017 © U.S Navy/Mass Communication Specialist 3rd Class Ford Williams

Announced by the U.S Naval Forces in Europe/Africa, the United States has, in addition  to the Naval units, provided:

  • The Arleigh Burke-class guided-missile destroyer USS Porter (DDG 78) “Freedom’s Champion”
  • A nuclear powered attack submarine assigned to Commander,
  • Task Force CTF 69, two P-8A Poseidons assigned to CTF 67
  • And one P-3 Orion from the U.S. Navy’s 6th Fleet Patrol and Reconnaissance Wing 11. 

“Exercise Dynamic Manta is an excellent way for NATO allies to build resilient warfare capabilities, including anti-submarine warfare capabilities, through realistic training and challenging scenarios.  The chance to participate in an exercise that enhances NATO’s overall multi-lateral operations is a tremendous opportunity, and we look forward to working with all of the participating nations.”  Highlighted Commander  Andria Slough, Commanding Officer of the USS Porter (DDG 78) March 14, 2017 ©U.S Naval Forces Europe/Africa

Participants are also Standing NATO Maritime Group 2, Task Unit U02 (SNMG2 TU02);  the Naval Forces of: Canada, France, Germany, Greece, Italy, Norway, Spain, Turkey, UK and the U.S.  

Sources: U.S Naval Europe/Africa, NATO Maritime Public Affairs   Follow us @USEUWAffairs

By Catherine Stella Schmidt (Copyrighted material) 


Italian Air Force Re-assumes the NATO Air Mission

The Italian Air Force has re-assumed for the second time NATO Air Policing Operation, leading the mission from mid March until mid April 2017.

The Operation is formulated to ensure the security and integrity of NATO member’s Airspace, to increase the interoperability and integration of Iceland’s Air Force with the NATO’s Integrated Air and Missile Defense System.

“This joined Aerial defense in the Iceland  is a clear example of rational management and sharing of the available resources among NATO member States.”  Elaborated General Claudio Graziano, Chief of Italian Defense March 7, 2017 © Italian MoD 

Described by the Italian Ministry of Defense:                                                                                                                                 The Air Force has deployed six Eurofighter to the operation and its task will be to ensure the security surveillance of Iceland Airspace until mid-April, while conducting joint Training activities with the local Coast Guard.

Sources: Italian MoD, Italian Air Fore, NATO Air Command Public Affairs Office

The United States Chairmanship of the Arctic Council ‘Objectives’

The United States, as an Arctic Nation and an influential member of the Arctic Council, is holding the two-year Chairmanship of the Council from April 2015-May 2017. 

                                        With the vision  that projects One Arctic

                         Shared Opportunities, Challenges and Responsibilities

For this term of the Council’s Chairmanship, the United States has prioritized its objectives on the following areas that to trigger progress and development in the most aspects of the Arctic region:

  • Improving economic and living conditions;
  • Arctic Ocean safety, security and stewardship;
  • Addressing the impacts of climate change. 

Additional: Achievements under Canadian Chairmanship of the Arctic Council 2013-2015

      News from U.S. Arctic                                                            

News from US Mission to the UN

Sources: Department of State and U.S Arctic Council                       Follow us @USEUWAffairs    

A View to U.S Army Reserve in Europe and its Vital Role and Contributions

For 60 years……..without stop….. Army’s Reserve Units in Europe, Army’s  7th Mission Support Command established initially in 1956 as ‘the 7th Civil Support Command’  has been the front Force to defend Europe and strengthen the European Armed-Forces.                                                                                                                                

February 12, 2017 © 7th MSC 

The 7th MSC facilitates Strong Europe through integration into Army operations in Europe and joint, combined, multinational operations in Europe and Africa. It is capable of rapidly interfacing with NATO allies and other partners in the event of a natural or man-made disaster. Described by the Army’s 7th Mission Support Command

By Catherine S. Schmidt, Editor in Chief (Copyrighted material)


Denmark Placed its Financial Support for Prosecuting War Crimes in Syria

With this news measure, the Danish government will allocate the mount of DKK 7.65 million to the UN-led  initiative which was adopted  by the UN Resolution in December 2016.

Denmark’s position is clear: the gross Human Rights violations we see and have seen in Syria are unacceptable and it is important that the world community documents them. With the UN’s new initiative, we are sending a clear signal – not least to the Syrian regime – that there is no impunity for such crimes. 
These efforts are a supplement to the stabilisation initiative, which Denmark announced last year,” highlighted Minister for Foreign Affairs Anders Samuelsen. March 7, 2017  © MFA of Denmark 

Special:             Denmark for the UN Human Rights Council 2019-2021

  1. Additional: Denmark launches a new stabilisation support package to Iraq and Syria
  2. Danish Special Forces assigned with new tasks in the Coalition’s fight against Da’esh

News from Ministry for Foreign Affairs of Denmark
News from Minister Anders Samuelsen
News from Danish Mission to NATO                                    Follow us @USEUWAffairs

America will stand with those who stand in Defense of Freedom


President Trump and Army Gen. Joseph L. Votel, commander of U.S. Central Command, at MacDill Air Force Base. Feb. 6, 2017 © U.S. Central Command/Marine Corps Sgt. Alan Belser 

During an official visit and speech at MacDill Air Force Base Florida, President Trump placed a special emphasis on the vital role that the United States Armed-Forces hold in maintaining the global security, peace and freedom.

Excerpts from President Trump’s speech at MacDill Air Force Base, Florida. February 6, 2017 

We strongly support NATO. We only ask that all the NATO members make their full and proper financial contributions to the NATO alliance, which many of them have not been doing.”

“We are going to be making a really historic investment in the Armed Forces of the United States and show the entire World that America stands with those who stand in defense of Freedom,”

“We will ensure that the men and women of our military have the tools, equipment, resources, training, and supplies you need to get the job done.  You’ve seen me say we’ve been depleted.  Our navy is at a point almost as low as World War I.  That’s a long time ago.  That’s a long time ago.  It’s not going to happen anymore, folks.  It’s not going to happen anymore — not with me.”  

For proof that our nation has been blessed by God, look no further than the men and women of the United States military.  They are the greatest fighters and the greatest force of justice on the face of the Earth and that the world has ever known.  The challenges facing our nation nevertheless are very large — very, very large.”

Freedom, Security and Justice will prevail.  In his first State of the Union message, President George Washington wrote that, “To be prepared for war is one of the most effectual means of preserving peace.”  Almost 200 years later, as the General was also speaking about Ronald Reagan, he said that wisdom comes in three very, very strong words:  “Peace through strength.”  I’ve said it many times during the campaign, speaking in front of tens of thousands of people at one sitting, and I’d always mention America first — a phrase that you probably never heard, “Make America Great Again.” Anybody ever heard that?   And peace through strength.”

“The men and women of the United States military provide the strength to bring peace to our troubled, troubled times.  We stand behind you.  We support your mission.  We love our country.  We are loyal to our people.  We respect our flag.  We celebrate our traditions.  We honor our heroes.  You are our heroes.  And we are prepared to fight.  And we pray for peace.

Thank you.  God bless you, and God bless America.  Thank you very much.  Thank you.”  February 06, 2017  © The office of White House Press Secretary

The Leadership of the Netherlands and its Armed Forces in the World-2

October  2015 ©MoD of the kingdom of the Netherlands

  1. Special: The Kingdom of the Netherlands and its Armed-Forces
  2. The Kingdom of the Netherlands World Affairs

See also our archives on the Netherlands EU Presidency 2016