“The commitment NATO made today is an important step towards ensuring the alliance can respond to emerging security threats of the twenty-first century while also continuing to address traditional security concerns,” Rep. Turner said.(WASHINGTON, D.C.) Today, Rep. Howard P. “Buck” McKeon (R-CA), Ranking Member of the House Armed Services Committee, and Rep. Mike Turner, Ranking Member of the House Armed Services Subcommittee on Strategic Forces, welcomed the endorsement by NATO member states of territorial missile defense and their reaffirmation that NATO remain a nuclear alliance.
“NATO member nations should be commended for their decision to move forward on a missile defense plan which acknowledges our shared security threats and commits to the development of missile defense capabilities that protect all alliance members,” said Rep. McKeon. “Our nations must be equipped to counter potential threats from Iran and other countries intent on acquiring weapons that can hold our people and deployed troops at risk. NATO’s actions are a step in the right direction, and we look forward to working with the Administration to ensure the United States upholds its commitment to deploy a robust missile defense system.”
“The commitment NATO made today is an important step towards ensuring the alliance can respond to emerging security threats of the twenty-first century while also continuing to address traditional security concerns,” Rep. Turner said. “This declaration builds upon over a decade worth of work on missile defense. Iran’s nuclear and ballistic missile programs continue unabated. This is a threat not only to the American people but also to our allies and friends. Therefore, I am pleased to see member states embrace territory-wide missile defense as a core element of the alliance’s agenda.”
At the two-day summit in Lisbon, Portugal, Heads of State and Government of the 28 NATO member countries adopted a new Strategic Concept outlining the alliance’s vision for its role in addressing security threats in the 21st Century. They also issued a formal declaration that supports the development of missile defenses for the protection of alliance populations and territories and reaffirmed NATO’s role as a nuclear alliance.
Rep. Turner is one of the eleven Members of the U.S. House of Representatives that serve on the NATO Parliamentary Assembly. Earlier this year, he introduced H.R. 5338, the NATO First Act of 2010: a proposal to reaffirm the United States’ commitment to NATO’s collective defense. Several provisions from the NATO First Act were adopted in the House-passed National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2011, including a provision on fielding missile defenses in Europe that provides protection for all NATO allies.