Security and Defense

Security and defense issues will continue to play a role in transatlantic relations in the years ahead. Determining the way forward for Afghanistan, the role of NATO, and defense systems integration, are only a few of the myriad challenges facing the German-American and transatlantic partnership. Analyzing the security issues and choices ahead allows policymakers and business leaders to understand transatlantic and global security challenges and provide innovative policy solutions on both sides of the Atlantic.

Assessing Transatlantic Risks: The Erosion of Allied Solidarity

Ann-Kristin Otto

Approaching its summit in Chicago in May, NATO is desperately looking for a positive message to spread. But there’s little good news to be found on all major fronts. Intentions to paint a picture of success in Afghanistan while conducting its own withdrawal are being overrun by events on the ground.  The… Read more >

The Question of Military Action Against Iran – Of Busted Bunker Hopes and Short Fuses

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Iran’s nuclear ambitions – and the West’s response – are analyzed by Non-Resident Fellow Dorle Hellmuth.

Germany in Europe – From Vanguard to Laggard and Back Again?


Commenting on German foreign policy is hampered by the fact that this is a moving target,[1] today more so than ever,  To complicate things further, the target not only moves quickly, it also changes direction in an apparently erratic manner. Accordingly, Germany has been making global headlines as a general source of… Read more >

European Energy Security: A New Pattern of External Stability and Internal Risks


This essay examines recent developments in European energy policy and analyzes improvements and shortcomings of energy security, primarily in the field of fossil fuels. It argues that Europe has successfully addressed some external energy security risks, the gravest problems of energy security currently originate inside Europe itself due to insufficient funding of necessary infrastructure projects.

Politics of Dilemma: Turkish and EU Approaches Toward Syria

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As Turkey continues to push for membership in the EU, many factors play a role in whether or not its acceptance will take hold. In this Transatlantic Perspectives essay, DAAD/AICGS Fellow Rana Deep Islam looks at Turkey and the EU’s respective foreign policy strategies, using the recent unrest in Syria as a… Read more >

German Security Policy on the Move – Challenges In and Post Afghanistan

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In this Transatlantic Perspectives essay, DAAD/AICGS Fellow Pia Niedermeier writes that Germany has arguably changed policy amid domestic and international constraints and has become an active partner in the ISAF mission in Afghanistan despite prior reservations. Ms. Niedermeier contends that two main challenges remain for German-American relations and Germany’s role in the transatlantic alliance in and beyond this mission – a narrative gap and a strategic gap – which need to be addressed to ensure that all sides are on the same page for future missions.

The Benefits of Reviving Transatlantic Armaments Cooperation


During the Cold War, Germany and the U.S. fostered close arms cooperation and development. Yet, after German unification, Germany focused on developing and procuring armament systems either domestically or within the EU. In Policy Report #46, Senior Non-Resident Fellow Alexander Ritzmann argues that German-American defense cooperation could once again become an area in which transatlantic cooperation helps to overcome challenges. Ritzmann offers some concrete policy recommendations to the U.S. and German governments to increase transatlantic defense cooperation and outlines what has led to the current lack of cooperation.

The Idea of the European Union as an Area of Freedom, Security, and Justice: Exploring the Europeanization of Germany’s Domestic Security Policy


DAAD/AICGS Fellow Ms. Constance Baban explores the impact of the idea of the European Union as an area of freedom, security, and justice on Germany’s domestic security policy in the context of 9/11, and how the challenges of ‘Europeanization’ have been confronted within Germany’s security policy debate. Ms. Baban discusses actual changes in domestic security policy, but also focuses on the political and media discourse and how this has affected the outcome of several security policies since 9/11.

Soundboard of Society or Critical Observer: German and American Media Coverage of the Afghanistan Conference

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One of the most debated issues in the transatlantic partnership is the NATO mission in Afghanistan. In January 2010, the London Conference on Afghanistan brought together delegations from around the world to discuss the military engagement in Afghanistan as well as the future of the country. AICGS Research Associate Kirsten Verclas explores how this conference surrounding one of the most contested issues in the German-American partnership was covered by the German and American media and outlines the reasons behind the coverage.

Anything But SWIFT: Why Data Sharing is Still a Problem for the EU


The fight against terrorism has been on the forefront of the U.S. and German agendas and shapes the relationship between both countries. While cooperation has been strong, differences have arisen in several areas. In Issue Brief 35, Edna Dretzka and DAAD/AICGS Fellow Stormy-Annika Mildner examine the disagreement between the U.S. and EU over sharing private financial data in relation to terrorism. The authors look at the legal situation in the United States and the political struggles in the European Union that hamper better cooperation across the Atlantic, and offer ideas on how the two actors can overcome their differences on data-sharing and SWIFT.

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