tv Atlantic Council Holds Discussion on European Security CSPAN May 25, 2016 3:44am-4:59am EDT
long waits at airports. we'll have live coverage of the homeland security committee at 10:00 a.m. here on c-span 3. this sunday night on q&a, u.s. senate historian betty coed talked about various events in history and the work her office does. >> i came in june of 1998 as a newly minted historian. my colleagues said to me, oh, it is going to be nice and quiet. we have an election coming up. you have a lot of time to settle in and read and get comfortable in your job. and within a few weeks the house had decided to impeach bill clinton and we got busy quickly and we had to do research on impeachment trials. we had not had a impeeve -- impeachment since 1868 and they wanted to follow historical precedent as much as they could.
>> sunday night at 8:00 eastern and pacific on c-span q&a. european diplomats and foreign policy analysts recently took part in a discussion about the role of diplomacy in strengthening european security. they discussed the conflict in ukraine and russia's influence in european affairs. this event hosted by the atlantic council is an hour and 10 minutes. good morning and welcome thank you for joining us. i'm fred kemp. it is my pleasure to welcome you on today's discussion in the role of diplomacy in the future of european security. i would like to extend a special welcome to our esteemed
speakers, first and foremost the secretary general for the security and cooperation in european, alberto lannier. and the secretary general is joined by a member of the panel of imminent persons on european security, as a common project. professor adam rot feld and barbara hearing and sergi kapanadze and the member of the board of the atlantic council and serving as president of the chicago counsel on global affairs or partner organization for today's event. would you like to welcome the distinguished guests we have today. forgive me if i don't have all of you in my notes but you know the ambassador of belgium, nicaragua, switzerland and lithuain yua. this is an in certain time in
european history. more than a quarter century after the fall of the berlin wall in the post war era about post political diverges. looking back sometimes where we are now we forget the huge importance of the cse getting us through the cold war and getting us through the other side in as good as shape as we've been and people are kicking around the idea of whether some of those lessons could be applied to the other parts of the world, including the middle east. but turning back to europe and ukraine, instability persists. the min ex has killed people and there is a spike with 20 ukraineab soldiers killed and europe south is inundated but the humanitarian security concerns of mass migration and the overflow of four civil wars and it is unclear whether europe
will be able to deliver while working with complex parters in the region, including turkey. among these challenges are also threats to europe's core. the mounting forces of disintegration and nationalism across the forces fueled by anti-refugee and anti-establishment narratives risk unraveling the possess and stability achieved through years of determined transatlantic leadership for european security and prosperity as a common project. realizing these new dangers to europe, the atlantic council has wrapped up their -- ramped up their ownishive because they believe a reminder is necessary in washington and across the atlantic of the transatlantic relationship to global security and the global future. but under siege by electorates, leaders are reluctant to work together in restoring a vision for europe or a transatlantic
vision. achieve example of this challenge is the united kingdom's june 23rd vote to stay in or to leave the european union. we released last week a letter signed by 13 former secretaries of defense, secretaries of state and national security advisers and remaining in britain from a geopolitical security standpoint. a vote to leave could inspire a cascade of other e.u. referendums as half of voters in eight other e.u. countries want their own vote. our panelists come from a group of experts across the ese who comprise the panel of imminent persons on european security as a common project. since the group's founding in december of 2014 by the osce swiss chairmanship in response
to the annexation of crimea that year, the panel has held a series of frank and intense discussions on european security. copies of the panel's final report, and i urge you to read it, is back to -- back to bip lomasy -- diplomacy can be found in the lobby. pick it up on the way out. and join the conversation we're starting here and continuing on twitter using the #stronger with allies. we have much to discuss. so let me go ahead and turn things over to professor rot feld, a man i respected for many years, currently a professor at warsaw university but previously minister of affairs at poland at a decisive moment in the country history and it is a great friend and a pleasure to have him back with us. professor i leave it to you to give you a more comprehensive introduction of the panelists
and the report. [ applause ] >> mr. chairman, thank you very much for your kind words and i would like to say that my -- i will make a brief introduction to our debate today. i would like to say that the panel was established with a mandate to respond to questions of how european security can be rediscovered as a common project for -- for the common project. the common wisdom popular among intellectuals and international security experts is that there is a need to transcend the existing institutions with -- with an end to [ inaudible ]. the other school of thinking is that one should convene a new great congress like historical
summits in vienna, 1815 versailles, 1900 to 18 or helsinki 1945. and to elaborate a european security treaty which should contain new principles and procedures or fundamentally new code of conduct. in my view, however, there is no deficit in europe of these institutions. political and legal procedures and -- and binding rules of the states in their mutual relationship. the problem in europe is not for the lack of documents, but for the deficit of neutral just and con continuance. our report reflects three different -- three different
narratives. one of them is represented by the -- the democratic western states and another one by russia and the third one by the countries in between who were represented by two participants of our panel from ukraine and georgia. i would like to say that the institutions should follow the problems. there for the panel of imminent persons on this final report has been focused on the origin and death of the crisis in the european security. the suggested remedies as a rule don't correspond to new risks and challenges. there is no shortage of contact, including high level meetings. there is an urgent need to find a way how to rebuild class and
confidence. the proposed recommendations along -- along modest -- i would like to say that -- that proposed accommodations, although they are modest, ant quait new challenges and the new common project should be less oriented to the new rhetoric and technicalities but to the call of matters. the problems impact -- were originated within the states and not between them. not between the west and russia, but within the west and within russia. what has to be done? in general, the terms one has to recommend to de-escalate and
demilitarize security policy. the priorities of strategies for cooperation and joint solution under the joint auspices should include in 2016 immediate steps and measures aimed at first prevention of the direct military conflict between the west and russia, one should be focused on specially the question of how to prevent unintentional military incidents. second, the development of political economic and military conditions for a just and peaceful settlement in and around ukraine as though -- as well as [ inaudible ]. and would you like to say that the interim report of our group was exactly focused on the solution of the crisis in and around ukraine.
france -- excuse me -- the sentiment of the mission in ukraine and establishing a mechanism to monitor and supervise the implementation of the agreement and elaborating a framework for the lasting political settlement of the ukraine crisis within the new european security order which has to be based on the following elements: the core and fundamental critical component of a new military order must be reviewed by national territory of states and the instability of in ternal political order. second, confirmation of the
principals -- of states and use of force and [ inaudible ] intervention in internal affairs and respect for human rights and equal rights and cooperation among states and fulfillment to good -- in good faith of obligations under international law. the next element that has to be taken in this broader context is the elaboration of antiquated risk and threats, military and nonmilitary and security measures and a reflection of some old ideas of or rejection of old ideas of influences or privileged inches for great powers or -- or irreconcilable
with the equal rights of all of the states, all of the states who belong to the osc. next element is revitalization and reactivation of the negotiation of the conventional arms control process and on a new act -- new sets of confidence and security building measures under the oac auspices. adjustment of the existing institutions and organizations to the new tasks and challenges, would you like to say that not everything has to be reinvented, but many things could be rediscovered. some only see -- mechanisms could be upgraded n. short, it seems to me that the time is ripe to initiate the process of
negotiation with an end to find the common security for west and russia in the form of a new security arrangement. such a negotiated compromise has to reconcile both different set perceptions and national security interests. it has to be done through a world which is more interconnected and more contested at the moment and a more complex than one than in the past years, which is -- which we know as the cold war period. at that point, the new european and security system has to be more integrated, and as i said, interconnected. since -- interdependent. since europe and the world are more praguemented and contested, there is a need to take under
consideration the existing policy and demonstrate both flexibility and sense of direction reflected in the new set of priorities in the way -- how they are reflected in our final report under the title of diplomacy. thank you very much for your attention. [ applause ] thank you very much for your introduction and, adam, for your overview of our report. as fred said, copies are just outside of the door. we're going to look forward rather than at the work that we have been doing.
very much appreciate the opportunity to have this discussion here at the atlantic council today. let me start with the secretary general and a reflection on i think something that may be underappreciated which is the role of the one international organization in ukraine, explaining today and the osc role has been critical from the very start of the conflict and continues to be critical. if you could reflect on that role and where that might evolve over the future and what it is that the osc has and could be doing in order to address the conflict that really is bringing all of us here together. >> right. perhaps one of the -- one of the tragic things that is surprised by the osc being involved in this and at the beginning of the crisis, the european union has said we've been dealing with kraip and the crisis -- with ukraine and the crisis and they discovered their role was
somehow one-sided and didn't find the ground for them to engage in what became an extremely polarized crisis with the media and the narratives that were different and where there was a need for an in collusive approach -- inclusive approach around which the players could play their role. and that is what the osc was able to provide. it is -- it is very -- how can i say in a controversial manner, the issue was discussed and then in the end there was an agreement a need for an international role and international role in a political process and international role on the ground to try to stabilize the situation. but also to try to unify the narrative on the conflict. so our mandate was mainly a mandate of monitoring and reporting back. trying to avoid this kind of --
how can i say -- expansion of the different narratives that could have brought to an expansion of the conflict. we started deploying and telling -- there was a story brought back by our monitors when they were presented -- all the difference within the osc communities. we have monitoring come from here and the european countries and from russia and they operate not in national teams but in multi-national teams and so they have to tell us the story together the way they see things, et cetera. so we forced a little bit, for everybody to look at things from the same perspective. and i think that was a good contribution that the international community provided to not only have feet on the ground but also in lowering the amount of -- the animosity around this conflict. the political process is normandy and you may be following the progress or the
difficulties in the progress, on the ground the mission and the mandate of the mission which as i say mainly is one of monitoring, it is an observer that we have and expanded to a thousand people, 700 monitors an the support staff. most of which are now deployed in the western regions. it is a mandate that is defacto been expanded to cover other functions. basically supporting the various steps of implementation of monitoring areas where we -- where the military equipment has been moved to, or reporting back on the fact that some of this equipment subsequent was repositioned close to the line of contact and so serving also as an early warning tool in relation to a possible violation of the cease-fire.
this is also to show that -- that at times when we see division or we see conflict back in europe where we hoped we would have -- after the cold war, we would have come and opened a new phase of -- of cooperation and peaceful interaction and we see that that -- that that order is not -- is not sustainable as we were expecting. we've seen a number of con flicks. in fa -- conflicts. and in fact there is a conflict with -- [ inaudible ] and ukraine is just another expression of that kind of problematic. so we still need a table around which we have to discuss our differences and understand the problems, promote the reconciliation which is still lacking and update the tools that we develop, some of the
tools go back to the cold war phase but they need to be readapted and modernized and readjusted to address the -- the more challenging nature of the conflict today. so that's -- that is the dream we have in the osc and it is very much a work in progress. >> so our report as professor rot feld described, we had two reports one that looked at ukraine and the role of the osc and some important recommendations on how to improve it and how to even do a better job because as we concluded the osc is a critical component of this. the second part of our report said that we need to have a diplomatic strategy that looks both to the immediate area and longer term. based on the implementation of minsk we said nothing could
happen until that fundamental part of that conflict is resolved and talk a little bit about what we should -- the focus immediately but in the longer term and how we -- we should be looking at that. >> well, since we leased the report in 2015 the situation has even become more serious and more urgent. minsk has not been implemented and conflicts that have been frozen are popping up again. and the rick of incidents -- the risk of unintended incidents have increased. therefore our focus today is really to avoid an escalation of the situation caused by unintended accidents, incidents. this needs a call for a stable
military cooperation. it needs a joint europe defending principals that we have all agreed and it needed more implication of the united states. the united states has to be at the table. because this crisis over the ukraine goes beyond the ukraine. it goes beyond europe. and it is a geopolitical threat to many countries. that's the immediate focus we have to take. and in the long run we have to find a strategy on how to define the security status of countries that do not belong to an alliance. the report calls to the countries in between. there is certainly a strategy needs that goes country by country because every issue is a particular suggestion but this is not enough. that is why our report asks
for -- for a comprehensive diplomat initiative to address these issues in the interest of the principals we've all agreed in the helsinki and also in the paris charter, which we stuck with. this framework is solid and does not have to be rewritten. it just has to be followed. >> but let's take the conversation to both parts of what you just talked about and jean-marie, where we are, we concluded and the one thing that we all agreed as the 15 panel members including our russian colleagues that the situation is dangerous and we need to focus on that situation in order to avoid it becoming more dangerous and the need -- and more hot wars occurring there. there is already one in ukraine but more hot wars occurring.
reflect on that, jean-marie, about what we could do and perhaps what the situation really demands at this point. >> well, this report is really a call to diplomatic action. there is great come placeancy today -- complacency. and nobody should regret the cold war which kept half of europe with the limited sovereignty with the attacks on human rights but at the same time one should recognize that today's situation is more dangerous sometimes than the cold warm and it is more dangerous because there is no agreed status quo. it's -- everything is up for grabs. which in some ways we should be happy with. if it means that the people -- the people take charge. but if it means that incidents can escalate because there is no clarity on the situation of each country, then that becomes a
very -- very dangerous. and that is why we believe in the panel that it is very important to take action both -- the very immediate short-term tactical situations where armed forces from russia and from nato countries can become embroiled, we saw it when -- when a russian fighter was shot over -- i mean was -- a sliver over turkish territory. we have been lucky so far that none of those incidents has really escalated but you can't have a sound security based on luck. and so we do call for much more engagement -- military -- to mi military to look at how to manage in case of escalation. if we are not lucky, what happens? there needs to be procedures in
place, so that events do not take control. that is how wars start. and we believe that maybe there is not enough thought given to that today. and then there is the broader -- the broader picture. the fact that, yes, during the cold war, as barbara was saying, you had neutral countries and still like switzerland or with different status for finland, but clear status. you had nato members and warsa pact members and that was the end of the cold war. you had an arms control that extended to europe with -- with conference on forces on europe, vienna document, and then on the nuclear front the intermediate nuclear forces agreement so you had a whole framework that created stability and transparency that limited the risk of unexpected escalation. and we see those frameworks
frankly at risk today. and so they have -- there has to be hard work to engage with russia on those issues. and of course we -- we hear and we know that unfortunately the reality that in many cases you engage and you don't get the response. but in our view, it is not a reason not to engage. let alone to make it clear to our public opinions that -- that every effort is made to maintain the framework -- the structures of -- that have kept stability and the peace in europe. and there i think one has to be aware that -- i'm a frenchman. i can see the fragility of public opinion in europe. you have a combination of some extreme left and extreme rights that are quite happy if the united states disengages.
the majority of europeans don't want that. but there is a very vocal minority that is quite comfortable with that. so the whole architecture is at risk. and there is not -- there has been nothing worse -- in it a way that disengaged faster than europe integrates or disengaged as europe seizes to integrate and the integration of europe has in large part been made possible by the strong relationship with the united states. and so if that relationship begins to fray, it is connected also to the crisis in europe. so i think we have our work cut out for us. and it -- and we won't find a solution if we don't work jointly, i think europeans and americans, on this issue. >> sergei kapanadze, they describe the problem that we have which is that the
frameworks that we live with for so many years are falling in part, in part because there is a challenge to the status quo. we found that that real challenge is focused in particular in that part of europe where the security status of countries like your own in georgia is being contested. and in fact, in some ways uncertain. there is a desire on the part -- in georgia to be a member of nato. there is a commitment by nato to have georgia as a member. but we're not there. how -- how does it look from georgia's perspective and in this continued uncertainty of the continued status as a country like georgia and the same is true for moldova for the ukraine of course with a direct military presence on your territory of russia? how does it look and particularly how does it look in the short-term as well as the developments down the road?
>> i can say that it doesn't look good, that is the sort answer. but then, the four things that -- that you can -- you can identify in georgia's position when it comes to the ukraine security, also the four things that you could also take from this report is irrelevant for georgia. and you mentioned some of them so i might repeat them but i'll be brief on those. the first one is that from the perspective, there is no need to change the health and services. it is not the principal. it is about one country who violates those principals and most of the violations are actually well seen in georgia. whether it is [ inaudible ] or annexation or the use of force or the threat of use of force or you name it. or whether it is economic or sanctions or the international or domestic affairs and we can
list every single item on the -- in relation to georgia. it is not to the principals, it is about one country, russia, who doesn't want to play by the rules. and we have these principals in terms of words but also in terms of deeds. there is a principal. it is not part -- it is part of the european principle that my country has the right to choose their land. and that is a fundamental principle vested in the osc made from the 1992 or 1999 in istanbul declaration or the paris tragedy of the european security. but we have to implement it. we cannot just say that -- if it is not being implemented then russia is getting the message that actually the european countries are back-tracking on this important principle. so while we might be saying,
yes, georgia has a right to join nato, they have a right to choose their own alliance, this is not happening in reality. what is happening is the alternative which is russia is preventing the integration. so there is no simple answer to that. but what is important is that there is no doubt in the positions of the nations in the list of the capital that you choose to join nato if they wish to, it is a matter of time. it is not something -- it is not a slip of tongue in 2008 and it is actually something that has been pledged and there needs to be a follow-up on that. the main problem we have right now is the issue of islam that we have told the door is open but we haven't been told where the door is. so we need to be given the instrument for the integration into nato is the first point. the second point is we need u.s. leadership. i cannot just -- you cannot overestimate the importance of this. you really need the u.s. for the
security of europe. and particularly when it comes to georgia. and that is visible not only in terms when it comes to promoting integrity and sovereignty, but in terms of also upholding the georgia's quest to join nato. and when the united states does not do that, the countries in between, or caught in between, as one of our friends have said, between nato and russia, they actually suffer. so the leadership is extremely important in this conflict. now one of the accommodations in the -- in the report of the panel is that we want to see the role of the united states bigger in the ukraine crisis because they are not part of the u.s. and the normandy and that is i think a very strong right recommendation but i want to draw your attention to the fact that in the case the united
states draw -- it is a international discussion but the problem with the international discussion is that it is a low-level form. we have here one of the founders of those discussions and who was representative of the u.n. but the problem with that format is the participation only takes place at the low level, the ministerial level, you have no high-level engagement from the united states from russia or even for that matter for the countries who are involved in this. and that is actually -- that is affecting the conflict. the second point i'm going to say is that for those, it is extremely important that georgia is kept on the radar of the international diplomacy. and we have slipped off the radar in the last years. that is also part of the domestic politics in georgia. but one way or another we need to remain on the radar. it is not just georgia but the conflicts have to remain on the radar. but the problem with the osc that once there is a crisis or
someone has a chance to become active. it happened in ukraine. once there is a crisis, it shows that it possesses the tools to intervene. it has found the ability to create a sort of a peace mission for ukraine. but the problem with the osc once there is no crisis, they cannot do anything. and the problem with georgia is that we do not have the crisis -- [ inaudible ]. but because we have no crisis there is no -- the conflicts have slipped off the osc agenda. there is no presence of the osc in georgia and there is no activity to resume [ inaudible ]. in fact, there is -- there is a feeling in it cal issy that the public has been forgotten. you have syria around the corner and [ inaudible ] that almost exploded and ongoing tragedy in ukraine and these conflicts are just for georgia -- nothing is happening there. so should we wait before
something explodes and pay attention to them or use this time and then try to move the things forward. i'll stop here and say thank you. >> i think the -- i think the problem that we always face in diplomacy is attention is only paid when things are going badly, not when they are not going not badly. and i would not say they are going good in georgia. the fundamental challenge is there and remains there. two themes i think come out of this discussion that i want to spend a little bit more time on. one is the danger of the situation that we face and the steps we need to take in order to -- in order to reduce the danger. an and the -- and the second is the role of the united states. let me start with the first one and just open it up to -- to press a little bit and then
perhaps you want to reflect on this. >> we have airplanes flying wing tip to wing tip. we have airplanes flying over the front and back of ships that if a millimeter difference would have clipped a ship and fallen into -- as we saw in the baultic sea, we have airplanes being shot down because they cross territory of a nato country. that is how wars start. what procedures -- we call for procedures in our report, but what proceed oars, particularly in the -- procedures in the osc, is there something that we could do in the osc that focuses on the day after or the moment after. an accident has occurred. how do you make sure that that accident does not escalate to awar that nobody wants. what kind of process and procedures might be put into place specifically within vienna or outside of vienna that you
think pay -- think may be able work. >> there are all sorts of things that could be done. first of all, in vienna, we have all of the players around the table all of the time. we have meetings every week in -- with various issues on the agenda but one of the things we can do is call everybody and start discussing what happens. and we can do that without special mechanism. we have framers with which we just call the people and push them to discuss and to extend views and then this can result into into a decision and common action. then we can think of more targets tools to address various aspects of. recently, in spite of this, we adopted the decision -- this was a decision that was negotiated and chaired by the u.s. ambassador with russians and others were participating and they all agreed in the end,
these were on cyber security. to measures, if there is a cyber attack, confidence-building measures with tools that convene working groups and specialized working groups to analyze the incidents and try to dispel concerns that one country might be behind something similar could be -- could be for this kind of incidents. son an immediate -- first of all, some kind of preventative code of conduct that could be something one could try to invest in. in tense situations, we should avoid transforms and sort of behaviors that might lead to incidents and that is important. secondly, you could think of a mechanism somewhere -- there is a by lateral agreement to address situations of this kind but you could -- you could do it in russia council, you could do it in the osc where you can --
you can build a little bit of context for discussion of this so with also some parameters on how to do it and think of an investigation mechanism if there is an accident to avoid the problems that we started seeing at the beginning of the crisis where the stories were very different and try to have a team going through and investigating and bringing back a report and so lowering the temperature immediately after the incident. so these are all examples of things -- of tools that we, i believe, could be useful but there is a need for the political will to make them happen. and in this divided government finding that is a problem. so one of the -- i think the tasks for all of that is to raise awareness as to the potential danger of situations of this kind and try to gather the support we need to be able to develop these mechanisms to
how to develop these mechanisms. >> anyone else want to come in on the mechanism piece and other ideas that we have? >> i very much agree that in crisis management, slowing down the pace of the crisis is of the essence. and those meck kmix committees, any way that drowns the emotion of the crisis into a process, it looks bureaucratic but it is good because it is bureaucratic and that is what is needed. >> i think that is right. let me -- before opening it up up to the floor, focus a little bit on the united states. and so we argue in the report that the actions of the united states and britain at the negotiating table and ukraine was unfortunate both we don't say this in the report, but clearly was the intent of those who were pushing this. both because of the 1994 memorandum with the united states, britain, russia and ukraine signed when the nuclear weapons were removed from
ukraine and the absence of two of the four signaturearies in the negotiation sent the wrong signal. and also because the united states has generally been part of any discussion on the future of european security. and you heard why the -- an argument for the u.s. to take a stronger leadership role. let me pose the question which is these are problems that europe needs to lead on. because they're european security problems. the united states is not and should not be uninterested in european security. but there is a dilemma. that's affected and should we worry about that? it is something we should be concerned about and should we
have in some way europe being pro actively in the lead and the u.s. in support of that when it comes to the issue of european security. at least that is an argument one could make. and i either would see how the panel reacts to that and the possibility or negatively. >> the crisis goes beyond ukraine and europe and that's why the u.s. has to be implied as well. actually, i prefer having the u.s. at the table and just having two tracks of trying to negotiate it. i think it's better for the process and all the parties concerned. actually, looking at the important element of the family mentioned, our report presents three narratives.
we came to the consensus about the situation is urgent and action is needed. having said that, i do believe that both sides are not interested in an april conflict. that's the basis for a diplomatic action. that's where we have to start rebuilding the dialogue wherever we k i think our panel is one of the attempts to do so. and then we have to continue. >> it's striking that during the cold war there was a complete confrontation, ideological on all level between the soviet union and the west. and nevertheless, we were able
to achieve major agreements, the arms control and the soviet union. and it was a very great achievement. whatever they're giving one that has with that action of russia, if we're not able to develop a real genuine diplomatic process with russia, russia remains a great power. needs to be treated with respect. it needs to be in a position of power. russia played a very constructive role. and we need to build on that. we need to build on that with a clear vision of what is wrong and what doesn't work. at the same time, if we shut
down the diplomatic engageme in. t, if we just focus on one element which is important, too, the military strength and all that is key. but the diplomatic side is the other half. let me just stress a point. this is important. and the tendency at times to do so bilaterally with russia, which we are seeing in the ukraine track at the moment, maybe sending the wrong signal. and one is there is nothing that russia would like more than to have, if there is a negotiation to have a negotiation with the united states about europe. and my view is that is not in the united states' interest. europe needs to be in that
process. and we can find out what the diplomatic niceties are and a condominium, something that looked like a condominium on part of the great powers is what we should not want russia to have and we shouldn't participate in that. and the contact group by definition has the parngs of russia and the united states and more importantly of key european partners in that process. i think you wanted to come in on this point and then i want to open it up.
they have taken over the process and they have become older, stronger and more assertive. it is caught in between. and the people on the ground and something needs to be taken into account. also, the domestic political propaganda scene in moscow is the u.s. to blame. whether u.s. engages or disengages, that is the major line in the russian propaganda. even though the united states is not doing anything, the russians are selling to the people is that it is america's fault that things are going -- that you can't do what they are. so i think it's fwoer have a stronger u.s. engagement but not all diplomatic. that's why i think the united states has to appear in europe also more assertive milita iviv including in the countries like
georgia. without the feelings that america is present in eastern europe, actually cares about the security, i do not think it will be safe. >> thank you. >> i want to open to the audience. make sure you actually ask a question. we're interested in comments but we're particularly interested in questions. i want to go to the ambassador from belgium up front. >> thank you very much. thank you for a stimulating conversation. i have a question to all of you. but particularly on the issue should he come back. the question is how come we lost diplomacy, why did it go away.
what did the russians essentially do through the power of nuisance to set up a kind of understanding which was the post cold war understanding? i think we should be somewhat more sober. there is an understanding. they talked rather well. and including domestic reasons, mr. putin has decided that understanding and throw diplomacy out the window basically. instead of saying that diplomacy has to come back in the window, seems to be somewhat short. it seems to the point that these are exactly that kind of understanding was based on a majority of cooperation, perhaps not agreeing on everything, but at least having basic framework
within. when you plead for a kind of enkbae enga engagement, where is your party? and is it forceful engagement on the outside because we generally like to restore that understanding, then probably that will be kind of a pleasing engagement. engagement to where we give into the difficult demands that other side. that is my conundrum. that is my question. >> do you want to start? >> i would start by saying since this panel and myself and none of us would recommend just appeasement and the agreement between all of us is that rules
starting with the final act, there is no need to rewrite them. they are just fine. it's not about rewriting the rules. we all agree on. that that's the basis for any discussion. >> we decide to have and to explain and have several narratives. not pretending that there is no -- there is no fact and that each narrative is equally valid but part of resolving the present crisis is recognizing that the way the various actors in the european crisis read the crisis is very different.
and it's deep and the way they read the crisis and there is a certain coherence in the russian writing of the crisis that it would be wrong to ignore because if you don't understand the logic, the other point that they come from, doesn't mean you have to come to share that view point. but you have to understand that viewpoint tone gauge. that's what we were taking by putting the various narrative side by side. not caving into one particular narrative but recognizing that there is a real problem. there were some agreements but they were reached with the perspective that was in the horizon of russia was very different from the horizon of
european union members hor the horizon of the united states. and when you move on that road and suddenly you discover -- nod sut enly, gradually, you discover that roads don't go in the same direction, then you have a problem. so it's important to walk back in that role and understand where we can change course and begin to repair the relations. that's why i believe personallien that gaugement matters and it's not at all appeasement. >> i would add on -- just on the importance of the diplomacy is why we stress that importance. it's military confrontation. and our judgement is that the world is more dangerous than during the cold war because we don't have the structures of
coordination, cooperation and of dialogue. i would add that a willingness by the united states, europe to engage in diplomacy does, of course, presume a partner on the other side. but a willingness in and of itself is important for political reasons. but the other side doesn't want to be part of the dialogue, we know what the problem is. you and i know what the problem is but we doend neat to be convinced. but the public doesn't know where the problem s and having an openness to dialogue, even if it is rejected serves the purpose to remind people who we're dealing with and why we're having the problems that we have. >> thank you, paul fritz.
for those of us who have been involved in this dialogue since about 200 will 8, there's a certain sense of deja vu in this room that conclusions you reached are similar to the conclusions that we reached in the process and the summit that there seems to be a cycle here where we have a long serious analysis of the problems of european euro atlantic security and we come to the conclusion that the principles are fine. the institutions are fine and everyone needs to engage more. we tend to talk about the helsinki problem as if these are the ten commandments handed down by the mountain top and there is a certain flexibility built into the principles. you have sovereignty, integrity and self-determination of
people. you have the right to choose and change alliances, but you also have the commitment not to enhance your own security at the expense of others. and this is a structure that was designed not as an enforcement mechanism but for constant dialogue about how the principle as pli in each individual case. there seems to be the element that's been missing now for a number of years. that it's present in the geneva process. it's present in the minsk process. but not sufficiently high level where the various parties involved are working toward common understanding of how these principles should apply. and i'd be curious as to whether the panel believes that there is a prospect for changing that. for returning to the core mission of taking the ten
principles and reaching understandings of how they should ab plied in individual cases. and if not, then this might not be the right institutional framework for addressing the challenges. >> do you want to take that? >> looking up the case of the crisis in and over the ukraine, you simply have to state that he was the only institution that could become active. they didn't just become active because of the flexibility. >> narrator: lining but only in combination with the secretary-general and the secretary-general and the chairman in office. they were really committed and engaged and made it possible to deploy people from the secretary within 24 hours after the decision has been taken. so that is the right michlt tour of flexibility of approach and commitment. however, our first report, of
course, there needs to be a series of improvement. strengthening the secretary-general to be able to act when it needed strengthening and to be able to act on short notice. of course, an issue of the legal personality of the situation. there are only situations like this where they can become active. >> i think in eastern europe there is no problem of applicability. the case where the territory as
a nation could be more or less relevant. i'm sure many would doubt that. i think in most of the other cases and certainly ukraine, this is not the debate. the debate is between the letter of principles which shows the principles of the right to choose one's lines and the principle of as you mentioned you cannot enhance your own security at the xpengs of the others. now the problem is i think in the interpretation of the letter principles, particularly russian interpretation is because the way they interpret it is they cannot do anything if i don't like it. now that interpretation then the whole security is basically in shackles. and it zpt work anywhere. so i think what is important and what the panel has said and certainly within the intelligence of the panel is
what we need to do is work with russia to make them understand that the country is on their alliances and doesn't mean they're in the security interest. i don't think that baltic states are a threat to russia. it will not be a threat to russia. so it's another perception. it's another mentality and not really the problem with the principle per se. that's why i don't think it's correct to say that what we need to do is to think which of the principle are applying in which region and we can find out how to adjust. that's what russia has been saying all along, particularly within the discussions of the past. >> sir, right here on the side. >> thank you for the panel and
thank you for taking my question. when i look at the panel, and i go to work basically. i cannot believe it. >> speak a little more into the microphone. >> i don't think the european union cannot accomplish any goals of security anywhere in the world. democracy works and sometimes it doesn't work. my question for you all will be, when diplomatic can hurt and institute some problems whether they p more emphasize on one things that are important. it's economic security. you go over to -- look what happened in the middle east. there's a 50% or more of 6 o% employment. what do you think the young generation will do? what is supposed to be done? security will be done through education and create jobs and security where they can be
occupied and go to work. that's what's happening in the ukraine where they have not security. there is only corruption. so what are you looking into the road of diplomatic development of this key issue? >> i can try to answer the question. i would agree with you is that in the end and europe a big part of security is the inner strength of each country. and we see that today a lot of the threat come from internal weakness. they then exploit it and become an international issue. if ukraine had been stronger, i mean, not militarily but intern internally, if they had sorted out its many issues, certainly the crisis that we have seen
develop in eastern ukraine may not have developed the way it has developed. the zeeb on european security. there say bit of a theoretical dimension and then i have a friend friendly disagreement in a sense that there is not much enthusiasm at the moment for enlarging alliances and this is -- i'm not -- i doubt that it's going to come any time soon. so the reality is there is a fight about perception. a fight about sending political signals. whether one country has the right or not to be to choose its alliance which is a fundamental sovereign right and that is a contention that nobody will make. and at the same time, in practice, it's unlikely that that right is going to be tested
in the shortly. so we need free throw tekt the principles while at the same time not creating -- not generating crisis that do not need to be generated. >> we're getting to our end of our alotted time. actually the final word and come back to the issues that were raced and to also help us wrap this up in two minutes. >> i tried to be as fast as i k first of all, dialogue, that does not mean appeasement. when we are looking at the situation now and we see many in play from sanctions to more investment. but we need to keep open a channel to address issues as
they come up and to try to find avenues in a specific manner. so there is no contradiction in my view and it's important that they talk about the policies and the dialogue and define where the leadership also can be seen. obviously, europeans have strong responsibilities. it's a very complicated debate. principles are there. so they're coming from that perspective. now we're in a very different environment. so the principles, we -- they do reflect general principles in international law anyhow.
and they dominate in europe and this doesn't mean that they're valid. and as you mention, it's a security guarantee. so it's not only a question of territorial integrity. it's a question of how it is an international commitment. so one always needs to take a look at the bigger picture. finally, we see more of your politics on the agenda. this is complicating a large way to deal with situations. at the same time, we we have a broader agenda driven by politics and certainly not only in the regions we are discussing now and also in other areas. but do create other problems. debate about migration and the organization between conflict and refugees and et cetera. and a lot of the challenges we
have. we need the international community and that is making this more complicated to achieve. so it is time for a new form of diplomacy in a way, and it remains important to central and i'm reaching out to other constituencies. and, you know, from the financial sector to the academic circle and today, they're all so important. and this is not only a way for me to communicate you to but for me to listen to others and to mobilize society and whatever. if you see we do something we call the security and we do exactly that. to reach out.
we need to learn to work in different ways. but at the same time, we need to also make people aware of the fact that we need strong leaders, strong leadership and don't think the challenges are in play. >> secretary-general, thank you so much for injuyour closing comments. i want to thank the pablinelist for this really interesting discussion. i want to thank the atlantic capital for hosting us. and with that, we're concluded. thank you.
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