NATO and the Arctic: is the Atlantic alliance a cold war relic in a peaceful region now faced with non-military challenges?
Haftendorn, Helga – 2011
This article analyzes which role the Atlantic Alliance plays in the Arctic and whether it can contribute to the security and territorial integrity of its members in the region. In a dramatic change from the cold war era, the Arctic is no longer at the center of a conflict between two hostile superpowers. But what can a basically military organization such as NATO – though with proven political functions – contribute to stabilizing the Arctic region if its major challenges are non-military? With regional challenges resulting mostly from globalization and climate change, it is open to question whether a military alliance such as NATO has the will and the capability to cope with them. We might thus need to look also at individual members’ interests and abilities besides searching for joint alliance action. If we find NATO not up to the challenges, which alternative institutions offer themselves for coping with the political conflicts and controversies in the Polar region?