NATO Secretary-General Jens Stoltenberg announced on Monday that the alliance will increase the number of its response forces from 40,000 to 300,000 in what he says is “the biggest overhaul of collective defense and deterrence since the Cold War.” This comes as NATO members are set to meet in Madrid this week to adopt a new “Strategic Concept,” which will “define the security challenges facing the Alliance and outline the political and military tasks that NATO will carry out to address them.”
While speaking with Politico last week, Stoltenberg stated that “I expect the 2022 Concept will refer to Russia as the most significant and direct threat to our security.” He added that the Strategic Concept “will address a lot of other challenges that are hardly mentioned in the current strategic concept: climate change, cyber, hybrid, and space,” adding that “for the first time, we will address China and the challenges it poses to our interests, security and values.”
“We will adapt the NATO force structure. With more forces at high readiness. We will also have more NATO forward deployed combat formations, to strengthen battlegroups in the East up to brigade level. And more prepositioned equipment and weapon stockpiles. And for the first time since the Cold War, we will have pre-assigned forces to defend specific Allies. So that we can reinforce much faster if needed,” he added.