CRS Report for Congress
Received through the CRS Web
The Process and Allied Views
Updated July 1, 1997
Paul E. Gallis
Specialist in European Affairs
Foreign Affairs and National Defense Division
Congressional Research Service ˜ The Library of Congress
This study analyzes issues in each NATO member state on the question of enlargement of
the alliance. It weighs competing issues, such as domestic problems or the cost of European
Union expansion, and it briefly describes the constitutional processes in each country for
amending the North Atlantic Treaty to admit new members. The U.S. Senate addressed
NATO enlargement in the March-April 1998 debate on the protocols of accession (Treaty
Doc. 105-36). This study will likely be updated before the end of 1998. For related CRS
products, see NATO: Congress addresses expansion of the alliance, CRS IB95076; NATO:
Article V and collective defense, CRS Report 97-717; NATO Expansion: Cost Issues, CRS
Report 97-668; and NATO Adapts for new missions, CRS Report 96-561.
NATO Enlargement: The Process and Allied Views
In December 1996, NATO countries expressed the intention to name one or
more candidate states for membership at the alliance summit in Madrid on July 8-9,
1997. Designation of candidates would be the first significant step in the process of
admitting central European countries. NATO has set a target date of April 1999 for
completion of current members' constitutional processes to revise the North Atlantic
Treaty to incorporate new members.
Expansion of the alliance has triggered a broad debate about NATO's purpose
and future. Since the end of the Cold War, NATO's missions have been evolving.
The Clinton Administration believes that enlargement will enhance NATO's ability
to strengthen those new missions and build stability in Europe.
NATO states continue to emphasize Article V, the provision for collective
defense, of the North Atlantic Treaty. They wish to ensure that new members do not
dilute the alliance's political likemindedness, nor its defense posture. At the same
time, most member states believe that bringing countries into the alliance could
strengthen those countries' path towards democracy, and enhance stability.
Several differences have emerged among member states on the issue of
enlargement. The degree to which some members believe that Article V could be
strengthened or weakened by enlargement is one concern. Some members emphasize
more than others NATO's "new missions," such as crisis management and
peacekeeping. In general, candidate states better able to support new missions or that
contribute to stability in Europe have broader support among most member states.
Most member states are concerned about the possible costs of enlargement, and
the alliance has not yet agreed upon a plan for sharing those costs. Some member
governments also remain concerned about a possible backlash against the alliance
from Russian nationalists, should enlargement go forward.
There is an apparent consensus to name Poland, the Czech Republic, and
Hungary as candidate states at the Madrid summit. Some members, in particular
France and Italy, support Slovenia and Romania as well. The Baltic states do not
have support in a first round of enlargement. Following Madrid, negotiations for
accession with candidate states will begin, and should be completed by December
NATO enlargement will face competing issues in several member states.
Qualification for European Monetary Union (EMU), efforts to constrain budgets, and
national elections could affect the debate over enlargement. Member states will
watch developments in the U.S. Senate, above all. In France, Italy, and Turkey, the
debate could prove to be difficult. Member states will follow different constitutional
processes to amend the North Atlantic Treaty.
Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1
Enlargement and the Madrid Summit . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
Process and History . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
Brief History of Past Expansions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
Brief History of the Current Enlargement Debate . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
The Madrid Summit . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5
Negotiations for Accession . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6
Allied Views on Enlargement . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8
Belgium . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9
Britain . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
Canada . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
Denmark . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
France . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11
Germany . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14
Greece . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15
Iceland . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15
Italy . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16
Luxembourg . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17
The Netherlands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17
Norway . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18
Portugal . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19
Spain . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19
Turkey . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19
Appendix: Treaty Approval . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21
Belgium . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21
Britain . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21
Canada . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22
Denmark . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22
France . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22
Germany . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22
Greece . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22
Iceland . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22
Italy . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22
Luxembourg . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23
The Netherlands . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23
Norway . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23
Portugal . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24
Spain . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24
Turkey . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24
The Process and Allied Views
In December 1996, NATO countries expressed the intention to name one or
more candidate states for membership at the alliance summit in Madrid on July 8-9,
1997. Designation of candidates would be the first significant step in the process of
admitting central European countries. NATO has set a target date of April 1999 for
completion of current members' constitutional processes to revise the North Atlantic
Treaty to incorporate new members.
Expansion of the alliance has triggered a broad debate about NATO's purpose
and future. Since the end of the Cold War, NATO's missions have been evolving.
The Clinton Administration believes that enlargement will enhance NATO's ability
to strengthen those new missions and build stability in Europe.
During the Cold War, NATO's overriding objective was to deter or defend
against an attack on western Europe by the Soviet Union and its allies. Collective
defense has been the cornerstone of the alliance, expressed in Article V of the North
Atlantic Treaty, where each member pledges to assist another under attack with "such
action as it deems necessary, including the use of armed force, to restore and
maintain the security" of the Treaty area.1 Today, Russian conventional forces are in
disarray, and Russia could not become a threat to its neighbors for at least a decade.
However, most allied states continue to emphasize NATO's traditional core mission
of collective defense, in the event that Russia one day again adopts a threatening
posture. Officials in candidate states privately emphasize that they view collective
defense under Article V as the principal reason for their desire to join NATO.
In the 1990s, in the absence of a Russian threat, the alliance has taken on new
missions, such as peacekeeping, peace-enforcing, crisis management, and
humanitarian assistance. According to NATO's Strategic Concept of 1991, endorsed
by all members of the alliance, "risks to allied security are less likely to result from
calculated aggression against the territory of the allies, but rather from the adverse
consequences of instabilities that may arise from the serious economic, social and
political difficulties" arising from ethnic and territorial disputes in central Europe.2
Allied force posture reflects this change. The positional defense characterized by
heavy armored divisions of the Cold War has gradually changed into lighter, more
mobile forces for projection into areas beyond NATO's current borders. This new
North Atlantic Treaty (or Washington Treaty), signed April 4, 1949, Washington, D.C.
"The Alliance's Strategic Concept," in NATO Handbook, Brussels, 1995, p. 235.
configuration is a key factor in determining whether candidate states for NATO
membership can contribute to the alliance's purposes, and how much the restructuring
and modernization of candidate states' militaries will cost.
A range of issues related to NATO's missions is influencing the selection of
candidate states. Current members do not wish to see enlargement dilute the political
likemindedness and military capability of the alliance. At the same time, most
member states recognize that stability in central Europe could be enhanced by
admitting states with a demonstrated record of building democratic structures,
settling longstanding disputes with neighbors, and opening their markets to
competition and investment, even if the path to these objectives is not yet fully
travelled. Candidate states must be able to contribute to NATO's missions. That
contribution, however, may not be immediate. In the view of the Clinton
Administration and the European allies, few, if any, of the prospective candidate
states could today contribute meaningfully to countering an Article V threat. NATO
members reason that, since there is no such threat for the foreseeable future,
candidate states could first be admitted, then develop a capacity over the next decade
to contribute to collective defense and participate in the nearer term in other, less
Current members are evaluating candidate states, therefore, with several
considerations in mind. In the effort to maintain public support, one concern is that
NATO develop a coherent purpose in an era when not easily defined risks, such as
nuclear proliferation, have replaced the once readily identifiable threat of the Soviet
Union. Concern about a possible nationalist backlash in Russia against enlargement
has led to the negotiation of the "Founding Act" between NATO and Russia, as well
as a prospective initial enlargement that will not include countries once part of the
Soviet Union.4 Lingering concerns remain among many current members about the
political stability of prospective members and about their capacity to contribute
concretely to the alliance's defense posture and to the costs of enlargement. Some
current members are reluctant players in the enlargement process, and have other
concerns with priority over enlargement: the future course of the European Union
(EU), a key to stability on the continent; European Monetary Union (EMU) and
attendant budgetary pressures; the coaxing of stability in Bosnia; and national
elections. Each is an issue that will compete in importance with the process of
This study reviews the history of the process of enlargement, discusses the
Madrid summit, describes the nature of accession agreements for prospective
members, and analyzes the allies' views towards expansion. An appendix sketches
the constitutional process to approve enlargement for each NATO member.
See Report to Congress on the Enlargement of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization, U.S.
Dept. Of State, Feb. 24, 1997. P. 10.
See Library of Congress. CRS. NATO: Congress Addresses Expansion of the Alliance, by
Paul E. Gallis. Issue Brief 95076, regularly updated; and NATO Enlargement and Russia,
by (name redacted). CRS Report 97-477.
Enlargement and the Madrid Summit
Process and History
Article X of the North Atlantic Treaty describes the process for inviting a state
to join the alliance. Article X applies directly to the discussions at the Madrid
summit. "By unanimous agreement," current members may invite a state to begin
accession negotiations. If current members' governments all agree upon one or more
candidates, NATO will then begin negotiations for accession with each of those
states. Article XI, discussed below in the section on the views of individual member
states, addresses the next step, which is the constitutional route for approval of an
amended Treaty admitting the candidates.
Brief History of Past Expansions. There have been three past expansions of
the alliance: Greece and Turkey were admitted in 1952; Germany in 1955; and Spain
in 1982. In each instance, one protocol was submitted to member states for approval
(i.e., there was one protocol in 1952 that named both Greece and Turkey, and not a
separate protocol for each state.) These accessions occurred during the Cold War,
and the admission of these four states was not controversial. In the United States, the
admissions of Greece and Turkey, and then Germany, were approved by wide
margins in the Senate, and Spain's by a voice vote. The Senate and the Executive
Branch viewed the admission of these countries as contributing to the strategic
weight of the alliance against the Soviet Union. There has not been an occasion in
which an accession agreement was negotiated with an aspiring member, and that
aspirant was then rejected.
The Senate Foreign Relations Committee, in considering the North Atlantic
Treaty in 1949, commented in its report that the admission of new members "might
radically alter our obligations under the pact." The Committee therefore sought, and
received, a commitment from President Truman that a president would consider any
admission of a new member to constitute a new treaty, requiring the advice and
consent of the Senate. This practice has been followed in admitting each new state.
Two-thirds of all Senators present in the Chamber must vote to consent to ratification
of the Protocol admitting a state. The Protocol enters into force when the President
Brief History of the Current Enlargement Debate. The Clinton
Administration, backed above all by Germany, proposed expansion of the alliance
at the January 1994 NATO summit. At that summit, some allies wished to explore
the issue before committing themselves to admit new members. The allies
established the Partnership for Peace (PfP) program at the 1994 summit. PfP
provides a framework for evaluating states that may be interested in joining NATO.
The program offers training to states in such areas as development of civilian control
of the military, NATO practices in military doctrine or operations in the field, and
For a full discussion, see U.S. Library of Congress. CRS. NATO Expansion: Senate Advice
and Consent, by (name redacted). CRS Report 97-170. Feb. 4,
1997. Each of the
protocols for the three previous expansions was somewhat different, having been tailored
either to particular geographic or historical circumstances of the parties invited to join.
peacekeeping. Critics have contended that PfP was simply a means to forestall
enlargement. Proponents counter that PfP has provided the necessary time and basic
steps to acclimate prospective members to NATO thinking and practices.6
At the 1994 summit, a second decision, after the establishment of PfP, was
made in keeping with the European allies' desire to proceed cautiously towards
enlargement. They agreed to undertake a study that would describe the path towards
enlargement. The study was released in September 1995, and stated that new
members must accept the full range of NATO responsibilities, such as building a
military able to contribute to collective defense. The study noted that new members
would be under the protection of strategic nuclear forces committed to NATO's
defense, but that there was no near-term need for basing nuclear weapons or other
member states' conventional forces in large numbers on the territories of new
A further step in the process of enlargement came at the 1996 NATO
Ministerial. The Final Communiqué recommended that heads of government of
NATO states, at the July 1997 summit, invite "one or more" candidate states to begin
accession negotiations. It noted that the alliance "will remain open to the accession
of further members...." The Communiqué stated the goal is to admit "new member(s)
by the time of NATO's 50th anniversary in [April] 1999."8
Most European allies wished to establish relations with Russia on firmer footing
before proceeding with enlargement. In 1996, France proposed negotiation of a
NATO-Russia "charter" that would outline a cooperative framework in security
matters. The Clinton Administration was at first doubtful about the proposal, but
allied support for the idea ultimately led to negotiations, in which the United States
played a key role. On May 27, 1997, the negotiations resulted in a document called
the "Founding Act." It touched upon a wide range of issues. NATO reiterated that
it had "no intention, no plan, and no reason" in the foreseeable future to station
nuclear weapons on new members' soil, but that it may do so should the need arise.
NATO further stated that military infrastructure "adequate" to assure new members'
security under Article V of the North Atlantic Treaty would be maintained on their
territory. The alliance pledged not to place "substantial combat forces" in the
"current and foreseeable security environment" on new members' territory, but
underscored an intention to increase interoperability, integration, and reinforcement
capabilities with the new states. The Founding Act also established a NATO-Russia
Permanent Joint Council to consult on matters of mutual interest, such as
peacekeeping, nuclear and biological weapons proliferation, and terrorism, but not
on NATO or Russian internal matters.9
For a balanced account of PfP's first steps, see Jeffrey Simon, NATO Enlargement and
Central Europe. Washington: INSS, National Defense University, 1996. P. 7-28.
Study on NATO Enlargement. Brussels: NATO, September 1995.
Final Communiqué, Ministerial of the NAC. Brussels: NATO. Dec. 10, 1996.
Founding Act on Mutual Relations..., Paris. NATO Press Office. May 27, 1997. See also
CRS IB95076 and CRS Report 97-477, already mentioned.
The Founding Act reflected the concerns of some allies that Russia be consulted
during the enlargement process. At the same time, critics of the Founding Act in
allied countries and in Russia contended that President Yeltsin had little choice but
to sign the document, especially in light of clear indications that the alliance would
proceed to enlargement with or without Moscow's acquiescence, and that the
document gave Russia no substantive influence over NATO decisionmaking. In the
United States, some critics contended that the document gave Russia a foothold in
NATO decisionmaking, and that Russia might use the opening to prevent the alliance
from implementing new missions such as crisis management and peacekeeping.10
The Madrid Summit
The central issue at the Madrid summit will be enlargement, although other
issues such as agreement over a new alliance command structure, enhancing
Partnership for Peace, and further refinement of the Combined Joint Task Forces
concept will be pursued as well.11
On June 12, 1997, President Clinton announced that the United States would
support the candidacies of Poland, the Czech Republic, and Hungary for admission
to NATO. Administration officials believe that these three states have made the most
progress in reforming their militaries, developing democratic institutions and a free
market, and ensuring civilian control of the military. They also believe that there is
a consensus in favor of these three countries, but not over additional countries; in this
view, pursuing a "smaller" enlargement of three rather than a "larger" one of five
states promises a greater chance of success when the issue is before member state
Several additional considerations contributed to the Administration's decision
to support only three countries. An enlargement of three countries would presumably
be less costly, given the expenses likely for current members in supporting the
modernization and restructuring of new states' militaries.
decisionmaking in the alliance is already cumbersome, and a smaller enlargement
would be easier to assimilate. The Administration also wishes to underscore that
enlargement is an "open process;" efforts by Romania and Slovenia to qualify for
entry, and the two countries' support within the alliance, make them possible future
candidates, should a first enlargement in fact take place and the new members prove
to be productive allies. Administration officials have said for approximately a year
that the Baltic states' militaries are not sufficiently strong to contribute meaningfully
to collective defense. Some U.S. and allied officials privately state that the Baltic
states cannot now be adequately defended under Article V due to their geographic
location, and that countries that cannot be defended should not be admitted.
See, for example, Daniel Vernet, "M. Chirac appelle à la tenue d'un sommet paneuropéen
à Madrid," Le Monde (henceforth LM), May 28, 1997, p. 2; and Henry Kissinger, "The
Dilution of NATO," Washington Post. June 8, 1997. P. C9.
See Library of Congress. CRS. NATO: July 1997 Madrid Summit Agenda, by (name r
edacted). CRS Report 97-443. June 5, 1997.
Finally, some Administration officials wish to raise the bar of qualification as
high as possible. Romania has only recently moved firmly on the path towards
mature democracy, and is struggling to implement a free-market economy. Officials
believe that it must make further progress towards civilian control of its military.
Some hold-overs from the communist era reportedly remain in senior positions in the
Romanian military and the intelligence service. Slovenia has a small defense force,
able to make only a minimal military contribution to NATO.
Some allied states contest such an evaluation, and have vowed to pursue
invitations to Romania and Slovenia at Madrid.12 Officials of several allies may
concede that civilian control of the military in Romania is insufficient, but argue that
it is at least the equal of Poland. Further, they believe that excluding Romania in
particular, after significant strides forward in building a democracy, could be a
political setback for reformers in a strategically key Balkan country.
Negotiations for Accession
If in fact candidate states are selected at the Madrid summit, negotiations for
accession will begin almost immediately. U.S. and allied officials wish to complete
the negotiations by December 1997.
The instrument(s) of accession will be in the form of a Protocol to the North
Atlantic Treaty. In the previous three expansions of the alliance, the Protocols noted
candidate states' commitment to the principles of the Treaty; delineated the additional
geographic territory to be covered under Article V (particularly specific in the case
of Greece and Turkey in 1952); and, for Germany, noted issues touching upon the
country's special legal position as a result of the aftermath of World War II.13 There
will not be heavily detailed documents describing the military responsibilities that
each new member must undertake because the alliance's defense needs are classified
and cannot be shared with candidate states. Assignments to build air combat shelters
or boost a particular intelligence capacity, for instance, are made only by NATO's
Defense Planning Committee (the DPC). The DPC decides upon each member
state's Defense Planning Program (DPP), which outlines force goals and other
responsibilities to ensure that appropriate contributions to NATO's common defense
are made. Such a program will be issued to the candidate states only after they
become signatories to the Treaty.
Interviews with U.S. and allied officials. For Romania, see Library of Congress. CRS.
Romania's New Government: Politics, Policies, and Relations with the United States, by
(name redacted). CRS Report 97-451. April 10, 1997;
and Basic Facts, by (name redacted) and
Jeri Hawthorne. CRS report 97-554. May 20, 1997.
Protocol to the North Atlantic Treaty on the Accession of Greece and Turkey. London,
Oct. 22, 1951; Protocol to the North Atlantic Treaty on the Accession of the Federal
Republic of Germany. Paris, Oct. 23, 1954. For Germany's legal standing after World War
II, see Legal Issues Relating to the Future Status of Germany, prepared by CRS for the
Senate Foreign Relations Committee in preparation for hearings on German unification.
Washington: June, 1990.
A precise estimate of the financial costs of enlargement, consequently, cannot
be discerned from the negotiations for accession. Because detailed defense
commitments will not be part of the discussions, current member governments and
their legislatures will be unable to evaluate the restructuring and modernization
programs that allied officials later determine to be necessary for candidate states once
they become members. Outside the negotiations, it is possible that PfP's Partnership
and Review Process (PARP) can provide a general indication of NATO's
expectations of new members because the PARP designates steps that countries
should take to improve interoperability with NATO forces.
Administration officials are acutely aware of the developing debate over allied
cost-sharing for enlargement. Some Members of Congress have questioned the
accuracy of the Administration's estimates of the costs of enlargement, and believe
that they are too low. Some Members of Congress are also insisting that the
Administration devise a clear cost-sharing arrangement for enlargement with current
allied states.14 Administration officials state privately that they will seek a more
See, for example, the debate over cost burdensharing in an amendment to the European
Security Act of 1997, Congressional Record, June 11, 1997. P. 3711, 3715-3717.
precise formulation of enlargement costs by December 1997, and that a cost-sharing
arrangement will be discussed with the allies.
During the negotiations for accession, NATO officials will discuss several
issues with candidate states. One issue will be the process of integration into
NATO's command structure. NATO has been in the process of streamlining the
command structure, and has adopted a general commitment to give European officers
more commands. Another issue will be cost-sharing arrangements in NATO's three
budgets: the strategic investment program (covering fixed installations, such as
airfields, fuel pipelines, and telecommunications installations used in common by all
members in the deployment and operation of forces), the civil budget (for paying
NATO's international civilian staff), and the military budget (for paying the
international military staff at NATO headquarters and the alliance's major
commands). Each member state pays an agreed proportion of these budgets, the
proportion being decided on the basis of gross domestic product and other economic
factors. Upon completion of these discussions, the governments of candidate states
will write to the NATO Secretary General to indicate that they will abide by the
North Atlantic Treaty, and that they understand their commitments under the
integrated command structure and the alliance's budgets.15
Another issue has been quietly raised with prospective candidates. Several
current allied governments have told prospective candidates that, should they enter
the alliance, they must not veto future candidate states. Such a commitment can only
be informal, since the Treaty provides every state, once a member, with a veto over
a prospective member. The discussions have centered upon countries that have
experienced historical animosity towards their neighbors. For example, there have
been longstanding disputes between Poland and Ukraine, and between Hungary and
Romania over issues such as borders and ethnic minorities. (A series of bilateral
treaties addressing most of these issues is now in place for the most likely
prospective candidates.) The intention of these discussions is to warn a candidate
state, upon becoming a member, against using its position to address bilateral issues
in a manner detrimental to the alliance.16 All candidate states under serious
consideration have publicly pledged not to veto future candidacies.
Allied Views on Enlargement
Member states have different concerns and perceptions about enlargement.
Some governments of NATO members have expressed little enthusiasm for
enlargement, but support it in principle because the Clinton Administration believes
that expansion is important for European stability and critical for the vitality of the
alliance. Some members support enlargement primarily for regional considerations,
such as the desire of Italy and Greece to enhance stability in the Balkans. Several
states have begun to place enlargement in a broad strategic context, addressing it, for
example, through the prism of the prospective evolution of the European Union. The
debate over enlargement, then, is as much about the long-term nature of the system
meant to ensure European security as it is about the qualifications of candidate states.
In some member states, fragile government coalitions could be tested once the
amended treaty is submitted to parliament. Other issues -- budget constraints
imposed by EMU, the EU's role in security affairs, judgment of the U.S. commitment
to preserve peace in Bosnia, national elections17 -- will affect the debate over NATO
enlargement. In most allied countries, a vigorous debate has not yet begun on
enlargement; polling information is therefore of doubtful value, but will be indicated,
There is an apparent consensus among member states to invite Poland, the
Czech Republic, and Hungary at Madrid to begin accession negotiations. A number
of members will seek to add Romania and Slovenia to the list. Other states
mentioned as prospective candidates -- in particular, the Baltic states and Bulgaria -are unlikely to receive support at the summit.
Article XI of the North Atlantic Treaty addresses the manner in which the
original members joined the alliance. It does not directly apply to the admission of
new members, except for the provision that member states should follow their
"constitutional processes" for ratifying a treaty. [See Appendix.] For NATO's three
previous expansions, protocols naming candidate states contained statements
requiring that all existing members must ratify the amended treaty before a candidate
state may gain entry into the alliance. In NATO's previous expansions, all member
states have approved the new candidates.
The analysis of the positions of the 15 allies below is derived from interviews
with officials from each country and from the United States, as well as discussions
with other observers. Public sources have also been used.18
For some months, the Belgian government supported Poland, the Czech
Republic, and Hungary for membership. In May 1997, some officials began to
indicate that Belgium would support Slovenia's and Romania's candidacies as well.
Belgian political figures, above all on the center and left, had initially expressed
concern that a cooperative security framework be negotiated with Russia before
enlargement proceeded; the "Founding Act" appears to have allayed those concerns.
There is broad support among the Belgian political elite for enlargement, and
for keeping the door open to future rounds of enlargement. At the same time, some
officials express concern about the costs of enlargement. In recent years, Belgium
Library of Congress. CRS. European Monetary Union and the Euro: How Will the United
States be Affected?, by Arlene Wilson. CRS Report 97-445. April 11, 1997; and NATO and
Bosnia: A Looming Transatlantic Debate, by (name redacted). CRS Report 97-480. April
An excellent brief study also exists. See Sean Kay and Hans Binnendijk, After the Madrid
Summit: Parliamentary Ratification of NATO Enlargement, INSS, NDU. March 1997.
has made budgetary sacrifices to move towards qualification for EMU. Making
progress in overcoming a large public debt has been a key policy objective of the
government of Prime Minister Dehaene, who has pursued such a policy in the face
of workers' unrest over a reduced safety net. These budgetary strictures will continue
for several years, and few funds for NATO enlargement may be available. Belgium
also has some concerns that additional NATO members may complicate the alliance's
The Labour government of Prime Minister Tony Blair supports a "smaller rather
than a larger" expansion of the alliance. In concert with its Conservative Party
predecessor, the Blair government has stated that NATO must not admit countries
that dilute the alliance's political and military cohesion. Britain wishes to ensure that
the alliance will continue to adapt to the post-Cold-War security situation in Europe
through consensus. "We have to be confident," Foreign Secretary Robin Cook has
said, "that those new members that come in are democracies and have the military
capability to make a contribution as well as to demand a guarantee from NATO." He
declined to name Britain's candidates for entry, but stated that the Baltic states would
not be invited in a first round of invitations.19 Reportedly, however, Britain most
strongly supports Poland, the Czech Republic, and Hungary, and some officials have
indicated that Slovenia's candidacy is also acceptable. The British government
wishes to see the alliance remain open to future expansion.
In the debate about sharing the costs of enlargement, both Labour and
Conservative Party officials believe that Britain's efforts to restructure and modernize
its forces for power projection, as agreed under the Alliance's Strategic Concept of
1991, must be taken into consideration. Britain believes that it has already taken
significant steps towards this end, and is likely to be cautious in agreeing to
additional expenditures to assist new member states.
Canada supports the entry of five countries -- Poland, the Czech Republic,
Hungary, Romania, and Slovenia. Enlargement is not a significant topic of debate
in Canada, but the issue of cost-sharing for alliance expansion could provoke some
The Danish government has not made public its choices for enlargement.
Reportedly, however, Denmark supports Poland, the Czech Republic, and Hungary.
Most strongly among the allies, Danish officials support the Baltic states' admission
to the alliance, and are likely to express support for the candidacies of Lithuania,
Latvia, and Estonia at Madrid. Denmark has played a leading role in developing
alliance defense cooperation with the Baltic states. Defense Minister Hans
Haekkerup has said that he will ask NATO at the summit to commit itself to inviting
"NATO enlargement: Interview by the Foreign Secretary," CNN [Internet], May 19, 1997.
the Baltic states to join in a second round of enlargement if those states are not
admitted in a first round.20
Among NATO members, Denmark has traditionally had one of the smaller
defense budgets, when figured as a percentage of GDP. There is little political
support for expenditures for NATO enlargement. Denmark has been a strong
supporter of international peacekeeping efforts, and it is one of the principal
supporters of a NATO with more "political" missions, such as peacekeeping and
On February 6, 1997, the Danish parliament passed a resolution that endorsed
NATO enlargement as a means to enhance stability in Europe; supported greater
cooperation between NATO and Russia; urged that the Baltic states one day be
considered for NATO membership; called for an enhanced PfP program to strengthen
the alliance's links with candidate states not gaining entry; and endorsed adjustment
of equipment levels covered by the Conventional Forces in Europe (CFE) Treaty that
reflect a reduced threat from Russia.21
Elections on June 1, 1997, ousted the center-right coalition of Alain Juppé and
brought to power a Socialist-led coalition under Lionel Jospin. Gaullist President
Jacques Chirac remains head of state. For at least several years, France will again be
in a period of cohabitation, in which the left and the right share power. Prime
Minister Jospin assumed office in a highly contentious political atmosphere where
domestic issues such as unemployment (now at 12.8%) and slow economic growth
(approximately 2%) are dominant.
President Chirac and Prime Minister Jospin have differed in their views on
NATO enlargement. After initially wishing to delay enlargement, President Chirac
firmly endorsed alliance expansion in the fall of 1996. He has championed
Romania's candidacy, and endorsed Poland, the Czech Republic, Hungary, and
Slovenia as well.22 President Chirac has advocated a long-term goal of returning
France to NATO's integrated command structure, once the alliance agrees on more
Europeans in important commands and once it shapes more clearly the mechanisms
to carry out its new missions.23
Traditionally, the President of France takes the lead in foreign and defense
policy, but Prime Minister Jospin has said that the President may not claim a
"Denmark: Defense Minister to defend Baltic conditions at NATO summit." FBIS-WEU97-162. June 11, 1997.
Resolution on NATO Enlargement, Parliament of Denmark. Feb 6, 1997. Unofficial
"Paris souhaite que la République tchèque...," LM. April 4, 1947. P. 4.
Library of Congress. CRS. France: Current Foreign Policy Issues and Relations with the
Untied States, by Paul E. Gallis. Report 96-794, Sept. 26, 1996. P.7-10.
"domaine réservé."24 Chirac, in any event, is much weakened politically by the loss
of majority support in the National Assembly. Jospin has endorsed NATO
enlargement in principle, but wishes to proceed slowly. He has specifically
supported Romania's candidacy. At the same time, Jospin and the Socialists have
criticized enlargement as a U.S. policy intended to enhance American influence in
Europe. Jospin sees a "tendency to hegemony" in U.S. security policy in Europe, and
he opposes for now French reintegration into NATO's command structure.25 Several
members of his cabinet are also critical of enlargement. Interior Minister
Chèvenement, leader of a left-wing splinter party, has long been a critic of U.S.
leadership of NATO and an opponent of enlargement. There are two communist
ministers in the Jospin government. Communist leader Robert Hue has called for the
dissolution of NATO.
NATO is important to France as long as a revitalized, aggressive Russia is a
possibility, but the European Union is of greater long-term importance. In economic
and political affairs, President Chirac has said that he wishes to see the EU assume
a strong global position, becoming "an active and powerful center, the equal of the
United States," in the twenty-first century.26 Further economic and political union are
essential to this end. Prime Minister Jospin's views have been similar. France and
Europe "must first define the way to a European security, which could then lead to
an evolutionary approach [by the EU] to NATO."27 This position received a setback
when, in June 1997, the European Union could not agree to integrate the Western
European Union (WEU) into the EU.
Resources currently constrain France's ability to undertake large-scale,
independent military missions. Budget strictures and defense cutbacks have been
influential in leading President Chirac onto a path on which France must rely more
heavily on NATO for lift and for intelligence resources.28 In concert with this
development, at NATO's Berlin Ministerial in June 1996, the European allies agreed
that the European security and defense identity should develop within NATO. This
process is beginning to take shape institutionally, but the tools and the political will
among the European allies to carry out military operations on the ground are largely
Many of the French policy élite believe that U.S. officials have sought to
establish a "competition" between NATO and the European Union. The French
(joined by officials from some other EU member states) have sharp criticism for U.S.
officials who denigrate EU efforts at resolving security problems on the continent or
"M. Jospin se place dans la perspective d'une cohabitation non-conflictuelle," LM, May
20, 1997, p. 5.
"M. Jospin critique la réintégration de la France dans l'OTAN," LM, Feb. 5, 1997, p. 5.
Jacques Chirac, "Pour un modèle européen," Libération. March 25, 1996. P. 1.
See Gallis, France: Current Foreign Policy Issues..., CRS Report 96-794. P. 7-9.
the EU's recent record of economic growth.29 They view such an attitude as an effort
to assure U.S. power and influence on the continent at the expense of the European
French concerns about NATO enlargement and the more general direction of
European security policy are also fuelled by the widely held view that one day U.S.
forces will leave Europe. In this view, Europeans will be left holding the reins of a
security apparatus that will not have been of their own design.
The French government's specific candidates for NATO membership have
emerged in the context of their thinking over the proper roles of NATO and the
European Union. France has endorsed EU enlargement, but wishes to proceed
slowly, after the year 2000. France believes that a NATO and an EU enlargement to
include Poland, the Czech Republic, and Hungary alone place too much weight in the
German economic and political sphere. This concern is somewhat attenuated as long
as Chancellor Kohl, a strong proponent of close French-German cooperation, remains
in power. In addition, these three states -- the Czech Republic in particular -- are
pursuing an economic model closer to that of the free-market approach of Britain
(and the United States) than the statist approach of France; an EU enlargement to
include these three countries alone would tilt away from France's desired course for
the EU's future social and economic policy. A NATO enlargement to include these
three states alone, which desire above all the U.S. security guarantee and closer
relations with the United States, could prove a double blow to France's long-term
interests. In contrast, France views Romania as a more "Latin" country, with a more
familiar culture and perspective. Strategically, France believes that Romania
provides a potentially stable security anchor in the Balkans and towards the east, the
areas from which Paris believes the greatest security threats to Europe may come.
France also supports Slovenia's entry, as noted earlier, but some officials express
reservations about Ljubljana's record in regional disarmament negotiations and its
potential strategic importance to the alliance.
France's ultimate stance on NATO enlargement remains unclear. The Founding
Act was proposed by France and signed in Paris; it would be an embarrassment to
France if the government slowed enlargement at Madrid. The Jospin government has
given every indication that it will concentrate on domestic issues, and may be willing
to allow President Chirac to take the lead on the portfolio for enlargement, at least
initially. Enlargement must be approved by a majority vote in the National
Assembly. Key elements of the coalition that oppose or wish to proceed slowly on
enlargement may be less likely to make alliance expansion a point of contention if
Prime Minister Jospin demonstrates successful leadership on domestic issues critical
Richard Holbrooke is a particular target of such criticism. Many European officials
expressed anger when, after the EU's inability to resolve a territorial dispute between Greece
and Turkey in early 1996, Holbrooke said: "...the Europeans were literally sleeping through
the night. You have to wonder why Europe does not seem capable of taking decisive action
in its own theater." Washington Post, Feb. 8, 1996. P. A17. In contrast, it has been the
official view of U.S. administrations for over four decades that greater European integration
through the European Community, and now the EU, brings stability to the continent and is
in the U.S. interest.
to their constituencies. Support for enlargement among the French people has fallen
in the last year from 56% to 39%, but public discussion has been minimal.30
Competing issues will likely affect France's ultimate position on sharing the
costs of enlargement. France's efforts to qualify, and remain in line with, EMU
criteria, and to deliver promised jobs are more likely to prevail as budgetary
priorities. In addition, the Juppé government began a major military restructuring
program (largely endorsed by Prime Minister Jospin) in keeping with NATO's
Strategic Concept, a policy that may allow Paris to contend that it has already borne
a significant burden in taking steps to fulfill its commitments to a NATO geared to
new missions. Some French officials believe that the Clinton Administration is
attempting to put an unfair proportion of the costs of enlargement on European
German Defense Minister Volker Rühe was an early advocate of NATO
enlargement in 1993. Chancellor Kohl's support has been more guarded, largely due
to the importance of maintaining Germany's good relations with Russia. Because
Russia has viewed enlargement as a threat, the German government has been
restrained in its public endorsements of NATO expansion. The signing of the
Founding Act has somewhat relaxed this constraint.
Germany advocates the entry of Poland, the Czech Republic, and Hungary. The
Federal Republic wishes to move the line of stability further east in Europe; NATO
enlargement, and eventually EU expansion, would serve this purpose. French
President Chirac has reportedly attempted to persuade Germany that Bonn should
also back Romania's and Slovenia's candidacies. In mid-June 1997, Chancellor Kohl
expressed his "sympathy" for Romania's desire to enter the alliance, but stopped short
of an endorsement. On June 17, 1997, Defense Minister Rühe stated explicitly that
Germany would support only three countries at Madrid, but that the door must
remain open in the future for Romania and Slovenia.31 In the past, he has also been
a strong advocate of the Baltic states' eventual entry.
A consensus in the Bundestag supports enlargement. The major parties back
enlargement, as do some members of the Green party. The issue has not yet been
widely debated in Germany. A spring 1997 poll indicated that by a margin of 38%
to 37%, the German people believe that enlargement will strengthen European
security, a decline in support from the previous year.32
"French Public less eager than in '96 to welcome new members to NATO," USIA Opinion
Analysis. Washington: USIA. April 1, 1997.
"Germany's Rühe says NATO Expansion to continue in future," FBIS-WEU-97-169, June
"German Public Endorsement of NATO Enlargement Declines Sharply," USIA Opinion
Analysis, April 9, 1997.
There is sharp opposition in the German political elite to sharing the costs of
enlargement. The German government has not done a study of the costs of
enlargement, and there does not appear to be a consensus over existing U.S.
estimates. Bonn believes that the German people have borne heavy burdens in
strengthening stability in Europe. Unification of Germany has been and continues
to be costly, and Bonn has provided substantial financial assistance to the developing
democracies in central Europe and to Russia. In addition, Bonn has shouldered
heavy costs, reaching over $3 billion in 1996, for caring for over 300,000 refugees
from the war in the former Yugoslavia living in Germany. Germany is working to
cut overall budgetary expenditures at considerable political cost to the Kohl coalition
in order to qualify for EMU, of which it is a key proponent. Taxation is very high in
Germany by U.S. and by most European standards. Juergen Koppelin, a Free
Democratic Party defense expert on the Bundestag's Budget Committee, has said that
there is no money in the budget for modernizing central European militaries.33
Instability in the Balkans has been a traditional concern of Greece. The conflict
in Bosnia and virtual anarchy in Albania feed this concern, and are important
components of the debate in Athens over European security. In keeping with the
views of some other allies, Athens believes that future threats will come more from
"the south" than the east. For Greece, "the south" means the Muslim world, the
Caucasus, and its own region, the Balkans. Greek officials express concern about
terrorism, the spread of Muslim fundamentalism, and immigration from unstable
areas and attendant social and economic dislocation. Athens has expressed concern
that NATO maintain a cooperative relationship with Russia, and views the Founding
Act as a step along this path.
While Athens supports the candidacies for NATO membership of Poland, the
Czech Republic, and Hungary, it also has pressed the case for Romania and Bulgaria.
Greece supports Slovenia's candidacy as well. Greek officials acknowledge that
Bulgaria will not enter NATO in a first round of enlargement, but they wish to keep
the door open for its later candidacy. Socialist Prime Minister Simitis has expressed
concern that both NATO and EU enlargement will not include the Balkans. The
Balkan countries, in his view, must be treated like central European countries,
"without differentiation and arrangements" that would exclude them from key
Iceland's government supports the inclusion of Poland, the Czech Republic, and
Hungary in NATO. Iceland also supports the future inclusion of the Baltic states in
the alliance. Iceland remains concerned that Russia could one day again become a
"FDP fears NATO expansion too expensive for FRG," FBIS-WEU-97-125. May 5, 1997.
"Improved cooperation noted in Prime Minister Simitis' visit to Romania." Press release
from the Embassy of Greece, Washington. March 22, 1997; and "Athens reiterates support
for Bulgaria's NATO accession," Athens News. April 15, 1997.
threat. For this reason, it emphasizes the preservation of NATO's core mission of
collective defense, but also endorses such "new missions" as peacekeeping. Foreign
Minister Haldór Ásgrímsson has said that Iceland does not wish to see enlargement
dilute the political solidarity and military effectiveness of the alliance; therefore, only
countries that have resolved disputes with their neighbors should be eligible for
membership. At the same time, "free independent countries have the right to choose
their own security arrangements," and NATO must therefore be open to future
candidates, including the Baltic states.35
Italy is confronting a full agenda of controversial domestic and foreign policy
issues. In the early 1990s, corruption scandals destroyed the political edifice
composed of traditional parties that had governed the country since the end of the
Second World War. Since 1993, a series of elections and referenda have put Italy on
a fitful course towards reform. Today, the center-left government of Prime Minister
Prodi has developed policies to confront directly such difficult issues as
constitutional reform, budget reduction, pension reform, and privatization of a large
state sector of industries to restructure the economy and meet EMU convergence
criteria.36 Simultaneously, Italy is leading the Multinational Protection Forces (MPF)
in neighboring Albania. Prime Minister Prodi is grappling with these issues while
performing a political balancing act to preserve the support of Communist
Refoundation (RC), a far-left party not in the government but whose votes are key
to the government's initiatives.
Italy's long-term objective in European security has been preservation of a U.S.
presence on the continent, seen as a key in the past to establishment of not only
NATO but institutions such as the Organization for Security and Cooperation in
Europe (OSCE) and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development
(OECD), all of which have enhanced stability.37 Washington's design, therefore, of
a NATO with new missions and expanded membership has been supported by Rome,
but many Italian political figures have privately sought a slower, more evolutionary
course to these objectives, especially given Italy's competing domestic problems.
Italy is at odds with the Clinton Administration over the candidacies of Slovenia
and Romania. While the Prodi government supports the admission of Poland, the
Czech Republic, and Hungary, it has joined with several other allies in emphasizing
Speech by Foreign Minister Ásgrímsson at the North Atlantic Assembly, Reykjavik, May
See Library of Congress. CRS. Italy: Uncertain Transition for a U.S. Ally, by Paul E.
Gallis. CRS Report 93-746. Aug. 18, 1993; Mario Caciagli and David I. Kertzer, eds., Italian
Politics: the Stalled Transition, Boulder, Colo.: 1996, and review of the same by Gallis, in
Mediterranean Quarterly, vol. 8, no. 1, Winter 1997, p. 148-151.
Foreign Minister Lamberto Dini, "America and Europe, A Time for Unity, A Time for
Vision," speech at CSIS in Washington. Feb. 21, 1997.
the importance of a NATO that looks as much south as east.38 Surges of refugees
from the unstable Balkans, the fragility of the Middle East peace process, and
disorder in North Africa and the Horn of Africa -- areas of traditional Italian interest
-- have led Rome to make the case for a "larger rather than smaller" enlargement.
Italy believes that an enlarged NATO without Slovenia and Romania would neglect
strategic concerns in southeastern Europe, where the principal threats to stability now
arise, as demonstrated by political conditions in Bosnia and Albania. Should NATO
not invite Slovenia and Romania to join the alliance at Madrid, then Rome will seek
a clear commitment at the summit to a subsequent, early invitation to those two
Prime Minister Prodi's efforts to consolidate his electoral base and his coalition's
support within parliament are important ingredients in judging Rome's ultimate
stance on enlargement. Municipal elections in May 1997 somewhat enhanced the
standing of his coalition parties, but they also strengthened the hand of Communist
Refoundation.39 RC's support on several central elements of the government's
economic policies remains uncertain but important to the government's survival, and
the party is strongly opposed to enlargement. In the parliamentary vote to send
Italian forces to Albania, RC withheld its support of the government, necessitating
a successful appeal by the coalition for the opposition center-right's support. Italian
officials believe that a similar hurdle and solution may be necessary on enlargement;
opposition parties support enlargement. Failure to win a vote on such a critical issue
would bring down the government. For these reasons, Prime Minister Prodi may
await a vote in the U.S. Senate on enlargement before submitting the issue to the
Italian parliament; hesitation by the U.S. Senate would lead to a delay in the Italian
parliament addressing the issue.
The government of Luxembourg supports the candidacies of Poland, the Czech
Republic, Hungary, Slovenia, and Romania. Government officials believe that
enlargement will pass through parliament without difficulty.
There is a division on the issue of enlargement in the Netherlands' coalition
government of Labor Prime Minister Wim Kok. The Labor Party supports
enlargement. Its coalition partners are a centrist party and the conservative VVD, or
Liberal Party. In February 1997, the VVD leader, Frits Bolkestein, proposed in the
Binnenhof (the lower, or second, chamber of parliament) a resolution stating that
enlargement, by antagonizing Russia, would hinder stability in Europe and divide the
continent. The resolution failed.
See James Kitfield, "Danger Zone," National Journal, May 10, 1997. P. 923-925; "Italy
urges balanced expansion," Reuters. Feb. 26, 1997.
Mino Fuccillo, "Per Prodi un sospiro di sollievo," La Repubblica, May 12, 1997.
The debate over enlargement will occur in a politicized atmosphere because
elections will be held in spring 1998. Prime Minister Kok, who has engineered a
successful economic program, is a popular figure, but Bolkestein is also highly
popular. Bolkestein's VVD, even if it were to become the party with the most seats
after the election, would likely need coalition partners to govern. One or two other
party combinations are also possible for building a coalition. Most observers believe
that the Netherlands will ultimately support enlargement because all major parties
except the VVD support it. The Netherlands' extensive review process for approving
a treaty, however, could mean that an extended period of time will elapse before final
ratification. [See Appendix.]
Dutch government supporters of enlargement desire an expansion of the alliance
that does not weaken collective defense. New NATO members must be able to
contribute meaningfully to their own defense, and firmly on the path to democracy,
in the Dutch view. By June 1997, The Hague had reportedly decided to support
Poland, the Czech Republic, Hungary, Romania, and Slovenia. The Dutch believe
that Romania has settled important territorial and minority issues with Hungary. In
The Hague's view, to admit Hungary alone would be a setback for those in Romania
who have worked to resolve controversial bilateral issues with Hungary. At the same
time, some Dutch officials acknowledge that Romania has not yet established
effective civilian control of the military. The Baltic states, in the Dutch view, cannot
be readily defended; an enhanced PfP regime is thus appropriate for the Baltics, and
there can be no firm timetable for their entry into NATO until the alliance's relations
with Russia improve significantly.
As in many allied governments, officials of the Netherlands are divided over the
issue of enlargement costs. Many officials emphasize the importance of NATO
being able to act under Article V; for them, costs will be a key factor in the
enlargement debate because they desire adequate funding for collective defense.
Other officials believe that, due to the current absence of a threat, enlargement costs
should be modest. The Netherlands' constitutional process is expected to produce an
evaluation of the costs of enlargement. The Netherlands is also one of the alliance's
strongest supporters of a greater political role for NATO in such matters as
encouraging democracy and protecting human rights. In the Dutch view,
enlargement should go forward, but with a constant eye on its effects on the alliance's
strategic and political functions.
After initial hesitation in supporting enlargement, the Norwegian government
now supports an expansion to include Poland, the Czech Republic, and Hungary.
Above all, Norway seeks to ensure preservation of the alliance's "core functions" -meaning that there must be no dilution of NATO's ability to carry out responsibilities
under Article V. Norway's geographic remoteness, small population, and modest
defense forces, along with its position outside the EU, may enhance its sense of
isolation. Under such circumstances, the Norwegians are acutely sensitive to any
changes in defense posture that might adversely affect their heavy reliance on NATO
for security. The Norwegian government believes that neither Romania nor Slovenia
can yet make a meaningful contribution to collective defense. Defense Minister
Jørgen Kosmo has said that candidate states "must have established democratic
political control over their military resources, and Romania has not done this.... The
Baltic republics...are not able to take part in the core functions of the alliance."40
Support for enlargement in the Norwegian parliament is strong.
Portugal does not have strong, direct interests in central Europe, but is
supportive of the alliance consensus to expand. It is in the group of southern NATO
countries (France, Spain, Italy, and Greece) that seeks an enlargement with the
potential to strengthen the alliance's ability to address problems emanating from "the
south." For this reason, Portugal supports the entry of Romania and Slovenia as well
as Poland, the Czech Republic, and Hungary.
The degree to which Portugal is expected to share the costs of expansion will
be an issue in Lisbon. The minority Socialist government of Prime Minister António
Guterres has persuaded unions, part of his natural constituency, to restrain wage
demands, in keeping with government efforts to contain inflation and encourage
growth. Prime Minister Guterres has made qualification for EMU a central part of
his government's program. Accepting costs, such as NATO expansion, that affect
this goal may prove difficult, given the importance of the domestic social and
The minority center-right Popular Party government of José María Aznar
supports an enlargement that would include Romania and Slovenia, as well as
Poland, the Czech Republic, and Hungary. In discussing enlargement, Spanish
officials often cite their own country's positive experience in joining NATO and the
EU: entry into the key European institutions encouraged Spain on its path to strong
democracy. These officials do not wish to deny such an opportunity to qualified
candidate states. Spain is concerned about nuclear proliferation and terrorism, as
well as instability in "the south" that could cause a flow of immigrants or refugees.
Spain, like its neighbors, therefore wishes to see the alliance put greater emphasis on
The Spanish government is attempting to qualify for EMU. Its economy has
grown slowly over the past several years, and unemployment is high. The
government is in the midst of restructuring the economy. In such circumstances, a
debate over sharing the costs of enlargement could be a difficult one for Prime
Some observers believe that it is possible that Turkey could ultimately block
NATO enlargement as a means to force the EU to open its door to Ankara. Others,
however, believe that Ankara is unlikely to block a policy goal of the United States,
"Minister Kosmo: Romania, Baltic states not ready for NATO entry," FBIS-WEU-97-026.
Feb. 6, 1997.
its most important ally. Turkey is in the midst of political turmoil that may endure
over the next year. Turkish military leaders strongly favor the continuation of a
secular state and drawing closer to the European Union. They pressured Islamist
Prime Minister Necmettin Erbakan of the Welfare Party to resign on June 18, 1997,
because he had taken steps to steer Turkey away from secularism. Erbakan was
ruling in a coalition government with Tansu Çiller, leader of the secular True Path
Party, who was expected to succeed him. The Turkish President, with constitutional
authority to name a successor, instead chose Mesut Yilmaz, leader of a secular party,
to form a coalition due to scandals that dog Çiller. In this unsettled atmosphere, the
debate over enlargement could prove to be a difficult one.
The Turkish military is highly conservative, and supports NATO enlargement
in part to strengthen western security against the possible revival of an aggressive
Russia. The military has expressed chagrin that Turkey is being called upon to admit
former Warsaw Pact states to NATO when it seems likely that such states may join
the EU before Turkey. Should these states then be involved in an Article V crisis,
Turkey would be called upon to defend countries viewed as its equal in security
matters, but with which Turkey would not enjoy equal status as a trading and political
partner due to Ankara's exclusion from the European Union. Former Defense
Minister Tayan has said that EU and NATO expansion should not be considered
separately, a theme voiced officially by many EU governments, but with Turkey
quietly excluded from the equation. In Tayan's view, "in the aftermath of the Cold
War,... it is only natural that the political, military, and economic restructuring of the
EU and NATO should be conducted in parallel and in harmony with each other."41
Some Turkish officials have threatened to block NATO enlargement unless the EU
promises to consider Turkish membership seriously. This sentiment reportedly has
a measure of support in all of the parties in parliament.
Turkish political leaders support enlargement in principle. Ministers in the
Erbakan government publicly endorsed Romania, Slovenia, and Bulgaria, and
indicated that Turkey would not impede efforts to name candidate states at the
Madrid summit. Turkey believes that the conflict in the former Yugoslavia is strong
evidence that, if stability is an objective, then enlargement must not exclude Balkan
states from the alliance.42 However, some observers believe that the debate on
enlargement in the parliament in 1998 could become enmeshed in the effort by
Turkey to gain entry into the European Union.
There is considerable public and governmental opposition in Europe to Turkey's
possible candidacy for the European Union. Such opposition is a sensitive subject
in Turkey because it is viewed as a critique of Turkish culture, which Turks believe
Europeans find wanting. Most EU publics and governments perceive sharp cultural
differences with Turkey, which is Muslim, poor, and, in Europe's view, facing the
Middle East more than Europe. Germany, supported by several other governments,
believes that Turkey does not qualify for EU membership due to the strong hand of
its military in political affairs and to human rights violations, particularly against the
"Turkish Defense Minister Comments on NATO Expansion," FBIS-WEU-97-117. June
Kurdish population. For their part, Turkish leaders have worked to build a secular
state that has a strong European component, while not denying cultural, political, and
economic ties to the east and south. The Clinton Administration supports Turkey's
effort to become a candidate for EU membership. The Clinton Administration
believes that European security can be enhanced by a strengthened and broadened
European Union that encourages democracy and human rights, and that continental
stability will be enhanced if Turkey is admitted.
Appendix: Treaty Approval
In 1949, countries seeking to join NATO followed their respective constitutional
provisions for ratifying a treaty in order to join the alliance. Some states do not
follow the same provisions for revision of a treaty. For the most part, however, the
practice is similar to that of the United States: when a new member is to be admitted,
the treaty is viewed as a "new" instrument because the addition of a state not only
reconfigures NATO's geography, but its political and strategic make-up, requiring
new obligations. In the United States, a two-thirds vote of those present in the Senate
chamber is required to consent to ratification and admit a new member, and most
other allied states require some form of legislative approval, with the notable
exceptions of Britain and Canada. Some NATO members, however, have not yet
decided upon the procedures to be followed.43 In the past expansions of the alliance,
the protocols have specified that all current member states must approve candidate
states before they may join the alliance.
Belgium has a bicameral legislature. Usually, a simple majority in both the
Chamber of Representatives and in the Senate is necessary to revise a treaty. The
Belgian government has devolved considerable power to the country's regions over
the past decade, and some observers contend that regional assemblies must also
approve treaty revisions. Officials of the Dehaene government, however, believe that
because the North Atlantic Treaty addresses primarily matters of defense, only the
parliament in Brussels need express approval.
The executive in the form of the cabinet ratifies the revision of treaties in the
United Kingdom. Only EU treaties must be laid before parliament. However, a
government normally ensures that parliament debates important foreign policy issues
raised by a treaty. Due to the significance of NATO enlargement, British officials
believe that the government will seek such a debate. The parliamentary debate will
have no procedural effect upon ratification.44
Ackerman, op. Cit.; and Kay and Binnendijk, op. Cit.
See "NATO Enlargement," Research Paper 97/51, by Tom Dodd. House of Commons
Library. May 8, 1997.
As in Britain, the cabinet alone has the authority to ratify a treaty. Parliament
may wish to debate the issue, and is reportedly likely to address the costs of
enlargement above all.
Denmark has a unicameral parliament, the Folketing. The cabinet prepares a
bill to approve a treaty or a treaty revision and sends it to the Folketing, where it is
read once and referred to the appropriate committee, which then issues a report. The
instrument is then sent again to the floor, where a majority vote is necessary for
The government prepares a report on the treaty revision for the Council of State,
which provides advice on legislation. The cabinet then prepares a draft law for
approval for the National Assembly. The relevant committees study the draft law,
and may issue reports. There must be a simple majority in the Assembly to pass the
law, followed by a simple majority in the Senate as well.
The Ministry of Foreign affairs prepares a bill to approve revision of the Treaty.
The government must then approve the bill, and submit it to parliament. Germany
has a bicameral legislature, and views currently differ over the procedures to be
followed to ratify the amended the treaty. Some observers believe that only a simple
majority in the lower house, the Bundestag, is necessary. Others believe that it must
then be sent to the upper house, the Bundesrat, where a simple majority would also
be needed for ratification.
The government prepares draft legislation to amend the Treaty, and sends it to
the unicameral parliament. An absolute majority is necessary for ratification.
The cabinet prepares draft legislation to amend the Treaty, and submits it to the
President, who must approve it. The legislation is then sent to the unicameral
legislature, the Althing, where a majority vote is necessary for ratification.
The cabinet prepares draft legislation, and submits it to the bicameral
legislature, where each house has equal authority in approving a treaty or revision of
a treaty. Each house may send the legislation to a committee, which would then issue
reports. After the reports are studied, a simple majority of those present in the
chamber in both the Chamber of Deputies and the Senate is necessary for ratification.
The cabinet prepares draft legislation, and submits it to both the Council of
State, which examines the constitutionality of legal instruments, and the Chamber of
Deputies. A two-thirds vote of approval in both the Council of State and the
Chamber of Deputies is then necessary.
The Netherlands has an extensive process for ratification of treaties and
revisions of treaties that may require one year or more. The Dutch cabinet, upon
receiving the Protocol from NATO for revising the Treaty to admit new members,
prepares a document of explanation. This document provides a general analysis of
why the Protocol, in the government's view, should be ratified. A more concrete
section of this document examines closely the strategic and financial implications of
enlargement for the Netherlands and for NATO. Both this document and the
Protocol will then be submitted to the Council of State, a government organ that
reviews instruments for their constitutionality.
The Council of State provides advice to the cabinet on the document and on the
Protocol. This procedure is not pro forma; for example, the Council of State
provided a sharply critical commentary on the Maastricht Treaty of 1991, which the
Council viewed as too vague on important points. After several months of study, the
Council of State will give its opinion on the constitutionality of the Protocol on
NATO enlargement to the cabinet, which, where appropriate, will act to revise the
document assessing the policy implications of alliance expansion. That revised
document is then sent for study and debate to the Binnenhof (second chamber, or
The Binnenhof's foreign affairs and perhaps finance committees reviews the
cabinet's document that assesses the Protocol, and sends reports on the document to
the plenary for debate in the chamber. A majority of those present in the second
chamber must vote in favor of the Protocol in order to move to the next step in the
process, which is review by the first chamber, or upper house. The first chamber
follows the same process as the second chamber. If a majority of those present in the
first chamber vote in favor of the Protocol, it is then sent to the Queen for her
signature. The Queen then returns the signed Protocol to the cabinet for
Norway has a unicameral legislature, the Storting. A majority of those present
in the chamber must vote in favor of the Protocol in order to amend the Treaty.
The cabinet examines the Protocol and prepares a draft resolution of approval
of the Protocol. The cabinet then sends the resolution to the unicameral legislature.
The legislature refers the resolution to the appropriate committees, which make a
recommendation to the plenary. A simple majority vote is necessary to approve the
resolution. The legislature sends the approved resolution to the President of the
republic. His signature is necessary to ratify the amended Treaty.
The government prepares a draft resolution on the Protocol, which it sends to
the Council of State, an organ that reviews the constitutionality of laws and treaties.
After review, the Council of State sends the resolution to the two houses of the
legislature, the Cortes Generales. The two houses, the Chamber of Deputies and the
Senate, must pass by simple majority the resolution on the Protocol. The two houses
then send the resolution to the king. His signature ratifies the amended Treaty.
The cabinet prepares a draft law on the Protocol, and sends it to the National
Assembly. The appropriate committees review the draft law, and issue reports that
evaluate it. A simply majority in the Assembly will ratify the amended Treaty.
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