WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), a member of the U.S. Senate Foreign Relations Committee, joined U.S. Senators Jim Risch (R-Idaho) and Bob Menendez (D-N.J.), chairman and ranking member of the Committee, along with U.S. Senators Thom Tillis (R-N.C.), Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.), and Ron Johnson (R-Wis.) in introducing bipartisan legislation in support of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) and in recognition of the great accomplishments the organization has made over the past 70 years.
“When the United States called on our NATO partners to defend us after we were attacked, they answered. That’s an unbreakable bond,” said Murphy. “At a time when foreign powers all around the world are increasingly trying to weaken Western governments, NATO is as critical today to our national defense and stability as it was 70 years ago. And it’s only growing. Today, we celebrate NATO and recommit to the alliance.”
“NATO is the greatest political-military alliance in history, and the world is undoubtedly a better, safer place because of it,” said Risch. “The peace and prosperity that this alliance helped create is truly remarkable. It is fitting that we stand together with our allies in recognition of the accomplishments made over the past 70 years, and discuss how to bolster NATO so that it endures for years to come.”
“NATO is the strongest military alliance in the history of the world and we must consistently act to protect it,” said Menendez. “That means that all political leaders in the United States should never waver from a robust and rock solid commitment to the Alliance. I am proud to join this resolution in recognition of NATO’s 70 years of success, and hope that this will serve as the basis for renewed commitment to NATO in responding to Kremlin aggression and emerging threats around the world.”
The resolution establishes that the Senate:
- lauds NATO for its 70-year maintenance of the alliance and recognizes its singular contributions to maintaining the safety, security, and democratic systems of its members;
- calls on NATO member states to continue to fully meet their Wales pledges, more fully share the security burden by increasing their defense spending with a focus on meeting capabilities targets, enhancing interoperability, improving readiness, and modernization to respond to the threats that face the alliance on each of its flanks;
- stands in robust support of those NATO members who spend two percent or more of their GDPs on defense, acknowledges the four countries that have met that goal since 2014, and strongly encourages the remainder to strive to quickly reach that goal;
- affirms that the Senate stands ready to consider, if all applicable criteria are satisfied, the Republic of North Macedonia’s application to join NATO;
- backs the White House’s 2017 affirmation that the United States ‘‘stand[s] firmly behind Article 5’’ of the NATO Treaty;
- welcomes former Secretary of Defense James Mattis’ efforts to encourage significant NATO reforms, especially regarding modernization, readiness, command structure adaptation, military mobility, and improving NATO’s speed of decision- making to ensure the alliance remains fit for purpose; and
- reaffirms the commitment of the United States to NATO’s mission, and its belief that NATO is the most successful security alliance in our Nation’s history and one that will continue to be a cornerstone of United States security.
Full text of the resolution can be found here.