NATO is facing an increasingly diverse, unpredictable and demanding security environment, ‘an arc of insecurity and instability along NATO’s periphery and beyond’. In recent times this has led to a range of steps by NATO to reinforce its collective defence, enhance its capabilities, and strengthen its resilience. NATO has committed itself to provide its armed forces with sufficient and sustained resources, thereby underlining its stated strategic intent that ‘NATO’s essential mission is unchanged and that NATO will ensure that it has the full range of capabilities necessary to fulfil the whole range of Alliance missions, including to deter and defend against potential adversaries, and the full spectrum of threats that could confront the Alliance from any direction’.
The precise application of combat power from the air has been of strategic importance to the Alliance since NATO’s inception. Time and again, NATO and its Member Nations have turned to Joint Air Power as the first, and in some cases only, military response option.
For more than fifteen years now, NATO has been actively pursuing efforts to improve the operational capabilities and competencies of the Alliance. Today, essential shortfalls still exist and the transatlantic capability gap has become even greater. Although this capability and competency gap in NATO is not new, it has become more apparent with the recent developments in the Ukraine and the changes in the relationship between Russia and NATO.
JAPCC initiated a comprehensive project ‘Air and Space Power in NATO – Future Vector’. This project intends to chart a future path with viable options and solutions to guarantee that Joint Air and Space Power continues to contribute to the security and success of NATO and its nations.