NATO celebrated its 60th anniversary during its April 3-4 summit in Strasbourg/Kehl, and President Barack Obama was one of the celebrants. Speaking in Strasbourg, France, on April 3, the new president affirmed U.S. support for the military alliance and for the concept of collective security that undergirds it and ties the fate of our own nation to that of all other NATO members.
President Barack Obama called for a "world without nuclear weapons" when he spoke in Prague on April 5. But nations obviously will not disarm in a vacuum. And so he also called for a “stronger, global regime” that would fill the vacuum and ensure that all nations follow the rules.
During last year's presidential campaign, Republican candidate John McCain turned heads when he stated: "We have to strengthen our global alliances as the core of a new global compact — a League of Democracies — that can harness the vast influence of the more than one hundred democratic nations around the world to advance our values and defend our shared interests."
Todd Stern, the Obama administration's special envoy for climate change, told representatives of 175 nations in Bonn, Germany, on March 29, that global warming "requires a global response" and that rapidly developing economies like China "must join together" with industrialized nations to solve the problem.
Following a series of informal discussions held in Brussels over the preceding weekend, U.S. Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan Richard Holbrooke met with NATO Secretary-General Jaap de Hoop Scheffer and the 26 NATO ambassadors at the Brussels Forum on March 23. The prime focus of the talks was NATO's strategy for Afghanistan. Holbrooke gave participants a preview of U.S. plans for continuing the ongoing military operation there.