Post-Cold War NATO Force Structure Planning and the Vexatious Issue of Multinational Land Forces

  • Thomas-Durell Young


The NATO Alliance has a long and varied history as regards multinational land formations. From the failed effort to create a European Army during the early 1950s, to the creation of the Allied Command Europe (ACE) Mobile Force-Land in 1960, to the formation of the plethora of multinational corps following the end of the Cold War, two generations of NATO officials have had to confront the nettlesome difficulties of operating these formations. And, indeed, nettlesome their attending problems are. These problems range from balancing the command authority requirements of a multinational force commander and the reticence by nations to relinquish sovereign control of forces to a foreign commander, to effecting multinational logistics, where national laws and financial regulations have traditionally outweighed a foreign commander’s requirements. In consequence, in NATO’s multinational land formations today, to cite one of the best contemporary studies on the subject, “… a gap exists between planning, perceptions and reality.”3


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© Palgrave Macmillan, a division of Macmillan Publishers Limited 2001

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  • Thomas-Durell Young

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