Jens Stoltenberg to lead NATO

at a critical time.

We Norwegians know this guy as our former prime minister, and an “OK guy” whether we have voted for him or not. As of March 28 he is appointed to take over as NATO's Secretary General come October, and we can't see anything wrong in that.

Jens Stoltenberg is definitely the diplomatic type, which in today's world is an advantage. That he has been top leader of a strategically placed country that has achieved much in all map-directions through diplomatic channels over the years, does at least on paper make him a natural and good choice as leader in an organization like NATO.

good support

From the information I have gathered lately, the support for Stoltenberg's candidacy is pretty good among member states. His reputation internationally for having firm positions on important issues, has grown in later years. This certainly hasn't hurt his candidacy.

That he in earlier years often fronted quite different views and opinions on relevant national and international issues – even being against NATO membership at some point, does not seem to have hurt him as much as one might expect. Guess "sins" in ones past can be forgiven…

Not all that many weeks ago that few, if anyone here in Norway thought of Stoltenberg as future leader in NATO. To us it was most likely that he would enter a leading or important position in some other international organization, maybe related to climate issues, nature preservation, or alike.

When the news arrived that Jens was suggested as NATO's civilian leader, few of us actually thought that he, as another Scandinavian, could take over after the present leader– Anders Fogh Rasmussen from Denmark, as the civilian leadership in NATO has traditionally been geographically circulated a bit wider between member states.

Russia's take-over of the Krim peninsula, and present situation in and around Ukraine, probably made having the right person as NATO leader, more important than traditions, in the organization. This favored Jens Stoltenberg in the position now and in the coming years.

Be all that as it may, Jens is well qualified for the job. So, whatever the reasons leaders in various member states had for choosing him and/or support his candidacy, he is most likely the right choice at this time.

leaving Norwegian politics…

Apart from seeing a new face as leader of the Norwegian Labor Party soon, we won't notice much when Jens leaves national politics. We have, and have had, many Norwegians in leading positions internationally, and now Jens will become another one.

Maybe Jens will make enough of a mark in history to be noticed and remembered, and maybe not. As long as he does a decent job in the coming years, it is all fine with us Norwegians.

(23.apr.2015) So far I am not at all impressed by what Nato does anywhere. Guess the only good thing about having Jens Stoltenberg in Nato, is that we don't have to see much of him here in Norway for a while. And, if we're really lucky, he may be gone for ever…

sincerely  georg; sign

Hageland 31.mar.2014
last rev: 23.apr.2015

side notes.


The North Atlantic Treaty Organization is “our” organi­sation, forming a military and diplomatic shield for member states. NATO has served us reasonably well since 1949, and has strong enough backing to make it a force to be reckoned with well into the next decades.

growing organization

New member states have entered NATO at various times since the beginning. Mainly from the east in later years, as former East-Block states have wanted to form new alliances westwards after the fall of the USSR.

NATO's growth will probably be minimal in the future, as there aren't that many relevant non-member states left in the region. Various forms for partnership across the globe is quite substan­tial and growing though.

external resources

28 Mar. 2014
Appointment of Secretary General designate

This afternoon, the North Atlantic Council decided to appoint Mr. Jens Stoltenberg as Secretary General of NATO and Chairman of the North Atlantic Council, in succession to Anders Fogh Rasmussen.
from NATO's homepage Read all.

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