Ulla Schmidt (Germany)

12 October 2019

This CDS general report was adopted on Saturday 12 October 2019 by the Committee on the Civil Dimension of Security at the 65th Annual Session of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly in London, United Kingdom.


The North Atlantic Treaty’s emphasis on the principles of democracy, individual liberty and the rule of law makes NATO a unique Alliance – one that is based not only on shared interests but also on shared values. This general report provides an overview of how the balance between realist and idealist considerations has evolved throughout the Alliance’s history. The author warns that, in the last decade, significant technological, economic, and demographic developments have challenged the moral supremacy of the liberal democratic order. Democracy and personal liberties are retreating in parts of the world. In combination with phenomena such as fake news and social media bubbles, these developments could weaken the unity of our Alliance and jeopardise our collective security. 

The General Rapporteur urges Allied leaders and institutions to take a more proactive approach in promoting democratic values within the Euro-Atlantic community and beyond in order to strengthen the cohesion of the Alliance. She offers a series of measures in this regard, including the role of the NATO Parliamentary Assembly as an appropriate venue for Allies to exchange their views on how to defend NATO’s core principles.

Read also