Silhouette of a military fighter sun lights blue sky

Up In the Air: Does NATO’s Air Defense Deficit Endanger Baltic Security?

The McCain Institute for International Leadership

ASU Barrett & O'Connor Center
18th & I Street NW

8th Floor Event Pavilion

Washington, D.C

June 20, 2018

4:00 P.M. ET

There is a critical gap in military capabilities and contingency cooperation in the Baltic region. Without adequate air defense, the Baltic states remain vulnerable to Russian aggression and other looming threats. What can be done to secure the sovereignty of the Baltic states for generations to come?

Join the McCain Institute for a conversation with Sven Sakkov, the Director of Estonia’s International Centre for Defence and Security, and Air Marshall Sir Christopher Harper, former Director-General of NATO’s International Military Staff.  With opening remarks by McCain Institute Executive Director Ambassador Kurt Volker, and Estonian parliament’s Chairman of Foreign Affairs, Marko Mihkelson, the discussion will be moderated by Senior Director of the McCain Institute, Ambassador Michael Polt.  The event will be followed by a rooftop reception.

Prior to his current post, Sakkov directed NATO’s Cyber Center of Excellence. He has served as the Deputy Undersecretary for Defence Policy and the Director of the Policy Planning Department at the Ministry of Defence, Defence Counsellor at the Estonian Embassy in Washington, D.C., Estonia’s permanent representative to NATO, and the Office of the President of the Republic.

Air Marshal Harper is a recently retired  Senior Royal Air Force officer who has also served as the UK Military Representative to NATO and the European Union, as well as Deputy Commander of Allied Forces from 2011 to 2013.

Before joining the McCain Institute, Ambassador Polt spent 35 years as a career diplomat, serving as ambassador to Estonia, Serbia and Montenegro. Throughout his career, he also held diplomatic positions in Berlin, Bern, Panama City, Bonn, Bremen, Mexico City, Copenhagen and several other posts around the world.