Shapiro Speaks on State-Defense Cooperation

Monday, August 13, 2012

Assistant Secretary of State for Political-Military Affairs Andrew J. Shapiro recently spoke at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) about the new era in State-Defense cooperation. Shapiro spoke on State’s efforts to improve interagency cooperation, especially cooperation between State and DoD, saying that the Bureau of Political-Military Affairs is institutionalizing cooperation to ensure that State-Defense collaboration will endure.

In his opening remarks, CSIS President and CEO John Hamre described the State-Defense relationship as a “fragile little flower that is growing in a hostile landscape” that will “require support and nourishing from all of us.” Shapiro continues on this idea, saying that “improving [interagency] relations starts at the top.” If the heads of State and Defense are constantly involved in bureaucratic fighting and turf wars, their animosity “can filter down the bureaucratic chain, choking off cooperation.” Instead of spending valuable time and energy in bureaucratic backbiting, cooperating agencies can put their efforts toward getting things done.

Sharpiro went on to describe steps the Departments of State and Defense are taking to improve interagency cooperation.  These efforts include personnel exchanges, increased cooperation in planning, and capacity building in partner nations. Shapiro also discussed State-DoD initiatives to improve coordination of transnational global security.

For more information about Shapiro’s remarks, please follow the links below.
Ushering in A New Era in State-Defense Cooperation: A discussion with A/S State Sapiro, CSIS
A New Era In State-Defense Cooperation, U.S. Department of State

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