Political Economy


How a leader of a small Scandinavian country came to head NATO? Did Fogh seek the help of Bush to land the NATO job?

Wednesday, 31 July 2013
Former USA president George W. Bush is reported to have pressurised his successor to appoint the Danish current head of the military organisation, Anders Fogh to the position, something that had not been thought.
When in 2009 Anders Fogh Rasmussen became Secretary General of NATO, it is said that it was thanks to high power and successful lobby pressure from outgoing US President, George W. Bush, that made him to land the job as NATO secretary general.

Bush was no longer president when the appointment was done, but quite unusual, he chose to interfere in the appointment and put pressure on his successor, Barack Obama to appoint him, reports Danish Daily, Politiken referring to an American diplomat who was closest to the process as the source of the knowledge.
"During the transfer to Obama's new team, we placed the appointment high on the list, and we carefully explained why we thought Fogh would be a great candidate for the U.S.," says Damon Wilson, who was a key adviser in the White House under George W. Bush. Damon Wilson today is deputy director of the think tank Atlantic Council based in Washington.nato-head

NATO Secrtatry General, Anders Fogh Rasmussen (Image Garnscole)
"When you consider how extensive such a transfer is, it is not unexpected that such a decision is going to be on the list of important matters," says Damon Wilson to Politiken.
A helping hand from George W. Bush was largely thanks to Denmark's loyal participation in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan, according to the U.S. diplomat.

But it was also because Anders Fogh Rasmussen specifically asked about the position and sought the help of George W. Bush during a meeting at the president's ranch in Texas in March 2008 - just three and a half months after the election, which had secured Fogh Rasmussen re-election for a second time. At the time, the prime minister outwardly claimed that he was not on job hunting, writes Politicken.
According to Damon Wilson,  Fogh Rasmussen had shown increased interest in the position and during a meeting he had openly shown that he wanted to be a Secretary General.

"The president made it clear that he could not promise anything because the new president would take the decision" said Damon Wilson, according to Politiken.

Politiken claimed to have attempted to seek to hear from Anders Fogh Rasmussen on his own take on the matter, but he did not want to be interviews.
A Danish expert who has studied the process, believes that Denmark's participation in the controversial war in Iraq directly contributed to Anders Fogh Rasmussen appointment to the post of Secretary General.
"I find it hard to imagine that Denmark had the record, if we had done as Germany and kept us out of Iraq he would have not had the post," says Associate Professor Jens Ringsmose from the Centre for War Studies at University of Southern Denmark to Politiken.
by Scancomark.com Team

What do you think about this article? Suggest correction or join our network!

Print Friendly and PDF