On Thursday 19 August 2021, the NATO Military Committee convened a special meeting with its Resolute Support Mission Partners to discuss the ongoing situation in Afghanistan and the continued coordination of their common approach.
In this extraordinary meeting, the NATO Military representatives met with their counterparts representing Resolute Support’s Operational Partners* to discuss the ongoing situation in Afghanistan, their common approach and the continued evacuation of NATO-affiliated staff.
Since the country’s collapse, NATO and Allies have been working round the clock to maintain operations at Kabul international airport and enable NATO, Allied, Partner and affiliated staff to be safely evacuated. NATO and Nations are now working on coordinating their common approach in response to these recent events. An extraordinary Foreign Ministerial meeting has been convened for Friday 20 August 2021.
After the meeting, Admiral Bauer posted a video on social media in which he addresses – on behalf of the Military Committee – all Allied and partner troops who have served the NATO missions in Afghanistan.
* The RSM Partners are: Armenia, Australia, Austria, Azerbaijan, Bosnia-Herzegovina, Finland, Georgia, Mongolia, New Zealand, Sweden and Ukraine
Full text of Admiral Bauer’s video message on the mission in Afghanistan – 19 AUG 2021
Dear troops from Allied and partner countries who have served the NATO missions in Afghanistan,
This morning, the NATO Military Committee convened to discuss the current situation in Afghanistan.
The speed of the collapse of the Afghan security forces and government has created a heated debate in our Armed Forces and our societies.
Your sacrifices there make this a matter very close to our hearts.
Many are asking: was it worth it? Were our efforts in vain?
The answers to these questions are deeply personal.
But, on behalf of the Military Committee, I would to like to say to you all: that fighting for what you believe in… is never in vain.
Doing what your democratic governments have asked you to do…
And fulfilling the role that was enshrined in our constitutions… is never in vain.
Around one million of our men and women in uniform served in Afghanistan.
Leaving behind their loved ones to help build a better future for the people there.
Putting your life in the service of freedom has much to offer…
But it can – and has – also led to scars.
Physical or mental.
There are families that are coping with tremendous loss.
For those who are struggling: please reach out to a buddy or a veteran organisation to get the help you need and very much deserve.
To all of you, I say:
Your service in Afghanistan has irreversibly changed the country.
Just as it has irreversibly changed you.
The individual sacrifice you made should never be taken for granted.