US Ambassador to NATO Douglas Lute today insisted that there was no expectation for NATO as an alliance to “formally” join the ISIS war, so long as the alliance member nations continue to participate in the conflict and the alliance remains involved in a “niche” capacity.
The US has been pushing for more and more nations to join the “anti-ISIS coalition,” and in practice every NATO nation that could make a meaningful contribution to the conflict is already part of that coalition.
Lute insists that the US is “not hung up on” NATO declaring itself a member of the coalition at the alliance level. NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg insisted that NATO intends to “do more” to support Iraq, beyond ongoing training operations.
Lute went on to confirm that the US, and other nations are open to the possibility of deeper involvement in the ISIS war, fighting in both Libya and Tunisia, provided the governments request it. In Libya’s case, that depends largely on how long it takes for the US to prop up a government which will endorse the invasion.