The last panel of Georgian Defense and Security Conferency dedicated to the discussion on Georgia’s strategic readiness. Former NATO Deputy Secretary General Rose Gottemoeller’s video address opened the session where she stressed on the main pillars of NATO-Georgia cooperation: “Substantial NATO-Georgia Package is a model how we can work with partners to build defense capacity and that is in no small part, because Georgia is a model partner”.
Defense Minister of Georgia Irakli Garibashvili, Commanding General Georgia Army of U.S. National Guard Brigadier General Randall V. Simmons JR, Director of NATO Defense Institution and Capacity Building Marc Di Paolo and U.S. Congressman Adam Kinzinger participated in the discussion “Georgia’s Strategic Readiness: From Words to Action”. Chargé d’Affaires a.i. of U.S. Embassy to Georgia Elizabeth Rood moderated the session.
Defense Minister highlighted the goals and priorities of Georgia’s strategic readiness and referred to regional security challenges and the ways of solution. As he outlined, given the extremely complex security environment, the Ministry of Defense continues its ambitious defense transformation guided by the Total Defense and our strategic readiness objectives aimed at improving Georgia’s defense capabilities, establishing an effective and sustainable system of defense, enhancing interoperability of the Georgian Defense Forces with NATO and ensuring that Georgia is continuously prepared for NATO membership. “We have decided to attach major focus to infrastructure development in 2020-2025 along with the welfare of our soldiers and their families. While this will significantly contribute to our readiness, it will also greatly impact on our soldiers and families’ well-being and their desire to continue to contribute in the service to our nation while also motivate the others to join”, - stated Irakli Garibashvili.
The panel speakers agreed that strategic readiness of the country is achieved through developing a Total Defense system that works for Georgia and which ensures strengthening of the deterrence and defense capabilities of the state. The successful execution of deterrence and defense tasks requires adequately manned, trained and equipped Georgian Defense Forces, as well as the readiness of society, state and private sector to contribute to Georgia’s state defense. This can be attained only by developing and institutionalizing the Total Defense the system at the national level through a whole-of-government approach, which is a critical mechanism for state and societal resilience contributing to the security and defense of the country.