From 20 to 21 February 2023, Chair of the NATO Military Committee, Admiral Rob Bauer visited Slovenia upon the invitation of the Chief of the Slovenian General Staff, Major General Robert Glavaš. During his visit, the Chair met with Slovenian President Nataša Pirc Musar as well as senior Slovenian government and Armed Forces officials. Admiral Bauer delivered a speech to high-ranking government and ministry representatives, and visited Exercise LIPICANEC at the Slovenian Armed Forces Central Training Area in Postojna.
Following the inspection and welcome by the Slovenian military honour guard, Major General Glavaš and Admiral Bauer spoke on the implementation of the Concept for the Deterrence and Defence of the Euro-Atlantic Area and the progress on the Regional Plans.
Meeting with President Nataša Pirc Musar, Admiral Bauer thanked Slovenia for its contribution to Euro-Atlantic security. “Slovenia helps strengthen NATO’s deterrence and defence posture on the Eastern Flank, by contributing to the multinational battlegroups in Latvia and Slovakia. And you play a significant role in promoting regional stability and cooperation in South-eastern Europe and the Western Balkans”, noted the Admiral.
The discussions with State Secretary for National and International Security Andrej Benedejčič focused on the challenges facing the Alliance. “With the complex security environment becoming increasingly dangerous, we need to be ready to fight both the battles of today and tomorrow,” said Admiral Bauer.
In his meetings with Minister of Defence Marjan Šarec and Secretary of State for European Affairs, Mr Marko Štucin, the discussions focused on defence spending and NATO’s deterrence and defence posture. “In this new era of collective defence, we must be ready to expect the unexpected together,” emphasized the Chair of the NATO Military Committee.
Whilst at the Ministry of Defence, Admiral Bauer gave a speech on NATO’s unique ability to unite countries and adapt to changing security climates. The Chair also emphasized the fundamental difference between crisis management and collective defence: “In crisis management, time was on our side. We could plan for crisis management operations and missions. But in collective defence, the timing is very much decided by our adversaries. They are the ones who determine when and where the fight begins. And that means it is up to us as a defensive Alliance to be ready to expect the unexpected. At all times. In all domains. In all corners of our Area of Responsibility”.
On the last day of the visit, Admiral Bauer and Major General Glavaš visited Exercise LIPICANEC, where military staff from the US and Slovenian Armed Forces train together to practice tactical skills and procedures, ensure basic readiness and competence, develop interoperability and share experience in the field of logistical support.