Anders Fogh Rasmussen

Former Prime Minister of Denmark (2001-2009)
and Former NATO Secretary General (2009 - 2014)

 

THE WILL TO LEAD

Anders Fogh Rasmussen's new book "THE WILL TO LEAD"
discusses America's strategic leadership role

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For three decades Anders Fogh Rasmussen has been at the centre of global and European politics; including being Prime Minister of Denmark, Danish Minister of Economic Affairs and NATO Secretary General. Anders now runs his own political consultancy, Rasmussen Global, and is non-staff adviser to Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko. He has also joined the Yalta European Strategy (YES) board. In 2017 Anders founded The Alliance of Democracies, which is dedicated to the advancement of democracy and free markets across the globe. He is also co-chair of the Transatlantic Commission on Election Integrity, which unites political, tech, business and media leaders to detect and prevent the next generation of foreign election interference.

Anders has played a key role throughout his various tenures; when Denmark held the Presidency of the European Union he concluded 10 candidate negotiations for accession to EU membership. As part of NATO he helped create a fundamental transformation of the Alliance, developing a new Strategic Concept, setting core priorities for the future. In the midst of the most serious economic crisis of modern times he launched a new initiative calling on nations for more multinational cooperation.

It is Anders’ experience and achievements along with his outstanding abilities which makes him recognised as a hugely respected voice in international politics. Anders gives unique insights into geopolitical trends and international hotspots. He also discusses the current international security challenges with great clarity. Drawing on his skills as an effective communicator, as a speaker, Anders Fogh Rasmussen also provides audiences with his knowledge and vision about Europe’s role in the world of geopolitical change.

Leadership in a Troubled World
International Security Challenges
Geopolitical Trends and International Hot Spots

Awards and Recognition

Knight Grand Cross in the Order of Orange-Nassau (2014)
St. George Medal, 1st Class, awarded by the Defence Minister of Bulgaria (2014)
Order of Stara Planina, awarded by the President of Bulgaria (2014)
Order of Liberty, awarded by the President of Ukraine (2014)
Doctor Honoris Causa title by the University of Bucharest (2013)
Medal of Merit in Gold (2012)

In His Own Words

Let us not be completely negative. In many respects today’s world is a brighter place.

  • Barriers across nations and between leaders and voters have been removed by technology;
  • In 2002, a quarter of the world lived in poverty. Today that figure is around one in ten people.
  • At the beginning of the 20th century just over 10% of the world population lived in democratic countries – now it is more than 50%.

However – geopolitically – the world is on fire. We face the most depressing situation I have seen in my lifetime.

America’s role as the global policeman has been challenged. But instead of rising to that challenge, the policeman seems to prefer going into a retirement.
And we see yet again the consequences of US disengagement.

This is not the first time the world has heard the phrase, ‘America First’. President Wilson used it in 1915 to justify US non-intervention in World War One. 18 months later, Germany brought the war to America. A generation later, the America First committee opposed US intervention in Europe’s war. Again, the war came to America.

As former US Vice President Hubert Humphrey said, “We know that World War II began not in 1939 or 1941 but in the 1920’s and 1930’s when those who should have known better persuaded themselves that they were not their brother’s keeper.”

Today, we should know better. Because we see the consequences.

The West is divided. Autocrats are in the ascendancy. And the international rules-based order forged from ashes of two World Wars and a Cold War is giving way to narrow interests, short-term transactions and zero-sum games.
Russia is driving wedges where it can; simmering conflicts in its neighborhood; interfering in our societies to distort reality online and to hack our elections; and sowing chaos left, right and center.
Moscow is also extending its foothold across the Mediterranean: first by stepping into the vacuum we left in Syria; and then extending its influence in Libya where the international community failed to deliver a political plan after NATO’s mandate ended – something which I strongly urged at the time.
But Russia is not the only malign state posing a challenge.

For example, China is exploiting strategic investment to achieve political goals, abusing World Trade rules to serve its own ends, and refusing to abide by principles of reciprocity in international trade.
And while Russia sees the world as a chess board, and China sees it as a game of Monopoly, many in the West continue to see it as a game of Scrabble – where words seem to count more than actions and interests. No wonder our responses are inadequate.

Our values are important. So it is time we made a stand for them – at home and abroad.
Because, if the 20th century taught us anything, it is that cooperation and unity across the Euroatlantic alliance works to make us safer, more prosperous and more free.

In my view, we have spent too much time highlighting our own divisions. Instead let us focus on what unites us– the core economic and political project that enhances our sovereignty and makes us all stand taller in the world.
Why does this matter? Because if Europe fragments and descends into these self-defeating dynamics, there will be only two winners: Putin and Xi Jinping.

Defending our freedom is not just about issuing statements, or warm words. Or even giving awards. It is about uniting around our common ideals and taking actions to defend them; and to shine our values into the dark corners of the world.

Interview with Anders Fogh Rasmussen

Q What are the top 5 threats to international security in the coming decade?

I would point to the following five major threats to international security:

First, international terrorism. The rise of radical Islamism will fuel terrorism, not only nationally, but also globally. The terrorist network, al-Qaida, the sectarian Sunni-Shia divide and the rise of the so-called Islamic State hold the greatest potential for a regional and global terrorist threat.

Second, nationalistic revisionism. Russia’s attempts to re-establish a zone of Russian influence in its near abroad and China’s flexing of muscles in the East China Sea are prime examples.

Third, proliferation of weapons of mass destruction. Iran’s nuclear aspirations pose a risk of a regional nuclear arms race. Non-secure stockpiles of nukes or biological weapons are tempting targets for terrorist groups set for terrorist attacks.

Fourth, cyber attacks. Cyber attacks can disrupt the critical infrastructure that is vital to our economy, commerce, public safety and military. These attacks can be carried out by criminal groups as well as terrorist networks and nation states. Disinformation is intoxicating our societies, but the next generation of Artificial Intelligence-enabled disinformation such as deepfake videos, will be a game-changer.

Fifth, transnational crime, such as arms smuggling, human trafficking and drugs trade. These illicit activities will often be financing terrorist organizations and extend their reach and wealth.

Many of these threats will be reinforced by failed states where people suffer from poverty and lack of opportunities, and climate change that will lead to new conflicts over migration and resources.

Q How do you become a true leader and what traits must you possess?

A true leader must be capable of setting a clear vision, transforming that vision into concrete goals, elaborating a strategy to achieve the goals, creating a coalition to carry out the strategy, and communicating the vision, the goals and the strategy. The true leader realizes that his or her overall mission can only be accomplished through team-work. That requires an ability to attract the most talented and ambitious people, to develop a good and creative working environment, and to show genuine appreciation for a good performance. At the same time, the true leader must stay focused on the goals, demonstrate true resolve, and be willing to take risks.

Q What is Europe’s role in 21st Century geopolitics, and which changes can or should be applied?

The European Union is the ideal forum for tackling globalisation. With its well-developed institutions, its democratic values, and its economic weight and clout. It is time for the EU to “go global”. First and foremost, because we as Europeans have a responsibility to work for freedom, democracy and peace around the world. But next, because it is in our own interest. The global power structure is changing. We can no longer take for granted that our values will continue to dominate international relations. The EU must be strong in order to defend freedom, democracy and human rights.

First, we must reform our economies to make them more competitive and stimulate growth and job creation. Second, the EU must take the lead in efforts to foster free trade and transatlantic economic cooperation. Third, we must strive for an independent Europe and reduce Europe’s dependency on imported oil and gas. Fourth, the EU must guarantee its citizens’ safety and security at a time when organised crime and terrorism attempt to breach all borders. Fifth, the EU must play a far more active role in its foreign policy – taking the lead in the fight against poverty and promoting security and democracy across the globe.

Q What are the key international challenges and opportunities for businesses in the coming months and years?

The obvious opportunity is that globalization is making the world into one, integrated market place. News, information, thoughts and ideas are spread and exchanged across continents incredibly fast. Relations among people are built much faster than ever before. Businesses that understand this dynamism and grasp those opportunities will become market leaders. However, the interconnected and interdependent world also poses some challenges to business. Regional hot spots and security threats can have a major global impact on trade and investment.

The edge of competition has sharpened and strengthens the requirement for staying one step ahead through technological advances, value creation and new working methods. Rapid communication through social media can change the political environment or the consumer behaviour in a moment. And in the global market place, recruiting and retaining qualified employees will require an improved ability to fulfil their expectations regarding workplace culture and flexibility and mobility.

How to book Anders Fogh Rasmussen

Drawing from his experience, Mr Rasmussen firmly believes that the enlargements of the EU and NATO have contributed to peace, progress and prosperity in Europe. He has achieved much diplomatic success as an extraordinary consensus-builder working behind the scenes with leaders of various nations. In his presentations he explains the tactics needed to promote world peace and security and the benefits to be reaped from achieving global stability.

If you would like to book Anders Fogh Rasmussen for your next event, please call Jakob Juhl on +376 735 174 / +45 8987 0533 or send an email to jakob@csaspeakers.com.

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