can violations of whatever treaty provisions the United States agrees to be detected? For the Intelligence Community, the issue of concern may be more focused on ensuring that the treaty provisions are crafted in such a way that insures that it will be easy to distinguish between treaty-limited equipment and equipment that is outside of the scope of the treaty when the equipment is viewed from a distance. Obviously, resolving the differences between these conflicting goals requires time and effort to accomplish. Even so, once consensus is reached, it often proves to be unacceptable to the allies or to be nonnegotiable with the East, and the process starts over again.
Ideology also becomes a player in the interagency process. Some officials may have a dim view of the whole arms control process; others may be extremely distrustful of the East and want to ensure that the CFE treaty is airtight in its basic formulation. Others may have a different outlook altogether. As is sometimes seen in CFE interagency fora, the personal ideology held by those in a position to influence the details of the action (usually at the Assistant Secretary level) will often direct their personnel to take hard-line positions on topics of key concern, which deadlocks the progress for significant periods of time.
With the huge numbers of issues that the interagency must deal with in keeping up with the CFE negotiation, and given the cumbersome system in which decisions are made, it should not be surprising that there are times at which the CFE progress seems to be dragging. However, if the interagency process solves most of the conflicts, and if it is successful in clearly defining for the NSC and the President the political decisions that must be made on those few major issues where consensus cannot be reached, then it has accomplished its intended purpose.
In essence, the interagency process, and the Western Alliance's structure for managing CFE, is a direct reflection of the democratic process. While it is difficult to move very swiftly, it does ensure that all the parties concerned receive a hearing.
by Arthur W. Bailey
The principles of national sovereignty and political consultation are inherent in the basic North Atlantic Treaty of 1949. In addition to being a defense alliance, NATO provides a forum for consultation and political-military decision making. This consultative background was underscored by the 1956 Report on Non-Military Cooperation, which broadened the consultation process to include all matters of Alliance interest during the formative stages of government decision making.5 Although the principal forum for consultation is the North Atlantic Council (NAC), consultation now occurs in other NATO bodies, such as the Senior Political Committee, the Political Committee, and the Economic Committee.