Garčević: Panelist at Civil-Military Relations Conference

Ambassador Vesko Garčević, Professor of the Practice of International Relations at Boston University’s Pardee School of Global Studies, actively contributed to the 10th Annual Civil-Military Relations Conference held at Tufts University on November 10 and 11, 2023. Serving as a key panelist in the session titled “Economic and Geopolitical Crossroads: The Russia–Ukraine War,” he shared the platform with esteemed experts, including Dr. Alexandra Vacroux, Executive Director of the Harvard Davis Center, and Dr. Oxana Shevel, Associate Professor of Political Science at Tufts University.

During his presentation, titled “Myths and Pretext: Ukraine and NATO Membership,” Professor Garčević delved into Ukraine’s evolving relationship with NATO, spanning from the 1990s to the present day. Emphasizing a critical juncture, he argued that the Annexation of Crimea, rather than the NATO Summit in Bucharest, marked a pivotal moment in Ukraine-NATO relations. Up until 2014, Ukraine had adhered to a non-alignment policy, refraining from seeking NATO membership and not being granted the Membership Action Plan—a recognized gateway to NATO membership.

However, Professor Garčević contended that the Annexation of Crimea in 2014 prompted Kyiv to reassess its stance towards NATO, leading to a formal application for membership in 2022. Despite this move, he expressed skepticism about Ukraine’s imminent NATO membership, asserting that many European members are hesitant to accept Kyiv while the war persists. In his analysis, the ongoing conflict provides Moscow with an opportunity to exert influence, maintaining Ukraine in a state of passive dependence on major powers’ decisions.

Ambassador Vesko Garčević dealt with issues pertinent to European security and NATO for almost 14 years during his diplomatic career. In 2004, he was posted in Vienna to serve as Ambassador to Organization for Security and Cooperation in Europe. He was Montenegro’s Ambassador to NATO from 2010 until 2014 and served as Montenegro’s National Coordinator for NATO from 2015 until he joined the faculty at the Pardee School. Learn more about Ambassador Garčević on his faculty profile.