Washington, DC (July 6) — Today, the Center for European Policy Analysis (CEPA) announced its International Leadership Council (ILC), co-chaired by retired US Army Lieutenant General and former US National Security Advisor H.R. McMaster and former German Minister of Defense Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer.

The ILC is a high-level group of global thought leaders and decisionmakers who share CEPA’s core mission of strengthening the transatlantic alliance and advise on CEPA’s strategic vision. It was previously co-chaired by former US National Security Advisor Zbigniew Brzezinski and former US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright.

CEPA’s ILC members include:

  • Anne Applebaum, Staff Writer, The Atlantic; Senior Fellow, SNF Agora Institute and Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies; Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Gulag: A History
  • Stephen Biegun, US Deputy Secretary of State (2019-2021); Visiting Policy Practitioner, Weiser Diplomacy Center, University of Michigan
  • Carl Bildt, Prime Minister, Kingdom of Sweden (1991-1994); Minister for Foreign Affairs, Kingdom of Sweden (2006-2014); Special Envoy for the Access to COVID-19 Tools Accelerator, World Health Organization
  • Francis Fukuyama, Political Scientist; Author of The End of History and the Last Man; Olivier Nomellini Senior Fellow, Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies, Stanford University
  • Timothy Garton Ash, Historian; Political Author; Professor of European Studies, Oxford University
  • Toomas Hendrik Ilves, President, Republic of Estonia (2006-2016); Minister of Foreign Affairs, Republic of Estonia (1996-1998, 1999-2002); Member of the European Parliament (2004-2006)
  • Matthew Kaminski, Editor-in-Chief, POLITICO
  • David Kramer, US Assistant Secretary of State for Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor (2008-2009); Bradford M. Freeman Managing Director, Global Policy, George W. Bush Institute
  • Ivan Krastev, Political Scientist; Author; Chair, Centre for Liberal Strategies
  • Linas Linkevičius, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Republic of Lithuania (2012-2020); Minister of National Defense, Republic of Lithuania (1993-1996, 2000-2004)
  • Zhanna Nemtsova, Co-Founder, Boris Nemtsov Foundation for Freedom
  • Ine Eriksen Søreide, Minister of Foreign Affairs, Kingdom of Norway (2017-2021); Minister of National Defense, Kingdom of Norway (2013-2017); Member of Parliament, Kingdom of Norway
  • Eckart von Klaeden, Member of Parliament, Federal Republic of Germany (1994-2013); Vice President and Head of External Affairs, Mercedes-Benz AG

“Russia’s war against Ukraine has shown that the transatlantic alliance is critical for global security. The ILC will provide the leadership and vision needed at this critical moment,” said CEPA’s President and CEO Dr. Alina Polyakova. She added: “I am truly grateful to our transatlantic co-chairs – General H.R. McMaster and Minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer. These leaders embody the transatlantic values and principles that must be at the core of our foreign and security policy.”

“We are facing many urgent transatlantic issues. I am confident that our ILC will provide the strategic foresight and vision to help CEPA meet those challenges,” emphasized Larry Hirsch, Chairman of CEPA’s Board of Directors.

“It will be a privilege and honor to contribute to the work of the ILC,” said Minister Kramp-Karrenbauer. She added: “My friendship and sympathy for transatlantic relations rest on the conviction that only America and Europe together can keep the rules-based order strong, defending it against Russian violent aggression and Chinese ambitions for global supremacy. While Europe needs to become stronger in terms of foreign and security policy, I am convinced that a strong NATO and a strong Europe are just as indispensable for the US as they are for us.”

“It will be a privilege to co-chair CEPA’s ILC beginning next year,” said General McMaster. He added: “I have learned much from CEPA and admired the work that the organization does to understand the challenges and opportunities we face across the free world and recommend how we can work together to build a better future. I look forward to joining European co-chair Minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer and doing all I can to support CEPA’s mission of ensuring a strong and enduring transatlantic alliance. That mission is more important than ever in this perilous time.”

The ILC will convene in September 2022 as part of CEPA’s flagship annual event, the CEPA Forum. General McMaster will assume his position as co-chair at the start of 2023. ILC members serve in a voluntary and advisory capacity and do not have a role in institutional governance, which is the purview of CEPA’s Board of Directors.