The North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) will soon gather at the Warsaw Summit in Poland to address a number of significant issues on July 8-9, 2016. The current security situation in Europe and beyond is troubling. The concerns range from political (exit of Britain from the European Union) to economic (how to house, feed, and care for millions of refugees), to military (Russian aggression, Afghanistan, and more).
During the Warsaw Summit NATO will be making important decisions that will affect security in and around Europe. These decisions will provide for a good defense for the citizens of Europe as well as project stability beyond its borders. There are innumerable problems to be addressed at the Warsaw Summit that concern the citizens of Europe (weapons of mass destruction, terrorism, arms control, and defense of Europe). Beyond Europe’s borders the challenges are many: counter-piracy operations, assistance to nations in the African Union, and the migrant and refugee travel across the Aegean and Mediterranean Seas. Relations and security agreements will need to be considered for non-NATO nations threatened by Russia (Sweden and Finland for example).
My formative years in Special Forces were spent on a Special Forces A-team (12 men) whose primary mission was to conduct Unconventional Warfare (UW) behind enemy lines in the event the Soviet Bloc nations invaded central and western Europe.  So it will be with great interest to see how NATO addresses the current Russian aggression towards the Ukraine, Poland, and the Baltic states.
There are many concrete steps that NATO has taken to improve the defensive posture of Eastern Europe and to provide a deterrent posture to keep the Russians in check. NATO exercises held recently in Poland and other Eastern European nations improve the military coordination of the member nations. Could NATO stop Russia from invading the rest of the Ukraine or one of the Baltic States (Estonia, Lithuania, or Latvia)? Unlikely. But deterrence is important none the less.