Smith’s official website hasn’t posted her comments; what follows is borrowed from Air Force Magazine and TASS. Her own site states that until coming to her post as U.S. permanent representative (ambassador) to NATO recently, she was Senior Advisor to Secretary Blinken at the Department of State.
Ahead of the meeting [January 10th meeting with U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Wendy Sherman and Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Sergei Ryabkov], U.S. Permanent Representative to NATO Ambassador Julianne Smith said the alliance was united in opposing Russia’s demands but still hoped diplomacy would lead to de-escalation.
“Let’s be clear: Russian actions have precipitated this crisis,” Smith told journalists on a press call from Brussels.
“We are committed to using diplomacy to de-escalate the situation, and we will do so in lockstep with our NATO allies and our European partners,” she added. “There is widespread unity and consensus across the alliance on the challenge that sits before us.”
Smith said the U.S. continues to study the security needs “of our friends in Kiev to better understand what their requirements are.”
Smith…flatly dismissed Russia’s December demand that NATO membership be withdrawn to 1997 borders and that the open-door policy for admitting new members be changed.
“This alliance is not going to be rolling back time and returning to a completely different era where we had a very different alliance that was smaller and a very different footprint,” Smith said.
Despite differing perspectives from the larger economies of Western Europe to those closer to Russia in the east, Smith said the alliance enters discussions Jan. 12 with a common vision of the threat:
“Russia has essentially been the main threat to European security over the past two decades.”
NATO won’t pull back to its size as of two decades ago, Ambassador Julianne Smith, the US permanent representative to NATO, said during a conference call in Brussels on Tuesday.
“When you talk to NATO allies one thing becomes clear in terms of consensus at the table,” she said. “This alliance is not going to be rolling back time and returning to a completely different era, where we had a very different alliance with smaller and a very different footprint.”
“We are operating in today’s world,” she went on to say.