POSTED: 02:45 a.m. HST, Nov 26, 2012
ROME (AP) — NATO is moving its run-down southern command in Italy to a new, (euro) 164 million ($212 million) high-tech campus 20 kilometers (10 miles) away.
NATO said Monday it would leave its base of nearly 60 years, located in the Naples neighborhood of Bagnoli, on Dec. 3 and move to the new campus at Lake Patria, up the coast in Campania's farmland.
U.S. Navy Capt. Ike Skelton, spokesman for the Joint Force Command, said the new base corresponds to NATO's needs for greater operational flexibility.
NATO is looking to reform and streamline its command structure, still partially based on Cold War requirements, in response to declining defense budgets in most member nations. This is in keeping with NATO's new philosophy of "smart defense," allowing members to combine resources.