Image credit: BPA // Getty Images

July 09, 2018

In Two Summits, a Moment of Truth for Trump

By Victoria Nuland

President Trump’s next two summits, first with NATO allies in Brussels, then with Russia’s President Vladimir Putin in Helsinki, Finland, will either restore American global leadership or kill it off, depending on how he plays our hand.

Unity at NATO, followed by a firm encounter with Mr. Putin, would demonstrate American resolve to stand with allies and stand up to strategic competitors. Or Mr. Trump could squander all the power and leverage of the United States by abusing and dividing our allies, then lavishing praise and freebies on an autocrat he admires who is set on undermining our democracy and global position. It all depends which President Trump shows up in Brussels and Helsinki — the one his national security adviser says wants a strong NATO, or the man who regularly calls NATO “obsolete.”

Traditionally, an American president gains when he meets a Kremlin boss with the wind of allied unity at his back. If he uses the NATO meeting to coordinate his message to Moscow, he multiplies the impact by speaking for dozens of free countries, not just America. And a Trump-Putin summit is overdue. The mountain of problems we have with Russia requires leader-to-leader talks because Mr. Putin has neutered decision-making at all other levels of his government.

Read the Full Article at The New York Times

  • Podcast
    • June 26, 2020
    Defense Priorities in a New Administration, with Michèle Flournoy

    Michèle Flournoy joins Andrea Kendall-Taylor and Jim Townsend to discuss how a Biden administration can work with NATO to confront transnational threats. Flournoy has been a l...

    By Andrea Kendall-Taylor, Jim Townsend & Michèle Flournoy

  • Commentary
    • Real Clear World
    • June 24, 2020
    Duda’s Unnecessary Gamble

    Polish President Andrzej Duda will visit the White House on Wednesday, a mere four days before the first round of Poland’s presidential election. While the United States and P...

    By Adam Twardowski & Carisa Nietsche

  • Podcast
    • June 19, 2020
    Germany, Nuclear Sharing, and the U.S. Drawdown with Ulrike Franke and Frank Sauer

    Ulrike Franke and Frank Sauer join Andrea Kendall-Taylor and Jim Townsend to break down the U.S. proposal to drawdown in Germany, nuclear sharing, and more on a joint Brussels...

    By Andrea Kendall-Taylor, Jim Townsend, Ulrike Franke & Frank Sauer

  • Podcast
    • June 12, 2020
    The Russia-China Defense Relationship, with Mike Kofman and Alexander Gabuev

    Mike Kofman and Alexander Gabuev join Andrea Kendall-Taylor and Jim Townsend to explain the Russia-China defense relationship on the latest episode of Brussels Sprouts. Kofman...

    By Andrea Kendall-Taylor, Jim Townsend, Mike Kofman & Alexander Gabuev

View All Reports View All Articles & Multimedia