From Wales to Brussels: Analyzing NATO in the Trump Era

The heads of state and government of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) members met in Brussels on May 25, 2017. The agenda was packed, reflecting the severity of both the European and international security environments. From discussions over combating terrorism to increasing defense spending, this meeting provided the necessary space for leaders to outline their priorities and hash out differences. But this event will likely be seen as particularly significant because it marked President Donald Trump’s first meeting with his twenty-eight Alliance counterparts. The stakes were not simply NATO’s recent initiatives, but ultimately its future as an ambitious and coherent Alliance with the United States at its core. Against that backdrop, this article will evaluate NATO’s progress since the Wales and Warsaw Summits, analyze the decisions taken at the Brussels meeting, and conclude by examining the impact of Donald Trump’s presidency on the Alliance.

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