With the NATO summit happening in Brussels last week, Heritage experts and analysts paid close attention to the discussions that took place there, and to what President Trump did while he was there. Overall, it was a great success for conservative policies, and emphasized many of the recommendations that Heritage has been making in the past weeks.
Heritage analysts Luke Coffey and Daniel Kochis have published several articles this week touching on issues that they wanted NATO to focus on. Last Monday, they released a report encouraging NATO to maintain its open-door policy for qualifying countries, which they see as a key component to the security of Europe. They also spoke explicitly against giving Russia veto power over any country’s potential membership in NATO. In a later report, Kochis emphasized that the NATO summit needed to speak openly and frankly to the continuing threat from Russia, especially for Eastern and Central Europe, and also needed to make sure its member countries continued to increase their defense spending in order to have a unified front against potential Russian aggression. Coffey and Kochis continued to elaborate on where NATO countries should focus their defensive efforts in another report released last Thursday, where they pointed to the Black Sea, the Baltics, and the Ukraine as key locations to bolster defensively.
Many of Kochis’s and Coffey’s recommendations were realized during the summit. NATO’s open-door policy remains and we could see both Macedonia and Georgia joining the alliance at a later date, which would be a great boon to Europe’s security. The allied nations also recommitted to greater defense spending, and are unified against any potential Russian threats, which puts President Trump in a strong position for his meeting with Putin on July 16.
President Trump also spoke strongly against the proposed Nord Stream II pipeline that could run between Germany and Russia, calling it a threat both to Europe’s security and their energy independence. Kochis had also referenced the dangers of the pipeline in his brief, where he had recommended that the U.S. needed to push back against the project.
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