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Europe’s fears about Trump-Putin summit

4 11 42
12.07.2018

As if the war of words between US President Donald Trump and the leaders of other NATO member countries this week weren’t bad enough for transatlantic relations, European leaders are bracing for his expected follow-up performance at a July 16 summit with Russia’s Vladimir Putin. The timing alone has already cast a dark symbolic shadow at a moment when a clear display of consensus is critical for Western unity.

Some European diplomats I spoke with in Washington ahead of the summit fear Trump will do more than just denigrate NATO, going so far as to threaten a US withdrawal from the military alliance before engaging in a lovefest with Putin that will enable the Russian leader to further exploit Washington’s differences with Europe. More significant than issues such as a looming trade war and Trump’s desire to have Moscow re-admitted to the G8 (reduced to the G7 after Russia’s 2014 annexation of Crimea), uncertainty about where the Trump administration is ultimately heading is shaking a continent swept up in an anti-immigrant, right-wing populist tide.

More worried than angry, most European leaders have........

© Middle East Monitor