His tactics can lack diplomatic elegance (mostly by intention) and anger partners, but it’s undeniable he has locked his legacy-seeking sites on what looks to be an overwhelming list of long-festering problems. Among them: NATO allies’ unwillingness to bear sufficient defense burdens, China’s unfair trade practices, Russia’s violation of a short and intermediate-range missile treaty, North Korea’s nuclear proliferation and Iran’s dangerously malign behavior.
On its twenty-fifth birthday on November 1, however, there were no fireworks, inspiring speeches, or fancy receptions in Brussels though. Mired in internal quarrels, from Brexit to rising Euroscepticism, European leaders may feel there is not much to celebrate.
Add Royce’s reaction to the draft bills that were simmering before the midterms recess, unease over the potential for another meeting between US President Donald J. Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin, and what is sure to be a swift reaction to Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ resignation on November 7, and the Trump administration did not get even twenty-four hours from the close of the midterm polls before letting Russia jump right back into the national conscience as a hot-button issue.