Ashish Kumar Sen

  • Trump Picks Putin

    US President Donald J. Trump on July 16 appeared to believe Russian President Vladimir Putin’s denials over the US intelligence community’s assessment that Russia meddled in the 2016 elections, saying he saw “no reason why” Moscow would have acted in that way.

    Speaking at a joint press conference following his first summit with Putin in Helsinki, Trump said: “President Putin was extremely strong and powerful in his denial today” on meddling.

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  • Trump-Putin Summit: Expect the Unexpected

    Just in the past few months, US President Donald J. Trump has blown up the G7 summit in Canada, berated the United States’ NATO allies, criticized British Prime Minister Theresa May on her handling of Brexit, described Germany as a “captive” of Russia, characterized the European Union as a “foe,” and directed the Pentagon to...
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  • Donald Trump and Theresa May: On the Issues

    Donald J. Trump and Theresa May attempted to paper over their differences—at least in public—at a joint press conference on July 13. This interaction followed a controversial interview Trump gave to the British tabloid The Sun in which  the US president criticized the British prime minister’s approach to Brexit.

    Here’s a look at where the two leaders came out on some key issues as they fielded questions from journalists at the prime minister’s country residence, Chequers.

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  • Ghani Hopeful 'Real' Dialogue Will Bring Peace to Afghanistan

    Unlike in the past, there is now a “real” and “constructive” dialogue on bringing peace to Afghanistan and this effort is based in mutual trust, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani said in Brussels on July 12.

    Ghani, speaking at the NATO Engages event co-hosted by the Atlantic Council, said US President Donald J. Trump told world leaders at the NATO Summit this week that the US strategy of a “conditions-based” commitment to Afghanistan was producing results.

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  • Trump’s NATO Strategy: Shake, Rattle, and Commit

    US President Donald J. Trump on July 12 reaffirmed the United States’ commitment to NATO after declaring that allies had agreed to his demands to spend more on defense. This affirmation came hours after the US president chastised allies for not spending enough on defense and even threated to pull the United States out of the Alliance.

    “The United States was not being treated fairly, but now we are,” Trump said at a news conference in Brussels after NATO leaders held an emergency meeting to address the US president’s complaints that allies are not spending enough on defense.

    “Yesterday I let them know that I was extremely unhappy with what was happening and they have substantially upped their commitment,” Trump said, “And now we're very happy and have a very, very powerful, very, very strong NATO, much stronger than it was two days ago.”

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  • US Senators Back NATO as Trump Leaves Allies On Edge

    In Brussels, where US President Donald J. Trump has castigated allies and cast doubt about the US commitment to NATO, two US senators—one a Republican and the other a Democrat—speaking at the NATO Engages event co-hosted by the Atlantic Council on July 12 expressed their full-throated support for the Alliance.

    “Congress has your backs,” said Sen. Thom Tillis (R-NC), co-chair of the Senate NATO Observer Group and a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee.

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  • NATO’s Jamie Shea Signs Off On a Positive Note… And With Some Advice

    At a time where there are so many doubts about NATO at the political level, the paradox is that the Alliance on July 11 came out with a communique—agreed to by all member states—that is “the most substantive… the most complete, the most consensual,” notes Jamie Shea, NATO’s outgoing deputy assistant secretary general for emerging security challenges.

    Many of those doubts about the Alliance have been raised by US President Donald J. Trump, who has expressed displeasure with allies whom he believes are not pulling their weight.

    Shea has some advice for Trump: he should read the Alliance’s communique. “If I am President Trump I would think, ‘My God! This is music to my ears. It really does push the Alliance in a direction of being useful to me on all of my foreign policy initiatives,’” he said.

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  • NATO Engages: Shoring Up the Alliance

    The opening day of NATO Engages: The Brussels Summit Dialogue was marked by passionate endorsements of the transatlantic military alliance that has been credited with giving the West its longest period of peace without a major power conflict in centuries.

    It also produced an attempt by NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg to ease the Alliance’s relationship with its largest member—the United States.

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  • Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau Stands Up for NATO

    Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau on July 11 delivered a resounding defense of NATO—the transatlantic military alliance that today grapples with external as well as internal challenges—and sought to address questions of burden sharing noting that it is the quality of the output rather than the quantity of the input that actually matters.

    “A lot of people talk about the 2 percent,” said Trudeau, referencing the defense spending guideline agreed to by NATO members, “but announcing inputs isn’t nearly as important as demonstrating outputs,” he added.

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  • Finally, Peace in the Horn of Africa?

    The leaders of Ethiopia and Eritrea on July 9 signed a declaration ending the state of war between the two countries.

    The summit between Eritrean President Isaias Afewerki and Ethiopian Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed in the Eritrean capital, Asmara, on July 9 marked the first time that the neighbors’ heads of state have met in nearly two decades.

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