Today, US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson will attend the NATO foreign ministers meeting in Brussels to discuss how the alliance can enhance transatlantic cooperation. In focus is the North Korea threat and the Russian intervention in Ukraine. However, speculation over the future of Mr Tillerson’s position may undermine his authority.
North Korea has successfully tested an intercontinental ballistic missile capable of hitting the US mainland and European capitals. Regardless, any talk of upgrading Europe’s missile defence shield would breach non-proliferation deals with Russia. On the Ukrainian front, Tillerson has reaffirmed America’s commitment to European security, affirming the need for a totally sovereign Kiev.
While cooperation here is expected, US-NATO relations have been strained over President Trump’s criticism of members failing to meet the defence spending target of 2% of GDP. Regardless, Europe’s recent capitulation to President Trump’s demand should appease Washington and work to promote a more constructive transatlantic dialogue in the future.
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