Highlights from this week’s NATO summit


The annual NATO summit wrapped up on Wednesday, amid a flurry of photo ops and eager hand-shaking. Leaders from 37 countries + the EU attended the conference in Latvia, including almost-member Sweden, plus non-members Australia, Japan, New Zealand, Georgia, South Korea and Ukraine.

Although brief, the two-day summit was pretty eventful:

  • 🇸🇪Turkey finally let Sweden join, though President Erdoğan is now saying Turkey’s lawmakers won’t be able to rubber-stamp it all until they’re back from break in October (gotta love that work-life balance).
  • 🇺🇦 Ukraine was frustrated by NATO’s reluctance to provide a firm timeline for its accession, so President Zelensky fired off a rather fiery tweet which reportedly left the US delegation furious.
  • 📢And the summit’s epic 11,000 word statement devoted plenty of text to Russia (the region’s “most significant and direct threat”) and China (due to its “stated ambitions and coercive policies”). NATO has become pretty direct in calling out adversaries in recent years.

Intrigue’s take: The alliance has an ‘open door’ policy, but that doesn’t mean you walk in like it’s a Walmart. Ukraine’s biggest (though not only) hurdle is the fact it’s at war with a nuclear power right now; and NATO members don’t want to take on a treaty obligation to enter that war directly.

So for now, NATO is supporting Ukraine in other ways. And notwithstanding some summit fireworks this week, that pledge still looks pretty rock solid.

Also worth noting:

Latest Author Articles
US allies hold breath as House readies vote on security assistance bills

After months of deadlock, US Speaker of the House Mike Johnson says he’ll bring a key $95B military aid package to a vote as soon as tomorrow (Saturday).

19 April, 2024
Microsoft invests $1.5B in UAE AI firm after secret US government talks

US tech giant Microsoft has announced it’ll invest $1.5B in G42, the leading artificial intelligence (AI) firm in the UAE. The “strategic investment”, which gives Microsoft a minority stake in the company, aims to further the UAE’s ambitions as an AI hub while bringing yet another leading AI firm into Washington’s orbit.

17 April, 2024
Modi unveils election manifesto as ~1 billion Indians prepare to vote

Few world leaders enter a re-election campaign as sure of winning as Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, but that’s no excuse to slack off. So last Sunday, just before voting kicks off this Friday, his Bharatiya Janata Party (Indian People’s Party, or BJP) unveiled its election manifesto named Modi’s Guarantee.

16 April, 2024
Could the US let WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange walk free? 

President Joe Biden just said the US is “considering” Australia’s request to end the pursuit of WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange, a move that could close over 14 years of legal and diplomatic drama. 

12 April, 2024