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Biden’s trip to Europe weighs heavily on the indication of Western unity, but may be light on Putin’s actions to stop the Ukrainian war.

Since the outlook for the NATO summit was first announced about two weeks ago, US and European officials have discussed possible announcements by the leaders at the end of the rally, according to some people familiar with the plan. ing.

This may include new sanctions on emerging Russian conglomerates, additional measures to limit the country’s finances, and new measures to limit the import of Russian energy products. Assistance or financial assistance to strengthen the defense of the country.

And Biden left open options for expanding US military deployments to NATO members along the eastern end of the alliance, strengthening America’s commitment to defending Europe at critical moments.

However, the harsh reality that these moves are unlikely to curb Putin’s war urges Biden to visit Brussels for a NATO snap meeting, along with a special meeting of the European Council and a G7 rally. prize. Officials say it will add another stop in Eastern Europe, potentially Poland, and leave Washington on Wednesday for a high-level diplomatic operation.

Biden succeeded in rallying European and Asian allies behind a series of penalties and unparalleled levels of military aid, but he and his NATO counterparts lined up at the end of their support. I pulled. Crisis, US and European officials say the parameters of such a settlement remain unclear.

It leaves Biden’s visit to Europe (one of the moments of change in his presidency) open to the way that the worst conflicts in Europe since World War II can be turned. If or when Ukraine becomes unable to withstand the Russian attack?

“They will have to see what happens if Ukraine is lost,” said former Army General Wesley Clark, former NATO Supreme Allied Commander. Think about what you can do to keep Ukraine in battle. Yes, there is a risk. There is always a risk in dealing with Mr Putin. “

Biden challenged to become a “world leader”

Biden was publicly challenged last week by Ukrainian leaders to take responsibility for ending the fighting. President Volodymyr Zelensky spoke directly to Biden in an emotional speech that he called the no-fly zone and helped procure fighters. He was watching from his private library on the third floor of the White House.

“Being a leader in the world means being a leader in peace,” Zelensky said in English.

Biden was also asked by former Ukrainian President Petro Poroshenko to visit Ukraine as a “symbol of our solidarity” during this week’s trip to Europe.

Polo Shenko spoke with Jim Acosta of CNN on Saturday afternoon and called Biden “my very good friend and very good friend of Ukraine”. Against Russia. “

Those personal complaints will resonate with the man who swore while seeking a job to restore American leadership, renew the American alliance, and protect democracy from the creeping tide of authoritarianism.

As the war in Ukraine progresses, the challenge is no better than this week’s urgent talks, where leaders are looking to Biden for direction and purpose.

“He is challenging Biden to fulfill his responsibilities as a leader of the West, a leader of the democratic community of the state, and he has presented NATO with a de facto challenge,” said the Assistant Secretary of Defense of Europe. Assistant Ian Brzezinski said. NATO of the George W. Bush administration.

“He said that if NATO couldn’t meet this challenge, we would have to consider other security arrangements. What a powerful challenge to NATO’s relevance in this era … (that …) ) Summit meeting. “

The limits of supporting Ukraine with full display before travel

But when the summit was announced last week, some European diplomats said they lacked a major step that leaders could take at a high-profile rally that both Russia and Ukraine would watch carefully. Revealed concerns about what he saw.

The main items Ukraine wants, such as establishing a no-fly zone and NATO’s assistance in providing Soviet-era fighters, are so far as the United States and its partners are trying to avoid direct conflict with Russia. It’s off the table. The meeting is likely to focus on strengthening already provided aid, including military and financial aid, or applying new sanctions to Russia.

European and US officials said discussions on the announcement and final joint statement were underway as countries were deciding on a summit decision or takeaway.

“The president is looking forward to seeing his counterparts in person. I think they have many new steps that could be disclosed and unfolded during those conversations, but I I’m not going to get ahead of them, a few days ago. ” John Finer, US National Security Adviser, told CNN last week.

The realization of major announcements during the summit may help highlight the current unity between allies.

“He miscalculated about the West. He … rebuked, I thought there would probably be some sanctions, but he could endure it, he could continue, and he could move on. Was done, “said Marie Yovanovitch. Former US Ambassador to Ukraine.

“Instead, he urged NATO’s resurrection, and the West is uniting in opposition, not only strengthening the side countries of the NATO-Ukraine border, but also providing support to Ukraine.”

After Biden-Xi calls, countering China becomes paramount

The upcoming summit will also give Biden the opportunity to measure the temperature of his counterparts on another issue: China’s President Xi Jinping will provide Russia with military or financial support, as Putin requested. What to do if you decide to do that.
According to the White House, in a 110-minute call with Xi last week, Biden showed the “impact and consequences” of advancing its support, but punishing China, the world’s second-largest economy, is far more. It will be more complicated than in Russia, which would be more common, and will require the same unity with Europe, which does not always agree with Biden on how to approach Beijing.

“This is a very important summit. It’s being held in an unusual way in the midst of a crisis. It’s also partly ensuring us and our allies. [are] It’s good to be on the same page, but it’s also very important for signaling Vladimir Putin, “said Kurt Volker, a former US ambassador to NATO and a special envoy to Ukraine.

Volker has identified some messages that the alliance must send during the summit. This includes recommitting to the Article 5 guarantee of collective defense and clarifying that Russia’s use of nuclear weapons justifies the Western response.

But he also said NATO must clarify that Ukraine, which is not a member of the group, is nevertheless a very important issue for its members.

“I think it’s also very important for NATO to signal Ukraine. It’s in NATO’s interest to keep Ukraine as an independent sovereign state in Europe,” Volker said. We don’t want to be very specific about what we do. But while Putin destroys and eliminates Europe’s sovereign state, we need to signal Putin that we are not going to sit by. “

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