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[A fast-track for Ukraine would likely further alienate the states in the Western Balkans, where the slow and cumbersome enlargement process] has disillusioned many while Russia and China have expanded their influence in the region as a result.”

Defense Cooperation Foreign Policy NATO

The problem is that Europe’s dream of Strategic Autonomy has been sunk in Ukraine. After years of debate whether NATO or the EU should lead security, it is NATO that has emerged as the trusted partner. With the events in Ukraine, some EU countries regard the US or the UK as a better security insurance, than say France or Germany.”

Defense Cooperation Foreign Policy NATO

We should see the message by the president and his subordinates as complimentary rather than contradictory. In combination they are saying, ‘We really don’t want to block Sweden and Finland’s accession to NATO but we will unless they act.’ If Sweden and Finland are flexible and address Turkey’s concerns then I think this problem will be easily resolved. However, if they don’t, with President Erdogan doubling down … I think Turkey will block.”

NATO

[Erdoğan] saw an opportunity to extract some benefits both for Turkey and for his own political standing [ahead of a crucial election next year.]”

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