Alliance rebrands counter-terrorism role and burden sharing commitment in attempt to appease President Trump

A review of the NATO Summit meeting in Brussels, 25 May 2017

By Ian Davis, NATO Watch

NATO leaders agreed:

  • An Action Plan to do more in the fight against terrorism.

  • To do more to ensure fairer burden sharing across the alliance.


  • Montenegro will soon become the twenty-ninth member of NATO.

  • NATO moved into its new headquarters in Brussels.

This was the first NATO Summit attended by President Trump and newly elected French President Emmanuel Macron. It was a very short Summit agenda geared almost exclusively on President Trump’s wish list: stepping up NATO’s role in the fight against terrorism and fairer burden sharing in the alliance.

Overall, the Summit outcomes can be characterised as a modest repackaging of existing NATO commitments in an attempt to placate President Trump. From a European NATO perspective, the objective was about not diluting the programme agreed at the previous Wales and Warsaw Summits, and keeping the wider US administration (if not necessarily the US President) engaged in the implementation process. While there remains uncertainty about the future direction of US policy towards NATO, so far, the US administration has not backed away from those earlier commitments.

Read the attached pdf briefing to find out more.

President Trump says NATO is no longer obsolete. And given the need for reliable and independent facts, nor is NATO Watch. Thanks to a grant from Polden Puckham we will be relaunching NATO Watch later this month with a new website and regular updates.