President Biden gets a ‘W’….
Russian President Putin, a ‘Loss’….
And Turkey could be getting a ‘W’ against the Kurds of Iraq…..
NATO’s top official said Tuesday that Turkey had dropped its objections to the membership of Sweden and Finland, two historically nonaligned nations that, alarmed by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, have asked to join the military alliance.
Turkey’s reversal is a blow to President Vladimir V. Putin, who in justifying the invasion of his neighbor bitterly protested previous expansions of NATO — and Ukraine’s efforts to join the alliance — as a threat to his country’s security.
Should Finland and Sweden be formally adopted into the alliance, as is widely expected, Russia will look across 800 miles of border with Finland at one of NATO’s newest members.
The announcement came after Turkey’s president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, met for four hours with Prime Minister Magdalena Andersson of Sweden and President Sauli Niinisto of Finland, as NATO heads of state gathered in Madrid for an annual summit. The 30-nation alliance operates by consensus, which meant that Turkey effectively held a veto over their membership applications.
“I’m pleased to announce that we now have an agreement that paves the way for Finland and Sweden to join NATO,” the secretary-general, Jens Stoltenberg, said Tuesday evening. “Turkey, Finland and Sweden have signed a memorandum that addresses Turkey’s concerns, including around arms exports, and the fight against terrorism.”
It was not clear what concessions, if any, were made to Mr. Erdogan, whose objections centered on the quest for autonomy by ethnic Kurds in Turkey and neighboring countries. He has accused Sweden and Finland of sheltering Kurds whom Turkey calls terrorists, and he objects to the embargo on arms sales that the Scandinavian countries placed on Turkey after its incursion into Syria to fight Kurdish forces….
Putin, seeing the meeting of G-7 and NATO heads of state, is going on his own ‘summit’ meeting with his new Russian Empire countries….
On Wednesday, Mr. Putin is to head to a summit of the leaders of the countries bordering the Caspian Sea, the world’s largest landlocked body of water: Russia, Turkmenistan, Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan and Iran. The political, economic and security aspects of the Caspian region and its vast oil and gas resources have taken on greater importance for Moscow since it began the war in Ukraine.
As sanctions over the war disrupt trade routes, countries friendly to Russia are emerging as newly critical economic partners, though some are treading carefully….