It was intended as a show of unity after seven decades as allies, but the NATO Summit in London has, if anything, brought the divisions among nations into sharper focus.
After parading those divisions in public in London on Tuesday, the leaders of the 29 member states take their arguments behind closed doors at a luxury golf course and resort near Watford, on the outskirts of the British capital.
NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg said Wednesday that he expects leaders will talk about everything from the fight against terrorism, relationships with Russia and the rise of China.
The meeting of leaders comes a day after the U.S. president clashed publicly with Macron during their extended news conference where they disagreed over Turkey’s incursion into northern Syria and the French president’s description of NATO as being brain dead.
Prior to the summit, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan said his country would oppose a NATO plan to defend the Baltic states unless the alliance backed Turkey’s action against the Kurdish groups, which it considers terrorists.
Arriving for Wednesday’s meeting Macron didn’t back away from the brain dead remark, and said NATO debates should be “about other things than budgets and finances.”
Britain’s prime minister, who is in the midst of a hard-fought election campaign, is expected to remind NATO leaders behind closed doors that their commitment to defend one another is at the heart of the alliance they operate under a principle of one for all, and all for one.
At a Buckingham Palace reception, a misery loves company moment involving Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, French President Emmanuel Macron and Britain’s Boris Johnson, among others, was caught on video,
The scene, captured by the host broadcaster, showed Trudeau seemingly venting about U.S. President Donald Trump’s marathon media availabilities.
“He was late because he takes a 40-minute press conference at the top,” Trudeau is recorded as saying.
Trump is not mentioned by name, but the video could provide fodder for more behind the scenes — or maybe in front of the camera — drama.
WATCH: See the clip of Trudeau, Macron, Johnson and others