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Updated Jul 10, 2024, 7:46am EDT
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Biden opens NATO summit with ‘forceful’ speech

Insights from Reuters and CNN

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U.S. President Joe Biden delivers remarks at a NATO event to commemorate the 75th anniversary of the alliance, in Washington, U.S., July 9, 2024. REUTERS/Leah Millis
Leah Millis/Reuters
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The News

US President Joe Biden pledged to provide Ukraine with new air defense systems to counter Russia’s invasion during an opening speech at the NATO summit, an address that multiple media outlets described as “forceful.

The commentary comes as Biden’s fitness to contest the presidential election against Donald Trump in November remains under intense scrutiny following a disastrous debate performance last month. Several prominent Democratic supporters and donors have called for Biden, 81, to step down as the party’s candidate as questions swirl about his age and general health.

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NATO an opportunity for president to save himself

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CNN

This week’s NATO summit has turned into a “public test” of Biden’s “health and cognitive capacity” following last month’s debate, CNN politics reporter Stephen Collinson wrote. Biden’s every move will be scrutinized by those in Washington unconvinced that the octogenarian can handle the demands of a second presidential term. He’ll also be closely watched by a more global audience, Collison added: “The effects of the president’s advancing age are not just an issue for his political future; they are now the West’s problem given that he is the last defense against a stunning comeback by Trump.”

Doubts persist about Biden’s ability to right sinking ship

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Reuters

Several diplomats remained unconvinced by Biden’s fitness for office, Reuters reported, with one putting his improved delivery at the NATO summit down to the fact that the speech was scripted and let him use a teleprompter — unlike during the live debate with Trump. “We don’t see how he can come back after the debate,” the European diplomat told the outlet. “I can’t imagine him being at [the] helm of the U.S. and NATO for four more years.” European leaders are already bracing for a potential second Donald Trump presidency, with Biden’s recent gaffes spooking allies abroad. Top European officials met with foreign policy advisers for Trump on Tuesday on the sidelines of the NATO conference.

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