Ukrainian soldiers.

What would happen if the U.S. abandoned Ukraine? Former President Donald Trump has suggested he would do so if he returns to the White House next year and predicted he would end the war quickly, most likely by pressuring Kyiv to negotiate. But even if the intent is to bring peace, the practical effect would be to prolong the war.

Video screens at the European Parliament building promote the upcoming European elections.

One of the biggest elections in this “ultimate election year” is the one scheduled for June, when more than 400 million people in 27 countries will be eligible to vote for a new European Parliament. The elections will have considerable impact not only for the people who live in Europe but also for the rest of the world.

Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko.

With tightly controlled parliamentary and local elections in late February, Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko installed allied figures in seats of power across the country and rooted out whatever was left of Belarus’ political opposition, thereby extinguishing the last dying embers of his country’s democracy.

Polish and French forces train together.

The European Union is making efforts to step up in security, proposing a joint defense spending program and setting targets for increased joint weapons purchasing and procurement. But can the EU actually become a security provider, rather than a security consumer dependent on the U.S.? There are good reasons to remain skeptical.

Latvian Prime Minister Evika Silina.

The Baltic states are increasingly asserting themselves on the European and NATO stage. And Latvia is intent on not being left out. But while security concerns are paramount, the government of Prime Minister Evika Silina also has a substantial domestic policy to-do list that may dictate if Latvia can redefine its role in Europe.

French President Emmanuel Macron.

As Europeans come to terms with the long-term consequences of Russia’s all-out invasion of Ukraine and growing isolationist sentiment in the U.S., the potential of a more militarily self-reliant EU has begun to affect internal policies and debates in Brussels that will influence European politics over the coming decades.

A farmers’ protest in Brussels, Belgium.

In recent weeks and months, farmers across Europe have taken to the streets to protest against rising production costs and falling wholesale prices. Disruptive farmer protests in Europe are nothing new, but these demonstrations are unprecedented in both scale and nature, provoked by a perfect storm of seismic global events.