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The Editors

Don’t Let Erdogan Slow NATO Enlargement

The Turkish leader’s brinkmanship is weakening the alliance and making Finland and Sweden vulnerable to Russian aggression.

It’s time for tougher talk. 

It’s time for tougher talk. 

Photographer: Eric Lalmand/Belga Mag/AFP via Getty Images

By threatening to block the enlargement of NATO to include Finland and Sweden, Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has revived doubts about Turkey’s reliability as a member of the alliance. U.S. and European leaders should make clear that Erdogan’s behavior is undermining NATO’s collective security — and be willing to impose consequences if it continues.   

Erdogan’s ostensible objection to Finnish and Swedish membership in the North Atlantic Treaty Organization is that the Nordic countries shelter separatists from Turkey’s Kurdish minorities, including some belonging to terrorist groups. Ankara has for years complained that its enemies too easily find refuge among its friends, including fellow NATO members.