Carlos Barria / REUTERS Russian President Vladimir Putin talks to U.S. President Donald Trump during their bilateral meeting at the G20 summit in Hamburg, July 2017.

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The Real Opportunity Behind the Media Spectacle

By Michael Kimmage

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MICHAEL KIMMAGE is Professor of History at the Catholic University of America and the author of The Decline of the West: An American Story. From 2014 to 2016, he served on the Policy Planning Staff at the U.S. Department of State, where he held the Russia/Ukraine portfolio.

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U.S. President Donald Trump and Russian President Vladimir Putin will meet for a frenetically anticipated summit on July 16 in Helsinki. Their encounter—coming amid cascading revelations of Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election, unnerving questions about Trump’s admiration for his Russian counterpart, and U.S.-Russian tensions around the globe—is certain to be a media spectacle. But as its location subtly implies, the real importance of the meeting may have little to do with the theatrics at the top. Unglamorous, largely unnoticed diplomatic processes could prove more consequential. In Helsinki in 1975, the United States, the Soviet Union, and various European powers devised a security architecture for Europe that was controversial at the time but ultimately crucial to the Cold War’s peaceful end. Without the Helsinki Accords, which fostered agreement on Europe’s borders and enshrined a nominal commitment to human rights in the Eastern bloc, the revolutions of 1989 may never have come and almost certainly would not have been as peaceful as they were. Marian SAHARA women's Sandals in White,Peter Kaiser MARABELLA PETER KAISER LADIES LONG BOOT Size: 8Mist Gtx® Shoes - Loden Green - Standard Fit - 9,Dubarry Kildare Boots, Brown, UK 7 (EU41)Charles Tyrwhitt Brown Goodyear Welted Oxford Brogue Shoe Size 7 W by Charles TyrwhittAlberta Ferretti Court - Women Alberta Ferretti Courts online on United Kingdom - 11516044IT, Chie Mihara AMA women's Sandals in Brown, Victoria SNEAKER NEOPRENO women's Shoes (Trainers) in Red,Penelope Mixed Material Low Heel Ankle Boot,Aduo 1.5 Heel - Silver - UK 8Crocs Classic Unisex 10001 Clog,TED BAKER SUEDE JEWELLED COURTSebastian Boots - Women Sebastian Boots online on United Kingdom - 11472538UG, Airstep / A.S.98 POLARI women's Sandals in Black, JFK TAMP women's High Boots in LPB Shoes INGRID women's High Boots in Black,Tara 2.5 heel - Black Satin - UK 8,Miss L Fire Bernie Size: EU 38, Colour: Red,Ladies Albery Sheepskin Slippers Light Grey UK Size 7/8,Native Boots - Women Native Boots online on United Kingdom - 11533865PP, adidas STAN SMITH men's Shoes (Trainers) in White, New Rock DARY men's Mid Boots in Black, Pataugas WALLY-F4a women's Mid Boots in Black,State Bishop Skate Shoes - Black/White,MAVIC DEEMAX PRO MTB SHOE,Nike Air Max 1 FB - Zwart,Keb Boots - Women Keb Boots online on United Kingdom - 11467386FC, Converse CHUCK TAYLOR ALL STAR BOOT PC men's Shoes (High-top Trainers) in Blue, adidas SUPERSTAR SlipON W women's Shoes (Trainers) in Tamaris ALLANA women's Low Ankle Boots in Black,The lessons of that previous U.S.-Russian encounter in Helsinki are worth remembering now. The agreement that resulted involved years of drab, painstaking diplomacy. It required agonizing compromise on both sides. It rested on work rather than optics. Under the shadow of low expectations, a difficult process preceded final success. The summit’s real importance, in other words, had little to do with momentary media spectacle. The same could be true of next week’s Trump-Putin meeting.

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Adidas Tubular Doom - Zwart Zwart Zwart 7225ed

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