A Secure Eastern Border Depends on the Stability of NATO Member States

Recent NATO summit: Defense of eastern border, from Estonia to Bulgaria, heavily militarized yet politically fragile.

NATO's east flank: exposed to Russia, Ukraine's war effects. Diverse and stable north, chaotic south. Vital regional security.

Stable Baltic democracies, close Russia borders, aware of vulnerability amid Ukraine crisis and NATO isolation.

Close to Ukraine, Eastern Europe empathizes due to Soviet history. Commendable support for refugees and assistance.

Eastern Europe leads in aid to Ukraine based on GDP share. Estonia provides the most, followed by Latvia.

Eastern Europe drives EU change, a moral leader. But goodwill and military help aren't sufficient, internal politics crucial.

Unstable Southern Eastern Europe, Poland's democracy backslides, concerns NATO's strong eastern partner in crisis.

Hungary's erosion of democratic institutions and relations with Putin could give Russia and China influence in Brussels.