Stories by Gabe Lipton of GZERO Media

The world's longest-lasting military alliances

Despite facing growing internal strains and new external challenges, the NATO alliance has successfully prevented conflict in Europe since its creation in the aftermath of World War II. It's also celebrating its 7oth anniversary this month.

Reproduced from GZERO Media chart via Brookings; Chart: Axios Visuals

Consider this: In the past three centuries, only one similar collective defense agreement has lasted longer, according to a Brookings Institution study. The chart above puts NATO's longevity into historical context.

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China traces a new line through Europe as Italy backs Belt and Road

Chinese President Xi Jinping at the National People's Congress in Beijing. Photo: Andrea Verdelli/Getty Images

Chinese President Xi Jinping will arrive in Rome tomorrow ready to plant a flag in the heart of Europe.

What to watch: Italy is expected to break with most other advanced economies by formally signing onto Beijing's $1.3 trillion global Belt and Road (BRI) infrastructure initiative.

Trump's next battles on trade

Trump (R) announces a trade truce last July with European Commission President Jean-Claude Juncker. Photo: Win McNamee/Getty Images

The U.S. and China may be on the verge of resolving — or at least cooling — a heavyweight trade fight that's already seen them slap tariffs on $360 billion worth of each other's goods. If all goes according to plan, a deal will be in place ahead of a summit later this month between President Trump and Chinese President Xi Jinping.

The big picture: That won't spell the end of the Trump administration's aggressive bid to remake the global trading order. Emboldened by their apparent successes in renegotiating NAFTA as well as the China trade relationship, Mr. Trump and his hardline trade czar Robert Lighthizer are now going to train their sights on a whole slew of other countries where they think they can win terms more favorable to U.S. industry.