On May 23, President of the Philippines Rodrigo Duterte cut his visit to Russia and imposed martial law on the southern island of Mindanao after fighting broke out between security forces and ISIL jihadists. The island’s population is 22 million people. Offensives will also be staged in other southern provinces plagued by extremist groups. The president suggested the possibility of expanding martial law nationwide.
“I would insist that [part of the South China Sea] is ours and I will drill oil there,” Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte claimed he told his Chinese counterpart Xi Jinping during his second official trip to China earlier this month.
While vaudevillian comedy-like shouting matches broke out in the West Wing of the White House between President Donald Trump and his senior advisers and between the White House press secretary and various presidential aides, world leaders gathered in Beijing to discuss the creation of modern-day land and maritime «silk roads» to improve the economic conditions of nations around the world.
With Moon Jae-In’s victory in South Korea, the period of tension on the Korean Peninsula is likely to end. With the rise to power of the new president, South Korea can expect a sharp decline in hostilities with North Korea as well as a resumption of dialogue with China.
In the week of World Press Freedom Day the New York Times carried one of its holier-than-thou and unintentionally ironical editorials, this time titled «Donald Trump Embraces Another Despot». Seeing the headline, the world could be forgiven for asking which one it might be, this time, and eventually the Editorial Board revealed the target of their displeasure to be President Duterte of the Philippines, an unpleasant morsel of filth who had just been invited to visit the United States by President Donald Trump, who is also an unpleasant morsel of filth...
...Meanwhile North Korea has fired back that it would reduce Japan to «ashes», turn South Korea into a «sea of fire», bring about the «collapse of the American Empire» and referring to the US aircraft carrier fleet the USS Carl Vinson which Trump called an «armada» the North Korean propaganda department stated...
US President Donald Trump’s readiness to use unilateral military force is undoubted, as his missile barrage on Syria and threats to North Korea and Iran attest. Alongside this militarism, however, is another, seemingly different side of Trump; one that appears to embrace talks and diplomacy with foreign leaders.
If the efficacy of the US-China cooperation over North Korea gets tested successfully through the next several months – even as the remaining 75-80 percent of the Trump administration’s strategy toward North Korea unfolds – we may see wider application in other areas and regions for the new type of relationship between the two big powers...
On May 4, the House of Representatives overwhelmingly voted to impose new sanctions on North Korea targeting its shipping industry and slave labor among other things as tensions continued to mount over North Korea’s advancing nuclear and ballistic missile programs. The Korean Interdiction and Modernization of Sanctions Act (H.R. 1644) is designed to undercut North Korea's economy by cracking down on the network of banks and industries that help it avoid Western sanctions. In particular, it cracks down on North Korean shipping and use of international ports.
Donald Trump has said that under the «right circumstances» he would be «honored» to meet with Kim Jong Un - a «pretty smart cookie» as the President called the North Korea’s leader. «If it would be appropriate for me to meet with him, I would absolutely, I would be honored to do it», he told Bloomberg on May 1. Since coming to power in 2011, Kim Jong Un has neither left his country nor met a foreign leader...