April 30, 2018
Following North Korean leader Kim Jong-un’s visit to China in late March, I said that though many would still say that he remains a ruthless dictator, some may start thinking that he plays his foreign policy cards rather well (*). Indeed, his whirlwind diplomatic campaign upends the title of “reclusive ruler” attributed to him in the West. Six days before meeting South Korean President Moon Jae-in, he declared in a display of confidence that he will suspend nuclear and missile tests and will shut down the testing-site where the previous six nuclear tests were conducted. The announcement received broad international welcome. South Korea’s Presidency said in a statement that this was a meaningful step forward. And days before meeting with President Moon Jae-in of South Korea came the pivot away from nuclear testing toward the economy. Following the announcement regarding the suspension of nuclear and missile tests President Trump tweeted “This is very good news for North Korea and the World – big progress!” But during his joint press conference with President Macron on April 24, when asked what complete denuclearization meant he responded “It means they get rid of their nukes. Very simple…” Okumaya devam et
April 25, 2018
With endless displays of camaraderie underling a special relationship between the two leaders and the two countries the Trump-Macron summit was a rather unconventional one, at least in terms of body language. But President Macron’s desire to forge such a relationship has a past. Okumaya devam et
April 16, 2018
President Trump said on Sunday that he knew he would be demeaned for using the term “mission accomplished”. On that at least he proved to be right.
But what was the mission?
Firstly, to prove at low cost that when Mr. Trump draws a redline, unlike his predecessor, he enforces it; he is a strong leader.
Secondly, to distract attention from his endless internal political problems. Okumaya devam et
April 12, 2018
During the UN Security Council debate on Syria on April 9, Ambassador Nikki Haley said, “What we are dealing with today is not about a spat between the United States and Russia. This is about the inhumane use of chemical agents on innocent civilians…” But, it was about a spat between the two powers. Nobody disputes the fact that the loss of hundreds of thousands of innocent lives and displacement of millions in Syria has been a crime of epic proportions. However, Ambassador Haley’s stressing her concern for innocent civilians, and hundreds and hundreds of similar high-level statements of compassion by other countries during the last eight years have been anything but sincere. Regrettably, ending the suffering has never been the top priority for external powers involved in Syria’s proxy wars. These countries were after securing their interests, achieving their strategic/ideological/sectarian objectives, even trying to make sure that Syria is no more. And at this stage, Russia and Iran with decades-old strong links to Damascus seem to be on the winning side. At least, they are in a much stronger position on the battlefield. Okumaya devam et
April 10, 2018
Forty-seven years ago, today, the U.S. table tennis team arrived in China. Later in the year, in July 1971, Secretary of State Henry Kissinger made a secret trip to China paving the way for Richard Nixon’s own visit. The U.S. President and his Chinese hosts agreed to the joint “Shanghai Communique” of February 27, 1972, in which both nations pledged to work toward the full normalization of diplomatic relations. As part of the effort toward that end, on May 1, 1973, the U.S. opened a liaison office in Beijing to handle all matters in the U.S.-China relationship “except the strictly formal diplomatic aspects of the relationship.” China created a counterpart office in Washington in the same year. Finally, on January 1, 1979, the U.S. recognized People’s Republic of China and established diplomatic relations with it as the sole legitimate government of China. Okumaya devam et