While President Trump insults his erstwhile foreign partners in a colorful twitter tirade ahead of a G-7 (or rather, G-6+1) summit in Quebec, exposing the very real fragmentation of longtime western partnerships as the US cracks down on unfair foreign trade practices, a productive meeting between China's "Emperor for Life" Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin has been completely overshadowed, as Bloomberg points out.
The two leaders held their first meeting this year on Thursday ahead of the June 9 Shanghai Cooperation Organization meeting - an eight-member group led by China and Russia - which will be held in the port city of Qingdao.
Please tell Prime Minister Trudeau and President Macron that they are charging the U.S. massive tariffs and create non-monetary barriers. The EU trade surplus with the U.S. is $151 Billion, and Canada keeps our farmers and others out. Look forward to seeing them tomorrow.
Prime Minister Trudeau is being so indignant, bringing up the relationship that the U.S. and Canada had over the many years and all sorts of other things...but he doesn’t bring up the fact that they charge us up to 300% on dairy — hurting our Farmers, killing our Agriculture!
But the west is ignoring the burgeoning partnership between the two countries - both permanent members of the UN Security Council - at its own peril. Because Putin and Xi are playing an ever-expanding role in resolving global disputes like, for example, the dispute between the US and North Korea. For example, both leaders support North Korea's demands that any denuclearization agreement stipulate that the process happen in stages - something that the Pentagon initially opposed, though Trump has more recently said he'd be open to it.
"China and Russia have common interests in regards to the resolution of the Korean crisis," said Alexey Muraviev, a Russia strategic and defense affairs specialist at Curtin University in Perth, Australia. "Their pragmatism is driven by the belief that it is better to have the regime that is in place rather than hope for another one."
Indeed, the final shape of a North Korea denuclearization deal (assuming one is reached) will likely need the blessing of Beijing, if not both Beijing and Moscow, before it becomes a reality. Because ultimately both countries want to ensure that hostilities don't break out on their borders with the North, and that US and NATO troops remain as far from their borders as possible. Already Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov has assured his North Korean counterpart that any deal "must involve the lifting of sanctions" - pushing back against the US's insistence that sanctions won't be...