How Trump would have viewed an Obama-Kim summit, Trump-Kim summit sparks hope of a nuclear-free Korean Peninsula, Trump’s G7 affront to common values, Australia to combat Russian election interference, Beauty pageants are rapidly losing their appeal

A roundup of global commentary for the June 25, 2018 weekly magazine.

Evan Vucci/AP
North Korean leader Kim Jong Un (l.) and President Trump shake hands prior to their meeting on Sentosa Island in Singapore.

The Guardian / London

How Trump would have viewed a similar Obama-Kim summit

“[Donald] Trump ... would have poured buckets of derision on [President Barack] Obama for the piece of paper he signed with Kim, for the fawning praise he lavished on a brutal tyrant, and for the paltry non-concessions he got in return...,” writes Jonathan Freedland. “Kim leaves Singapore having gained much of the international legitimacy the dynastic dictatorship has sought for decades.... [Yet,] Kim has promised not ‘complete denuclearisation’ but simply ‘to work toward’ that end.... Trump praised himself for achieving a historic milestone.... [I]t is better for the world that Trump and Kim are shaking hands rather than ... threatening nuclear war.... But for now, this is only a historic breakthrough for the Kim dynasty....” 

The National / Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates

Trump-Kim summit sparks hope of a nuclear-free Korean Peninsula

“The meeting between Donald Trump and Kim Jong-un on [June 12] was more than historic,” states an editorial. “It was epoch-making. It brought together the leaders of two bitter rivals ... for a cordial conversation that was inconceivable just a few months ago. More than that, it might also have sown the seeds for a new era – assuming things do not go awry – of a denuclearised Korea.... Movement on either side will require trust – and trust takes time to accumulate.... Wild expectations should be tempered. Yet, after [the summit], a nuclear-free Korea living in peace and prosperity looks like a more realistic possibility – so long as the two men ... grasp this opportunity to follow it up with credible action.” 

The Jordan Times / Amman, Jordan

Trump’s headbutting with G7 leaders was an affront to common values

“The [Group of Seven] summit in Charlevoix, Quebec, ended in disarray after US President Donald Trump locked horns with the other G-7 leaders on trade issues and other policy matters...,” states an editorial. “Trump ... called on the leaders of France, Germany, UK, Japan and Canada to invite back Russia to the fold of the G-7. The US president was rebuffed on this request, with the other leaders explaining ... that the cause for the ‘expulsion’ of Russia was due to its invasion, occupation and annexation of Crimea.... The G-7 is supposed to be a homogeneous group of nations with common visions and shared values....
[I]f the Western group of nations cannot get used to the mercurial character of President Trump, what can be expected from other world leaders.” 

The Sydney Morning Herald / Sydney, Australia

Australia has learned from Russian interference in the US election

“In the digital age, as the 2016 US election showed, foreign powers can cause havoc during election campaigns by exploiting the anonymity of the internet to seed division, misunderstanding and ‘fake news’...,” states an editorial. “Laws are now on the verge of being introduced into federal parliament that promise to clean up the mess.... To a large measure ... they have attracted bipartisan support.... These provisions are an attempt to pre-empt the kind of havoc that Russia-linked internet ‘bots’ were able to wreak during the US election campaign.... Bipartisanship over most of this regime has come at a price, but a good one, since the changes that have resulted address serious concerns that the laws, in their original version, threatened freedom of speech.” 

South China Morning Post / Hong Kong

Worldwide, beauty pageants are rapidly losing their appeal

“In Hong Kong, watching the [Miss Hong Kong] pageant every summer was like taking part in a traditional ritual...,” writes Luisa Tam. “The pageant, since it was established in 1973, has produced many outstanding title-holders.... Four decades on, the Miss Hong Kong pageant seems to have lost its powerful grip on the local population.... The culture of indifference towards beauty pageants is spreading quickly across the globe.... Once upon a time, beauty pageants were highly regarded.... Earlier this month, the Miss America contest announced it would be scrapping its infamous swimsuit competition.... [T]he biggest pageant organisers in the world have ... decided to offer this ‘olive branch’ at a time [of] ... rapidly falling viewership. Women no longer need such platforms to validate their existence....” 

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