Hard Numbers

300 million: Since its February 15 release, a new Chinese sci-fi blockbuster, Wandering Earth, has brought in more than $300 million at the box office, making it one of the highest grossing films in the country's history. The movie details efforts by Earth's governments to save the planet from an unstable sun by attaching thrusters to the planet and ejecting it into another part of the universe in search of a new home. We leave it to you to decide what world leader the film's writers may have had metaphorically in mind.

$240,500: North Korean leader Kim Jong-un is sporting a fancy new limousine just weeks ahead of his second summit with President Trump. The Mercedes Maybach S-600 will doubtless impress Mr. Trump, but we can't help noting that 2018 model's retail price of $240,500 is almost 200 times the per capita income of Mr. Kim's country.

1,000: After winning power in Madya Pradesh, India's fifth largest state, the opposition Congress party announced a plan to build 1,000 new shelters there for cows, an animal widely revered by Hindus. As national elections approach later this year, the resurgent Congress party is trying to chip away at the ruling BJP's bona fides among Hindu nationalists.

86: As he starts his third month in office, Mexico's new president, the left-wing nationalist Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, boasts an enviable 86 percent approval rating. His policy of going after fuel thieves remains his most popular initiative.

Wrecking the global economy's hopes for a relaxing late-August Friday, China and the US have taken fresh shots at each other in their deepening trade war.

First, China announced new tariffs on US goods in response to US levies on China's exports that are set to take effect next month.

Trump responded with a vintage tweet storm, lashing out at China and demanding that US firms stop doing business there. The Dow plunged as markets waited for the next shoe to drop. And drop it did: later in the day Trump announced higher tariffs on nearly everything that China exports to the United States.

Why now? Bear in mind, all of this comes right as Trump is leaving for this weekend's G7 summit in France. That gathering already promised to be a testy one – but with the global economy slowing, the impact of Trump's increasingly nasty trade war with China will add fresh tensions to the occasion.

So where are we in the trade war now? Here is an updated list of what measures each side has imposed to date, and what's next. Both sides have a lot at stake, but from the looks of it, the list isn't going to get shorter any time soon.

When Donald Trump first started talking about buying Greenland last week, we figured it was a weird story with less legs than a Harp seal.

Signal readers, we were wrong. President Trump was so serious about purchasing the autonomous Danish territory that this week he abruptly cancelled a trip to Denmark after the country's prime minister, Mette Frederiksen, labelled the idea "absurd."

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The Amazon in flames – More than 70,000 forest fires are burning in Brazil right now, most of them in the Amazon. That's up 84% over the same period last year, and it's the highest number on record. This is the dry season when farmers burn certain amounts of forest legally to clear farmland. But critics say Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro's efforts to loosen conservation rules have encouraged farmers, loggers, and miners to set more fires, many of them illegally. Bolsonaro – a science skeptic who recently fired the head of the agency that tracks deforestation – says, without proof, that NGOs are setting the fires to embarrass his government. Meanwhile, the EU is holding up a major trade deal with Brazil unless Bolsonaro commits to higher environmental protection standards, including those that affect the Amazon.

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Over the past fifty years, the Amazon rainforest has shrunk by an area equal to the size of Turkey. In the 1960s and 1970s, the Brazilian government supported settlement of the sparsely populated region for security reasons. Since then, huge swaths of the forest -- which is crucial for limiting the world's greenhouse gasses -- have been cleared for farmland used to feed Brazil's population and support its massive agricultural exports. Greater awareness of the environmental impacts in the 1990s produced tighter conservation regulations, though plenty of illegal clearing continues. In recent years, the annual deforestation rate has begun to rise again, and Brazil's new president Jair Bolsonaro has pledged to weaken regulations further in order to support businesses.