North Korea No Deal

Donald Trump and Kim Jong-un are back to sleeping in their own beds after their summit in Vietnam ended without an agreement. Trump is eager to emphasize that relations with Kim remain sunny. "This wasn't a walk away like you get up and walk out," he said. "No, this was very friendly. We shook hands," noted the president.

Two days later, how are the major players viewing the walkout in Hanoi?

Happy With How Things Went

China – Beijing wants the Korean Peninsula quiet, particularly as President Xi Jinping focuses on advancing trade talks with Trump. There's no American armada steaming toward trouble, no Korean rockets' red glare, and the two sides will keep talking.

Trump doubters – Some Americans, and US allies, feared Trump would offer Kim big concessions in exchange for vague promises. The president made clear he had no intention of doing that. Sanctions remain firmly in place.

Vietnam – Hanoi proved it could host a major international gathering on frighteningly short notice. The country's expanding economy and solid relations with the US offer a favorable contrast with North Korea.

Wary About What Comes Next

Japan – Fears that Trump would ease pressure without promises from Kim to scrap missiles that can hit Tokyo were not realized. But talks will continue at a lower level, and Japan will watch anxiously to see what comes next.

Unhappy With How Things Went

South Korea – President Moon needed a breakthrough to expand economic cooperation with the North, a key component of his domestic political agenda. The summit's failure forced him to call off a major announcement on the "Future of Korean Peace and Prosperity" he hoped would advance peace and boost his political standing.

Kim – If Kim was hoping Trump would give a lot to get a little, he left disappointed. So, what's plan B?

Trump – With so much trouble awaiting him back in Washington, Trump needed something he could sell as a major breakthrough. His refusal to move first will play well with North Korea skeptics, but Trump needed a big win to distract from the gathering storm back in Washington.

What's Next?

The summit's failure doesn't close the book on nuclear talks, but Trump's refusal to lift sanctions before Kim takes bigger steps leaves North Korea's leader with tough decisions on how to move forward. Though North Korea's foreign minister disputes Trump's account of what North Korea wanted and offered, Trump says Kim has promised to hold off on nuclear and ballistic missile tests to keep open the hope for future progress.

But there's nothing in writing. Kim could restart testing to try to force Trump to offer him something new. Or maybe he calculates that events in Washington ensure Trump won't be around much longer.

It was inevitable that Prime Minister Narendra Modi would make India's elections a referendum on Narendra Modi, and now that the vast majority of 600 million votes cast have been counted, it's clear he made the right call.

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Among the 23 men and women now seeking the Democratic Party's nomination to take on Donald Trump in next year's election, the frontrunner, at least for now, has spent half a century in politics. Former Vice President Joe Biden, first elected to the US Senate in 1972, is the very epitome of the American political establishment.

Yet, the dominant political trend in many democracies today is public rejection of traditional candidates and parties of the center-right and center-left in favor of new movements, voices, and messages. Consider the evidence from some recent elections:

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It's Friday, and Signal readers deserve at least one entirely upbeat news story.

José Obdulio Gaviria, a Colombian senator for the rightwing Democratic Center party, is an outspoken opponent of government attempts to make peace with the FARC rebel group after 50 years of conflict.

On his way into a meeting earlier this week, Gaviria collapsed. It was later reported that he had fainted as a result of low blood pressure probably caused by complications following recent open heart surgery.

A political rival, Senator Julian Gallo, quickly came to his rescue and revived him using resuscitation skills he learned as—irony alert—a FARC guerrilla. CPR applied by Gallo helped Gaviria regain consciousness, before another senator, who is also professional doctor, took over. Gaviria was taken to hospital and appears to have recovered.

Because some things will always be more important than politics.