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THE SUMMIT: THEY GOT WHAT THEY WANTED AND IT WASN’T MUCH

THE SUMMIT: THEY GOT WHAT THEY WANTED AND IT WASN’T MUCH

In the end, the summit of the century was precisely the meeting that both Donald Trump and Kim Jong-un wanted. Kim realized the dynastic dream of striding into a meeting with a US president as a nuclear power on equal diplomatic footing. Trump strode across the stage of history with a grand gesture of norm-defying personal diplomacy that he could speak about in superlatives.


But at the end of the three hours of individual and staff meetings, there wasn’t much there there. Kim and Trump signed a brief statement that commits both sides only to “work toward” several things — denuclearization, peace, repatriation of US soldiers’ remains — that earlier US-DPRK agreements had addressed with much greater specificity and, of course, zero success.

Perhaps the most substantive development was Trump’s announcement that he’d freeze the “provocative” and “expensive” military drills with South Korea — long a demand of Pyongyang, Beijing, and Moscow — without saying what, if anything, Mr Kim had offered in return.

As the two sides staffs move ahead with negotiations, the three critical issues remain: What does “denuclearization” mean specifically? How are any North Korean efforts to dismantle its nuclear capacity to be scheduled, verified, and rewarded? And what security guarantees is the US likely to give North Korea so that Kim feels safe without nuclear weapons?

For all the pageantry and hand-shakes and body language analyses, we know no more about these issues today than we did twenty-four hours ago or, for that matter, twenty-four years ago when the first efforts to stamp out the DPRK’s nuclear program began.

What we do know is that the diplomacy to sort these questions out could take years. That certainly behooves Kim, a wily young negotiator who figures he’ll outlast Trump by decades — the less he has to commit to up front the better. But does Trump need a win sooner than that?

Meet Alessandra Cominetti, a recipient of MIT Technology Review Magazine's Innovators Under 35 award. As a lab technician at Eni's Research Centre for Renewable Energy in Novara, Alessandra has devoted her career to finding new solutions and materials to optimize solar energy. Much like the serendipitous encounter that resulted in her employment, her eagerness and willingness to try new things allowed her to stumble upon a material for the creation of portable solar panels.

Watch her remarkable story on the latest episode of Faces of Eni.

Joe Biden has vowed to radically change the US' approach to foreign policy and international diplomacy should he win next week's election.

But a lot has happened in four years under Donald Trump that could impede Biden's ability to simply return to the status quo ante. How different would US foreign policy really be under a Biden presidency? What will the two-term former vice president likely be able to change, and what's bound to remain the same, at least for now?

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"The top priority will be to announce to the world that the United States they've known for decades is back." Former top Obama diplomat and current CEO of the think tank New America Anne-Marie slaughter predicts an American revival on the global stage if Joe Biden wins the presidency. But at a time when the United States has never been more divided, can any nation, even the world's most powerful, be a global leader if it cannot even keep its own house in order? Ian Bremmer's conversation with Slaughter is part of a new episode of GZERO World.

Watch the episode: How a "President Biden" could reshape US foreign policy

"If [the election] is very close and it ends up in the courts, that kind of protracted situation I think will lead many Americans to believe that it was an unfair election." Rick Hasen, election law expert and author of Election Meltdown, lays out some of the worst-case scenarios for Election Day, ranging from unprecedented voter suppression to dirty tricks by foreign actors. The conversation was part of the latest episode of GZERO World with Ian Bremmer. The episode begins airing nationally in the US on public television this Friday, October 30. Check local listings.

Emmanuel Macron in trouble: These are trying times for Emmanuel Macron, as the French president suddenly finds himself dealing with three major crises at once. First, France is currently reeling from a massive second wave of coronavirus, which has forced Macron to order a second national lockdown. Second, he is facing rising social tensions at home over the (long-fraught) question of integration into French society, after an Islamic beheaded a teacher who had shown derogatory images of the Prophet Mohammed as part of a lesson on free speech. The killing of three people outside a Nice church by a knife-wielding man of Tunisian origin yesterday heightened the sense of crisis. Lastly, Macron is facing a backlash from much of the Muslim world over his controversial comments in response to the teacher's murder, in which he pledged to crack down on extremism but also seemed to target Islam in general. There have been anti-French protests across the Muslim world, and several countries have called for a boycott of French goods. Macron doesn't face voters again until 2022, but he's already had to reset his presidency a few times. And his rivals — particularly from the far right, anti-immigrant National Rally party— may start to smell blood in the water.

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