Watching and Ignoring

Since there won’t be a Friday edition this week, Willis has kindly submitted this guide for your attentions over the next seven days…


Watch the G7 summit — We don’t often spend time on these talk-shop, photo-op summits, but this one could be interesting, if only because every single member has a bone to pick with Donald Trump. EU leaders, Canada, and Japan — America’s closest allies-all face US tariffs. Will anyone smile at the group photo?

Watch North Korea — News from inside the DPRK, the world’s most secretive state, hints at possible divisions of opinion over talks with the US. Three senior military officials were removed from their posts this week, according to US officials.

Ignore new calls for Catalan independence — Hoping to profit from political turmoil in Madrid, imprisoned Catalan independence leader Jordi Sànchez called on the Spanish government this week to drop its commitment to “the indisputable unity of the homeland.” Last week, Mariano Rajoy lost power to the Socialist Party’s Pedro Sánchez, who must now lead a minority government. But that doesn’t move us closer to Catalan independence. Only a commitment from Madrid to recognize a Catalan independence referendum can do that. That’s not on the agenda.

Ignore Venezuela’s protester release — Venezuela’s government has released dozens of opposition politicians and activists in recent days. This is not a political breakthrough because there is no common ground between President Nicolas Maduro and those who would force him from power. It’s more likely a bid to ease pressure on the government following a disputed election than a genuine gesture of conciliation or a sign that the regime is buckling under pressure. Those released are not allowed to use social media or travel abroad.


How will our cities and lives change in the future? What about a structure with a roller skating rink above a swimming pool, made out of transparent solar panels that power the entire park? This was the innovation invented by Eni's young researchers based on Luminescent Solar Concentrators, developed through Eni's research.

Watch the latest episode of Funny Applications, Eni's video series that imagines new uses for technology.

In an interview with GZERO World host Ian Bremmer, Hong Kong lawmaker Dennis Kwok, an outspoken pro-democracy advocate, expresses his concerns that the current "draconian" laws China's leadership is forcing upon his city has expedited the end of the "one country, two systems" policy established in 1997.

For 30 years, citizens of Hong Kong have gathered in Victoria Park on the evening of June 4 to honor the peaceful protesters massacred in Beijing's Tiananmen Square on that date in 1989. It has been the only public Tiananmen commemoration permitted on Chinese soil.

This year, the park was surrounded by barricades to keep people out. The officially stated reason for the shut-down? Crowds spread coronavirus. (In this city of more than 7 million, COVID has so far killed four people.)

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Nicholas Thompson, editor-in-chief of WIRED, helps us make sense of today's stories in technology:

What kind of technology is law enforcement using in their standoff with protesters?

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Ian Bremmer's Quick Take:

Big news, of course, that former Secretary of Defense Mattis comes out with a public statement basically calling Trump's rule, his actions, unconstitutional and unfit for office, more divisive than any president he's ever seen.

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