7,000: When France's Yellow Vest movement erupted last November, protests drew more than 280,000 participants and paralyzed Paris. But seven months and a particularly unsuccessful European parliamentary election campaign later (the group's candidates received less than 1% of the vote), the leaderless movement produced just 7,000 protestors over the weekend and now teeters on the brink of irrelevance.

30 billion: Chinese technology giant Huawei said it expected a $30 billion financial hit from the Trump administration's ban on the firm acquiring US technology, with sales of Huawei smartphones outside mainland China forecast to plunge 60 percent over the next couple of years. Founder Ren Zhengfei said the company "didn't expect the US would so resolutely attack Huawei."

7: Internet outages continued to hit broad stretches of Ethiopia for a seventh day on Monday. Authorities have remained tight-lipped about the reason for the shutdown, but the timing has led to speculation the country may have cut access to prevent students from cheating on nationwide exams. #overkill

500: US Border Patrol recently apprehended 500 African migrants crossing the US-Mexico border in a single week. For context: 211 African migrants were apprehended along the US-Mexico border for the entire 2018 fiscal year. Asylum seekers hail from various African countries, including Eritrea, Angola, Cameroon, and Sudan.

Sudan's new strongman? – In response to a brutal crackdown that has reportedly killed more than 100 pro-democracy protesters in Sudan this month, the country's vice president, nicknamed Hemeti, has promised justice. "We are working hard to take those who did this to the gallows," he said during a televised speech. The problem is that Hemeti, whose real name is Mohamed Hamdan Dagolo, commands the Rapid Support Forces. That's a paramilitary force, widely known as the Janjaweed, which has carried out genocidal atrocities elsewhere in the country in recent years—and is accused of unleashing the very attack on protesters that Hemeti says demands punishment. Assuming that Hemeti fails to bring himself to justice, we'll be watching to see if he becomes Sudan's next strongman.

Iran's Centrifuges - Iran says that by June 27, its stockpiles of enriched uranium will exceed the limits imposed by the 2016 Iran Nuclear Deal, signaling the Islamic Republic's withdrawal from the agreement. (The Trump administration withdrew last year.) Tehran, which announced the restart of centrifuges last month, says there's still time to avoid this outcome if the European governments that signed the deal will help Tehran avoid new and tighter US sanctions. But the Europeans, though sympathetic, find themselves caught between a rock and a US-dominated global financial system. That's why they've reportedly warned Iran that if it does violate the terms of the deal, it can expect zero further help.

The Argentine Power Grid - Over the weekend, Argentina's entire electrical grid failed, cutting power to the country's 44 million people as well as to neighboring Paraguay and Uruguay. The lights are back on, but officials remain in the dark about the blackout's cause. An investigation will be complete in 15 days, but the outage has already delivered a shock to the political system. To reduce government debt and spur investment in Argentina's poor infrastructure (the quality of Argentina's electricity supply ranks 113th in the world), President Mauricio Macri cut energy subsidies, which pushed electricity bills higher. His main opponent in October's election says the blackout proves Macri's policies have failed.

What We're Ignoring: Turkmen Target Practice

Turkmen military readiness – If you click this link, you'll see Turkmenistan's president flashing his marksmanship skills from atop a bicycle. But despite vehement protest from Signal's (avid cyclist and aspiring Central Asian strongman) Alex Kliment, I'm ignoring this display of moveable gunplay for three reasons. One, he's traveling at about one mph. He's not even pedaling. Two, he's about 15 feet from the targets. Three, when I see the Turkmen president cycling toward me with a handgun, I'm going to duck and cover. I won't just stand there like a hapless paper target. The too-easily-impressed Kliment and President Berdymukhamedov are both out of luck.

Hong Kong's democracy movement scored a big win over the weekend by forcing the territory's chief executive to suspend plans to enact a law that would allow for the extradition of Hong Kongers to the Chinese mainland. Carrie Lam, Hong Kong's chief executive, has apologized in hopes that the swelling crowds, estimated at more than two million people, might go home.

But the worst political crisis to hit Hong Kong since the United Kingdom handed it back to China in 1997 is far from over. The protesters believe more action is needed to protect the independence of Hong Kong's political and court systems and to safeguard the basic rights of the territory's citizens.

The crucial next questions:

How will Beijing respond to this setback? By all indications, Beijing wanted this law to be passed as part of President Xi Jinping's goal of bringing Hong Kong – as well as self-governing Taiwan – under greater control from Beijing.

But the protesters' victory sets a dangerous precedent by showing that a big-enough mobilization of people can deny China something it wants. So far, Beijing's response has been to blame Lam for mismanagement and to suggest that foreigners are stoking the protests.

Mr. Xi arguably has bigger fish to fry at the moment (the deepening trade war with the United States and a potential upcoming meeting with Donald Trump at the G20 summit in Osaka next week). And since tight state control of Chinese media means that most people on the mainland have no idea that millions of protesters faced down the government, he can probably afford to make a tactical retreat on the extradition law -- for now.

But will the protesters force Beijing to act sooner rather than later? The intoxication of success sometimes encourages protesters to make new and tougher demands. For many in Hong Kong, suspending the law isn't enough; they want it dead. What's more, far from accepting Lam's apology, the streets are now calling for her resignation.

That's a more serious and immediate problem for China's leadership. Postponing the law to try to quiet the crowd is one thing. Allowing the streets to take down a government official is quite another.

The bottom line: Chinese officials know that inaction may encourage, rather than quiet, the triumphant crowds. More repressive action by the state is dangerous, but if protester demands continue to mount, Beijing may see a rougher course of action as unavoidable. And no one knows where that might lead.

Hundreds of thousands of protesters packed the streets of Hong Kong on Sunday to denounce a plan that would allow the territory's government to extradite residents to mainland China for trial. The demonstrations looked to be the largest since the British handover of Hong Kong in 1997, and more protests are scheduled for Wednesday.

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Some say Donald Trump is a clear favorite for re-election next year, while others insist that unless the Democrats nominate Leon Trotsky to take him on, he'll probably lose. A new CNN poll released this week found that 54% of respondents say Trump will win a second term.

There's persuasive evidence on both sides of this debate. Consider…

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President Donald Trump tweeted yesterday that, beginning on June 10, the United States would impose a 5 percent tariff on all goods entering the US from Mexico "until such time as illegal migrants coming through Mexico, and into our Country, STOP." He added that the tariff rate would steadily rise "until the illegal immigration problem is remedied."

A few thoughts:

This will affect lots of things that Americans buy: Mexico recently became the US' largest trade partner (in part because of the US-China trade spat). If these tariffs move forward, Americans looking to buy cars, electronics, and the makings of a fresh salad will pay more. Note: tomato-lovers and avocados-aficionados are particularly exposed.

Mexico can retaliate, a bit. Mexico's economy is much smaller than its northern neighbor's, so it has less leverage. But it can still target American exporters of meat, cheese, potatoes, cranberries, bourbon and speedboats (speedboats!) with retaliatory tariffs that could cripple their sales in Mexico, a major market. Mexico has done this once before, in response to Trump's metals tariffs last year.

The USMCA trade agreement, also known as NAFTA 2.0, is in serious jeopardy. The agreement has not been ratified in either the US or Mexico. US Democrats, led by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, object to parts of the agreement and have delayed a vote. Trump appears to be preparing to force that vote anyway. If it comes, the treaty may well be rejected.

Will it work? Trump has made the fight against illegal immigration the heart of his political message since he first launched his presidential campaign. Turning the screws on Mexico over this issue plays well with his base as he heads into 2020. But a total "STOP" to undocumented migrant flows is virtually impossible, so what specifically does he want from Mexico now? Mexican President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador has dispatched an envoy to Washington to find out.

Could it backfire? These tariffs would certainly hurt the Mexican economy far more than the US economy. But if Mexico's economy sinks, more people will want to leave Mexico, meaning more pressure at the US-Mexican border. And a crippled economy will leave the Mexican government with less money to address precisely the border problems that Trump says he wants solved.

Bottom line: The world is again reacting to a tweet, and Trump could just as easily reverse this plan. If not, these tariffs will have serious implications for Latin America's second-largest economy, for American consumers, and for US politics ahead of the presidential election.

Keep your eye on the timeline.

Today, we step away from the usual roundup of what we're watching and ignoring in order to cast a wider net over a busy week in international politics. Here are short cuts on several of the most important stories.

Bibi's in big trouble

Even after winning elections in April, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, also known as Bibi, was unable to form a government before Wednesday's deadline, a first in Israeli history. Now new elections must be held on September 17.

Opposition leader, and former Defense Minister, Benny Gantz appears set to again lead his Blue and White coalition against Netanyahu. The stakes are high for Bibi – he is facing corruption charges, and wants to be in a position to pass laws that grant him immunity from prosecution while he is in office.

One twist: this week, Gantz publicly floated the idea of a unity government between Blue and White and Netanyahu's Likud party—as long as Netanyahu is not prime minister. Could that happen? Likud may well come out in front in September, but Netanyahu's unprecedented failure to form a government means that his fellow Likudniks might start to see him as expendable after the vote.

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Special Counsel Robert S. Mueller just gave a brief statement about his report on the Russian government's attempts to influence the 2016 presidential election, and the question of whether President Trump sought to obstruct that inquiry. Here are two takes on what Mr Mueller said.

Robert Mueller's double-negative legacy
by Willis Sparks

With his brief statement this morning, Robert Mueller leaves behind a "double negative" legacy regarding the question of whether President Trump sought to obstruct justice: we didn't have confidence that the president didn't commit a crime.

And so there's something here to disappoint both the president and his detractors.

President Trump can't be happy that Mueller made explicit in this statement that "Charging the president with a crime was not an option we could consider" under Department of Justice policy. That comment will provoke endless speculation that Trump avoided prosecution only because he's president.

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