“I just want to live a peaceful life,” is probably the motto of most people watching on as the historic talks in Singapore between the unlikely and abrasive duo, Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un, swept the world. But how does this huge swing in international diplomacy impact the global markets – and what is exactly at stake?
Is there truly an end to the so-called “war games?”
Is The Jury In?
On June 12th, many news outlets scrambled and flooded with security and general traffic to report the final outcome: a very comprehensive peace agreement aimed at the irreversible denuclearization of North Korea. The Wall Street Journal headlined with a somewhat unbelievable photograph of Trump and Kim. The photo showed off both men smiling and interlocking hands as they exchanged remarks.
Meanwhile, other outlets like the Financial Times, highlighted the huge diplomatic concessions overlooked by the nature of a peace agreement between two nationals initially teetering on the edge of nuclear warfare. The Financial Times specifically reported that the US halting military exercises in Korea and promising safety for Pyongyang as two significant compromises.
In particular, if one considered the fact that North Korea was already poised to denuclearize due to reported problems with the structural integrity of some of its nuclear facilities, then its move towards denuclearization should not count as part of a deal made in the interests of the United States.
Yet, despite the implied peace and and the incoming feelings of warmth between the leaders and the peoples of both countries, and the possible propagation of those feelings globally, what the United States stands to gain from this peace agreement for its large concessions is still not immediately clear.
What About The Rest: Europe? China? Japan?
Recently, Trump’s rapport with many European politicians – which many argue is at or near a nadir already – has sunken to even lower levels due to his dismissal of the Canadian prime minister, Justin Trudeau’s, trade concerns relating to the volatility of the deal.
The friction of Canada and the U.S. during the important G7 summit also created some feelings such as trepidation, uncertainty, fear, and hostility still remain.
Naturally, the tensions with Canada and with much of Europe in succession originated once again from the undiplomatic bluster of his remarks for his opponents and anyone supporting an agenda openly against his own – calling Trudeau “dishonest and weak” at the G7 summit.
The Asian countries controlling relatively powerful economic blocs – China and Japan – each saw a shift in the direction one might expect based on their political and economic relations to the United States. China received major benefits from the decrease in the US’ military presence in Asian regions (i.e. take the South China Sea as one of the events highlighting the importance of territoriality) and in its seemingly monolithic stance with regards to the status of the trade war.
Meanwhile, Japan’s stance towards peace was one of measured optimism and support, but its own interests and power balance shifting as a result of the newly negotiated diplomatic ties may be coming under some strain.
How Are We Faring Domestically?
Finally, we should remember that while Trump’s character on political platforms creates a sort of magnetism and focus that makes most feel as if they are experiencing events in a way that is more “momentary,” Trump’s historical woes won’t go away so easily even with a big diplomatic breakthrough.
Trump’s completely backed out of the 2015 Iran deal. This is something he has denounced several times in the past. It’s also something that stands as a landmark diplomatic achievement of the President before him, Barack Obama. He’s ignored the Paris Climate summit and Macron’s visits to the Senate to dissuade him from backing out of the Iran deal, or JCPOA.
He’s signed executive orders making businesses dealing with oil and similar resources to get access to those resources at the expense of the environment with the Keystone XL agreement. Betsy DeVos is held by many on both sides of the political camps to be an incompetent when it comes the matters of education, for which holds the role of Secretary of Education for the nation.