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Commentary Headlines

Commentary: Korean Peninsula at the crosshairs of great power rivalry

President Trump has called off a planned summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. Before his announcement, we spoke with Ambassador Chas Freeman, a retired American diplomat, about the broader strategic issues on the Korean Peninsula. Lodged between China, Japan and Russia, Korea has long been the object of great power rivalry. Occupied at times by both China and Japan, Korea was carved in half at the end of World War Two, with the North becoming a communist state allied with the Soviet Unio

Commentary: Trump’s nuke focus misses Kim Jong Un’s real leverage

Kim Jong Un has decided to show Donald Trump that the White House hasn’t cornered the market on drama, much less the Nobel Prize for bringing the two Koreas peace in their time. As the leader of a regime known for its bombast and abrupt about-faces, Kim’s threat to cancel their meeting in Singapore next month is par for the course in dealing with Pyongyang. But Kim also is sending a message: their agenda needs to go beyond his nuclear weapons and missiles.

Commentary: A reality check on Korea nuclear talks

When President Donald Trump and his South Korean counterpart Moon Jae-in first agreed to meet in Washington Tuesday, they seemed to genuinely believe they might be on the brink of a major rapprochement with the North. Now, there are concerns over whether the much-touted summit between Trump and Kim Jong Un scheduled for Singapore on June 12 will happen at all.

Commentary: Modern Meghan radicalizes the royals

In at least one thing, in its present time of troubles, the United Kingdom remains pre-eminent. Queen Elizabeth II (92), is the longest-serving head in the world, both of a state and a royal family whose magnificence and capacity for display easily tops anything else in the West. Though far outranked in wealth by the Sultan of Brunei (71), and in both wealth and power by King Salman of Saudi Arabia (82), she has a firm base of popularity. Good for her; a problem for her successors.

Commentary: Five Questions: Zoë Heller on the Harry-Meghan royal wedding

Novelist Zoë Heller isn’t interested in watching the marriage of Prince Harry to actress Meghan Markle. “The most interesting stuff about weddings for me is always the anthropological detail, the chance to watch how people are behaving at the reception afterward,” says Heller, author of books that include “The Believers” and “Notes on a Scandal.” “But you’re not going to get any of that.” Of more interest to Heller: how a worldly woman like Markle will cope with the “drear” of royal life.

Commentary: ‘Mexico First’ frontrunner uses Trump playbook in crunch election

It’s crunch time for Mexico, where the course of the next two months will determine whether the country turns its back on a generation-long project of opening its economy to the world and its political system to the winds of democratic change. The decision ultimately rests with Mexican voters — and, to some extent, with U.S. President Donald Trump.

Commentary: Trump’s Iran decision gives unexpected gift to Putin

Donald Trump’s decision to withdraw from the Iran nuclear accord has brought a bonus for the Kremlin. The U.S. president’s Iran action means that Vladimir Putin could make up with the soaring price of oil – the real backbone of the Russian economy and his hold on power – for what he lost from the sanctions.

Commentary: How to avert more death and despair in Gaza

Scores of Palestinians killed. Thousands wounded. That’s the toll exacted over the past seven weeks by Israeli Defense Forces (IDF) against protesters along the security fence separating Gaza from Israel. Unless the situation gets defused quickly, the carnage is likely to get much worse.

Commentary: China’s Muslim minority faces a modern Orwellian nightmare

In China’s northwest Xinjiang province, the predominantly Muslim Uighur minority have nowhere to hide. Facial recognition software reportedly alerts authorities if targeted individuals stray more than 1000 feet from their homes and workplaces. Residents face arrest if they fail to download smartphone software that allows them to be tracked, according to social media users. Simply wishing to travel outside China can be cause for arrest, with Beijing detaining family members and using its politica


U.S. intelligence officials brief lawmakers on Russia probe

WASHINGTON U.S. lawmakers, including a senior Democrat, went to the Justice Department for first of two planned classified briefings on Thursday from FBI and intelligence officials on an FBI probe into Russian election meddling after President Donald Trump made unsubstantiated claims about a "spy" being used against his campaign.