Weekly Report 8-14 June 2020

Tension between the United States and Germany

Donald Trump decided to remove 9500 troops from Germany, a strong ally to the USA, and one of Europe’s great powers.

This withdrawal caught the Department of Defense and the Pentagon by surprise, which in turn tried to justify such cut through past G7 events, which caused tension between Donald Trump and Angela Merkel and linking it with the influence of the former American ambassador in Germany, Richard Grenell, still has. However, this cut points out transatlantic tensions that have been worsening since an emergency meeting with the rest of the NATO members in 2018, in which Donald Trump threatened to pull the USA from the organization, if the other member states did not comply with the minimum of 2% of GDP in defense expenditure.

This decision by Donald Trump has sparked much criticism, given that if the USA continues to leave the organization in the background, that could lead to a Russian breakthrough in Western Europe (something that is not desired by Western Europe or the USA).

The return of North Korea

In 2018, the United States of America began conversations with North Korean leader, Kim Jong-Un, after great tensions between the two powers, due to North Korea’s desire to increase its nuclear weapons.

The truth is that, although the world has not shown confidence in the possible success of such negotiations, North Korea was receptive of them in the sense of not only stopping nuclear tests and easing tensions on the Korean peninsula, but also deepening relations between Washington and Pyongyang.

However, hopes vanished when foreign minister Ri Son-Gwon stated on the anniversary of the second summit between Trump and Kim Jong-Un, that relations between USA and North Korea faded and that nuclear plans had resumed.

Thus, the resumption of nuclear plans, according to Ri Son-Gwon, is justified by the fact that, at the second summit in Vietnam, Washington called for the dismantling of its nuclear weapons before the sanctions on North Korea were eased.

Such proposal was not well regarded by North Korea, which led to worsening relations, because it was perceived that the USA only wanted to accumulate political goals without making any compromise, which, consequently, accentuated the gap between the two powers and caused the resumption of nuclear plans. Due to the failure of the second Summit in 2019, North Korea increased its nuclear proliferation plans, signaling that it would not be postponing them, possibly leaving out a relationship with Washington, assuming there is no sign of backtracking on its stance.

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