William Katz:  Urgent Agenda

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A NOT-SO-GENTLE REMINDER FROM THE REAL WORLD:  We're talking about presidential primaries and they're talking about nuclear weapons.  From Reuters: 

(Reuters) - Kim Jong Un plans to travel to Russia this month to meet President Vladimir Putin and discuss the possibility of supplying Moscow with weapons for the war in Ukraine, as Russia says it is seeking closer military ties with North Korea.

In a rare trip abroad, Kim would travel from Pyongyang, probably by armoured train, to Vladivostok, on the Pacific Coast of Russia, where he would meet Putin, the New York Times reported on Monday, citing U.S. and allied sources.

While in Vladivostok, a port city not far from North Korea, the two leaders would discuss Kim's sending Russia artillery shells and antitank missiles in exchange for Moscow's advanced technology for satellites and nuclear-powered submarines, the newspaper reported.

At a time when the United States has expressed concern about growing military ties between the two countries, the news of Kim's planned visit came after Russia said it was discussing holding joint military exercises with North Korea.

"Why not, these are our neighbours. There's an old Russian saying: you don't choose your neighbours and it's better to live with your neighbours in peace and harmony," Interfax news agency quoted Russia's Defence Minister, Sergei Shoigu, as saying on Monday.

When asked about the possibility of joint exercises between the two countries, he said they were "of course" being discussed, it said.

South Korean news agency Yonhap earlier cited South Korea's intelligence agency as saying Shoigu, who visited Pyongyang in July, had proposed to Kim that their countries hold a naval exercise, along with China.

The Kremlin said last week that Moscow intends to deepen its "mutually respectful relations" with Pyongyang, one of its close Cold War allies and also one of a small handful of countries to back Russia's proclaimed annexation of parts of Ukraine in 2022.

The New York Times reported that Kim could possibly go to Moscow, although that was not certain.

COMMENT:  I'd like to see the presidential candidates concentrate more on foreign policy.  It is stories like this that hint at the future we face internationally, yet foreign policy seems to be an afterthought these days.  It is not.  It is something that can kill us, while we count economic numbers.  China must be our main concern, but China is linked with Russia and North Korea, and Iran. 

We must never allow those nations to see us as weak.  That is how wars get started.

September 3, 2023