Advertisement
  • White House
  • Russia

The deteriorating relationship between the United States and Russia is one of the biggest disappointments of 2017, Russian President Vladimir Putin’s spokesman told reporters today.

Russia would like to rebuild relations between the two adversaries, but “it takes two to tango,” Dmitry Peskov said today during a conference call with the press.

“We want and are looking for good mutually beneficial relations based on mutual respect, mutual trust with all countries, primarily with European ones, including the United States, but it is necessary to dance tango, as they say.”

Advertisement
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan (Associated Press)

The United States and Turkey began issuing reciprocal visas again on Thursday, more than two months after normal visa service was suspended in a dispute over the arrest of two U.S. diplomatic staffers in Istanbul — the latest friction between the two nominal allies.

The State Department said it was lifting the visa restrictions after it was assured by the Turkish government that U.S. Embassy employees would not be arrested when performing their official duties.

But the Turkish Embassy in Washington denied assurances were offered “concerning the ongoing judicial processes,” and suggested that the arrests were legal and justified.

Advertisement
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan
Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan (Associated Press)

The United States and Turkey began issuing reciprocal visas again on Thursday, more than two months after normal visa service was suspended in a dispute over the arrest of two U.S. diplomatic staffers in Istanbul — the latest friction between the two nominal allies.

The State Department said it was lifting the visa restrictions after it was assured by the Turkish government that U.S. Embassy employees would not be arrested when performing their official duties.

But the Turkish Embassy in Washington denied assurances were offered “concerning the ongoing judicial processes,” and suggested that the arrests were legal and justified.

  • White House
(Andrew Harnik / Associated Press)

President Trump isn’t taking a holiday vacation from Twitter. In one of three tweets early on Thursday from his West Palm Beach golf club, he charged that China was “caught RED HANDED” allowing oil shipments to reach North Korean ports.

Pronouncing himself “very disappointed,” Trump in effect was acknowledging the failure of his months-long effort to convince China to clamp down further on energy shipments going to the isolated country, which relies heavily on Beijing, as a way to pressure North Korea to abandon its nuclear weapons program. 

Trump’s tweet came after a South Korean newspaper published what it said were U.S. spy satellite images of Chinese ships selling oil to North Korean ships.

  • White House
President Trump visits a firehouse in West Palm Beach, Fla., on Wednesday.
President Trump visits a firehouse in West Palm Beach, Fla., on Wednesday. (Nicholas Kamm / AFP)

After another morning at his Florida golf club, President Trump visited firefighters and paramedics at a West Palm Beach firehouse and praised his own performance as president, including with a false boast.

Trump touted his administration’s work to roll back government regulations and cut taxes and claimed credit for the stock market hitting record highs. He also said he’s signed more bills into law than any other president, which isn’t true.

“We have signed more legislation than anybody,” Trump said, standing in front of a rescue vehicle inside the fire station. 

Advertisement
  • White House
President Trump visits a firehouse in West Palm Beach, Fla., on Wednesday.
President Trump visits a firehouse in West Palm Beach, Fla., on Wednesday. (Nicholas Kamm / AFP)

After another morning at his Florida golf club, President Trump visited firefighters and paramedics at a West Palm Beach firehouse and praised his own performance as president, including with a false boast.

Trump touted his administration’s work to roll back government regulations and cut taxes and claimed credit for the stock market hitting record highs. He also said he’s signed more bills into law than any other president, which isn’t true.

“We have signed more legislation than anybody,” Trump said, standing in front of a rescue vehicle inside the fire station. 

Sergei Lavrov
Sergei Lavrov (AFP/Getty Images)

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson asked Russia on Wednesday to reinstate its military personnel at a monitoring station in eastern Ukraine intended to quell escalating bloodshed.

In a telephone conversation with his Russian counterpart, Sergei Lavrov, Tillerson also urged Russia to “lower the level of violence” and underscored the Trump administration’s “concern” over increased fighting in Ukraine, the State Department said in a statement.

Russia last week withdrew its monitors from the Joint Center on Coordination and Control, which is tasked with verifying a much-violated ceasefire between Ukrainian forces and Russia-backed separatists. Moscow cited what it called restrictions and “provocations” from Ukrainian authorities that made it impossible for the observers to do their jobs.  

(Associated Press)

The Trump administration announced sanctions Tuesday against two more North Korean officials for their alleged role in Pyongyang’s expanding ballistic missiles program.

The Treasury Department “is targeting leaders of North Korea’s ballistic missile programs, as part of our maximum pressure campaign to isolate [North Korea] and achieve a fully denuclearized Korean Peninsula,” Treasury Secretary Steven T. Mnuchin said in a statement.

The nuclear-armed country tested an intercontinental ballistic missile last month that U.S. officials said appeared capable of reaching New York or Washington, a significant milestone in the country’s growing arsenal. 

Advertisement
(Associated Press)

The Trump administration announced sanctions Tuesday against two more North Korean officials for their alleged role in Pyongyang’s expanding ballistic missiles program.

The Treasury Department “is targeting leaders of North Korea’s ballistic missile programs, as part of our maximum pressure campaign to isolate [North Korea] and achieve a fully denuclearized Korean Peninsula,” Treasury Secretary Steven T. Mnuchin said in a statement.

The nuclear-armed country tested an intercontinental ballistic missile last month that U.S. officials said appeared capable of reaching New York or Washington, a significant milestone in the country’s growing arsenal. 

Perhaps the most significant move of Hatch’s career is the one that should, if there is any justice, end it.