TODAY'S PAPER
69° Good Morning
69° Good Morning
Long IslandColumnistsDan Janison

POTUS to give his latest spin on crises from Iran to Venezuela

Expect him to follow up on last year's remarks on North Korea, Afghanistan and Iran. He also could talk about the budding U.S. trade war with China.

President Donald Trump speaks Monday at the Lotte

President Donald Trump speaks Monday at the Lotte New York Palace hotel in Manhattan during the UN General Assembly. Photo Credit: AP/Evan Vucci

One year ago, President Donald Trump addressed the United Nations General Assembly for the first time. He proclaimed the virtues of national sovereignty and imparted stern warnings to rogue states.

Trump's follow-up remarks on North Korea, Afghanistan and Iran will command attention when he returns to the body's rostrum Tuesday. Expect him also to say something about the budding U.S. trade war with China as both nations impose new import taxes on each other's products.

Last year, Trump said: "No one has shown more contempt for other nations and for the well-being of their own people than the depraved regime in North Korea. It is responsible for the starvation deaths of millions of North Koreans, and for the imprisonment, torture, killing, and oppression of countless more."

If the United States is forced to defend itself or its allies, he warned, "we will have no choice but to totally destroy North Korea. Rocket Man is on a suicide mission for himself and for his regime."

But Trump met in June with dictator Kim Jong Un, and the president this week is expected to adjust the tone, if not the full substance, of his 2017 remarks. Trump most likely will note their Singapore summit as a step toward North Korean nuclear disarmament. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo last month reported no progress toward that goal.

North Korea wants to sign a treaty officially ending the Korean War, in which combat ended in 1953. The response reportedly has been debated within the Trump administration.

As for Iran, Trump said last year: "We cannot let a murderous regime continue these destabilizing activities while building dangerous missiles, and we cannot abide by an agreement if it provides cover for the eventual construction of a nuclear program."

Since then, he has pulled the United States out of the Obama-era Iran nuclear deal. The rest of the signatories have stayed in the agreement, however. On the eve of this year's General Assembly, British Prime Minister Theresa May said Iran has honored terms of the multilateral pact.

Trump is talking tough again this week, with the stated goal of putting the squeeze on the theocratic republic. One forum will be the UN Security Council meeting Wednesday. It will be the U.S. president's turn to chair the council, which every year deals with nuclear nonproliferation.

Tensions are rising. Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, also due at the UN, said Sunday that a U.S.-allied country was behind an attack on a military parade that killed 25 people in the city of Ahvaz.

Last year, Trump spoke of strategic shifts in the Afghanistan War, now in its 17th year, and of ISIS on the wane. Violence and Taliban domination still go on in Afghanistan and Syria.

The crisis he cited in Venezuela last year also continues.

While at the UN, Trump is due to meet with leaders of Colombia, Egypt, France and Israel. Japan's Prime Minister Shinzo Abe met with the president over dinner Sunday at Trump Tower, where they said they discussed North Korea.

Comments

We're revamping our Comments section. Learn more and share your input.

Latest Long Island News