Here is how China’s Xinhua news agency reports the call
Speaking by telephone, Xi told Trump that he appreciates the US president’s desire to resolve the Korean Peninsula issue politically, hoping that the United States and the DPRK will start dialogue as soon as possible and strive for positive results.
Xi added that he hopes all parties concerned will show goodwill and avoid doing anything which might affect or interfere with the improving situation on the peninsula, calling on them to maintain the positive momentum on the Korean Peninsula issue.
Xi pointed out that China remains persistent in denuclearizing the Korean Peninsula, maintaining peace and stability on the peninsula, and resolving the nuclear issue through talks.
Aid agencies estimate that more than 440,000 internally displaced people have returned to their homes in Syria during the first six months of this year. In parallel, UNHCR has monitored over 31,000 Syrian refugees returning from neighbouring countries so far in 2017. Since 2015, some 260,000 refugees have spontaneously returned to Syria, primarily from Turkey into northern Syria.
The main factors influencing decisions for refugees to return self-assisted mostly to Aleppo, Hama, Homs, Damascus and to other governorates are primarily linked to seeking out family members, checking on property, and, in some cases, a real or perceived improvement in security conditions in parts of the country.
3-- Democrats and the Crisis of Legitimacy
71% of eligible voters didn’t vote for the Democratic Party candidate. 73% didn’t vote for Donald Trump (Clinton won the popular vote). Ninety million eligible voters (40%) didn’t cast a ballot at all. Why it makes sense to present outcomes in terms of what voters didn’t do is (1) the duopoly Parties control which candidates and programs are put forward and (2) voters have fled the duopoly Party system rather than simply switching Parties. ...
. Between 2009 and 2016 somewhere between eight and ten million registered voters— 20% of registered Democrats, fled the Democratic Party. In conjunction with the loss of over 1,000 legislative seats over this same period, the Democrats were in the midst of a full blown political crisis going into the 2016 election....
By 2016 over 40% of registered voters, including those who had recently left the Democratic Party, were self-defined as unaffiliated with either duopoly Party (graph below). And this figure leaves aside thirty million eligible voters who aren’t registered to vote....
Hillary Clinton was the insiders’ candidate precisely because she, amongst the available murderers, thieves, rubes and hacks, put the best liberal face on programs that actual democratic choice would have tossed into the rubbish bin years ago. More domestic spying? More trade deals that benefit connected insiders? More looting by corporate titans? More privatization of the public realm? Hadn’t the 20% of affiliated Democrats who left the Party by 2016 already rejected this program?
4-- Blocking Peace in Korea by Lying about the Past
Pyongyang... tends to keep its promises. This is not to say that North Korea is a wonderful, virtuous country, only that its government is interested in peace, very interested. Of course, it is. After all, violence is a tool of the powerful, not the weak....
One of the first examples of how Washington “pockets concessions” and then later “reverses course” is the armistice that was supposed to lead to a peace treaty after the Korean War was halted in 1953. Yes, right from the very beginning Washington’s lack of good faith was evident. Under the armistice that was signed, introducing qualitatively new weaponry to the Peninsula was prohibited, but Washington brought in nuclear cannons and Honest John nuclear-tipped missiles in January 1958. They continued stockpiling nuclear weapons until 1991. Then they switched to more effective conventional weapons. The US also had ICBMs that could strike from a distance and nuke-equipped submarines that could be moved to the Korean Peninsula at any time. Thus the Korean Peninsula was originally nuclearized by Washington and has been kept that way ever since 1958.
The Agreed Framework
the Syrian Army has de facto sliced rebel-controlled territories in East Ghouta into three isolated pockets, severely compromising the ability of militant groups to further organize an effective defense.
7-- West Virginia, the class struggle and the fight against Internet censorship
Within the ruling class, there are growing warnings about the way workers have used the Internet to organize their struggles and escape the stranglehold of the corporatist, anti-working-class trade unions.
In their four-decade-long string of unending betrayals, the unions have depended on a monopoly of information and the isolation of workers to lie, threaten and browbeat workers to submit to concessions. This is beginning to break down. In particular, social media platforms have allowed workers in different sectors and countries to communicate directly with each other, organize protests and share information.
The New York Times, in an article published March 8 (“West Virginia Walkouts a Lesson in the Power of a Crowd-Sourced Strike”) comments worriedly that West Virginia teachers “found ways to organize and act outside the usual parameters of traditional unionism. Teachers and service workers across the state aired their frustrations in an enormous Facebook group, and their walkout ultimately included members of three different unions and many people who did not belong to a union.”
The rebellion of teachers against the back-to-work order from the unions “was a crucial turning point, and a telling one,” the Times writes. “[T]he rank and file, not union leaders, came to call the shots