President Donald Trump’s cordial relationship with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe seems to have hit a snag.
A report by The Washington Post reveals that Trump subtly warned Abe by remarking, “I remember Pearl Harbor,” during a confrontational meeting with the world leader before blasting the prime minister over Japan’s economic policies. Trump purportedly lambasted Abe over the United States’ trade deficit with Japan and hopes a trade deal can come about that benefits American beef and automobile exporters.
The 1941 attack happened more than four years before Trump was born, but the president acted like he was there when Japan bombed Pearl Harbor, catapulting the U.S. into World War II.
The pair have always had a strong camaraderie, but this recent incident seems to signify a shift in their relations.
“I’ve never heard him [trash]-talk Abe. And you can’t say that about a lot of the world leaders,” said a U.S. official, who spoke on condition of anonymity to the Post.
Yet in recent months, the leaders’ warm relationship has turned cold as they disagreed over Trump’s dealings with North Korea and the businessman-turned-politician’s threats to impose automobile tariffs on Japan.
Trump’s relationships with world leaders are typically strained, and despite politicians trying to appease the orange troll doll, Trump still strings them along and lashes out against their policymaking.
Banner/thumbnail photo credit: Reuters / Jim Bourg