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Evan Vucci / AP

Boston Globe A1, "On trip, a more presidential look for Trump: His less diplomatic side mostly under wraps abroad," by Annie Linskey in D.C.: "[H]is days overseas revealed that he's capable of avoiding major gaffes and of sticking, for the most part, to the script."

The takeaway ... N.Y. Times A1, "Mild in Mideast, but Elbows Are Out in Europe: Trump Is Rattling a Continent Eager to Jab Back," by Mark Landler and Mike Shear in Taormina, Sicily: "[T]he smooth statesman celebrated in Saudi Arabia and Israel is now being portrayed as the ugly American, trampling America's friends and trashing the trans-Atlantic alliance."

  • Aides say the disrupter stance will pay dividends "in the form of better trade deals and more equitable security arrangements."
  • Europe reacts — Erik Kirschbaum in Berlin, for L.A. Times: "Across Europe, the reaction to Trump's trip, and especially the NATO photo opp, was less than charitable. Scotland's J.K. Rowling, the author of the 'Harry Potter' books and a frequent Trump critic, posted a film clip of the Trump-Markovic [pushing] incident on Twitter: ... 'You tiny, tiny, tiny little man.'"
  • "Trump's image as an outsider continued in Italy on Friday at the G-7 meeting in Taormina, Italy ... The presidents, chancellor and prime ministers of France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Canada and the United Kingdom walked the streets of Taormina. Trump followed in a golf cart."
  • N.Y. Times Quote of the Day ... Daniel Gros, president of the Center for European Policy Studies, on Trump's interactions with European leaders: ""Everybody sees that he's trying to be a tough negotiator with the Europeans, whom he apparently views as a bunch of weaklings. But nobody sees any use in firing back. They think there will be very little action on trade. Ultimately, they think it's harmless."

Go deeper

24 mins ago - World

Iran's nuclear dilemma: Ramp up now or wait for Biden

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

The world is waiting to see whether Iran will strike back at Israel or the U.S. over the assassination of Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, the architect of Iran's military nuclear program.

Why it matters: Senior Iranian officials have stressed that Iran will take revenge against the perpetrators, but also respond by continuing Fakhrizadeh’s legacy — the nuclear program. The key question is whether Iran will accelerate that work now, or wait to see what President-elect Biden puts on the table.

Updated 1 hour ago - Health

U.K. first nation to clear Pfizer coronavirus vaccine for mass rollout

A health care worker during the phase 3 COVID-19 vaccine trial by Pfizer and BioNTech in Ankara, Turkey, in October. Photo: Dogukan Keskinkilic/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images

The United Kingdom's government announced Wednesday it's approved Pfizer-BioNTech's COVID-19 vaccine, which "will be made available across the U.K. from next week."

Why it matters: The U.K. has beaten the U.S. to become the first Western country to give emergency approval for a vaccine that's found to be 95% effective with no serious side effects against a virus that's killed nearly 1.5 million people globally.

3 hours ago - World

Biden says he won't immediately remove U.S. tariffs on China

President-elect Joe Biden during an event in Wilmington, Delaware, on Tuesday. Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

President Trump's 25% tariffs imposed on China under the phase one trade deal will remain in place at the start of the new administration, President-elect Biden said in an interview with the New York Times published early Wednesday.

Details: "I'm not going to make any immediate moves, and the same applies to the tariffs," Biden said. He plans to conduct a full review of the current U.S. policy on China and speak with key allies in Asia and Europe to "develop a coherent strategy," he said.