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Welcome to Axios World, where two evenings a week we break down what you need to know about the big stories from around the globe.

  • Thanks for joining me! Please tell your friends and colleagues to sign up, and I'd love your tips and feedback: lawler@axios.com.
  • Situational awareness: President Trump intends to nominate Patrick Shanahan as secretary of defense. Shanahan has been acting secretary since January.

It's been a chaotic few days in U.S. foreign policy, including flare-ups with Iran, North Korea and China.

  • We'll get to all that. But we're starting this edition with a big story centering on a small country, brought to you by Axios fellow Phanindra Dahal.

Thanks for reading — have a wonderful weekend.