Welcome to Axios World, where two evenings a week we break down what you need to know about the big stories from around the world.
Boris Johnson and Mike Pompeo today at the State Department. Photo: Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images
We're less than 24 hours away from President Trump's announcement on the Iran nuclear deal, and all indications are that he will throw the agreement into a death spiral by declining to waive sanctions.
Between the lines: This is one of the most significant decisions of Trump's presidency, and key players on both sides of the debate have been making last-ditch attempts to shape it.
I asked Jake Sullivan, who as a top aide to then-Secretary of State Clinton was tasked with opening the secret channel with Iran that set the stage for nuclear negotiations, what he would tell Trump if he had two minutes to convince him to stay in the deal.
His bottom line: "Each of the objections to the deal are better dealt with by staying in than by leaving,” and “walking away from the deal means breaking international unity, taking the pressure off Iran and making people go to bed at night in capitals around the world worrying more about Washington than about Tehran.”
I also asked the Atlantic Council's Matthew Kroenig whether there was a policy argument to be made for tearing up the deal now.
Go deeper: Defining week for the Trump Doctrine
Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios
Japan has long taken a hawkish stance against China and its growing influence, but the Asian rivals have recently been working to thaw their relationship after years of tension— in large part because both fear Trump's trade war, Axios' Erica Pandey writes.
The big picture: The Japanese "still fundamentally see China as the greatest threat to Japan, and they're still deeply reliant on the security relationship with the U.S. [in the East China Sea], but they're hedging," Dan Sneider, an expert on East Asia at Stanford University, tells Erica. "They're accepting the reality that China's going to be a major power, and they also have to hedge against the uncertainty of American foreign policy."
North Korean soldiers look across the border between North and South Korea. Photo: Jung Yeon-Je/AFP via Getty Images
Weeks before his planned summit with Kim Jong-un, President Trump reportedly pushed the Pentagon to consider reducing troop numbers in South Korea. Ryan Hass of Brookings writes for Axios Expert Voices that "such a move could elevate the risk of catastrophic conflict."
Matt Hancock, the U.K.'s minister for digital issues, told my colleagues Steve LeVine, Sara Fischer and Alison Snyder that he is open to forcing platforms such as Facebook and Google to pay for the data they mine from their hundreds of millions of users.
Putin at his inauguration. Photo: Sasha Mordovets/Getty Images
After 18 years as Russia's president or prime minister, Vladimir Putin was sworn in for a new six-year presidential term today.
It is also the first anniversary of Emmanuel Macron's election as France's president.
The Phnom Penh Post was sold to an investor with ties to the Cambodian government, the paper reports, in a further signal that the free press is disappearing in the country, Axios' Michael Sykes writes.
João Lourenço, the hand-picked successor of long-serving autocrat José Eduardo dos Santos, took office in the southern African country of Angola last September with incredibly low expectations, the Economist reports:
The Kakava Festival, at which the Roma community celebrates the coming of spring, in Edirne, Turkey. Photo: Chris McGrath/Getty Images
“The United States does not need John Kerry’s possibly illegal Shadow Diplomacy on the very badly negotiated Iran Deal. He was the one that created this MESS in the first place!”— Trump responds on Twitter to a Boston Globe report that Kerry met with Iran’s foreign minister to try and “salvage a deal he helped craft.”
Thanks for reading! See you Thursday evening.