Good morning, and welcome to the Global Situation Report for Tuesday, 30 May 2023.
- MEDDLING: Mexico’s Ebrard to campaign against Republicans
- Mexico’s Secretary of State Marcelo Ebrard scheduled another trip to the United States next month to campaign against U.S. immigration laws and the presidential campaign of Florida Governor Ron DeSantis.
- Ebrard met with the Latino community in Florida earlier this month, days before Mexican President Andres Manual Lopez Obrador urged Latinos not to vote for DeSantis in the 2024 Republican primary.
- Ebrard denied that he was attempting to influence U.S. elections, but added, “If you allow the first domino to fall, then the 24 states governed by Republicans will follow and then it [immigration laws] will be the subject of the campaign.”
Why It Matters: Ebrard’s last meeting in Florida focused on “how to defend our sisters and brothers throughout the United States, and especially in Florida” from what he characterized as racist and anti-immigrant laws. Ebrard is one of the top contenders to replace AMLO on the Morena Party ticket in June elections next year.
- BRICS BANK: China to deepen cooperation with New Development Bank
- Chinese officials said they were ready to deepen cooperation with the New Development Bank ahead of its annual conference in Shanghai today and tomorrow.
- The New Development Bank was previously referred to as the BRICS Bank.
Why It Matters: New Development Bank is an effort by BRICS countries to build a competitor against U.S.-dominated global financial institutions like the International Monetary Fund and World Bank. China sees New Development Bank as a beachhead against U.S. global financial control.
- WORLD TOUR: SECDEF on four-nation tour
- U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin is scheduled for a four-nation trip to meet with defense leaders from allied countries.
- Austin is scheduled to meet with his counterpart in Japan, take part in the Shangri-La Dialogue in Singapore, meet with Indian defense officials in New Delhi, then wind up his trip to commemorate D-Day in France and meet with French and U.K. defense officials.
Why It Matters: While most eyes are on U.S.-Japanese defense cooperation against China, don’t sleep on India. The United States and India announced a strategic defense cooperation pact earlier this year. Both countries committed to joint military technology development and munitions production. This is an important meeting as the U.S. tries to shift the balance of power in the Indo-Pacific.
- LEFTIST UNION: Lula promises South American reintegration
- Brazilian President Luis Inacio Lula da Silva welcomed Venezuelan dictator Nicolas Maduro to Brasilia over the weekend ahead of efforts to restart the Union of South American Nations.
- Lula heralded “the return of South American integration” and lent political legitimacy to the Maduro regime.
Why It Matters: Lula da Silva campaigned on regional integration to establish a common currency for the South American Common Market (Mercosur) and/or a BRICS common currency to move South America off the global dollar system.
- BLOC PARTY: China backs Serbia against NATO
- Chinese officials expressed their support for Serbia following an armed confrontation between Serbian forces and NATO-troops in Kosovo (KFOR). Some 30 NATO KFOR troops were injured on Monday as Serbians attempted to take over municipal offices in the Kosovo breakaway region.
- The Chinese Foreign Ministry urged NATO officials to “respect the sovereignty and territorial integrity” of Serbia. Neither China nor Russia recognizes Kosovo.
Why It Matters: Serbia remains in the middle of the East-West divide as officials warned this month that the country was the target of a Western-backed color revolution. Both sides could use a renewed conflict to draw resources and attention away from Ukraine as the Serbia-Kosovo conflict becomes a new front in Cold War 2.0.
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