Daily Memo: Russia’s Shuttle Diplomacy, China’s Checkbook Diplomacy

All the news worth knowing today.

GPF Staff |July 25, 2018

In the past two days, Russia’s foreign minister has met with the heads of state of Israel, Germany and France. The visits were unannounced. At first blush, it’s unclear what the sudden burst of shuttle diplomacy means. Several media outlets have speculated that Syria was the main item on the agenda. It’s possible, though, that the meeting with Israel and the subsequent meetings with Germany and France were unrelated – and that the foreign minister’s sit-downs with European leaders had more to do with Ukraine. We should be cautious not to read too much into meetings with foreign leaders – after all, Russia’s foreign minister gets around quite a bit. Still, it’s hard to ignore the fact that these meetings took place amid new developments in Syria, where Israel confirmed it shot down a Syrian fighter jet on Tuesday, and Ukraine, where Russia seems to be advocating a new referendum plan.

Speaking of France, French President Emmanuel Macron is in trouble at home. His app

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