Trump shows Kim a trailer video with the two leaders as heroes

North Korea’s leader Kim Jong Un (L) and US President Donald Trump (R) walking together during a break in their talks at the historic US-North Korea summit, at the Capella Hotel on Sentosa island in Singapore. (AFP via The Straits Times / Kevin LIM)
Updated 12 June 2018
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Trump shows Kim a trailer video with the two leaders as heroes

SINGAPORE: US President Donald Trump, the former reality television star with a knack for theatrics, tried a dose of Hollywood drama as he sought to sway North Korean leader Kim Jong Un during their historic summit.
Using an iPad, Trump said, he showed Kim a short video made on his behalf, laying out the opportunities that could come with an agreement to eliminate North Korea’s nuclear arsenal — a story about “two men, two leaders, one destiny.”
Reminiscent of a movie trailer, the film shows images of warplanes and artillery while a narrator suggests in English and Korean that “a new world can begin today, one of friendship, respect and goodwill.”

“We had it made up. I showed it to him today, actually during the meeting, toward the end of the meeting and I think he loved it,” Trump said during a news conference. The video was broadcast on big screens at the start of Tuesday’s press conference.
Trump said the video was played for about eight members of the North Korean delegation, “and I thought they were fascinated by it.” The president added: “That could very well be the future.”
“I showed it because I really want him to do something,” he said.
Long an authoritarian state, North Korea has used propaganda films to shape public perception of its leaders, often portraying Kim and his family as gods. The current leader’s father, Kim Jong Il, was a longtime movie buff who had thousands of titles in his film collection and once led North Korea’s ministry of propaganda.
Trump, who starred on NBC’s reality show “The Apprentice” before entering politics, told reporters he was “not concerned at all” that the film could be used as propaganda, adding, “We could use that video for other countries.”
During their exchanges, Kim seemed to buy into the cinematography of their unlikely meeting, saying through a translator, “many people in the world that will think of this as a scene from a ... science fiction movie.”
The short film sought to place Kim as a central character living in a key moment in history.
Against a piercing musical score, the narrator asks, “What if? Can history be changed? Will the world embrace this change? And when can this moment in history begin? It comes down to a choice, on this day, in this time, at this moment, the world will be watching, listening, anticipating, hoping.”
The video suggests that Kim could “be the hero of his people. Will he shake the hand of peace and enjoy prosperity like he has never seen, a great life, or more isolation? Which path will be chosen?” The narrator references some of Trump’s main arguments to Kim, namely that eliminating his nuclear stockpile would allow his country to benefit economically and re-enter the world community.
The trailer portrays Trump and Kim as the two leading characters of the film — but the outcome is yet unknown. The narrator says the film is “featuring President Donald Trump and Chairman Kim Jong Un, in a meeting to remake history, to shine in the sun, one moment, one choice, what if? The future remains to be written.”


Bollywood’s Amitabh Bachchan becomes farmers’ star after clearing loans

Updated 21 November 2018
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Bollywood’s Amitabh Bachchan becomes farmers’ star after clearing loans

  • Farmers and other agriculture workers together make up about half India’s 1.3 billion people
  • Bachchan wrote in his blog this week that he had helped 1,398 farmers from the northern state of Uttar Pradesh and felt a ‘sense of accomplishment’

CHENNAI, India: Bollywood veteran Amitabh Bachchan was hailed on Wednesday as a star of India’s farmers after clearing loans worth more than 40 million rupees ($560,000) as an agricultural crisis forces many rural workers into extreme poverty.
India’s farmers have been hit hard by a drop in commodity prices, stagnant wages, record fuel prices and high fertilizer costs, sparking rallies across the country this year calling for better prices for produce and loan waivers.
Farmers and other agriculture workers together make up about half India’s 1.3 billion people.
“It is a very big problem that has left farmers across the country in dire straits,” Rakesh Tikait, spokesperson of the Bhartiya Kisan Union (Indian Farmers’ Union) told the Thomson Reuters Foundation in a phone interview.
“The government policies are flawed and need an overhaul. We are fighting for that change but are thankful for any help that comes along the way.”
Tikait said Bachchan’s gesture might have been symbolic but it meant a lot for farmers who were struggling to survive.
More than 12,600 farmers and agricultural workers committed suicide in 2015 alone, accounting for about 10 percent of all suicides in India, with almost 60 percent of suicides caused by bankruptcy and indebtedness, according to official data.
Bachchan, one of Indian cinema’s most revered actors, wrote in his blog this week that he had helped 1,398 farmers from the northern state of Uttar Pradesh and felt a “sense of accomplishment.”
“Gratitude leans across to the desire of removing some of the burdens that farmers continue to suffer ... and the inner peace it generates when the desired is completed,” he wrote.