Trump to Japanese PM Abe: 'I Remember Pearl Harbor'

Prime Minister of Japan Shinzō Abe and U.S. President Donald Trump hold a joint press conference in the Rose Garden at the White House in Washington D.C. on Thursday

Prime Minister of Japan Shinzō Abe and U.S. President Donald Trump hold a joint press conference in the Rose Garden at the White House in Washington D.C. on Thursday

Trump's relationships with world leaders are typically strained, and despite politicians trying to appease the orange troll doll, Trump still strings them along and lashes out against their policymaking. It came just days after Trump imposed heavy steel and aluminium tariffs on a number of US allies, including Japan.

The meeting, which left Abe exasperated, epitomized the paradoxical nature of Trump's closest relationship with a foreign leader.

Trump reportedly said "I remember Pearl Harbor" to Abe in what was described as a "tense" meeting, referring to the attack by Japan on the United States that led to the USA entering World War II.

The first meeting of the panel, consisting of defense and diplomatic experts and scholars, was held a day after the Defense Ministry released its annual white paper which pointed out that North Korea's nuclear and missile programs remain a serious threat to Japan despite the historic U.S.

But it underscores the tension that exists even with Abe, whom Trump mostly ignored ahead of his denuclearization summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un earlier this year.

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The 1941 attack happened more than four years before Trump was born, but the president acted like he was there when Japan bombed Pearl Harbor, catapulting the US into World War II. Abe has even stayed at Trump's private Mar-a-Lago club in Palm Beach, Florida during one of their many meetings.

Despite the growing rift between the two leaders - whose friendship was strengthened through their shared loved of hitting the links - Abe doesn't regret gambling on a strong relationship with Trump because without the personal bond, relations would be much worse, officials told the Post.

"I've never heard him [trash]-talk Abe". But according to The Hill, Japan's trade minister, Hiroshige Seko, said just last week that Tokyo might retaliate if Trump follows through with tariffs of 25 percent he has proposed imposing on auto imports from Japan and European countries.

According to Japanese officials, during tense exchanges, Abe waits for Trump to make his point, and finds an opening later in the conversation to rebut him.

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