The best words: Trump's tour of Asia in quotes

Donald Trump wraps up a 12-day tour of Asia on Tuesday that has been dominated by North Korea's nuclear weapons drive, alleged Russian election meddling, and trade.

Published: 14th November 2017 03:34 PM  |   Last Updated: 14th November 2017 03:34 PM   |  A+A-

US President Donald Trump (File | AP)

By AFP

MANILA: Donald Trump wraps up a 12-day tour of Asia on Tuesday that has been dominated by North Korea's nuclear weapons drive, alleged Russian election meddling, and trade.

But there have also been some lighter moments and a lot of glad-handing as leaders across the region rolled out the red carpet for one of Twitter's most famous users.

Here are select quotes by the US president from the trip.

North Korea

"North Korea is a country ruled as a cult. At the centre of this military cult is a deranged belief in the leader's destiny to rule as parent protector over a conquered Korean peninsula and an enslaved Korean people." 

-- Trump, in South Korea, takes the gloves off on North Korea.

Sand trap 

"Wasn't it amazing?  And he was standing up.  I told him -- I said, I'm not going to ask -- because it was shot from a helicopter.  I said, I will not ask if that's you, but if it was, I'm very impressed because you're better than any gymnast I've ever seen."

-- Trump on footage apparently showing Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe taking a tumble in a bunker during their golf game.

Trade with China

"I don't blame China, I blame the incompetence of past admins for allowing China to take advantage of the US on trade leading up to a point where the U.S. is losing $100's of billions. How can you blame China for taking advantage of people that had no clue? I would've done same!"

-- Trump tweets on how it wasn't China's fault that they built up a $350 billion trade surplus with the US.

North Korea again

"NoKo has interpreted America's past restraint as weakness. This would be a fatal miscalculation. Do not underestimate us. AND DO NOT TRY US."

-- Trump warns North Korea by tweet as he arrives in Beijing.

I like you

"Our relationship is really extraordinary." 

-- Trump on Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe.

And you

"My feeling toward you is an incredibly warm one."

-- Trump on Chinese President Xi Jinping.

AND you

"We've had a great relationship. This has been very successful."

-- Trump on Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte.

You, not so much

"Why would Kim Jong-un insult me by calling me 'old,' when I would NEVER call him 'short and fat?'"

-- Trump on North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un.

Russia

"When will all the haters and fools out there realize that having a good relationship with Russia is a good thing, not a bad thing. There (sic) always playing politics - bad for our country. I want to solve North Korea, Syria, Ukraine, terrorism, and Russia can greatly help!"

-- Trump on why he should just be allowed to get along with Putin.

North Korea redux

"The future of this region and its beautiful people must not be held hostage to a dictator's twisted fantasies of violent conquest and nuclear blackmail."

-- Trump tells Asian leaders North Korea is a menace.

Enthusiasm levels

"And companies are moving into the United States.  A lot of companies are moving. They're moving back. They want to be there. 

"The enthusiasm levels are the highest ever recorded on the charts." 

-- Trump tells Southeast Asian leaders what life has been like in the US since his election.

Respect and red carpets

"The way they've treated us, the respect that Japan and China and South Korea, in particular -- because we went there -- have treated us has been really a great respect for the people of our country, the people of the United States.

"And we very much appreciate it, I will say that. It was red carpet like nobody, I think, has probably ever received.  

"And that really is a sign of respect, perhaps, for me a little bit, but really for our country."

-- Trump on the welcome he has received in Asia.

Always sunny

"I really enjoyed being here and the weather is always good, today it's pretty good. One thing about the Philippines, eventually it gets good no matter what."

-- Trump on the meteorological certainties of Manila.

Duracell president

"I mean, we are going to lots of meetings, right?  And, by the way, anybody that took the bet, pick up your money, okay?  And the hard stuff was that.  Really hard."

(Question from reporter): "What was the bet again?"

"Well, a lot of people said it's almost physically impossible for someone to go through 12 days. What I didn't want to do was come back because I would have had to come back."

-- Trump on his powers of stamina after suggestions that the trip might tire out the 71-year-old.

Take it easy

"Ultimately, it will all work out. It always works out. It has to work out."

-- Trump gets phlegmatic on the North Korean crisis.

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