To mark the United States' independence, North Korean launched an intercontinental missile capable of reaching Alaska for the first time.
In Wasilla, Mrs Palin, whose remaining value to her party is that she makes the President sound articulate, realized, suddenly, that after nine years of looking out her window at Russia- where they've got nukes out the ying-yang- she now needs to train her gaze southward for the ones coming from Pyongyang.
The President was back in The White House after a weekend of golf, lying on Twitter, slagging the media outlets that stubbornly refuse to fail, and issuing a video of himself pretending to put a Greg Gianforte handshake to a CNN reporter (now Congressman, the billionare thug told reporters the video was '"a “distraction” from “good work” being done by the president').
Rested, fit, and carefree, he told Miss World- UN Ambassador Nikki Haley- to threaten North Korea with a shooting war and China with a trade one that will really piss off his base once prices at Wal-Mart spike from shortages of cheap stuff.
Ambassador Haley read her script with all the verve and conviction with which, at every State of the State address to the South Carolina legislature, she vowed to crush the state's nearly non-existent labor unions, and defund the arts as alien to the core functions of government.
Today the President got on Air Force one to go to Poland, the first stop on another if-it's-Friday-it-must-be-Berlin whirlwind.
In none of the nations the President will visit is there an American ambassador. He fired them all in January.
There are powerless acting ambassadors treading water in those capitals, waiting for instructions from the leaderless regional desks in Secretary Tillerson's Foggy Bottom ghost town.
The President doesn't have business pending in Poland, but the rulers promised, a la Field of Dreams, if he would come, they would bus in smiling, cheering, protest-free crowds to make the Saudi street-liners- who so wowed Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross- look like the fake news photos of Inauguration Day.
The President says he will give a major speech in Poland. His entourage was still trying to write it when he landed.
He can do little but throw air kisses back to the Polish authoritarians. He has nothing to offer when it comes to Neighbor Russia's endless yearning for slices of Poland every few decades.
All he can do is ask, "Have you paid up with NATO?"
Mostly the President wants to pick up some tips from the nationalist, right-wing government in Warsaw. Not only do they still remember how to manufacture happy crowds from the days of the Communists, they have defanged the press and castrated the courts.
Of course, the Republican leadership of the North Carolina General Assembly could school both heads of state on how to pay lip service to democracy while throttling it in broad daylight (the President can invoke the Fifth Avenue Defense), but Poland is in Europe, the rest of whose leaders await him at the G20 Summit this weekend.
The President lacks pals among the leaders of the Old World. It is not so long since he mooned them all on his maiden trip overseas.
It is unlikely they will be as solicitous, this time, of his need for stroking, short presentations, issue papers with pictures, and his preferred brand of ketchup.
Such is the President's amazing ability to distort reality and gravity that a hastily-conceived sidebar with the Russian president will overshadow everything else on the G20 agenda.
This is just as well, as the President is against all of it, and the final communique of the leaders will announce their unanimous agreement that the moon is round and pizza is delicious.
No one knows what the American and Russian presidents will talk about. There is no agenda.
The Secretary of State, who sits on the largely derelict sixth floor of the State Department with five confirmed assistants, says the Administration wants to work on restoring military and diplomatic relationships with Russia so the President can get them to fix things for him in other places the way he has gotten China to fix North Korea.
Jared Kushner, who is accountable only to the President over whom he increasingly exercises a frat boy Svengali's power, has a larger personal staff than Secretary Tillerson.
The President will be hard-pressed not to come out of the Putin tete-a-tete looking any better than the village idiot. He has already sent his "no worries" message to Putin about the Russian investigations being iced.
He cannot talk too tough about the Russian hacking of elections here, in France, Germany, and Ukraine. To concede any Russian influence in his election will make the President's head explode. Or, worse still, open the secret dossiers to the leakers.
The President has already staked his legitimacy on the popular vote having been stolen from him by millions of nonwhite illegal voters.
Or the fake news media.
Or ex-President Obama, who failed to stop the Russian hacking that didn't occur because it was probably someone else but forced Mr Trump's campaign staffers to take lots of meetings with dodgy Russians to assure them sanctions relief was on the way.
Putin will come out with his spy mansions in Maryland and New York restored. Loads of Russian IT techs will apply for US short-term visas.
So many trains to choose from, so many ways to wreck them. And in only four days:
Getting ready to leave for Poland, after which I will travel to Germany for the G-20. Will be back on Saturday.— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) July 5, 2017