Corker’s feud with Trump was in part sparked by his sympathy for embattled Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, the subject of a lengthy profile in this week’s New Yorker from staff writer Dexter Filkins. The story paints a picture of Tillerson operating increasingly alone inside a diminished State Department that is far from happy about his imperial approach to leadership and proposed budget cuts for the institution. From the piece:

"Some observers believe that Tillerson is overwhelmed by the volume of decisions that he and his team have to make. According to current and former diplomats, Tillerson has centralized decision-making so aggressively that he is unable to keep up. A senior Trump Administration official told me, 'Where things fall in the cracks is in the area of management and leadership of the organization, and in leveraging the immense amount of expertise in that building.' Why isn’t Tillerson making better use of his people? 'I can’t explain it,' the official told me. 'I cannot frickin’ explain it.'

"Part of the problem is that Tillerson has not entirely given up the perspective of an imperial C.E.O. He rarely meets with legislators, and has sometimes been high-handed with fellow Cabinet members. 'It is a fundamentally counterproductive form of hubris,' the official told me. “People who should be easy allies for him, he’s kneecapping them.'"

Filkins also reports that allies are starting to notice the State Department’s growing irrelevancy. "Why call the Embassy when the only thing that matters is what the President tweets?" one Asian official told him.

Speaking of diplomacy, or lack thereof, the U.S. embassy in Ankara announced Sunday that it was suspending all non-immigrant visa services at diplomatic facilities across Turkey, The Post’s Erin Cunningham reports. The measures would make travel by Turks to the United States extremely difficult. It appears to be the latest setback in U.S.-Turkey relations following the arrest of a Turkish employee of the U.S. Consulate in Instanbul who had been accused of espionage — allegations that the embassy says are “wholly untrue.” In response, Turkey announced similar measures at its facilities in the U.S., citing concerns about security.

Meanwhile, Vice President Mike Pence walked out of an NFL game between the Indianapolis Colts and the San Francisco 49ers after a number of 49ers players took a knee during the national anthem to protest social injustice. Trump soon tweeted that he had asked Pence to leave the stadium if any players kneeled, but it seemed that the quick exit may have been pre-planned: Reporters accompanying Pence were advised to stay in the van because “there may be an early departure from the game,” according to NBC’s Peter Alexander.

Pence immediately took fire both for wading into the neverending NFL flag debate and for appearing at the game while traveling on Air Force Two. "After all the scandals involving unnecessarily expensive travel by cabinet secretaries, how much taxpayer money was wasted on this stunt?” tweeted Rep. Adam Schiff (D-Calif.), the ranking Democrat on the House Intelligence Committee, in response to Pence.

Liberty in North Korea, a group that offers help to those seeking to flee that country, released a powerful 7-minute video reenacting the story of a North Korean woman who was trafficked and sold twice in China while trying to make a new life for herself. The film is a reminder that for all the talk of nuclear weapons and “Rocket Man,” North Korean citizens are still the people who suffer most at the hands of Kim Jong Un's regime.

For Russian President Vladimir Putin’s 65th birthday, former Italian premier Silvio Berlusconi gave him bedsheets with a picture of the two world leaders shaking hands, according to La Stampa. You need to see the photo.

A pro-unity rally marches through Barcelona on Oct. 8 in response to last Sundays disputed referendum on Catalan independence. (Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)</p>

A pro-unity rally marches through Barcelona on Oct. 8 in response to last Sundays disputed referendum on Catalan independence. (Jeff J Mitchell/Getty Images)

Not so fast

After last week's chaotic independence referendum in Catalonia, the world's attention was fixed on shocking images of Spanish riot police using rubber batons against would-be voters.

But just out of view of the camera lenses stood the majority of people in this stylish, peaceful and prosperous region — those who did not vote in the disputed referendum at all. At least 6 in 10 registered voters stayed home, suggesting deep division and opposition to the split with Spain sought by the separatists.

As the showdown between the secessionist leadership in Catalonia and the central government in Madrid hurtles onward, many who abstained from the vote say they have been muzzled or ignored. “I will confess I feel a little afraid,” said Marta Gimenez, a recent law school graduate who works for a major Spanish bank. “I’ve been called a fascist whore” on social media, she said. 

The frustration also crosses the political spectrum. While many referendum opponents, Gimenez included, came from the right, there were plenty of critics from the left as well. “The international press has bought the Catalan politician’s narrative that’s been sold with a huge PR campaign and lots of money," Isabel Coixet, a well-known Catalan film director who has expressed her opposition to the vote for months. "It seems that the rest of us don’t even exist. We are at least half of the Catalans, and we have no voice."

Designer Javier Mariscal, who designed the mascot for the 1992 Barcelona Olympics, said that separatist leaders seemed to have no agenda beyond the vote itself. “Where is the plan?” he asked. “Will we be part of Europe? How? How will the economy run? How about trade? Who controls our borders?”

Even Catalan business leaders worry it makes no sense to break from Spain, a move that could put its status as a wealthy economic engine at risk. After a week of chaos, two Spanish banks — Banco Sabadell and Caixabank — announced plans to move their headquarters out of Catalonia to other cities in Spain.

But the weekend brought plenty of evidence that independence opponents won't stay quiet. On Saturday, thousands of them dressed in white and took to the streets of Barcelona under a banner in Spanish and Catalan reading, "Hablemos/Parlem" — "Let’s talk." The following day, hundreds of thousands of pro-unity marchers packed into the city waving Spanish flags.

“We don’t know how good we have it here," said Mariscal. "Let’s not blow it." — William Booth and Raul Gallego Abellan


The Post's Anne Applebaum surveys the situation in Britain and wonders if there isn't a huge political upheaval on the horizon, while the Straits Times says referendums like the one in Catalonia are only adding to that upheaval in many liberal democracies. Close to home, the Globe and Mail urges Justin Trudeau to stand firm ahead of a meeting with President Trump this week, while in South Korea there is still persistent fear that the United States may provoke a war that will leave Koreans in the crosshairs.

Is it Britain’s turn for revolution?
There’s a fervor in the air from the political left and right — and maybe more to come.
The problem with referendums, including Catalonia's
In the Internet age, voters want to have their own "playlist in politics", which explains why leaders are giving in by holding too-frequent referendums.
Trudeau’s Washington mission: Don’t play cute with Trump
Ottawa is facing the most protectionist American administration since the 1930s. That’s why the PM’s meeting with Mr. Trump is so important.
While the U.S. talks of war, South Korea shudders
There is no war scenario that ends in victory.


Over the last decade, the United States has slowly started to move away from the highly punitive policies of the "war on drugs." But an investigation by Reveal uncovers how one such rehab program in Oklahoma not only failed but brutally exploited the people it is charged with rehabilitating. In other news, The Post looks at the unique societal challenges faced by intersex Americans, while the New Yorker reports on the ways state guardianship laws are abused, upending the lives of the elderly.

They thought they were going to rehab. They ended up in chicken plants
“It was a slave camp. I can’t believe the court sent me there.”
The intersex rights movement is ready for its moment
The community has a message for the world: We aren’t disordered and we aren’t ashamed.
How the elderly lose their rights
Guardians can sell the assets and control the lives of senior citizens without their consent—and reap a profit from it.

The world's attention in Syria is mostly fixed on the country's east, where the Islamic State is clinging to its self-proclaimed capital and potential showdowns loom between the U.S., Russia and their proxy forces. But elsewhere, including around the capital of Damascus, civilian casualties skyrocketed in recent weeks despite ceasefires agreed to at a peace conference last month. "Now the planes are back, there is just terror all the time,” said one opposition activist. (Amer Almohibany/Agence France-Presse via Getty Images)

Trump administration releases hard-line immigration principles, threatening deal on ‘dreamers’
The Trump administration is calling for the funding of a border wall, a crackdown on minors from Central America and cuts to grants for 'sanctuary cities'
Dove ad that shows a black woman turning herself white sparks consumer backlash
Critics said the ad was reminiscent of Jim Crow-era ads about soap so powerful that it turned black people white.
A ‘long bad dream.’ Though Vegas shooting lasted minutes, recovery is far from over.
A bullet damaged Rosemarie Melanson’s lungs, stomach, liver and spleen. Her family waits and worries.

Breakfast time for this farmer's chickens is quite an event.