Trump-Kim summit sets new 'error' in Singapore's history

PHOTO: Screenshot from State Department website
PHOTO: Screenshot from State Department website

The Trump-Kim summit that took place on Tuesday (12 June) was historic for more than one reason: a number of media outlets also managed to make some historic gaffes about Singapore.

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Um, didn’t we already separate from Malaysia?

PHOTO: Screenshot from US State Department websites
PHOTO: Screenshot from US State Department websites

It seems the US State Department didn’t get the memo: the long hoped-for reunification is between the two Koreas, not Singapore and Malaysia. But hey, you’ll always be our bae, Malaysia. Even if your new-old Prime Minister makes us more than a little nervous.

Still, it kind of beats being thought of as being a part of China. At least the Americans are getting (geographically) closer.

Lee Haz…what?

PHOTO: Screenshot from Associated Press article
PHOTO: Screenshot from Associated Press article

Much of the pre-summit talk was about Singapore being put on the map, and what an incredible branding opportunity it is for the country.

Unfortunately, while you can put your country on the map, you still can’t teach people how to pronounce your Prime Minister’s name correctly. And so it went with the Associated Press, who came up with a head-scratching pronunciation guide for Lee Hsien Loong’s name.

Thanks to the wonders of syndication, the error appeared in various media outlets, including The New York Times.

‘Unknown man’ Ong Ye Kung?

PHOTO: Redmund Law
PHOTO: Redmund Law

It’s the selfie that went around the world: Singapore’s Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan took a photo at Gardens by the Bay with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, possibly the first selfie Kim has ever taken.

But wait: there was a third man in the selfie – Education Minister Ong Ye Kung, a man often touted as a potential future Prime Minister. Unfortunately, Ong had the misfortune of being identified by The Guardian as an “unknown man”. Not quite a gaffe but surely you have to be more than just an “unknown man” to pose up close with “Rocket Man”?

Treasure map?


Did you know that The St Regis, Capella and Shangri-La Hotel are all on the same island? Neither did we, until we saw the BBC’s map of Singapore. Someone neglected to tell the Beeb’s infographics artist that only Capella is located on Sentosa and that the other two hotels are located on mainland Singapore.

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