|3||Kim Jong-un||North Korea||2|
|5||Shinzo Abe||Japan||Not Ranked|
|6||Emmanuel Macron||France||Not Ranked|
|7||Kolinda Grabar-Kitarovic||Croatia||Not Ranked|
|8||Abiy Ahmed||Ethiopia||Not Ranked|
|9||Sauli Niinisto||Finland||Not Ranked|
|10||Donald Trump||United States||9|
1. The only reason the Chinese didn't collude with Trump in 2016 is because Russia beat them too it. All joking aside, U.S. President Donald Trump has been the gift that keeps on giving to Xi and China. The Belt and Road Initiative has filled in for Trump and America's increasing absence on the world stage.
2. After the World Cup helped give off the appearance of a statesman, the autocratic leader of Russia traveled to Helsinki to have a summit with the President of the United States. Putin had Trump eating out of his hand, parroting Putinist propaganda on issues ranging from Russia meddling in the 2016 U.S. election to Macedonia's participation in NATO potentially leading to World War III. Russian media hailed the summit as a victory for Trump. President Trump was eviscerated even by fellow Republicans. So of course, Putin received an invitation to the White House to rip Trump a new one again. Putin most ardent enemy in Europe is Theresa May who has been struggling. Her diplomatic boycott of the World Cup didn't gain any traction among other countries and two cabinet members resigned over her interpretation of Brexit. Putin is feeling high.
3. Kim is still living large off of his summit with Trump. He got POTUS to salute one of his soldiers and praise him endlessly. Trump trumpeted the summit as a victory for denuclearization and Kim decided to ramp up his program as a result.
4. Trump threatened Iranian President Hassan Rouhani over mild comments Rouhani made. Trump continues to embolden hardliners such as Ayatollah Khamenei and the Quds Force. Iran will likely be a nuclear power soon since Trump backed out of the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action and even U.S. military power won't slow it down for long.
5. While President Trump has treated Abe like something to use and throw away, Abe has hit back by agreeing with the EU on a huge free trade deal. Also in the TPP, Japan is angling to be a leader in global free trade.
6. Macron's bid to be the leader of the Western Alliance faltered when Trump backed out of the Paris Climate Accord, the Iran Deal, and generally berated his allies. But France's World Cup win represented the benefits of multiculturalism and immigration. Defeating an ethno-state in the final drove home the point. That win has been soured by the Benalla Affair, in which a member of Macron's security detail beat the hell out of some protesters.
7. Grabar-Kitarovic was the true star of the World Cup. She traveled to the games from Croatia flying coach. She sat in the stands and cheered for her team. Then she took selfies with other fans. She also gave some world leaders Croatia jerseys. Her humility stole the show.
8. Ahmed heads one of the fastest growing economies in the world. On top of that, Ethiopia and Eritrea finally found peace. It's been a good few weeks for the reformer.
9. Niinisto, who hosted the summit between Putin and Trump in Helsinki, has led the charge to improve relations between the two former Cold War adversaries. Boy were relations good between the two. It was a love in.
10. The first U.S. president not to be considered the leader of the free world since World War II has fallen even farther down the list. He's actually in danger of falling off the list. Real intelligence professionals were seriously postulating as to whether Trump is a controlled asset of Russia. Others called him treasonous for backing Putin over all of his own intelligence agencies. He's trying to distract from his embarrassing performance in Helsinki by threatening Iran.