This is good to see.
At the 10:23 mark, the VOA’s Steve Herman put the question to the White House in a smart way on Monday by using the Kim regime’s own words. And Sarah Huckabee Sanders replied that the administration is not naive:
WSJ columnist Gerry Seib framed the issue nicely in a column posted before this briefing Monday. He wrapped up by citing a senior Obama administration official who wrestled with dilemma:
Ultimately, “that age-old dilemma still exists for U.S. policy makers,” says Evan Medeiros, former senior Asia analyst in the Obama White House. “Is North Korea serious about denuclearization—not really—and if North Korea continues to muddle that core issue, then will the U.S. and others end up accepting North Korea in the future as a de facto nuclear-weapons state? I believe that’s what North Korea wants.”
I thought the Washington Post’s piece last week would change the media and public conversation and focus it to this obvious problem — as Korea watchers have been trying to do since Trump said on March 8 that he’d meet Kim. But it turns out it was Trump’s reaction to the “Meet the Press” back and forth that did it.
A few more examples of the evolution of coverage in the past couple of days:
AP: Trump says North Korea agreed to denuclearize. It hasn’t.
Slate: What is denuclearization anyway?
Vox: The past three days of surprising North Korea news, explained
NPR: How does Kim Jong Un define denuclearization?
Politifact: Donald Trump gets ahead of the facts on North Korea denuclearization
Still not much focus on this from the right-wing media and Trump-supporting voices, though.