In less than a week, the issue that has lurked behind President Trump's drive to talk to North Korea -- his desire to reduce U.S. troop levels at overseas bases -- has gone from inside baseball to front page headlines in the U.S. and South Korea. NBC got the scoop about John Kelly's pre-Olympic discussions… Continue reading The troop issue is officially in the public discussion. Now the question becomes: Will Trump’s put-it-all-out-there manner force the Koreas to admit their game?
I suspect Moon Jae-in. And that would not be good. What would be great is if Moon would ask Kim Jong Un whether he still wants to takeover South Korea and, if Kim says no, then ask why he is building so many nuclear weapons. But I don't think Moon will do anything so difficult.… Continue reading Will we learn more about Kim Jong Un or Moon Jae-in from the inter-Korean summit?
The New York Times website this morning is leading with Moon Jae-in's comments to Korean newspaper publishers that Kim Jong Un is willing to let the U.S. keep a military presence in South Korea, or let South Korea keep U.S. troops, however you want to look at it. The Times' Choe Sang-hun points out several… Continue reading Moon drives the hype higher by saying Kim will let the U.S. keep troops in South Korea. Seen that before too.
President Trump's statement Tuesday, in front of Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe no less, that the U.S. has been in contact at the highest levels with North Korea marked a turning point on the question of how real this summit stuff is. It's clear Trump is all-in. The White House underscored that by subsequently disclosing… Continue reading Tuesday was clearly a turning point showing Trump is all-in for talks, but remember the U.S. has been here before with North Korea
The White House on Sunday -- April 8, a month after President Trump told South Korean envoys he would meet Kim Jong Un -- said it had been in contact with North Korea and received the assurance that Kim Jong Un is willing to talk denuclearization. The definition remained up in the air, as the… Continue reading A month after the Korea Shock, North Korea talks to the U.S.
How else to read Trump's comments on Thursday that he may hold up the changes to the South Korea-U.S. free trade agreement based on how the upcoming talks on North Korea's nuclear weapons program go? South Korean officials on Friday publicly said they were looking to the U.S. for clarification on Trump's remarks. But a… Continue reading The U.S. and South Korea aren’t on the same page on North Korea, and Trump knows it.
Wednesday morning (Tuesday night in the U.S.), a day after Kim Jong Un returned to North Korea from China, the two countries confirmed that he was in Beijing. The train and motorcades everyone saw were, as many people suspected, for him. In its initial report, the Chinese news agency Xinhua said Kim told Chinese President… Continue reading China confirms Kim’s visit after he’s gone, and says he’ll talk to Trump about denuclearization. That’s nice, but…