North Korea grabs the narrative for the first time, but it has always had the cards

Watching Twitter on Tuesday afternoon and evening U.S. time was definitely the most fun since the Korea Shock on March 8. For the first time since then, North Korea took control of the story. Until now, almost everything we've heard about from North Korea has been through the filter of someone else. South Korean officials,… Continue reading North Korea grabs the narrative for the first time, but it has always had the cards

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?

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?

Now it’s a fight for Trump’s mind, and he appears ready to yank U.S. troops so he can collect a Nobel.

After staging his summit with Kim Jong Un, South Korean President Moon Jae-in hustled to make sure that Donald Trump sticks with the program. With Trump so mercurial, the battle is on between doves and hawks to persuade him what he should ask of Kim and be willing to pay to Kim. The South Korean… Continue reading Now it’s a fight for Trump’s mind, and he appears ready to yank U.S. troops so he can collect a Nobel.

Will we learn more about Kim Jong Un or Moon Jae-in from the inter-Korean summit?

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?

Moon drives the hype higher by saying Kim will let the U.S. keep troops in South Korea. Seen that before too.

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.

Are the South Koreans leaking?

South Korean media in the past day or so have come out with stories about the Trump administration's supposed proposals for Kim Jong Un and North Korea during the upcoming summit. The Chosun Ilbo, the biggest paper in South Korea, has one scoop, which it¬†translated for its English website. The gist is that Trump wants… Continue reading Are the South Koreans leaking?

The U.S. and South Korea aren’t on the same page on North Korea, and Trump knows it.

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.