Donald Trump and Kim Jong-un are in some ways, rather alike. Both are brash and fearless. Both are easy with bellicose rhetoric, but both are also open to dealmaking.
Today, this process began to unfold in a most visible manner on the world stage.
President Donald Trump and Chairman Kim Jong-un concluded their nuclear summit on Tuesday by signing a document in which the American president pledged “security guarantees” to the North Koreans, and in turn, Chairman Kim reiterated his own commitment to a complete removal of nuclear weapons from the Korean Peninsula.
This is an enormous development to have stated this much even if the specifics are not laid out.
At present the document has not been released by the White House, but we intend to bring that document to view once it is released.
The two leaders promised in this document to “build a lasting and stable peace regime” on the Korean peninsula, and to repatriate the prisoners of war and those missing in action during the Korean War. This is a notable step towards the formal conclusion of this conflict, which has lasted in some form since it started in 1950.
This meeting is highly symbolic, but the matters at hand are enormously practical. The North Korean regime has been the subject of much castigation in the West, and it is difficult to ascertain how much of the reporting (of starving citizens, mass executions, and terrible oppression of the people) is actually true. At the same time, North Korea IS a communist nation with a rather peculiar twist as to how the people seem to view their own leadership.
Further, the American rhetoric has been very tough – at least verbally – for many years. North Korea has responded in kind, or even blustered first at times.
With this summit, all that appears to be coming to an end.
The credit for this is multilateral, though, perhaps unfortunately, each nation will tend to claim credit to the exclusion of others. The players in this drama have been of course North Korea and the United States, but additionally, South Korea, Russia, Japan and China, have been absolutely VITAL in getting this resolution to come so far in such a short time.
We are following a press conference in progress about the summit. President Trump has been speaking in very positive terms about the meeting, saying that Chairman Kim Jong-un “really wants to get this done.”
Watch The Duran’s Alex Christoforou and Peter Lavelle analyse the summit: