Trump-Kim Summit Raises Cautious Hopes for Peace

The U.S. and North Korean leaders have ended their historic summit in Singapore temporarily silencing the naysayers but only time will tell whether it will bring peace to the Korean Peninsula, reports Joe Lauria. 

Kim’s arrival in Singapore. (Photo: Singapore Ministry of Communications and Information.)

By Joe Lauria  Special to Consortium News 

In time it will become evident whether the joint statement signed by U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jung-un on Tuesday will lead to a formal end to the Korean War, denuclearization of the Korean peninsula and an end what the North sees as U.S. provocations against Pyongyang.

On the morning after, we are only left with the atmospherics and images from the historic meeting between Kim and Trump in Singapore. The two leaders—who just months ago were hurling insults at each other, with Kim calling Trump “dotard,” and Trump calling Kim “Little Rocket Man,”— left Singapore and the details of the negotiation to their administrations.

As the document they signed has not yet been released, it is difficult to know what exactly they have agreed to. Trump held it up briefly so that reporters could read that he had “committed to provide security guarantees” to North Korea and Kim “reaffirmed his firm and unwavering commitment to complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.”  How that denuclearization is carried out may be the most difficult detail of all to work out.

The statement called for “follow-on negotiations” between U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and an unnamed senior North Korean official “at the earliest possible date, to implement the outcomes” of the summit, which are still largely unknown. 

The document also said the U.S. and North Korea would “join their efforts to build a lasting and stable peace regime” on the Korean Peninsula, which could mean negotiations leading to a peace treaty to formally end the 1950-1953 Korean War. North Korea was devastated in that war, with U.S. generals saying they were practically running out of targets to bomb. The U.S. unloaded  635,000 tons of explosives  and 32,557 tons of napalm.  “Over a period of three years or so, we killed off — what — 20 percent of the population,” Air Force Gen. Curtis LeMay, Strategic Air Command leader during the war, told the Office of Air Force History in 1984. Dean Rusk, later secretary of state in the Kennedy and Johnson administrations, said the U.S. bombed “everything that moved in North Korea, every brick standing on top of another.”

With memories of that destruction still strong, North Korea long saw U.S.-South Korean war games as dangerous provocations. Three times before the North sought a deal with the U.S. in which Washington would guarentee the North’s security, in exchange for an end to Pyongyang’s nuclear weapons program. 

Three times, in 1994 and again in 2005 and 2007, those negotiations failed when the U.S. refused to trust Pyongyang. New sanctions were piled on North Korea by the U.S., and with the assent of Moscow and Beijing, at the United Nations. But it was not until the North successfully tested nuclear weapons and developed an intercontinental ballistic missile that could soon reach the U.S. West Coast that Washington apparently got serious about reaching a deal, which was only begun in Singapore on Tuesday. 

At his press conference following the summit, Trump said the U.S. would “suspend” military exercises and he expected the North to “very quickly” denuclearize. For Trump personally, an ultimately successful outcome would be a triumph in that he had to outmaneuver neoconservative aides, such as his national security adviser, John Bolton, just to get the summit to take place. Trump may be motivated by vanity in wanting to win a Nobel Peace Prize, but if peace actually results, it would only be his fiercest critics who would quibble with his motive. 

Reluctant members of his administration might have gone along with the summit because part of the deal may well involve U.S. corporate participation in the North Korean economy, which is rich in undeveloped mineral resources.

Opposition Democrats and the U.S. news media largely portrayed the summit, the first ever between a sitting U.S. president and North Korean leader, as a waste of time or worse, indicating that Trump would be fleeced or that it would end in failure. That is yet to be determined. 

But the fact that the two leaders met at all, an idea that would have been considered absurd just three months ago, creates hope that tensions in Korea, after more than half a century, may actually be resolved.

Joe Lauria is editor-in-chief of Consortium News and a former correspondent for The Wall Street Journal, Boston GlobeSunday Times of London and numerous other newspapers. He can be reached at [email protected] and followed on Twitter @unjoe .

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83 comments for “Trump-Kim Summit Raises Cautious Hopes for Peace

  1. Hans Zandvliet
    June 13, 2018 at 20:29

    However much I do apreciate Trumps personal efforts and (I believe) good intentions, I just don’t see how the DPRK can ever safely hand over their nuclear arms.
    We (and the DPRK) have seen what happens do a leader and a nation that hands in its most powerful defence weapons: Iraq’s Saddam Hussein sent to the gallows in a monkey trial; Libya’s Muamar Gaddafi lynched on a street corner. In spite of both having decided to disarm. And recently Washington (Trump personally!) decided on a whim to walk out of the Iran nuclear deal, in spite of Iran’s full compliance.
    So what guarantees can Washington give at all to keep to their side of any deal???
    As Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov already concluded back in 2016 (when the USAF, under Obama, violated twice a ceasefire in Syria, days after coming into effect): Washington is not agreement-capable.
    I think it would be far better to come to an agreement with the DPRK in which they will now be accepted as a nuclear power and focus on other issues to end the Korean War and normalize relations.

    • john wilson
      June 14, 2018 at 04:41

      Yes Hans, and even if Trump was genuine he’s not going to be president forever and probably only for 4 years. If the next incumbent in the white house is a Hillary warmonger Clinton type, then the North Koreans could find any deal that Trump may instigate declared null and void. After all, Trump himself has already shown that deals can be scrapped by doing away with the Iran nuclear deal.

  2. W. R. Knight
    June 13, 2018 at 16:33

    What the talks between Kim and Trump accomplished is the generation of a lot of fog with no substance. The fundamental barrier to peace on the Korean peninsula will boil down to the negotiations of “nukes for troops”. You take away your troops and I’ll get rid of my nukes – or vice versa. Who will blink first? If Kim is smart, and I suspect he is, he will wait for the U.S. to remove at lease a sizable number of U.S. troops from South Korea BEFORE he gets rid of a single nuke. To do otherwise is naive as hell as no one in his right mind has any reason to trust Trump.

    Taking into account Trump reneging on multiple international agreements and his personal history of cheating and lying, anyone would be a fool to trust Trump further than they could throw him. Furthermore, Trump’s “committed to provide security guarantees” is like the protection racket. You pay me and I’ll ensure that my thugs won’t attack you.

    I’m afraid I have little hope for peace in Korea at least until Trump is out of office. The entire issue that needs to be resolved is one of trust. Who can trust whom. Can Trump trust Kim? Can Kim trust Trump? Given the personal histories of both, I would trust Kim before I would trust Trump.

    • john wilson
      June 14, 2018 at 04:43

      Knight, the trouble with “nukes for troops” is that the troops can be replaced within a couple of days whereas the nukes would take a couple of years to re-establish.

      • Hans Zandvliet
        June 16, 2018 at 01:19

        Very true. That’s why denuclearisation of NK should be recognized as a past station. There’s just no way back.
        And Washington has only itself to blame, after so many decades of threatening and provoking NK while refusing to come to a formal ending of the Korean war.

  3. Realist
    June 13, 2018 at 05:37

    I wouldn’t consider any final agreement between the US and NK to be a success unless it contains not only provisions for complete denuclearisation by NK but also removal of all American troops, nukes and THAADs from the Korea peninsula. Because, with those elements left in place, Washington can destroy NK at will and at any time. Those assets are also a continuing threat to Vladivostok and parts of China, though the Russians and Chinese are not making a fuss. A piece of paper with Trump’s signature promising that such a scenario won’t happen is utterly worthless. Every recent president from both parties has totally shredded America’s credibility when it comes to keeping its word. Its word is simply no good, not even to its own citizens. It might not be Trump who breaks his word, but the next guy or gal to occupy the White House.

    The only thing to politely applaud about this meeting is that it opens the (very remote) possibility that an equitable agreement (with teeth that take a major bite out of the American military threat) can eventually be made between the parties. Such will not happen if Kim Jong-Un is not the rube Trump assumes he is, willing to surrender his country for false American promises and a close look at the presidential limousine, and if Washington refuses to concede on the key issue of the enormous extant American threat posed to NK. Any Nobel to Trump would be another travesty from Oslo if the US troops, nukes and THAADs remain in place. NK would have more security if it simply petitioned for annexation to China, which the historic “hermit kingdom” has no desire or intention to do.

    • john wilson
      June 14, 2018 at 04:48

      You too don’t get it, Realist. Troops and Thad etc can replaced in a few days whereas nukes would take a couple of years or more to replace. The only way Kim can hope to get the Yanks out permanently, is for the North and South to have proper relations with free movement of people and trade between them so that there is no excuse for the US to be there at all.

      • Realist
        June 15, 2018 at 11:17

        Of course, good relations between the estranged Korean states is essential, and the demonstrated desire for such by both sides is, in fact, what has been driving this process at a remarkable speed of late. But the process has to get to a point where South Korea, not just North Korea, demands that Washington pulls its military threat (its 25K troops, even more ancillary personnel, nukes and THAADs) out of its territory, or true lasting peace will never happen. Without that, all the Korea’s would have is a phony peace allowed at the discretion of Uncle Sam who could attack on a moment’s notice.

        I fear that even if the two Korea’s unified, as the two Germany’s did, Washington would still find some pretense to maintain its military presence on the peninsula, because the real reason for the presence, as all should know, is to threaten China and Russia, not North Korea. If those 25K troops and approx. 200K additional Yanks in support roles were extricated from Korean turf, it would not really be a piece of cake for Washington to simply return them against the wishes of the natives. Such a scenario would presuppose a hostile invasion by China, which is not likely to happen.

        If the troops and their war machines are allowed to stay, they can be used against every other country in the region at any time. Kim may be allowed to maintain his status within North Korea if he disarms but allows Washington to keep its garrison, and maybe that’s all he wants, but the region will not have a real lasting assurance of peace until those Yankee troops and weapons are out. That is what Kim and Moon together must demand of Washington… which will undoubtedly laugh in their face at their temerity.

  4. michael crockett
    June 13, 2018 at 02:04

    It has been said, and I would agree, if peace breaks out it will be more the result of Kim and Moon and not so much our President. Trump will certainly try to take the lions share of credit for a peace accord. This could lead to a windfall for the President in the midterm elections. Just enough Republicans get elected and they subsequently thwart any kind of impeachment process from moving forward. Score a point (political capital) for Trump the peacemaker. Should we now expect him to go around the globe utilizing the tools of diplomacy and negotiations to solve problems elsewhere? I wish it were so. I will give him some credit if peace breaks out in the Korean Peninsula. However, I am of two minds here: Option 1) Trump throttles down the MIC: He dissolves NATO. He pulls troops out of Syria and Iraq while negotiating a peace agreement with Iran. He shuts down all US military bases abroad and brings all the soldiers home. Brings the Navy home. Brings the Air Force home. Brings an end to the US empire. He does a full on Ron Paul. I am all in on option one, but the Dark Lords of The Deep State will make sure DJT goes out like JFK. Option 2) Peace with NK is no more than a ploy and a diversion. On the global chess board NK is merely a pawn to be sacrificed so Trump can take a knight – Iran. Specifically a war with Iran which is the grand prize. The US will lead the illegal and immoral war, with Israel the KSA on board for the bloodbath. Trumps choice……well you don’t have to be a weatherman to know which way the wind blows. Trump picks option 2.

    • Skip Scott
      June 13, 2018 at 07:41

      The shame of it is that Trump ran on option one, and that’s why so many people voted for him. Of course he isn’t the first president to renege on the promise of making the USA a “kinder, gentler nation”.

      • W. R. Knight
        June 13, 2018 at 16:43

        Trump ran a “bait and switch” campaign just like all his business dealings. Anyone who failed to see that coming, knowing his personal history, was a fool. As the old saying goes “fool me once, shame on you – fool me twice, shame on me”.

      • john wilson
        June 14, 2018 at 04:50

        But he did renege, Skip, he tore up the Iran Nuclear deal which was a good one and had the full support of the rest of the world.

    • Sam F
      June 13, 2018 at 07:50

      Yes, the danger is that Korea is a domestic propaganda distraction to facilitate war on Iran.

    • Ciclismo
      June 13, 2018 at 14:44

      Option 3) NK finally agrees to enslave itself to the central banking system and by doing so is transformed into an ally and friend of the west.

  5. June 12, 2018 at 23:19

    this is all a charade. trump and for that fact the u.s. government know that n. korea is no threat to the u.s.. this man kim has only built up a nuclear arsenal because he saw what befell iraq and libya. he might be eccentric but he is not mad. he wouldn’t dare begin a nuclear assault. this is all apretense to try and bring n. korea into our sphere of influence because we still have our greedy eye on china. mesmerize n. korea and overtaking china will be that much simpler. this is the clear stategy as i see it. very simple.

  6. David A Hart
    June 12, 2018 at 22:25

    Tammy Kim reminds us that the main characters in this play are the people of North and South Korea…this is much more about them than it is about us. Kim writes “There is hope today, among South Korea’s fifty-one million residents, in the strange chemistry of Trump, Kim, and the South Korean President, Moon Jae-in; there is a belief that a peace treaty to officially end the Korean War, and a stepwise plan for North Korea’s nuclear downsizing, if not total disarmament, could be imminent. Meanwhile, America’s foreign-policy establishment, conservatives touting human rights, and Democratic leaders have issued statements and tweets (“the summit—and particularly its immediate aftermath—was a farce,” James Acton, of the Carnegie Nuclear Policy Program, wrote) that sound more like those coming from conservative extremists in Korea and the ruling right wing in Japan. South Koreans don’t love Trump, but, in a place where the U.S. military led a war that killed millions and created a multigenerational, literal rift, American standing and protocol are not the priority. From the Korean point of view, U.S. politics as usual has done little good for the peninsula. George W. Bush’s “Axis of Evil” and his opportunistic obsession with North Korean human rights (while setting up the prison at Guantánamo) rolled back years of inter-Korean progress. President Obama, to the profound disappointment of many on the peninsula, did nothing to advance Korean peace.”

  7. Kalen
    June 12, 2018 at 22:21

    Despite MSM spin it was Kim Jong Un who demanded precondition to the meeting which was suspension of or canceling US SK military provocations called exercises which especially were taxing North Korean short agricultural season as they were concentrated during planting and harvesting periods when NK army usually was used to help peasants in the fields, and could not do it effectively as was responding to prolonged weeks long military threat, which contributed to multiple famines over several decades.

    This precondition to this meeting was demanded by NK ruling elite, many in their eighties and seventies remembering US genocide of Korean War, as before Kim Jong Un legitimizes the killer US regime in eyes of Koreans by shaking hands with POTUS. Reason for that meeting was all about mutual legitimizing for domestic audience.

    Kim Jong Un and his powerful sister want to modernize westernize North Korea since they as their father are infatuated by western commercial culture and like to go along Chinese path of crawling back capitalism and abandoning socialism that in NK in circumstances of continuous war was very successful but young elites with their sensibilities arrested by western liberalism want more , more visible opulence, joint global oligarchic class as Chinese CCP cronies did.

    Does Kim knows that giving up nukes mean death to his dynasty regime in power?

    Or he believes American lies?

    One way or another hard working people of both Koreans will lose.

  8. Ellin Callvis
    June 12, 2018 at 21:31

    It was Pres.[Fuck] Trump who was rattling the saber over N Korea, threatening to nuke them?. And now Trump is playing peace-maker to North and South Korea – a process that was underway without the help [or hindrance] of the USA.

    This will be hailed as Pres. Trump’s only actual success as US President, and it is as phoney as he is.

  9. Lookingglass
    June 12, 2018 at 21:17

    Liked everything a out this article except the swipe at Mr. Trump’s motive being vanity. Behind all the bluster and bullshit, he seems to have a genuine goodness surrounded by all that energy and ego.

    • backwardsevolution
      June 12, 2018 at 22:08

      Lookingglass – that’s what I hold onto too. One of the reporters who was out on the campaign trail with Trump said that he genuinely felt for the people in Flyover Country, he listened to their stories, and was actually saddened at what he saw, the rusting, hollowed-out factories and the loss of jobs.

      He wrote his own Inaugural Speech and made some promises. He didn’t have to do that; he had already won the election. He immediately got rid of the TPP (Trans Pacific Partnership) that would have seen more jobs leave the U.S. The globalists, who had worked long and hard on further screwing the American people, wouldn’t have been too happy about that. He’s currently undoing trade treaties and wants “fair” trade without the massive U.S. trade deficits. Who could fault him for that? Many countries have had unfair trade advantages for decades.

      He wanted to get rid of NATO or at least severely clip its wings, but Russiagate popped up just in the nick of time to stop that. Ditto re friendlier relations with Russia. With his ripping up of the Iran agreement and the resulting dissension among NATO members, I’m wondering whether he’s not, in a backhanded fashion, getting rid of NATO that way. Merkel has already stated that Europe looks like it’s on its own now.

      I see Trump as a builder, not a destroyer. He wants peace and he wants the U.S. to mind its own business and concentrate on its own citizens. I see him as a man who actually loves his country.

      • irina
        June 12, 2018 at 23:11

        I read somewhere that The Donald is truly concerned about a nuclear exchange and wants to do everything
        possible to prevent such a catastrophe. He gets kudos from me if that is true and it very well may be given
        his current activities. Most of us are still in lala land regarding our nuclear peril.

        If nothing else, he has exposed the military as the rabid ‘war gamers’ they are, as evidenced by the responses
        to his promise to ‘call off’ the Korean war games, with the caveat that they will be resumed if North Korea fails
        to abide by its promises. To me, that is a position of both compromise and strength, which gives the US a big
        bargaining chip to ensure compliance. But to the wargamers, it is UNTHINKABLE. What about our Livelihoods ?
        they are practically screaming. (It’s not like a rapid response team from Alaska is not immediately available.)

        Well, what about them ? Maybe our military should help with the harvest also, too, as they used to do on my father
        in law’s potato farm in Fairbanks. He retired here after serving in both WW2 and the Korean War as a bombardier.
        Occasionally he would talk about WW2 but NEVER the Korean War. And he died fairly young of drinking too much.
        I’ve been learning more about Korean history, which is horrifying. Easy to see why (for US) it’s called the ‘Forgotten
        War’. Just today I learned that Teddy Roosevelt ‘gave’ the Korean Peninsula to Japan as a ‘protectorate’ in exchange
        for the Philippines:

        One of the comments to the above article discusses the use of napalm (new to ‘wargamers’ at the time) on North Korea.
        I suspect my father in law was part of that campaign.

        • LarcoMarco
          June 13, 2018 at 05:00

          “Official U.S. Air Force statistics show that the percentage of destruction, sometimes 100 percent, in North Korean cities was higher, on average, than the percentage of destruction in Germany and Japan during World War II. Plus, napalm was splashed all over the place. Churchill even had to send a cable to Eisenhower in 1953 saying, essentially, ‘When we invented napalm, we had no idea it was going to be splashed all over civilians.'”

          — gleaned from transcript of Cranky Amy Now (June 12, 2018)

    • john wilson
      June 14, 2018 at 04:56

      Wow!! Hey looking glass, the notion that there is any genuine goodness in Trump is frankly, bizarre ! The man has just torn up the Iran nuclear deal for no good reason and is just itching for a war against that country. He twice launched missiles against Syria based on no evidence and still has US military there causing death and mayhem.

  10. j. D. D.
    June 12, 2018 at 16:24

    It is becoming clearer and clearer — to the consternation of the “liberal” post-war order — that President Donald Trump is fully breaking from a Europe dominated by British geopolitics, to engage the United States with Asia. An Asia which is being catalyzed by China’s Belt and Road Initiative, where the future — by far the largest infrtructure buiding program in world histroy is seeking the elimination of poverty in the world by 2050.. President Trump, who for two years has fought the British Intelligence intitiated campaign to run him out of office, is now rejecting every London-spawned scheme to line him up in confrontation with China and Russia, and is looking for great-power cooperation with Asia, which has brought him to the extremely difficult attempt to end Korea’s 70 years’ war. That concern of Trump’s, not tariffs, was the real issue at the G7 summit which ended it in discord. Compared to the G7’s empty posturing, a simultaneous summit, over this past weekend, of the Shanghai Cooperation Organization China, representing 3.1 billion people, was more vital. and yet the very crucial Korea summit for which Trump was leaving — was one in which the “big European powers,” the “allies.” so bemoaned by the msm, showed no interest at all.
    Meanwhile, Prime Minister Abe, China’s President Xi, and Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov were all weighing in with offers to participate with the United States and South Korea, in consolidating denuclearization and peace through economic development on the Korean Peninsula. This is “the impossible” that Trump is trying to achieve. And it is one that the neoliberals and their neocon allies are doing all they can to see fail.

    • Mild - ly Facetious
      June 12, 2018 at 17:36

      j.DD — “It is becoming clearer and clearer — to the consternation of the “liberal” post-war order — that President Donald Trump is fully breaking from a Europe dominated by British geopolitics, to engage the United States with Asia.”

      … was this not the intent of the TPP, j.DD?

      A Plan put together by the Trilateral Commission of, among others, the Rothschild’s Rockefeller, Zibg Brzezinski, Samuel P. Huntington and other ‘neoliberal’ Capitalists…?

      Research the Trilateral Commission… .

      • Mild - ly Facetious
        June 12, 2018 at 17:50

        after reading the above link, are you sure that Donald Trump is “breaking” from UK geopolitics… ?

    • mbob
      June 12, 2018 at 20:20

      I hope you’re right, but it sounds too good to be true.

      To his credit, Trump is *not* a globalist/neoliberal and he’s not a hawk. Keeping the US out of Obama’s TPP was an unalloyed positive accomplishment. So are his policies on trade and tariffs, despite (neoliberal) media hysteria. Advocating for better relations with Russia and his unprecedented steps towards peace with N. Korea are again to his credit. I’ve read recently that he favors legalization of marijuana. None of these things were pursued under Obama (to the contrary), and they would not have happened with Clinton.

      On the other hand, Trump’s policies on tax cuts for the wealthy and his position on climate change are wrong and dangerous. I don’t like what he’s doing with healthcare. And I’m not sure what to make of his actions regarding Iran.

      It *is* possible that Trump that Trump is playing some sort of 10-dimensional chess as you rather suggest. A simpler explanation is that he’s simply doing the opposite of what Obama would do. The interesting thing is that, on average, that may be better policy.

      I left the Democratic party after 40 years. I was disappointed with Obama (whom I voted for twice). Obama’s rhetoric was belied by his governance. Obama was a committed globalist and neoliberal. He advanced inequality, protected the rich and powerful, attempted to weaken Social Security, and contributed to the destruction of the US working and middle classes. In those regards he was precisely the same as other neoliberal globalists, including his good friend Merkel. Trudeau, Macron, and May do likewise. Obama now reaps the financial rewards of his betrayals. I despise him.

      Trump is not a real Republican. He connects more with the Republican base than with Republican elites. It’s conceivable he could “flip” the positions of the parties on the political spectrum. Republicans could end up on the Democrat’s left.

      But, however appealing, that’s probably fantasy. I voted for Clinton in 2016. I believe now that she was the greater evil and I maintain an open mind on Trump.

      Establishment Democrats who choose to live in their media-endorsed echo chamber — where Trump is the embodiment of evil, where Russiagate is real, and where efforts to achieve peace are criticized instead of applauded — are at risk of losing what remains of their connection to the rest of US voters, including both those to their right and progressives and others to their left.

      • irina
        June 12, 2018 at 23:14

        Thank you for re-thinking your 2-16 vote. (I was a Bernie girl and voted for Jill Stein in
        the general election). The potential for Hillary meeting Kim Jong Un would be about zero.
        And the Clinton Body Count (google it) just keeps climbing . . . .

    • mike k
      June 12, 2018 at 20:31

      Good points.

  11. SteveK9
    June 12, 2018 at 16:21

    Look at the official Democratic Party reaction, if you want to feel ill.

    • LarcoMarco
      June 12, 2018 at 18:47

      CBS radio played a sound- clip of Chucko Schumer trying to out-dolt Bolton. “Trump’s made major concessions w/o receiving anything in return.”

    • KiwiAntz
      June 12, 2018 at 22:33

      And our National newspapers are splashed with photos of a respectful Trump (Mr Dotard) & a grinning Kim Jung UN (little rocket man)shaking hands like two long lost pals? What the hells going on here? Could this be the start of something big or another false dawn? Time will tell I guess but the optics looked great, didn’t they just??

    • Brad Owen
      June 13, 2018 at 11:50

      That’s why I consider Trump’s Mentor to be Coyote Trickster; stumbling and bumbling along, making herky-jerky to the left and to the right, the butt of all jokes, revealing wisdom along the way, to the astonishment of his critics. Perseus had Athena. Arjuna had Krishna. Trump has Coyote Trickster, the Clown/Sage. It’s like watching a Mummers’ parade.

  12. Jeff Harrison
    June 12, 2018 at 16:09

    I remain somewhat baffled by all this. I always thought that a war was over when the two sides decided it was over. Now, I realize that the Korean Police Action ended with a truce. I realize that over the ensuing 50 odd years, there have been tensions. Real tensions where people get kidnapped, shot, and boats sunk. But if the two sides want to call it quits what can the US do to stop that? And why a peace treaty? War was never declared; it was only a police action. It’s not like they have to return bits of territory to each other and I doubt that reparations are a question. The only thing left is to denuclearize the peninsula which wouldn’t be necessary if we weren’t such assholes that we wouldn’t negotiate in good faith unless the other side has an “equalizer”. But that’s the UN’s job, not the US’s. I certainly wouldn’t trust a country in extreme violation of it’s obligations under the NNPT. I keep wondering when the UN is going to sanction the US on that.

  13. Mild - ly Facetious
    June 12, 2018 at 15:41

    just say’n

  14. backwardsevolution
    June 12, 2018 at 15:17


    “In the year 2000 there were eight countries without a Rothschild-owned or controlled Central Bank:

    North Korea

    The only countries left in 2003 without a Central Bank owned or controlled by the Rothschild family were:

    North Korea

    The only four countries left in 2011, to this day, without a Central Bank owned or controlled by the Rothschild family are:

    Cuba (hybrid system – peso for locals and peso for tourists (redeemable by Cuba through BIS in Basel)
    North Korea (depending on Trump/Kim summit outcome, might be the next to fall)

    Libya got their “very own” Central Bank one or two days after Gaddafi’s murder. Surrounded by all the chaos, the bankers still managed to set up a central bank. Almost like they had it planned all along!

  15. June 12, 2018 at 14:39

    And how in the world does the country that has the most nukes on the planet get to decide who can or can’t have nukes? The only country that used that nuclear weapon? At least, on the grand chessboard, this move is an interesting one in one of the most bizarre chess games in a few decades. What it means really, who knows?

  16. June 12, 2018 at 13:04

    I am sure the people of the world would like “Peace.” Unfortunately the “system” and the “international order” have other plans. See link below for much more info.
    June 12, 2018
    “The Bloody Hypocrisy Regarding the G7 Meeting”

    The system and the international order that the globalists and their political puppets and the establishment elites like to talk about, is, I believe responsible for heinous crimes against humanity. Millions of people are dead, millions are refugees, their cities and homes destroyed, and those who supported all this hellish evil, are enjoying their freedom. Some are retired, others are still in power. None of them have been held responsible for their actions and war crimes. [1]…
    [read more at link below]

    • Bob Van Noy
      June 12, 2018 at 15:37

      Many Thanks Stephen J. I don’t know how you can be so “wired”! Here is my favorite of your links which I will bookmark and study. Apparently the new word in America’s Foreign Policy is Sovereignty. I’ll bet that Ross Perot would find much to like with President Trump.

      • June 12, 2018 at 15:57

        Thanks Bob Van Noy. I believe we are assailed daily in the “news” and “newspapers” by marketed B.S. Our tax dollars are propping up all these think tanks, politicians, G7, G20 conferences, and armies of public relations parasites, sherpas, flunkeys etc.
        that send out more B.S. for public consumption. i believe we are Prisoners of ‘Democracy”

        Cheers Stephen J.

        • Bob Van Noy
          June 12, 2018 at 16:05

          As I say, Mr. Steven J., Many Thanks…

  17. elmerfudzie
    June 12, 2018 at 12:15

    Un is a test case. Will the west permit, a very wealthy man or men to keep nukes in their “basements”? CONSORTIUMNEWS readers cannot allow themselves to cloud, to mix apples with oranges, namely the Korean crisis with, the hopes and strategies of Reagan Doctrine, or the Reagan-Gorbachev deals. Back then, President Reagan had a myriad of apparatchiks and nomenklatura to deal with. The USSR was and the Russian Federation, today is an extremely complex network but not so for that singular dictator and satrap of the CCP, Kim Jong-un.

    This might appear to be off the mark but perhaps not, it was bad enough to witness Goldman Sachs get the bomb when Sarkozy became president of France and now, the same can be said of the far less politically experienced, Emmanuel Macron. This is not an obtuse comparison to make with North Korea’s Un because both men share one thing in common, unequivocal control over all military matters, including the use of nuclear weaponry. This is the crisis of our time, one man (men) with all the power to destroy life as we’ve come to know it. Not even our POTUS has such unequivocal authority as the French President and Kim Jong-un do. As of late, the matter has reached new heights in criticality, now that we’ve learned that (battle) field commanders, or if you wish, three star generals will have the power and make a decision whether or not to use nuclear weapons and not as previously assumed, issued from NATO-HQ or Trump!

    This “test case” must not succumb to showmanship politics, endless referendums, meetings or debates (a favorite thematic of the UN’s Security Council) . Next in line to consider are the billionaire mullahs, will the Western Occident permit them to keep nukes in their basement? permit “nuclear breakout” and A-bomb manufacturing in Iran? How we deal with Kim Jong-un will determine how Iran will be dealt with and what future awaits those second and third world nations who are nuclear wanna-Be’s….

    • June 12, 2018 at 17:38

      what about Israel?

      • elmerfudzie
        June 12, 2018 at 18:33

        Alfred Kath, I freely admit that the entire Western Occident Intel network (s) failed to halt both the Israeli and Pakistani atomic bomb projects. That said, It is impossible now to undo this weapons proliferation harm already done to humanity. The cross that cannot be carried, either for the sake of peace or for balance of power, is permitting another Israel and Pakistan, AKA unstable regions and governments, to acquire atomic bombs. This would only hasten the appearance of world war three, which cannot be stopped but only delayed…

        • elmerfudzie
          June 13, 2018 at 09:24

          Sam F, Yes, mistakes were indeed made, but why compound them? When, pray tell, does nuclear proliferation stop? clearly, it must stop somewhere. To permit Israel’s antagonists to acquire the bomb translates into the enemies of those same antagonists to get an a-bomb. What sort of world do we leave to our progeny? Besides, in an ideal future, we all get to return to the garden of Eden, NO Chance on that one happening. So, the bullies and mafioso’s will not, by policy, doctrine, or compelling restraint, simply vanish from daily life. Even a successfully managed one world, one currency, one government world wouldn’t stop the convulsions found in human nature. Cain will always be Cain and he is marked accordingly, just as God promised. Be they just bullies or criminals, what you are faintly suggesting here ? is an alternative that has total control over mind, spirit and body. Frankly, I’d rather have world war three, then see big brother, programs like MKUltra and the all seeing one eye (NSA), unite and come into fruition.

  18. Mild - ly Facetious
    June 12, 2018 at 11:55

    Trump + The Art Of The Deal … .

    Trump touts North Korean real estate potential

    Donald Trump has said he talked to Kim Jong Un about the property development potential in North Korea.

    In off-hand remarks delivered to a press conference in Singapore on Tuesday, Mr Trump said North Korea had great potential for condos and hotels. He also said that from watching coverage of North Korean military drills, it appeared the country boasted “great” beaches.

    “Instead of [testing missiles] you could have the best hotels in the world right there,” he told president Kim, according to his remarks to the press conference.

    “Think of it from a real estate perspective. You have South Korea, you have China and they own the land in the middle,” the president said. 

    Mr Trump’s statement came hours after the two leaders signed a pact that included a pledge to work towards “complete denuclearisation” on the Korean peninsula.

    • Mild - ly Facetious
      June 12, 2018 at 12:17

      Trump attended the final day of this women golf tournament in New Jersey (July, 2017) – at which, eight of the top ten finalists were Korean.

      I posed this question to Mr Trump on this forum, — ‘In light of the outstanding example of Korean women’s golfing excellence, “would you be willing to build a golf course in the Korean Demilitarized Zone’ ? (Trump + The Art Of The Deal)

      It appears the answer is in the positive… .

      Trump touts North Korean real estate potential–women-s-open/scoring.html

    • mike k
      June 12, 2018 at 12:21

      Make money, not war would seem to be a good slogan. Unfortunately war is one of the best ways to make a lot of money. Maybe we should go back to make love, not war. Although the OBOR belt and road initiative would seem to be a natural option for Trump. Sounds a lot more comfy than nuclear war!

  19. Don Bacon
    June 12, 2018 at 10:49

    The Singapore Joint Statement reaffirmed the April 27, 2018 Panmunjom Declaration, which included (among other subjects): “South and North Korea affirmed the principle of determining the destiny of the Korean nation on their own accord. .”

    So I believe that any real progress on Korea will come from the Koreas along with the support of neighbors China and Russia, and not from any amateurish “follow-on negotiations” involving U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, especially as the Senate gets involved. President Moon has dedicated much of his adult life to the reunification of Korea, and is currently developing plans along with China and Russia for economic expansion in the area, which is a goal of Chairman Kim also.

    • Don Bacon
      June 12, 2018 at 11:44

      more info on Korea economic planning here

    • mike k
      June 12, 2018 at 12:22

      Good call.

    • David G
      June 12, 2018 at 16:58

      Kudos, Don Bacon, for bringing South Korea into the discussion here.

      The task for both Koreas, if they are serious about normalizing relations and removing the specter of war (as I believe they are), will be to manage the U.S. so as to allow such progress. It’s an error to focus on the U.S. as the main agent of change, but if Trump’s unorthodoxy helps the process along, that’s all to the good.

    • elmerfudzie
      June 12, 2018 at 18:20

      Not so fast Don, the USPACOM and associated alliances, cannot permit new investors to enter North Korea until all the nuclear material(s) are accounted for. After all, when things go terribly wrong, just like firemen, they’ll be running into the fire while everyone else is exiting. By this I mean to say that, once situated on North Korean soil, Kim Jong-un, would only manipulate these investors, by forcing them into arm twisting western governments, should a few of his nukes go unaccounted for, or deliberately not surrendered or even worse, when formal state-to-state agreements disintegrate into a repeat of Neville Chamberlain’s boast, “peace in our time” foolhardiness. North Korea has a virtual honeycomb of endless tunnels where nukes can go undetected and in the future can be used for blackmail, extortion or in retaliation (in the event Un’s assassinated) A good supporting example was JFK’s insistence that Israel’s Dimona reactor facility undergo inspection. The Zionists sealed up access points to several floors below the reactor room, thus concealing their atomic weapons projects and progression. Just ponder the thought; how much more difficult, herculean the task will be, to verify a North Korean denuclearization program. Needless to say, I am not optimistic about any part of this new “Glasnost” …..

  20. mike
    June 12, 2018 at 10:43

    Here is my take. Rather than China being, historically, the emissary of NK/US relations. it is now the other way around (witness Kim Jung-un’s Chinese military escort to Singapore.) Say a new understanding was reached between NK and China. That might mean that NK no longer feels the need for nukes because they have China in their corner. The desire of SK to seek better relations with NK can only improve with troop reductions on the DMZ. As far as “crippling” sanctions go, what could the US possibly sanction that China could not provide? Pompeo and the Koch brothers would certainly want access to NK’s resources, but isn’t it more plausible that the Chinese would happily do the strip mining? In other words, China would exercise it’s hegemony over the entire Korean peninsula, ultimately including SK as a trading partner. All this talk of peace in the region and a Nobel for Himself might well be true; it also allows the US to save face while bowing out gracefully from involvement in the Koreas.

    • Nancy
      June 12, 2018 at 11:01

      I certainly think this scenario would be preferred to the U.S. “guaranteeing” the security of North Korea, which would be the equivalent of the fox guarding the henhouse.

    • mike k
      June 12, 2018 at 12:25

      True. But the Empire still hungers to rule the Earth. Big problem.

  21. Jose
    June 12, 2018 at 10:35

    Personally, I think that this is a step in the right direction. Moreover, I hope this leads to peace for all Koreans.

    • Pandas4peace
      June 12, 2018 at 12:02

      I agree. North Korea was lobbing missles over Japan just 8 months ago. The status quo is not acceptable. I don’t understand the Liberal argument that doing nothing, because KJU is a ruthless dictator, is better for human rights or world peace.

      • jose
        June 12, 2018 at 21:04

        I reckon so.

  22. Don Bacon
    June 12, 2018 at 10:33

    The war games, as Kim has complained and Trump noted, have been a major provocation., and they were also a violation of the 1953 Armistice Agreement. “I think it’s very provocative,” Trump said — as Pyongyang has complained for years.
    The undersigned, the Commander-in-Chief, United Nations Command, on the one hand, and the Supreme Commander of the Korean People’s Army and the Commander of the Chinese People’s Volunteers, on the other hand, in the interest of stopping the Korean conflict, with its great toil of suffering and bloodshed on both sides, and with the objective of establishing an armistice which will insure a complete cessation of hostilities and of all acts of armed force in Korea until a final peaceful settlement is achieved, do individually, collectively, and mutually agree to accept and to be bound and governed by the conditions and terms of armistice set forth in the following articles and paragraphs, which said conditions and terms are intended to be purely military in character and to pertain solely to the belligerents in Korea.

  23. RickD
    June 12, 2018 at 09:13

    When exchanging insults, “Dotard for Trump, “Little Rocket Man” for Kim both parties were correct.
    Those who say that Trump accomplished what other presidents failed to do overlook the fact that Trump, yet again, betrayed another long term ally, South Korea, and throw in Japan as well.
    Neither party has a history of compliance with agreements thus this one may be simply designed to make them both look good and will go nowhere.

    • Modawg
      June 12, 2018 at 10:19

      You have no concept of what’s going on. The South Koreans have wanted negotiations for decades with the NORKs. And previous US administrations have pressured them not to do so. It is that this current administration has taken the handcuffs off that this is happening at all. The fact that the US is in direct talks with them now does not betray them in the least. NO one of any relevance in SK believes that. Step outside your western media bias and look at things from the E. Asian perspective.

    • mike k
      June 12, 2018 at 10:31

      South Korea is now seeking peace. Japan is looking for an excuse to go on the war path again. If Trump acts to frustrate the war hawks in either of these countries, I count it as a plus for the world.

  24. Sam F
    June 12, 2018 at 09:07

    The mere US suspension of military exercises provides no assurance to NK, so NK may agree only to a similar first step, such as suspension of nuclear tests. A plausible US step to warrant the NK commitment seems unlikely:
    1. The US would have to remove all but an anti-invasion force from SK, including its nuclear-capable threat to China;
    2. The US could move forces back to SK in weeks, while NK would need years to restore a nuclear program.
    So Pompeo can easily sabotage the process with unreasonable demands, to make the US appear the peacemaker when it is the warmonger.

    • mike k
      June 12, 2018 at 10:36

      It seems strange in a way, but in the modern world peace is more difficult to accomplish than war. Laying down one’s weapons is almost a non action, a not doing. But we are addicted to doing, acquiring, and holding onto things. Letting go just does not come naturally to us.

      • Sam F
        June 12, 2018 at 14:22

        Yes, even weapons making is far more difficult than warmaking: despite the complexity of modern weapons, the leaders of the US are still ignorant gangsters. Any engineer held to account for results would never make the vague, impressionistic, emotional decisions that have led US leaders into wars since WWII. Bob Woodward well documents the Bush-Obama decisions that led to the Mideast wars, all of them foolish. The Obama-Petraeus surge in AfPak was as poorly reasoned as the Johnson-MacNamara escalation in Vietnam.

  25. Kieron
    June 12, 2018 at 08:48

    Why is it that trump have to outflank his neoconservative advisors ? I’m obviously not the most politically aware reader on this excellent site, however, aren’t advisors supposed to be reading from the same page, at least broadly, before you bring them into your team. John Bolton a neocon hawk seems to have little on his agenda other than take the US, and by default, the rest of the world to war. If Trump considers Bolton to be singing the same tune,then what hope do we have that any of these discussions will come to anything at all? Bolton was against them from the begining and indeed was probably behind convincing Trump to briefly pull out. Am I being totally dim. Please comment, I would learn something from a response.

    • Sam F
      June 12, 2018 at 09:12

      The statement is ironical, in that Trump installed the neocon advisors, likely for a good-cop/bad-cop negotiation, to appear to be outflanking them. That gives him someone to blame, to make a pretense of willingness to negotiate. All obvious to any diplomat, so unlikely to affect negotiations, but useful to propagandize the US.

      • Kieron
        June 12, 2018 at 10:22

        So Bolton is a diplomatic patsy ?

        • Sam F
          June 12, 2018 at 17:49

          I do not know intentions, but as mike notes, likely an act for negotiation and domestic propaganda.

    • mike k
      June 12, 2018 at 10:41

      Trump is a complex and often self-contradictory character. Most of us are. He has used Bolton as the stick, the bad cop, and Pompeo is the carrot, the good cop. He threatens Kim Jong Un, then buddies up to him. These are his ways of trying to manipulate people to get what he wants.

  26. anastasia
    June 12, 2018 at 08:45

    Can someone explain something to me. How does a country that has virtually no electricity make sophisticated nuclear weapons?. Do they make them by candlelight; by gas light (do they have gas?). Trump said that his “intelligence” agencies say that Kim’s nuclear arsenal is “substantial”. Is this the same “intelligence” agency that told Bush about Iraq’s “weapons of mass destruction?” The same one that told Clinton about Gaddafi’s nerve gas factory, only to find out after it was bombed that it was a drug store? That one. That “intelligence” agency? I will tell you what should be abolished before the fantasy nuclear arsenal of Kim’s. The CIA, the NSA, Defense Intelligence, and all the other private defense companies working as their agents for big big bucks.

    • Sam F
      June 12, 2018 at 09:20

      Apparently NK like Iran has very sophisticated scientists, engineers, and manufacturing, contrary to US mass media propaganda. So they have infrastructure and utilities at least where most needed. Note the modern structures and vehicles in their photos.

      It is hard to see why they would denuclearize, given the examples of Libya and Iran, and the extreme dishonesty of the US, unless they decide to accept massive investment as the better course, a soft invasion, seeing US hegemony declining anyway.

      • mike k
        June 12, 2018 at 10:47

        Perhaps Kim is being persuaded by China and Russia that the OBOR plan will gradually defang the US, and bring greater prosperity to his country. He could not be making the moves with South Korea and the US that he is, without the support of these great powers behind him.

        • Sam F
          June 12, 2018 at 18:05

          That is true; perhaps recent China’s nuclear umbrella assurance and past defense is enough assurance. NK could store their nuclear gear in China or Russia as honestly as the US could withdraw to Japan, and still be able to restore it in a few weeks if the US threatened or rejected the treaty.

  27. KiwiAntz
    June 12, 2018 at 08:02

    Cautious optimism, at least jawing is much better than warring & the proof will be in the pudding or the details? It’s going to be very interesting, moving forward, as to how the American Govt tackles a “peace process” as opposed to its usual “war process”? The US Govt sees appeasement & compromise as a form of weakness, so the ball is really in America’s court, Kim’s proposing a step by step process over time, perhaps years, that will require give & take from the Americans as Nth Korea will not totally denuclearise & Hand over their weapons unless it’s in their interests? That means the US gets out of Sth Korea & stop the threats? That would be a good first start? Nth Korea would disarm fairly quickly if the American’s just went home & left the two Korea’s sort out their own futures?

    • Joe Tedesky
      June 12, 2018 at 16:19

      Your last sentence about America leaving which would allow the 2 Korea’s to sort out their differences is what I personally believe is now happening. My only wonderment is whether the U.S. will leave. I mean what about those THAAD missiles, and spying on China? Are those days suddenly going to disappear? The other problem is America is awful at keeping their word to a treaty. Like I said, I’m truly trying to keep myself positive with this U.S. N Koreas business, but given the past of my country the USofA I have my doubts.

      Always enjoy hearing what you have to say KiwiAntz. Joe

  28. mike k
    June 12, 2018 at 06:37

    This summit is a very positive event, in that it shows some willingness to talk, and let diplomacy do it’s work. The previous threats and stonewalling were a dead end. Where it goes from here, no one can predict. But let us all take a deep breath and dare to feel some hope for a change.

    • mike k
      June 12, 2018 at 06:46

      It’s so hard for many of us to give Trump credit for anything at all. Let’s avoid such black and white thinking on this one, and give the Orange One some measured applause on this one.

      • Kieron
        June 12, 2018 at 09:55

        It’s a matter of trust Mike. Unfortunately he really doesn’t deserve much. His record to date indicates that his words are cheap. I understand where your coming from but he has yet to make good on any promise he’s made so far. In fact he has broken so many.

        • ronnie mitchell
          June 12, 2018 at 14:26

          As much as I hate to say it but Trump’s actions far outpace Obama’s when it comes to deescalating tensions which are the very reason for NK getting nukes in the first place. When nuke tests happened both sides talked in a threatening manner to the other side “dotard” “little rocket man”, but actual diplomacy (rare event for the US) has taken place, the first real hope for peace in over seven decades.
          Whereas Obama’s reaction to nuclear testing was very different, something that should make NK more determined to develop their weapons faster.

          ‘…But I agree with Tim Shorrock that the most stunning thing was for him (Trump) to talk about the war exercises being provocative, not to mention stopping them or at least suspending them. When Barack Obama was president and there was a particular crisis involving North Korean missile or bomb tests, he would send nuclear-capable bombers to drop dummy atomic bombs on Korean islands. As Tim said, the war games often involved attempts to knock over the North Korean regime, plans to send the Marines in at the port of Wonsan to march on Pyongyang in the early stages of a war and the use of nuclear weapons in the Korean theater. ”

          THAT approach would/could never lead to peace and its not like the Obama administration wouldn’t know that (but hey he was already busy bombing seven other Countries).

      • KiwiAntz
        June 12, 2018 at 22:53

        Your dead right Mike, give the orange one his dues & kudos here & applause? Obama won the Nobel Peace prize for “doing nothing” but drone people to death, so Trump’s at the very least deserves consideration for this prize? Better still get the undeserving Obama to forfeit his Nobel Peace prize & send it to the Donald??

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