The United States will not suspend any more major military exercises with South Korea, or so says Defense Secretary James Mattis. Halting these drills was a key component of the U.S.-North Korea detente. The announcement comes just days after President Donald Trump canceled Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s planned visit to Pyongyang – a decision reportedly motivated by a letter he received from Kim Jong Un’s spy chief, Kim Yong Chol, criticizing the White House for failing to take steps toward signing a peace treaty with the North and warning that negotiations may fall apart. South Korea, which has been more successful in its parallel efforts to mend ties with the North, says it has not yet discussed resuming major drills with Washington. In short, the White House got caught out on a limb after the Singapore summit and is looking to regain lost leverage.
Meanwhile, Japan is trying to work things out with North Korea on its own. According to the Washington Post, officials from