The US and North Korea, Still Miles Apart

When it comes to denuclearization, Washington and Pyongyang were never really on the same page.

|May 25, 2018

By Phillip Orchard

U.S. President Donald Trump canceled next month’s summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un on May 24, citing the “tremendous anger and open hostility” of recent North Korean rhetoric. (Of course, North Korea says angry and openly hostile things all the time; it would be more suspicious if it suddenly stopped.) Trump later said the summit might still happen with unspecified “constructive steps” from Kim. But the U.S. and North Korean positions on the North’s nuclear program are still miles apart, and the U.S. simply wasn’t going to get much of what it wanted in the June 12 summit in Singapore. It’s not clear if the White House ever truly thought otherwise – or, if so, why it did.

Measures of Good Faith

It’s possible that things were communicated behind the scenes all along that led the U.S. to take the North’s willingness to give up its nukes seriously – and that the North has indeed done an about-face. This is the story coming o

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