To the surprise of no doubt very few, President Donald Trump does not actually have a golden touch when it comes to global policy negotiations after all. He has claimed credit for the recent indications that the situation on the Korean peninsula was improving after an elongated threat period, but now, conditions are deteriorating just as quickly as they improved.
After the kickoff of a series of military drills being conducted jointly by the Americans and the South Koreans on the Korean peninsula, the North Koreans announced that they would not be holding a planned meeting with the South Koreans after all and called into question the security of the footing for a planned meeting between Trump and the North Korean leader next month.
In a statement released Wednesday (the Koreas are about thirteen hours ahead of the East Coast of the United States), the North Koreans relayed the following message:
‘This exercise targeting us, which is being carried out across South Korea, is a flagrant challenge to the Panmunjom Declaration and an intentional military provocation running counter to the positive political development on the Korean Peninsula.’
The Panmunjom Declaration is the agreement reached after a meeting between the North and South Korean leaders last month; it aimed to establish peace on the Korean peninsula through such means as its complete denuclearization and the formal ending of the Korean War.
A follow-up meeting had been planned for Wednesday.
As mentioned, the North Koreans also questioned a planned upcoming meeting between Kim Jong Un and Donald Trump. The president abruptly announced earlier this year that he had accepted an invitation from the North Koreans for a meeting; he touted the invitation as proof that his nearly genocidal, relentless aggression towards North Korea had worked. He went so far at one point as to say that he would see to the complete destruction of North Korea if they threatened the United States.
The North Koreans, however, have insisted that they are moving forward with a peace and denuclearization process completely of their own accord, and they sought to remind the West of that fact in their Wednesday statement. In their description of the situation, they’re here “at the table” because they want to be and can leave just as easily.
Addressing the planned U.S./ North Korea summit, the North Koreans said:
‘The United States will also have to undertake careful deliberations about the fate of the planned North Korea-U.S. summit in light of this provocative military ruckus jointly conducted with the South Korean authorities.’
Were the negotiating processes the North Koreans are currently involved in to completely fall apart, the world may again face the threat of the country turning its nuclear weapons on nations ranging from South Korea to the United States.
President Trump’s belligerent rhetoric has already been feared to have been dragging the world closer to nuclear war, but he has refused to acknowledge that the situation is more complex than that rhetoric having somehow supposedly worked to save us all from the nuclear threat.
Meanwhile, the exact fate of the North Korean nuclear threat remains in question. Whether or not them pulling out of negotiations would mean that they end plans like those for the dismantling of a nuclear test site later this month remains to be seen.
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