Historic handshake: new beginning for face-to-face diplomacy with North Korea

The world paused to watch a historic handshake between a U.S. president and a North Korean leader.

The meeting between President Trump and Kim Jong Un marks a new strategy of face-to-face diplomacy put to the old problem of a non-compliant nuclear nation.

the past

Three recent U.S. presidents attempted agreements with Kim Jong Un and his father, Kim Jong Il, in order to stop their nuclear activity. Each time, the agreements fell apart, and North Korea continued to improve its nuclear weapons program.

the present

Now, North Korea’s program is complete enough to be able to send missiles into the U.S.

meanwhile, in North Korea

While funneling huge amounts of money into their military, the North Korean people are starving to death.

“Amidst political tensions, an estimated 18 million people across DPRK [North Korea] continue to suffer from food insecurity and undernutrition, as well as a lack of access to basic services,” one U.N. report said. “Furthermore, 10.5 million people, or 41 percent of the total population, are undernourished.”

but, hope for the future

Kim Jong Un promised complete denuclearization. On Kim’s request, and without South Korea’s prior knowledge, President Trump stopped joint military exercises between South Korea and the U.S. (a regularly scheduled show of force and military commitment to South Korea on the part of the U.S.) as an act-of-good-faith for negotiations.

Geek out on the document that was signed at the summit here. And, as always, there are two emerging positions on the success of the summit: either the atta-boy, we-are-off-to-good-start side; or the we-gave-up-too-much-already perspective. Check out the debate here.

Click here to read the Washington Post article.

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