Donald Trump’s North Korea strategy exceeds expectations



South Korean National Security Advisor Chung Eui-yong briefs the press on his meeting with President Trump.

Michael Melkonian, Staff Writer

On March 8, 2018, the world was rocked by a major announcement from the White House concerning North Korea. President Trump’s nuclear strategy, which has been ridiculed for months by the media for being too aggressive and idiotic, is now starting to pay dividends. A South Korean delegation, headed by South Korea’s National Security Advisor Chung Eui-yong, met with President Trump and his top military advisors, and briefed them for hours on what their meeting was like with Kim Jong Un in North Korea.

This meeting, according to the White House, also presented President Trump with a personal invitation to meet with Kim Jong Un to talk about suspending North Korea’s nuclear ambitions and eventually removing North Korea’s nuclear weaponry. President Trump accepted the invitation and even promised to have the meeting no later than May. This was a huge reversal from the rhetoric coming from both parties last fall, with the President calling Kim “rocket man” and threatening to totally annihilate North Korea if they attacked America’s allies, and Kim calling Trump a “dotard” and threatening America, saying that “the nuclear button is on his desk at all times.”

No sitting American President has ever met with a North Korean supreme leader, so in doing this, the president has now kickstarted a summit that will be absolutely historic, comparable with the Reagan-Gorbachev summit of 1986 or Nixon visiting communist China in 1972. This as all happened due to the president’s hardline rhetoric and pressing of sanctions on North Korea. This is according to the South Korean delegation, who praised Trump numerous times for being able to get North Korea to the bargaining table.  

However, the president must also do his due diligence with this meeting. This meeting might quite possibly solve the most dangerous issue in the world or it can also be a ploy by Kim to buy more time for him to get a nuclear warhead on an ICBM that can hit the United States. North Korea has been known to break promises and deals, with an example being the deal made during the Clinton Administration with North Korea in 1994 barring North Korea from continuing its nuclear program, in return of the lifting of sanctions and the delivery of food aid to North Korea’s impoverished citizens. North Korea broke that deal in 2004 and has been continuing its track of a nuclear ICBM since then.

President Trump must make it clear to Kim that if he dares to break any agreement made during that summit that he will face the full power of the United States in the form of not only crushing sanctions but also military action. This was a risky move on the president’s part to accept Kim’s invitation, but a risk that is worth it politically and more importantly in real world terms. Even if President Trump comes out of that meeting with nothing, he can still say that he has done something to deal with the nuclear problem, unlike a few of his predecessors.

However, if the president succeeds and manages to freeze the North Korean nuclear program, it will be the greatest foreign accomplishment by an American president since President Ronald Reagan guided America through the Cold War. He will be hailed as the ultimate peacemaker and dealmaker and surely guarantee not only his reelection in 2020 and a Nobel Peace Prize, but huge Republican gains in the 2018 midterms. More importantly, he will save the lives of millions of people who would be killed and tens of millions who would be affected from a war between North Korea and the United States.