Donald Trump has worked hard to bring the North Korean nuclear standoff to a peaceful conclusion.
Trump’s efforts bore fruit when he and Kim Jong Un agreed to a June 12 summit to discuss how to end hostilities.
But then North Korea yanked the rug out from under everyone with a threat Trump won’t like.
The North Koreans walked out of talks with South Korea and threatened to cancel the summit with Trump over routine military exercises staged by the United States and South Korea.
These exercises take place every year, but the North Koreans succumbed to their paranoia and constantly believe they are the pretext for an invasion.
So they used them as an excuse to see how far they could push Trump and America’s allies.
“North Korea has cancelled talks with South Korea scheduled for Wednesday, and threatened to cancel next month’s summit between President Trump and Kim Jong-un over joint U.S.-South Korean military drills, according to South Korean news agency Yonhap.
Why it matters: This is a dramatic change in tone from North Korea, which recently released three U.S. prisoners and began dismantling a nuclear test site as part of efforts to lay the groundwork for talks with Trump. North Korea has long viewed joint drills as rehearsals for invasion, but had remained uncharacteristically silent about exercises last month. Tuesday’s objections were over an air force drill that began last week.
The statement, issued via the KCNA news agency, reads in part:
“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 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.”
Trump has stated he will walk away from a bad deal.
Unlike past American presidents, Trump won’t allow the North Koreans to use their nuclear weapons program to bully America into concessions.
This stunt is likely posturing by the North Koreans to see what they can get away with.
But Kim Jong Un won’t like the answer.
We will keep you up to date on any new developments in this story.