North Korea

“we will no longer gift the U.S. president”

JM Ashby
Written by JM Ashby

In another world under almost any other administration, America would be the party rejecting a meeting with North Korea officials, but we don't live in that world. We live in a world where the American government is more desperate for a meeting than North Korea is.

North Korea says there will be no meetings or summits in the foreseeable future because they're done giving Trump good press.

In a blunt put-down Monday, North Korea rejected what a senior adviser to Kim called another “fruitless” one-on-one with Trump. It was the latest reminder that Trump’s open-door policy for bargaining with authoritarians means those leaders can slam the door in his face.

“We are no longer interested in such talks that bring nothing to us,” said Kim Kye Gwan, a veteran diplomat and Foreign Ministry adviser. “As we have got nothing in return, we will no longer gift the U.S. president with something he can brag about.

It's not true that North Korea have "got nothing." In fact, they've gotten everything and that's why they can even make a statement like this in the first place.

They would not be in a position to reject Trump if he, as the American president, had not elevated them to that position; if Trump had not so thoroughly demonstrated that he's far more thirsty for something he can "brag about" than any other dignified leader in the world is or should be.

Trump legitimized North Korea, legitimized Kim Jong-un, and at times even made Kim Jong-un look relatively reasonable by lowering the bar to his level. And because the American president already begins the game at a level far above the leader of North Korea, Kim Jong-un received far more positive and consequential world press than Trump ever did from their bromance. Kim Jong-un's approval ratings increased and Trump's have only decreased.

No administration has ever enjoyed many viable options for dealing with North Korean belligerence, but future administrations will have even fewer because of Trump. And he may not even get that hotel in Pyongyang that we all know he's been thinking about.

  • Draxiar

    Again, someone else now has to clean up his mess. Republicans really suck at governing.

  • muselet

    Donald Trump is, alas, incapable of realizing he’s being played by Kim Jong-un, so we can expect another round of flattery and unilateral concessions some time soon.

    –alopecia

  • 1933john

    Seems it’s the beginning of a “rancorous divorce”.