North Korea

Pompeo in context

Featured image Secretary of State Mike Pompeo returned in the early morning hours from North Korea with an understanding on arrangements for the Kim Jong-Un’s forthcoming meeting with President Trump. He also secured the release of the three American hostages held by the North Korean regime. President and Mrs. Trump welcomed them home at Andrews together with Vice President and Mrs. Pence. In Pompeo’s absence, Trump announced our withdrawal from “the worst »

New York Times embarrasses itself in hit piece on Pompeo

Featured image Is there any shot at the Trump administration too lame for the New York Times to eschew? After reading this report from Brian Flood at Fox News, I’m starting to doubt there is. On Tuesday, the Times breathlessly reported that Secretary of State Pompeo was absent from Washington when Trump announced he was pulling the U.S. out of the nuclear deal with Iran. “At a Key Moment, Trump’s Top Diplomat »

Leaving North Korea

Featured image President Trump likes to make the news himself via his Twitter feed, as he has done this morning (below). Secretary Pompeo has left North Korea with the three American prisoners held by the North Korean regime. Their detention was unjustified and represented a further source of grievance with the regime. Kim, for some reason, now seeks to make a good impression on the president of the United States. I am »

Churchill on North Korea and Iran

Featured image I don’t think Churchill ever wrote much about North Korea, even though the Korean War was going on when he became prime minister for the second time in 1951, and Britain was our ally in that conflict. The outbreak of the Korean War mostly spurred on Churchill’s preexisting and controversial view in favor of German rearmament. But my mind has wandered back to some of Churchill enduring lessons as I »

Trump’s North Korea Policy: The Story So Far

Featured image News breaking this afternoon that North Korea is releasing three American citizens it has been holding. Another point on the scoreboard for Trump’s Nork policy. Of course, this is but a small gesture on the part of the Norks, and the real business will be whether Trump can get a meaningful and enforceable deal with them. Count me skeptical about this. But still it is fun to see the creased-smarty-pants »

Kim Jong Un promises peace in our time

Featured image What should we make of Kim Jong Un’s promises in advance of a proposed meeting with President Trump, including his promise to give up North Korea’s nuclear arsenal if the U.S. promises not to invade? I think Walter Russel Mead answers the question correctly when he describes them as “a repackaged version of virtually every concession North Korea has ever proposed.” What should we make of Kim’s historic meeting with »

North Korean Breakthrough? Plus, Tweet of the Day [with comment by Paul]

Featured image I don’t think we have said much about what could become a stunning diplomatic triumph: the rapprochement between North Korea and South Korea, accompanied by North Korea’s commitment to denuclearization. This assessment by Todd Rosenblum at The Hill strikes me as balanced: “Stunning Korea denuclearization statement bodes well for America.” It is too early to pop champagne corks, but it would be absurd to deny that so far, President Trump »

Have we really made “big progress” with North Korea?

Featured image President Trump is hailing North Korea’s announcement that the regime is willing to end the testing of its ICBMs. He tweeted: North Korea has agreed to suspend all Nuclear Tests and close up a major test site. This is very good news for North Korea and the World – big progress! Look forward to our Summit. I don’t want to rain on Trump’s parade. If he gets a boost in »

The pros and cons of talking with Kim Jong Un

Featured image So President Trump’s bellicosity towards North Korea hasn’t led to nuclear war, after all. Instead, from all that appears, it has led to the negotiating table and face-to-face talks between the president and Kim Jong Un. But is that a good place for the U.S. to be? And will it lead to a denuclearized North Korea? Let’s keep in mind that North Korea has benefited significantly from past talks with »

Next stop, Nobel Peace Prize?

Featured image The big news of the day is Kim Jong Un’s invitation of President Trump to a meeting to discuss denuclearization. The meeting is to take place before May at a place to be determined. Little Rocket Man has agreed to stop missile and nuclear testing in the meantime. South Korean National Security Adviser Chung Eui-Yong made this announcement on White House grounds to the assembled press gaggle yesterday evening: Today, »

Liberal media fawns over Kim Jong Un’s sister

Featured image I’ll say this for Kim Jong Un’s sister, Kim Yo Jong — she’s considerably better looking than the goon who runs North Korea. This may be faint praise, but there’s nothing faint about the praise being heaped on the dictator’s sister by America’s mainstream media. According to CNN, to take perhaps the worst example, “if ‘diplomatic dance’ were an event at the Winter Olympics, Kim Jong Un’s younger sister would »

Oops: Hawaii Missile Alert Is a False Alarm [Updated]

Featured image The Associated Press reports: “Hawaii officials mistakenly warn of inbound missile.” Hawaii emergency management officials say a push alert that warned of an incoming ballistic missile to Hawaii on Saturday was a mistake. The emergency alert sent to cellphones said in all caps, “Ballistic missile threat inbound to Hawaii. Seek immediate shelter. This is not a drill.” Hawaii Emergency Management Agency spokesman Richard Repoza says it’s a false alarm. That’s »

Tweet of the Day

Featured image Everybody is predictably freaking out over President Trump’s tweet about his, um. . . button: I won’t even bother sharing some of the hysterical reaction in the media over this. Better to go with the best response so far, which comes from . . . Kentucky Fried Chicken?? One can only imagine what Trump, a McDonald’s burger fan, will have to say when he sees this! (Of course Trump also »

At the Washington Post, if it misleads, it leads

Featured image The lead headline on the Washington Post’s web page right now is: “Putin thanks Trump for CIA intel that foiled a planned terrorist attack in Russia.” The story isn’t earth-shattering but has the virtue of enabling the Post to write a lead headline that includes “Putin” and “Trump.” Post reporter David Filipov characterizes Putin’s call as “unusual.” He says “countries share intelligence all the time, but presidents rarely publicly thank »

Will There Ever Be An Accounting On North Korea?

Featured image Today North Korea launched an intercontinental ballistic missile that stayed airborne for close to an hour and flew farther than any previously tested by that country. Defense Secretary James Mattis told reporters that the Kim regime now has the ability to to hit “everywhere in the world basically.” And, of course, the regime has nuclear weapons. Further: The US believes Pyongyang may be able to put a miniaturized warhead on »

The Gathering Storm in the Western Pacific

Featured image The South China Morning Post, one of the favorite go-to sources for my old professor of grand strategy Harold Rood, had an interesting article about China and North Korea a couple days ago—and notice how even the Post headline editors aren’t buying the official story: Main link between China and North Korea to be cut when Friendship Bridge closes ‘for repairs’ The closure of the Sino-North Korean Friendship Bridge in »

North Korean escapee soldier was severely malnourished

Featured image The world was transfixed by the dash of a North Korean soldier across the DMZ into South Korea. North Korean guards shot the escapee at least five times, but South Korean doctors performed three surgeries and managed to save his life. In treating the North Korean, doctors discovered that he was malnourished and had a severe parasitic infection they hadn’t seen before except in medical textbooks. The tapeworms they found »