Sunday 13 January 2019 - 07:05

Second Kim meeting: Trump’s perfect political distraction

By: Dennis Etler
Story Code : 771819
In this file photo taken on June 12, 2018 US President Donald Trump (R) gestures as he meets with North Korea
In this file photo taken on June 12, 2018 US President Donald Trump (R) gestures as he meets with North Korea's leader Kim Jong-un (L) at the start of their historic US-North Korea summit, at the Capella Hotel on Sentosa island in Singapore. (Photo by AFP)

Trump’s foreign policy however has faced blow back from deeply entrenched forces within the US military-industrial-congressional complex. His attempts to withdraw US troops from both Syria and Afghanistan have been met with resistance by the foreign policy establishment and have been largely scuttled.

Trump, faced with a recalcitrant opposition at home, has praised China as more amenable to dialogue than his Democratic critics. A second summit with Kim Jong-un would seem to a good means to divert attention away from his domestic woes.

But, Trump has already spent a lot of his political capital in his negotiations with Kim. The negotiations began after Kim made the first move and indicated his willingness to attend a summit with Trump, the first time the leaders of the two nations would meet. Kim’s pledge of denuclearization however has not been met with any meaningful concessions from the US side, such as a reduction, if not elimination, of US imposed economic sanctions.

On the other hand, both the DPRK and ROK (Republic of Korea, aka South Korea) have continued their rapprochement. President Moon Jae-in of the ROK has spoken in favor of a continued relaxation of tensions between the two Koreas. China has also voiced its support for the reconciliation process and the need for removal of US sanctions. The peace train on the Korean peninsula has already left the station and there is now no turning back. The major obstacle to the continuation of the peace process resides not in Seoul. Pyongyang or Beijing, but in Washington D.C.

The same applies to many other regions of the world. In the Middle East and the South China Sea, for example, US meddling has exacerbated tensions and thwarted attempts to resolve conflicts. It’s time for the US to stop interfering in other nations affairs and let them solve whatever conflicts arise themselves.