In another challenge to the “Trump saved the world from North Korea” narrative, the Norks today stabbed State Secretary Pompeo in the back and embarrassed him after he said their meetings went awesomely.
From Yonhap News:
U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Saturday that progress has been made on North Korea’s denuclearization after meeting with a high-ranking North Korean official in Pyongyang.
Pompeo landed in Tokyo after completing his two-day trip in North Korea for denuclearization talks. Before flying to Japan, Pompeo told pool reporters that he had “very productive” talks and spent “a good deal of time” discussing a timeline for North Korea’s denuclearization.
“I think we made progress in every element of our discussions,” he said, according to pool reports from journalists who traveled with the secretary.
But after Pompeo left, the Norks said yeah no bro.
North Korea expressed regret Saturday over the attitude of U.S. negotiators during their talks this week to work out details on how to denuclearize the Korean Peninsula as agreed to by their leaders in their recent summit meeting.
In a statement issued by an unnamed foreign ministry spokesman and carried by the Korean Central News Agency, the North lashed out at the United States for seeking unilateral and forced denuclearization from Pyongyang.
“We expected that the U.S. side would come with productive measures conducive to building trust in line with the spirit of the North-U.S. summit and (we) considered providing something that would correspond to them,” the spokesman said.
“The U.S. just came out with such unilateral and robber-like denuclearization demands as CVID, declaration and verification that go against the spirit of the North-U.S. summit meeting,” he added, calling the talks “really disappointing.”
CVID stands for complete, verifiable and irreversible dismantlement of the North’s nuclear program, an oft-cited demand by Washington for Pyongyang.
The spokesman apparently rejected the U.S. demand and reiterated Pyongyang’s call for a “phased” and “synchronous” approach, saying that it would be the shortest way to realize a nuclear-free Korean Peninsula.
“It would be the shortest path toward realization of the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula to … boldly break away from the failure-ridden methods of the past, push for whole new approaches and seek to resolve problems one by one based on trust and in a phased and synchronous principle,” he said.
This isn’t insurmountable of course. Just a stumbling block. But it doesn’t help that Trump is out there triumphantly declaring that he saved the world from nuclear holocaust. On the other hand, we’re in a much better place then many predicted from his insanely combative tweets. That doesn’t mean we’re in a good place, however… much remains to be seen.