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How Donald Trump Can Jumpstart Diplomacy with North Korea

Doug Bandow

President Donald Trump apparently has given up on North Korea, according to his aides. He said he wants no summits this year while he concentrates on his reelection campaign.

Downplaying PR extravaganzas makes sense as long as there is no agreement. However, the administration appears determined to move in reverse. An anonymous official told CNN that talks were “dead.” Apparently, the State Department has tightened already restricted travel to the North.

Dropping efforts to achieve detente with the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea leaves President Trump without an obvious foreign policy success. Endless wars in the Middle East continue. The president abandoned the nuclear deal with Iran, creating greater Gulf instability. Relations with Russia have worsened in practice. Hostile governments in Cuba and Venezuela continue to challenge America. The main success of the trade war with China was winning increased agricultural sales to benefit his Midwest supporters, at the high cost of disrupting the economy with burdensome tariffs.

The president should not give up working to defuse the Korean nuclear confrontation.

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