This week's Hanoi summit between President Trump and North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un must yield “specific deliverables” in order to be a success, the Wall Street Journal's Seoul bureau chief, Jonathan Cheng, argued Tuesday.
The second meeting between Trump and Kim follows their June 2018 summit in Singapore, which didn’t advance denuclearization in the Korean Peninsula but continued the halt of nuclear testing and missile launches by the regime.
During Tuesday's "Special Report" All-Star” panel in Hanoi, Cheng and Associated Press national security reporter Deb Reichmann weighed in on the expectations of the highly anticipated summit between the two leaders.
Cheng began by saying the first summit in Singapore helped "establish a relationship” between Trump and Kim, raising expectations for this second summit.
“We’re going to be talking about a peace treaty potentially, end the Korean War, ending the nuclear program of course, and perhaps, you know, just building a better relationship, I think that’s the real question,” Cheng said. He later said North Korea's regional neighbors Singapore and Vietnam share a “characteristic” that Kim wants for his country, which is “economic development,” but while maintaining “single-party rule.”
“You can see prosperity here in Vietnam and when you think about the history between the U.S. and Vietnam and the war, of course, in the ‘60s and ‘70s to where we are now, I think that’s potentially an attractive model to Chairman Kim,” Cheng told the panel.
Reichmann pointed out that Kim never pledged to “stop doing anything” after the Singapore summit. She also said the potential declaration of an end to the Korean War would likely be more a “symbolic gesture” than a peace treaty.
“It’s an easy thing for the president to do, but again, it’s the big shiny object over here and it’s not the denuclearization, which is the reason why the talks are there to begin with,” Reichmann said.