'Humiliated and Empty-Handed': Conservative Writer Blasts Trump's Utter Failure at North Korean Diplomacy

President Donald Trump's diplomatic efforts with North Korea are turning out even worse than many critics had expected.


Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's negotiations over the weekend were even more confirmation that the president and his administration have little grasp of what they're doing. As conservative writer — and frequent Trump opponent — Max Boot explained in the Washington Post, Pompeo left the meetings "humiliated and empty-handed."

Pompeo, who didn't even meet with Kim Jong-un, was firmly rebuked for the administration's demands that North Korea unilaterally denuclearize. Meanwhile, reports suggest that the Kim regime has continued to expand its nuclear arsenal, even after Trump declared that the North Korean nuclear threat was extinguished.

'Trump has been played from the start — and he’s the only one who doesn’t know it," writes Boot. "His dealings with North Korea have been a master class in self-deception."

Boot even employed one of the most foreboding historical analogies one can cite against Trump:

Trump nevertheless tweeted, “There is no longer a Nuclear Threat from North Korea” — a proclamation that will rank with Neville Chamberlain’s boast that his 1938 Munich meeting with Adolf Hitler delivered “peace for our time.” At least Chamberlain had the good grace not to salute any SS generals. Trump, by contrast, was caught saluting a North Korean general.

While few think that the world would be better off with increased tensions between the U.S. and North Korea — except perhaps national security adviser John Bolton — Trump's pathetic attempts at diplomacy have squandered an actual opportunity to move toward long-term peace. The fact that he can be so clearly and so obviously played by a leader like Kim with only emboldens the rogue regime and other authoritarians who want to push their luck. 

"Kim has played Trump like a Stradivarius," writes Boot. "If Trump was fleeced so thoroughly by a tyro tyrant whom he was denouncing as recently as the beginning of this year, imagine how much he will give up to a veteran despot for whom he has had nothing but praise."

Enjoy this piece?

… then let us make a small request. AlterNet’s journalists work tirelessly to counter the traditional corporate media narrative. We’re here seven days a week, 365 days a year. And we’re proud to say that we’ve been bringing you the real, unfiltered news for 20 years—longer than any other progressive news site on the Internet.

It’s through the generosity of our supporters that we’re able to share with you all the underreported news you need to know. Independent journalism is increasingly imperiled; ads alone can’t pay our bills. AlterNet counts on readers like you to support our coverage. Did you enjoy content from David Cay Johnston, Common Dreams, Raw Story and Robert Reich? Opinion from Salon and Jim Hightower? Analysis by The Conversation? Then join the hundreds of readers who have supported AlterNet this year.

Every reader contribution, whatever the amount, makes a tremendous difference. Help ensure AlterNet remains independent long into the future. Support progressive journalism with a one-time contribution to AlterNet, or click here to become a subscriber. Thank you. Click here to donate by check.

DonateDonate by credit card

Close

Don't Sit on the Sidelines of History. Join Alternet All Access and Go Ad-Free. Support Honest Journalism.