Korea Commentary Headlines

U.S. President Donald Trump shakes hands with North Korean leader Kim Jong...

Commentary: To denuclearize N. Korea, Trump should think small

New Year’s traditions differ across the Pacific. Americans break out bottles of champagne and wake up with headaches and fuzzy memories. Koreans try to maintain sobriety in order to bow to family elders on Jan. 1 and receive blessings for the peace, prosperity, and health of their entire clan. Such cultural differences, as superficial as they might seem, might offer a lesson in foreign policy.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un bids farewell to South Korean President...

Commentary: Europe’s North Korea moment

When South Korean President Moon Jae-in holds his first summit with the EU on October 19, North Korea will be at the top of the agenda. Many in Seoul hope that Europe will take a step forward and become more involved in dealing with Pyongyang, because when it comes to the current diplomatic process taking place in the Korean Peninsula, the EU is clearly punching below its weight. This is unfortunate, since Brussels can play an important role as the international community seeks denuclearization of North Korea and inter-Korean reconciliation moves ahead. It is time for Europe to embrace this role.

U.S. President Trump shows letter from North Korean leader Kim during...

Commentary: U.S. efforts in Korea bear little fruit

Every fall, when the leaves begin turning yellow and brown, I think of my late grandmother. Born in 1913 in what is now South Korea, she spent some of her early life in what is today North Korea. In both parts of the then-undivided peninsula, my grandmother lived according to the rhythm of the changing seasons; in her later years, she loved recalling the harvests of her youth, when Korea’s fields were bursting with life-sustaining golden grain. For me, her granddaughter, fall remains a time to assess what I have harvested in my life, and to examine the fruits the world has borne – or failed to bear. This year I’ve concluded that, while North Korea has reaped a bumper crop of political gains since last fall, the United States has come up empty.

South Korean marines march during a military exercise as a part of the...

Commentary: The danger of Trump’s decision on Korea ‘war games’

Donald Trump’s unexpected announcement that he was suspending joint U.S.-South Korean military exercises as part of negotiations with the North has caused consternation in Seoul as well as at the Pentagon. The greatest alarm, however, will be amongst Washington’s major allies in Asia and Europe, already made nervous by the U.S. president’s rhetoric that Washington spends too much money on defending them.

U.S. President Donald Trump shakes hands with North Korean leader Kim Jong...

Commentary: Whatever happens next, the Trump-Kim summit is a win

In the end, diplomacy can work – as a process, not an event. There is no Big Bang theory of nuclear diplomacy. If no further progress is made toward peace on the Korean peninsula, all this – the back-and-forth, the Moon-Kim meetings, the Singapore summit itself – is at worst another good start that faded. It is more likely, however, a turning point.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un claps with military officers at the Command...

Commentary: From inside North Korea, clues about Kim's agenda

It’s been a roller coaster ride for anyone following plans for a June 12 summit between Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un. The actors were contradictory, the stage sets numerous and the messages chaotic. Within days of Trump’s May 24 cancellation of the Singapore meeting – and then the withdrawal of his withdrawal – President Moon Jae-in of South Korea met with the U.S. president in Washington and with the North Korean leader on the northern side of the demilitarized zone (DMZ) to help keep the summit alive. Meanwhile, U.S. officials flew to the DMZ and Singapore and a top North Korean official came to New York to plan (again) for the encounter.

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un provides guidance on a nuclear weapons...

Commentary: Forget the ‘Libya model’ for North Korea

North Korea is not like Libya. And those who think that Washington should look to the North African nation as a precedent for either denuclearization or regime change in Pyongyang are heading either for confusion or disappointment.

A man walks past a TV broadcasting a news report on the upcoming...

Commentary: Trump's best option for denuclearizing North Korea

The head-spinning ups and downs of the “on-off-and-now-maybe” summit between Donald Trump and North Korea’s Kim Jong Un is diverting attention from the real choice facing the U.S. president: if he remains inflexibly committed to eliminating Pyongyang’s nuclear weapons and missile program by the end of his first term, he will fail.

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