Two months ago the US looked to be at a complete standstill with North Korea.
The thought of World War III did not seem ridiculous, and the idea of nuclear weapons being utilised was a terrifying, yet realistic prospect; not to panic, we were all safely reassured just how big President Trump’s red button was:
North Korean Leader Kim Jong Un just stated that the “Nuclear Button is on his desk at all times.” Will someone from his depleted and food starved regime please inform him that I too have a Nuclear Button, but it is a much bigger & more powerful one than his, and my Button works!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) January 3, 2018
Fast forward two months and Donald Trump could quite possibly achieve what no other previous President has achieved: disarm North Korea.
From the antagonist to the diplomat, the remarkable progress coming out of Pyongyang also says how Kim Jong Un will refrain from nuclear missile tests and begin ‘talks’ with South Korea.
The news comes after North Korea announced that there was no need to continue with their nuclear programme if there wasn’t a threat to their own military – a development made after Kim Jong Un spoke with a delegate from Seoul this week – the first time since taking power in 2011; a hotline between the two countries will be created in April.
Trump insists that North Korea’s words are genuine as the President remains optimistic that Kim Jong Un will disarm his nuclear programme; the move could see polls skyrocket for the President who has recently dropped in the ratings with comments made on teachers bearing arms and drug smuggling:
“I’d like to be optimistic, but I think maybe this has gone further than anyone has taken it before,’
‘Hopefully, it will go in the very, very peaceful, beautiful path. We’re prepared to go whichever path is necessary. I think we’re having very good dialogue.”
— President Donald Tump
Do People Believe That North Korea Will Denuclarize?
Trump’s previous rhetoric of fighting with ‘fire and fury’ looked like an insane lunatic was willing to go to-toe-toe with one of the most authoritarian regimes on the planet; the media are now saying this ‘lunatic’ could be the next in line for a Nobel Peace Prize.
However, some are skeptical that Kim Jong Un will follow through on such promises. Major Garrett, from CBS News, has highlighted the White House’s concern of North Korea’s track record going back on previous agreements they have reached with the west.
“The problem with North Korea is not talking or reaching agreements, but rather it is North Korea’s history of breaking those deals and advancing its nuclear weapons and ballistic missile programs.”
— Major Garrett, CBS News
Such cases where North Korea have changed their rhetoric was in 2005 when they announced they had manufactured nuclear weapons for self-defence; by 2006, North Korea accelerated their nuclear programme by conducting their first nuclear tests.
It was then estimated by researchers that ten years later, the country had enough uranium to produce six nuclear weapons each year – not exactly the quantity needed for strictly self-defence.
Whether Kim Jong Un will, therefore, follow through on nuclear disarmament remains a highly contentious discussion. A previous track record could see a step-up in North Korea’s programme, or it could see Trump’s greatest ever contribution to the White House.