Donald Trump, Kim Jong-un to open historic summit with one-on-one powwow

Randal Sanchez
June 11, 2018

From Pyongyang, the North's official media Monday carried comparatively detailed reports on leader Kim Jong-un's visit to Singapore, including his arrival date and plan to hold his first meeting with Trump on Tuesday.

USA allies are anxious that Trump could upend decades of global precedent, NPR's Mara Liasson reported on Weekend Edition Sunday.

Though Trump has been criticized for his failure to demand more concessions from North Korea before agreeing to a face-to-face meeting, which experts say gives Kim the sort of legitimacy on the global stage he desires, downplaying expectations does two things.

Even now, many experts doubt assurances by South Korea and the USA that Kim really intends to talk about eliminating his nuclear weapons program and believe he may be bent instead on easing pressure on his impoverished state and retaining as much of his arsenal as possible.

North Korean state journalists have also traveled to Singapore this week to capture their leader's meetings and movements.

"This is a leader who is really an unknown personality", Trump said.

Trump told reporters the Singapore summit is "really a get-to-know-you kind of situation".

"And if we're not willing to do that, we're not going to get a good deal", Graham said, complementing the worldwide community - including China and Russian Federation - for standing behind Trump in regards to sanctions on North Korea.

The limousine of Kim Jong Un arrives at the Istana, or Presidential Palace, in Singapore on June 10, 2018, to meet Singapore Prime Minister Lee Hsien Loong ahead the summit between US leader Donald Trump and North Korea leader Kim. Cha told TIME last month that he did not expect a comprehensive deal to be reached but Trump "never has a bad meeting".

So the summit was almost derailed by talk from Trump's hawkish National Security Advisor John Bolton of a "Libya model" of disarmament.

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"I think that was a very shrewd move on Kim Jong Un's part", Terry said.

"I have little expectation from the summit", he said.

Harry Kazianis, director of defense studies at the Center for the National Interest, said he is afraid of a summit that is only a photo opportunity.

"The entire world is watching the historic summit between [North Korea] and the United States of America, and thanks to your honest efforts. we were able to complete the preparations for the historic summit", Kim told Lee through an interpreter.

A more middle-of-the-road result could be for statements about denuclearization followed by more high-level negotiations. The North Korea side is being led by Vice Foreign Minister Choe Son-hui.

Asked Saturday what the benchmark of success is for the summit, he said, "At a minimum, I do believe, at least we'll have met each other".

"That's a ideal deal for North Korea".

Dynastic descent from Kim Il Sung is the basis for Kim's personal legitimacy - Pyongyang's propaganda promotes the similarities between them in looks, mannerisms and even handwriting. And I'm thinking even like a five-year timeframe.

Some hope for an end to Cold War confrontation and that the North will eventually give up its nuclear weapons, others are sceptical about Pyongyang's intentions - and some say they have too many economic problems of their own to pay much attention. "And, for me, the best-case scenario would be, at this point, for President Trump to step back from the process and hand it over to the professional diplomats and negotiators to work out these details".

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