Image from Daily Express
By JOHN EICHER
OPINION- It is been barely more than a week since North Korean Supreme Leader Kim Jong-Un and South Korean President Moon Jae-In met with each other to discuss peace negotiations between the two nations. However, diplomatic relations are already starting to falter.
The summit was unprecedented, marked notably by the presence of Jong-Un in South Korea, for it was the first time a North Korean leader has crossed the border in more than 60 years.
In exchange for a revised peace treaty, South Korea has agreed to work in conjunction with the North to denuclearize the peninsula, disarming one of the most dangerous regions in the world in terms of atomic power and political instability. While the resolutions agreed upon are unquestionably beneficial, their permanence must be called into question given the erratic nature of the powers involved.
President Trump has agreed to meet with Kim at a currently undisclosed location to discuss recently implemented U.S sanctions, and the discourse between the two world leaders have been troubling. The North is currently detaining three U.S. prisoners, and early talks before the summit strongly inferred that the prisoners would be released as a deed of “good will,” inside White House source Rudy Giuliani said.
Since then, both nations have pulled back on this claim amid debates over who deserves credit for the previous summit. Trump holds a steady stance that the U.S. deserves recognition given the timing of the sanctions.
He argues that the harsh regulations pushed North Korea toward neighboring allies. While this is occurring, state news in Korea claims the summit’s timeline coinciding within the sanctions is purely coincidental.
Preemptive to the summit, the U.S has deployed military assets within the Korean Peninsula, straining relations even further.
Though the U.S. and President Trump have had an undeniable influence on North Korea’s sudden openness to international diplomacy, the rhetoric over summit negotiations have been fluid at best.
Trump has tested the supreme leader of North Korea over Twitter before, openly mocking him over his weight and referring to Kim as “Rocket Man.” Unsurprisingly, a dynastic authoritarian who refers to himself as “supreme leader” is not particularly known for his willingness to take a joke.
The North Korean government is infamous for its long history of cruel leaders with fragile egos. Up until the summit, the nation isolated itself and its people from the rest of the world, implementing strict regulations against freedom of speech. Kim Jong-Un is regarded as deity within his own borders, presenting himself as infallible.
North Korea reaching out to other nations is valuable to the rest of the world, but negotiations are fragile enough as is. In order for a lasting peace to be established between North and South Korea, the oppressive rule of the North must be addressed, and negotiations must be approached delicately.
When the oppressive state of a whole nation is on the line, it is probably best to stop poking the bear.