<HTML> <TITLE> US relations 2018</TITLE> <BODY> <A NAME="top"> <CENTER> <FONT SIZE=7 COLOR="RED"> United States of America </FONT> <BR> <FONT SIZE=6 COLOR="GREEN"> 2018 </font> <BR> <A HREF="index.html"> Return to Asian Geopolitics indexpage</A> </CENTER> <P> This page includes materials on the stationing of US forces in ROK, MD, ROK reaction to US DPRK policy, etc. but does not attempt to go into wider US-ROK relations. <BR> Nuclear reactors issue, KEDO, IAEA, etc. are currently on the nuclear programme page<P> <B>2018 <UL> <LI><A HREF="NK_US_18.htm#august18">August</A> <LI><A HREF="NK_US_18.htm#july18">July</A> <LI><A HREF="NK_US_18.htm#june18">June</A> <LI><A HREF="NK_US_18.htm#may18">May</A> <LI><A HREF="NK_US_18.htm#april18">April</A> <LI><A HREF="NK_US_18.htm#march18">March</A> <LI><A HREF="NK_US_18.htm#february18">February</A> <LI><A HREF="NK_US_18.htm#january18">January</A> </UL> </B> <HR> <P> <UL> <B> <LI><A HREF="NK_US_17.htm">Korea-US relations 2017</A> <LI><A HREF="NK_US_16.htm">Korea-US relations 2016</A> <LI><A HREF="NK_US_15.htm">Korea-US relations 2015</A> <LI><A HREF="NK_US_14.htm">Korea-US relations 2014</A> <LI><A HREF="NK_US_13.htm">Korea-US relations 2013</A> <LI><A HREF="NK_US_12.htm">Korea-US relations 2012</A> <LI><A HREF="NK_US_11.htm">Korea-US relations 2011</A> <LI><A HREF="NK_US_10.htm">Korea-US relations 2010</A> <LI><A HREF="NK_US_09.htm">Korea-US relations 2009</A> <LI><A HREF="NK_US_08.htm">Korea-US relations 2008</A> <LI><A HREF="NK_US_07.htm">Korea-US relations 2007</A> <LI><A HREF="NK_US_06.htm">Korea-US relations 2006</A> <LI><A HREF="NK_US_05.htm">Korea-US relations 2005</A> <LI><A HREF="NK_US_04.htm">Korea-US relations 2004</A> <LI><A HREF="NK_US_03.htm">Korea-US relations 2003</A> <LI><A HREF="NK_US_02.htm">Korea-US relations 2002</A> <LI><A HREF="NK_US_01.htm">Korea-US relations 2001</A> <LI><A HREF="NK_US_00.htm">Korea-US relations 2000</A> </B> </UL> <P> <HR> <A NAME="august18"> <A HREF="#top">Return to top of page</A><BR> <font size=5 color =maroon"> AUGUST 2018</FONT> <UL> <!--point--> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/08/103_254054.html><B> 'US-North Korea seeing progress in relations' </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-08-17 17:34 Updated : 2018-08-17 18:16 Cheong Wa Dae spokesman Kim Eui-kyeom responds to questions in a media briefing, Friday. Yonhap By Kim Yoo-chul A Cheong Wa Dae official said Friday that South Korea expects the ongoing dialogue between Washington and Pyongyang on the North's denuclearization will bring about improvements in their decades-long hostile relationship. "South Korea is hoping to see a big step in relations between the United States and North Korea in the near future," Cheong Wa Dae spokesman Kim Eui-kyeom told reporters when asked what Seoul thought of remarks by United States Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. "It seems apparent that something is happening in the relationship between Washington and Pyongyang. Momentum is continuing as South Korea is seeing progress in the improved relationship between the former foes," Kim said in a media briefing. [US NK Negotiations] [Wishful thinking] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://fpif.org/rip-to-the-liberal-order/?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=fpif-8-16-18><B> RIP to the Liberal Order </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> The skepticism of U.S. pundits toward the US-North Korean summit indicates an anxiety about the crumbling liberal world order. By Suzy Kim, August 14, 2018. Originally published in Perspectives Daily. Print Friendly, PDF & EmailPrint Kim Jong Un and Donald Trump (Wikimedia Commons) The June 12 summit between Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un was a historic moment for the first time a sitting US president met with the leader of the Democratic People s Republic of Korea (DPRK), or North Korea, since its founding in 1948. It was remarkable to see the Stars and Stripes standing next to the DPRK flag, and to see the two leaders shake hands in acknowledgement of each other as equals rather than as sworn enemies. Reactions in the United States to this history-in-the-making have ranged from cautious optimism to cynical skepticism. But what these apprehensions indicate is the crumbling of the so-called liberal order under the weight of its own contradictions. Nicholas Kristof, regular columnist for the New York Times, represents the spectrum of reactions well, concluding that Trump was  outfoxed and  hoodwinked by Kim. Explaining why the summit made him uncomfortable despite his preference for diplomacy, Kristof wrote,  There was also something frankly weird about an American president savaging Canada s prime minister one day and then embracing the leader of the most totalitarian country in the world. In fact, there s been an odd convergence of reactions that have united hardline Republican hawks like John Bolton with liberal Democrats like Chuck Schumer, who signed a letter warning Trump against any deal that did not include concessions from North Korea regarding its nuclear program. The letter insisted on  anywhere, anytime inspections of all suspected sites of weapons of mass destruction, a probable nonstarter for a North Korea already wary of American threats and encroachment to its sovereignty. For liberals siding with Bolton, their position has much to do with Roger Cohen s argument that Trump is envious of Kim Jong Un and his absolute authority as dictator. Trump s failings as a leader, they say, are similar to Neville Chamberlain s the British prime minister who tried to negotiate with Hitler to thwart World War II. In making this anachronistic comparison, they, like Cohen, believe that Trump has  saluted evil and gone back on  more than seven decades of American stewardship of the world after the defeat of evil in 1945. [US NK policy] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/08/103_253949.html><B> Pyongyang again urges South Korea not to follow sanctions </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-08-16 10:58 Updated : 2018-08-16 17:35 Tweet Follow @koreatimescokr This file photo taken on November 21, 2017 shows a general view of North Korean coal piled up on a dockside at the port in Rason. AFP-Yonhap North Korea's official newspaper on Thursday repeated its call on South Korea not to follow foreign forces' sanctions on Pyongyang, saying sanctions pressure and relationship improvement cannot be compatible. The Rodong Sinmun, the newspaper of the ruling Workers' Party, said in a commentary that inter-Korean relations can hardly move forward in the interests of the Korean people if sanctions pressure from foreign forces is blindly supported and followed by the South. The commentary was published in apparent response to South Korean President Moon Jae-in's Liberation Day address the previous day, which called for complete denuclearization and lasting peace on the Korean Peninsula ahead of full-fledged inter-Korean economic cooperation. Besides the Rodong Sinmun, the North's external propaganda media outlets have recently stepped up calls on the South to choose between sanctions and relationship improvement. "If the (South) joins and blindly follows sanctions pressure by foreign forces maneuvering to deter inter-Korean exchanges, the North-South relations cannot be advanced in the interests of the Korean people and the implementation of the Panmunjom Declaration cannot be pushed," said the Rodong Sinmun, referring to the inter-Korean agreement reached at the April 27 summit. The newspaper then accused the United States of exerting pressure on the South's authorities, corporations and private organizations not to engage in exchanges and cooperation with the North. "The U.S. is unjustly intervening in the internal affairs of our nation and the inter-Korean relationship, hindering the reconciliation, unity, dialogue and cooperation between Koreas," said the paper. [Sanctions] [US dominance] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/08/14/2018081400988.html><B> Pompeo to Visit Pyongyang Late This Month </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Kim Jin-myung August 14, 2018 10:47 U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo will visit Pyongyang late this month, a source said Monday. It remains to be seen whether he can find a breakthrough in stalled denuclearization talks this time, which will be his fourth visit. "Pyongyang notified Washington of a time slot in late August for Pompeo's visit there," the source in Seoul said. Earlier, White House national security adviser John Bolton said U.S. President Donald Trump formally proposed Pompeo's fourth visit to Pyongyang in a letter to North Korean leader Kim Jong-un last week. U.S. State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert said on Aug. 9, "I can tell you we continue to have conversations virtually every day, every other day or so with the North Koreans." The diplomatic source added, "The two sides originally discussed the possibility of Pompeo's visit this week, but it seems that Pyongyang delayed the schedule a little." Washington and Pyongyang have been in a tug of war, with the North pushing for a declaration formally ending the Korean War and the U.S. for palpable progress in denuclearization. Pompeo's last visit was by all accounts a debacle as he failed to meet Kim and came away without any commitment to a denuclearization schedule. The fresh visit raises hopes that some kind of compromise has been negotiated behind the scenes. "It would be politically disastrous if Pompeo comes back empty-handed again," the source said. "He must have judged that he can achieve some results this time." [Pompeo] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/08/103_253932.html><B> 'Partial lifting of sanctions on N. Korea likely' </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> The Gaeseong Industrial Complex in North Korea is seen in this file photo. All operations in the joint venture between the two Koreas have been stopped since 2016 when Seoul decided to close the complex. Yonhap S. Korea says businesses with NK going under economic sanctions frame By Yi Whan-woo South Korea's foreign ministry said Wednesday it was talking with the United States to possibly obtain sanctions relief for North Korea, though the ministry didn't specify when the relief would happen. "The ministry is in discussions with the United States to get the go-ahead for partial sanctions relief, which will be helpful for South Korea to push forward the country's business projects, most of which are non-commercial, with North Korea. But the South has no plans to violate U.N. sanctions now being imposed on the North," said a ministry official. The official added the U.N. Security Council's actions would support and conform to the efforts of diplomatic talks toward denuclearization on the Korean Peninsula. At the Singapore summit in June between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, Trump said economic sanctions will be maintained until Pyongyang's nuclear program is "no longer a problem." The remarks came after Seoul began supplying power to the liaison office located inside the joint industrial park in Gaeseong, North Korea. Seoul's unification ministry said South Korea seeks to run the office within this month in consultation with the U.S. and the allies. [Sanctions] [US dominance] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/08/14/2018081401198.html><B> Gov't Scraps Push for Korea Chair at Columbia University </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Ahn Jun-yong August 14, 2018 12:22 The government last November killed a drive by the Park Geun-hye administration to establish a chair of Korean studies at Columbia. According to documents Liberty Korea Party lawmaker Cheong Yang-seog called in from the Foreign Ministry on Monday, the government had been seeking to set up a Korea chair at Columbia since Park visited the U.S. in September 2015. Columbia president Lee Bollinger had asked the Korean government to help create the position amid growing demand for Korean courses in addition to economic and diplomatic exchange programs, and the government here wanted to counter the growing influence of Japanese studies at U.S. universities. Columbia secured US$2.5 million in funding, and negotiations were held over which of its schools would host the chair. Initial plans were to it set up in the School of International and Public Affairs. Columbia, citing internal disagreements, instead proposed the School of East Asian Languages and Cultures, but the government rejected that proposal and the plan was eventually scrapped. The Foreign Ministry says there are already three Korean chairs at the school and there was no reason to create another. But there are suspicions that the plan was simply scrapped because the government wants to overturn everything the last administration did amid a huge public backlash against Park, especially her often bizarre cultural policies. Earlier this year, the government also cut off funding for the U.S.-Korea Institute at Johns Hopkins University, the only think tank in Washington specializing in Korean affairs. The only reason seems to have been that the institute resisted pressure from Cheong Wa Dae to replace its right-leaning chief. [Softpower] [Korean Studies] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_northkorea/857592.html><B> US Ambassador remains noncommittal regarding end-of-war declaration </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted on : Aug.14,2018 17:14 KST Modified on : Aug.14,2018 17:14 KST Says US government is following inter-Korean talks closely US Ambassador to South Korea Harry Harris speaks during a lecture titled  US-ROK Relationship: Toward the Next 65 Years at the Korea National Diplomatic Academy in Seoul on Aug. 13 (Kim Ji-eun, staff reporter) The American government has been closely following the high-level inter-Korean talks on Aug. 13, during which negotiators deliberated the third inter-Korean summit. US Ambassador to South Korea Harry Harris was noncommittal when asked on the morning of Aug. 13 about preconditions for adopting an end-of-war declaration and about the US position on friendly gestures by North Korea, including the partial shutdown of its Sohae (West Sea) Satellite Launching Station, repeatedly remarking that the US would be  waiting to see the outcome of the high-level inter-Korean talks. "It's too early right now to make a strong comment on the way forward with regard to an end of war declaration," Harris said during a lecture titled  US-ROK Relationship: Toward the Next 65 Years that was held at the Korea National Diplomatic Academy, located in Seoul s Seocho neighborhood on Aug. 13. [Harris Harris] [Peace declaration] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_editorial/857206.html><B> In current NK-US stalemate, only Trump, Kim and Moon can be relied on </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted on : Aug.12,2018 09:36 KST Modified on : Aug.12,2018 09:36 KST All leaders need successful negotiations to further political careers North Korean leader Kim Jong-un (left) and US President Donald Trump speak during the North Korea-US Summit in Singapore on June 12. (Yonhap News)  Welcome to Washington. And good luck! This was the greeting think tank officials and foreign affairs sources gave me when I first arrived in Washington, DC, three weeks ago as a foreign correspondent. The  good luck! message seemed sincere, more than just a formulaic exchange. At least one person commiserated over my having arrived in the US  in the era of Trump s insanity ; more than few expressed their  sympathies. They painted the image of a rough road ahead with President Donald Trump s unpredictable approach to governance and the seemingly endless tug-of-war with Pyongyang. Amid all of this, there were some people who offered comfort.  Things are actually quiet right now, so it s a very good time to adapt, said one think tank expert. The present moment has indeed been quiet compared to the months of extremes and massive change between the threat of war on the Korean Peninsula last year  as exemplified by Trump s remarks about  fire and fury  and the North Korea-US summit in Singapore this past June 12. It also means there has been no further momentum in the implementation of the leaders agreement since the Singapore summit. The June 12 summit alone has been enough to put North Korea-US relations on a very different level. None of the people I encounter in the US now are talking about the threat of North Korean ICBMs or Trump taking military action against the North. The focus of my conversations has been questions like  What sort of agreement can North Korea and the US reach? or  Will Kim Jong-un come to New York for the UN General Assembly this September? [US NK Negotiations] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/08/356_253802.html><B> 'Sanctions on North Korea will remain effective' </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-08-13 16:11 Updated : 2018-08-13 20:01 By Kim Bo-eun Sanctions on North Korea will remain effective until it takes serious denuclearization measures, U.S. Ambassador to South Korea Harry Harris reiterated Monday. "Sanctions will remain in place until North Korea takes concrete and verifiable steps toward denuclearization," Harris said in a speech marking 65 years of ties between Seoul and Washington, at the Korea National Diplomatic Academy in Seoul. The U.S. ambassador's remarks come at a time North Korea has been stepping up calls for sanctions to be eased in its denuclearization process. Washington, however, remains firm in its stance that Pyongyang needs to take tangible denuclearization measures first as it has not taken any verifiable steps since the summit between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in June, where Kim pledged to achieve complete denuclearization. North Korea earlier shut down its Punggye-ri nuclear testing site and dismantled facilities at its Tongchang-ri missile testing site, but these measures have yet to be verified. Pyongyang has yet to provide a list of its nuclear facilities and also present a timeline for its denuclearization process. Addressing Pyongyang's greatest ambition to build its economy, the ambassador said "The North now has to change to lift itself out of the poverty of the past six decades." "The potential for positive change in North Korea is limitless, but only if Chairman Kim fulfills his commitments to denuclearize," he said. "Our two nations are committed to choose the right deal, not just any deal," he added, implying that no concessions will be made without seeing denuclearization first taking place. Harris also addressed North Korea's repeated calls to declare an end to the 1950-53 Korean War. "It's too early right now to make a strong comment on the way forward with regard to an end of war declaration," he said. [Harry Harris] [Sanctions] [Pushback] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/08/356_253807.html><B> Hopes rise for US-S. Korea joint repatriation project in NK </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-08-13 17:50 Updated : 2018-08-13 18:01 Kelly McKeague, center, director of the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency, updates reporters on the recently repatriated remains from North Korea on Aug. 8, in Arlington, Virginia. / AP-Yonhap By Lee Min-hyung Hopes are growing for the possibility that South Korea and the United States will engage in a joint project next year in North Korea to repatriate the remains of U.S. soldiers who died in North Korea during the 1950-53 Korean War. An official from the South's Ministry of National Defense said Monday it hopes to join hands with its U.S. counterpart to speed up the repatriation of the war remains despite possible challenges. [MIA] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_northkorea/857185.html><B> Importers of North Korean coal received payments of coal instead of cash </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted on : Aug.11,2018 15:05 KST Modified on : Aug.11,2018 15:05 KST Ploy was to avoid bank transactions Kim Jae-il (right), Chief of the Korea Custom Office s Investigation and Surveillance Bureau, and Kim Hyun-suk, head of the investigation planning division, discuss how South Korean companies illegally imported North Korean coal at the Daejeon Government Complex on Aug. 10. (Yonhap News) The importing business that orchestrated the importation of North Korean coal received its brokering fees in kind with coal to avoid cash transactions in a bank, a Korea Customs Service (KCS) investigation has confirmed.  Company  H [which delivered the coal to Korea South-East Power while concealing its North Korean origin] received North Korean coal rather than cash as a transaction fee for its brokering efforts, the KCS said in an investigation announcement on Aug. 10. [Sanctions] [Subservience] [Coal] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_national/857184.html><B> Authorities confirm illegal importation of North Korean coal and pig iron </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted on : Aug.11,2018 15:03 KST Modified on : Aug.11,2018 15:03 KST Three South Korean firms used forged place-of-origin certificates The Korea Customs Service (KCS) announces the results of its investigation of South Korean companies illegally imported North Korean coal at the Daejeon Government Complex on Aug. 10. (Yonhap News) Allegations that North Korean coal was brought into South Korea have been proven true. The South Korean government officially announced confirmation on Aug. 10 that three domestic importation corporations brought 35,038 tons of North Korean coal and pig iron (worth 6.6 billion won, or US$5.8 million) into South Korea with forged place-of-origin certificates between April and October 2017. In an interim investigation announcement on the  disguised importation of North Korean coal, etc. case at the Daejeon Government Complex, the Korea Customs Service (KCS) reported violations of customs law in seven out of ten cases investigated and decided to refer the case to prosecutors with a recommendation to indict three individual importers and three corporations. [Sanctions] [Subservience] [Coal] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_northkorea/857186.html><B> Customs authorities strike back at allegations of professional neglect </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted on : Aug.11,2018 15:07 KST Modified on : Aug.11,2018 15:07 KST Korea Customs Service issues point-by-point rebuttal of LKP s accusations Korea Customs Service (KCS) Deputy Commissioner Roh Suk-hwan announces the results of the KCS investigation of the illegal importation of North Korean coal at the Daejeon Government Complex on Aug. 10. (Yonhap News). Customs authorities issues a point-by-point rebuttal on Aug. 10 on allegations surrounding a case involving the importation of North Korean coal. The Liberty Korea Party (LKP) and conservative media had previously targeted the authorities for charges of failure to handle the North Korean coal importation case  and even charges that they deliberately waited to investigate it. [Sanctions] [Subservience] [Coal] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/opinion/2018/08/197_253670.html><B> Six truths about North Korea </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-08-11 11:30 Updated : 2018-08-11 11:30 Tweet Follow @koreatimescokr By Amanda Price Recently, I read a well-written article by a highly esteemed author here at The Korea Times. I always make sure to read his insightful articles, which are well researched and excellently written. Suffice to say, that on this one occasion I disagreed with his argument, which concluded that the ills the North Koreans are experiencing are to some extent due to the West's own agenda. It is for this reason that I decided to respectfully (I hope) respond to his article with "Six truths about North Korea." <BR> TRUTH No. 1: North Koreans' misery and poverty are the direct result of the North Korean regime's ideology. [Bizarre] [Agency] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/08/10/2018081001527.html><B> Importers Knew Coal Was N.Korean </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Cho Yi-jun, Lee Min-seok, Ahn Jun-yong August 10, 2018 12:21 The Korea Customs Service on Thursday said some importers here knew that coal shipments disguised as Russian products really came from North Korea. That would violate UN Security Council Resolution 2371, which ban import of North Korean minerals, as well as South Korea's own sanctions, and make them targets of a secondary boycott from the U.S. In an interview with Voice of America, U.S. Congressman Ted Poe, who chairs the Subcommittee on Terrorism, Nonproliferation and Trade in the House of Representatives, said third-party sanctions should be imposed on South Korean companies and added no countries should exempt. The U.S. government has already slapped third-party sanctions on Russian and Chinese businesses. [Sanctions] [Coal] [US dominance] [Implementation] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_northkorea/857115.html><B> North Korea rejects latest US denuclearization timeline, report says </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted on : Aug.10,2018 17:02 KST Modified on : Aug.10,2018 17:02 KST Washington demands a transfer of 60-70 percent of warheads within 6-8 months US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo (left) greets North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong-ho at the ASEAN Regional Forum (ARF) in Singapore on Aug. 4. (AFP) North Korea rejected a suggested US denuclearization timetable for the transfer of 60 70 percent of nuclear warheads within six to eight months, according to a recent report. The Aug. 8 report on the US news site Vox quoted two individuals familiar with the details of the situation. According to the Vox report, the US made a proposal to North Korea for the transfer of 60 to 70 percent or more or nuclear warheads within six to eight months, with the warheads to be secured by the US or a third country for removal from North Korea. The timetable was reportedly suggested over the past two months by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, but was repeatedly rejected by a North Korean team led by Workers Party of Korea vice chairman Kim Yong-chol. The report also said it was  unclear what concessions, if any, the US would offer in exchange beyond sanctions relief or removing North Korea from the state sponsors of terrorism list. But with no way of knowing the exact size of the North s nuclear arsenal, the transfer of  60 to 70 percent or more of weapons would be impossible to verify even if the North had agreed to Pompeo s proposal, Vox observed. For that reason, the report suggested Pompeo s main goal may have been to get North Korea to officially disclose the current state of its nuclear arsenal. By Hwang Joon-bum, Washington correspondent [Pompeo] [Unilateral disarmament] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/biz/2018/08/367_253687.html><B> Unauthorized inter-Korean coal trade confirmed </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-08-10 16:31 Updated : 2018-08-10 21:53 Tweet Follow @koreatimescokr Korea Customs Service Deputy Commissioner Roh Suk-hwan presents the findings of an investigation regarding illegal entry of North Korean coal and pig iron into South Korean ports at a media briefing held at the government complex in Daejeon, Friday. / Yonhap By Yoon Ja-young South Korea received 6.6 billion won ($5.86 million) worth of North Korean coal and pig iron, of which the country of origin was fabricated, the nation's customs agency said, Friday. Cheong Wa Dae said there is no conflict between South Korea and the U.S. regarding the issue as the two countries are coordinating closely with mutual trust. According to the Korea Customs Service (KCS), three South Korean importers brought in 35,038 tons of North Korean coal and pig iron from April through October last year. They turned out to have used a Russian port as a transit hub, fabricating the materials as Russian coal. They brokered exports of North Korean goods to other countries via Russia, and got North Korean coal as a commission. [Sanctions] [Coal] [Subservience] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/08/356_253632.html><B> Pyongyang reiterates demand for treaty to end Korean War </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-08-09 16:50 Updated : 2018-08-09 20:39 Tweet Follow @koreatimescokr By Kim Bo-eun North Korea has ramped up calls to make a declaration ending the 1950-53 Korean War as denuclearization talks with the U.S. have been stalled for weeks. "There is an order in achieving a goal," the Rodong Sinmun, the mouthpiece of North Korea's ruling Workers' Party, said. "If the state of military confrontation between North Korea and the U.S. is ended through a declaration ending the war, a mood will be created for creating trust." Pyongyang wants the war to be declared over as a means to protect its regime from hostilities. It has been seeking an official end to the war as an early stage incentive in its denuclearization process. North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong-ho also referred to ending the war at the ASEAN Regional Forum in Singapore last week. "When the U.S. enables us to trust the country and get close up, we will be able to open up to the U.S. and show that through our actions," he said. [Peace declaration] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_northkorea/856946.html><B> Controversy swells surrounding ships suspected of importing North Korean coal </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted on : Aug.9,2018 17:41 KST Modified on : Aug.9,2018 17:41 KST Conservatives criticize government for failing to implement UN sanctions A crane unloads coal from the ship Jin Long docked at Pohang New Port, Pier 7, in North Gyeongsang Province, on Aug. 7. Despite assertions from conservatives and the press that the coal is North Korean in origin, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has declared that the vessel was carrying Russian coal and therefore did not violate any sanctions. (Yonhap News) Ships suspected of carrying coal from North Korea are a topic of fierce debate. The Liberty Korea Party (LKP) and the conservative press are treating the importation of North Korean coal as an established fact and criticizing the government for failing to impound the ships in question. The tenor of this criticism is that the government is not properly implementing UN Security Council sanctions against North Korea that ban the import and export of North Korean coal. Behind this criticism is the political insinuation that the government was aware of the coal s origin but swept it under the rug to prop up improving inter-Korean relations. This overlooks the fact that Japan, despite its hardline stance against the North, has never impounded the ships either. The government is currently investigating nine cases of suspected imports of North Korean coal. It s planning to take action if it acquires  reasonable grounds, such as confirmation that the coal originated in the North. The Hankyoreh has taken a closer look at how the ongoing debate over the coal imports came to be and the facts that have been confirmed so far. [Sanctions] [Coal] [Subservience] [Sanctions] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/tech/2018/08/693_253628.html><B> Consumers fall victim to US sanctions on Iran </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-08-09 17:18 Updated : 2018-08-09 17:43 Embargo on Iranian oil leads to higher gasoline and utility prices By Nam Hyun-woo Park Sung-jin, 32, drives about 70 kilometers a day, commuting between his home in Yeongdeungpo-gu, Seoul, and his company in Pangyo in Seongnam, Gyeonggi Province. Since the gasoline prices near his home are quite expensive, he uses a gas station on the Seoul-Busan Expressway because it is about 50 won cheaper, but in July he found that the price there was the same as at a gas station near his home. "It costs about 100,000 won ($90) to fill up my tank and I do this between two and three times a month," Park said. "The recent gasoline price hike is a burden for me." As Park said, oil prices here have been soaring recently and are expected to weigh heavily on households in the near future, as the United States' sanctions on Iran will likely affect domestic prices in the near future. [Tribute] [Iran deal] [Renege] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.moonofalabama.org/2018/07/hawks-renew-their-attacks-on-north-korea-talks.html><B> Hawks Renew Their Attacks On North Korea Talks </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> There are new attempts underway to sabotage the deal U.S. President Trump made with North Korea's Chairman Kim Jong-Un. These attacks are based on misleading interpretations of the agreements that were made between the two leaders. Duyeon Kim, a fellow of the Center for a New American Security based in Seoul, suggests in Foreign Policy to ignore the agreed upon sequencing of a. the establishment new US-DPRK relations, b. a peace agreements and c. denuclearization of the Korean peninsula. Duyeon Kim argues: [T]he issue is the order of agreed points, which has caused confusion and misinterpretation. For the first time in the history of negotiations, Washington essentially accepted, whether blindly or wittingly, Pyongyang s wish list on sequencing: 1) normalization of bilateral relations, 2) establishment of a peace regime on the Korean Peninsula, and then 3)  complete denuclearization. ... This is not "Pyongyang s wish list". North Korea's "wish list" did not include denuclearization talks. The listed content of those steps and their sequencing was negotiated and agreed upon by all parties. The leaders of North Korea, South Korea and the United States signed on to them. [Singapore summit] [Sequencing] [Pushback] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/08/08/2018080801305.html><B> Gov't Drags Heels as N.Korean Coal Scandal Escalates </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Kim Jin-myung August 08, 2018 12:18 Some 10 months have passed since North Korean coal was imported into South Korea labeled as Russian in origin, but the government has not held a single meeting to discuss the issue. A government official said Tuesday, "The Foreign Ministry has served as the main contact point and notified the Korea Customs Service, Unification Ministry and Ministry of Oceans and Fisheries, while keeping the National Intelligence Service briefed." "We have not held a government-wide meeting, but will look into holding one," he added. But a government-wide response could be crucial in blocking the future import of illegal North Korean coal and manage the fallout of the scandal. [Sanctions] [Coal] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/08/08/2018080801131.html><B> Korean Firms Tremble at Trump's New Iran Sanctions </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Choi Hyun-mook August 08, 2018 11:21 Korean petrochemical and construction firms are worried after U.S. President Donald Trump imposed new sanctions against Iran after unilaterally pulling out of an international nuclear deal with Tehran. Trump on Tuesday initiated a secondary boycott threatening foreign countries that they have a choice of either trading with Iran or the U.S. The boycott bans dollar purchases by Iran and imposes sanctions against businesses that do business with it in order to isolate the Iran in international financial markets. The U.S. also called on its allies including Korea and India to halt imports of Iranian crude oil before Nov. 5, when the second stage of the sanctions begins. This could have a devastating impact on Korean refiners, who were among the first to resume business with Iran when the deal was agreed with the U.S., EU, Russia and China in 2015. The government here has already asked the U.S. for an exemption from the sanctions. "During a meeting with U.S. officials last month, we asked to be exempted from the sanctions in return for cutting down on imports of Iranian crude oil," an official at the Ministry of Trade, Industry and Energy said. Korea has been bracing for the fresh sanctions by decreasing Iranian crude imports from 11.59 million barrels in March or 14 percent of its total oil imports to 5.6 percent or 5.49 million barrels in June. Iranian crude is favored by Korean refiners and chemical companies since it is cheaper than oil from other Middle Eastern countries such as Saudi Arabia. Iran is also the No. 1 foreign market for the Korean construction industry, and the sanctions could deliver a significant blow to builders here. Korean construction companies won a total of US$523 million worth of orders from Iran last year, including a 3.1 billion euro gas plant for Hyundai Engineering and Construction in March of 2017. But the other parties to the nuclear deal are still on board, and the EU has called on firms to defy the fresh U.S. sanctions and evoked an opt-out mechanism. Trump is believed to be trying to make waves ahead of U.S. mid-term elections before seeking a fresh deal with Iran. [Iran confrontation] [Sanctions] [Tribute] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/08/103_253554.html><B> US ban on travel to North Korea may end this month </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-08-08 15:39 Updated : 2018-08-08 15:38 By Jung Da-min A U.S. ban on its citizens traveling to North Korea is expected to expire at the end of this month. The U.S. government announced on Aug. 2 last year that U.S. passport holders were banned from traveling to North Korea for a year. The ban took effect on Sept. 1. There has been no announcement from the U.S. government of an extension. The travel ban followed the death of U.S. college student Otto Wombier, who suffered brain damage after he was detained by North Korea. [Travel ban] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.spreaker.com/user/radiosputnik/as-u-s-dprk-talks-stall-need-for-peace-i><B> As U.S.-DPRK talks stall, need for peace in Korea more urgent than ever </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> From: Loud & Clear Interviews National Security Advisor John Bolton said yesterday that the Administration is  still waiting for North Korea to begin the denuclearization process. He added that North Korean leader Kim Jong Un wants a second summit with President Trump, but that is unlikely absent real progress on the North Korean weapons and nuclear programs. Brian and John speak with author and professor Tim Beal, whose most recent book is  Crisis in Korea. [Bolton] [US NK Negotiations] [Pushback] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/08/07/2018080700700.html><B> S.Korea, U.S. to Launch Combined Artillery Brigade </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Jun Hyun-suk August 07, 2018 09:37 South Korea and the U.S. will launch a combined artillery brigade, a government official said Monday. The official said the combined force will be based north of the Han River and attached to the U.S. Forces Korea's 210th Field Artillery Brigade. The aim is to counter North Korea's long-range artillery guns. No South Korean arms and materiel will be deployed by the combined brigade in peacetime, but South Korean and U.S. officers will run the brigade together. A missile from a Multiple Launch Rocket System is being test-fired in this unidentified, undated file photo. The brigade commander will be a U.S. Army colonel and his deputy a South Korean Army lieutenant colonel. Some South Korean artillery officers have already begun working for the 210th Field Artillery Brigade. The 210th Field Artillery Brigade is the only USFK unit stationed in northern Gyeonggi Province and is supposed to play a tripwire role in case of an attack from North Korea. The brigade is equipped with a multiple launch rocket system nicknamed "steel rain" with a range of 45 km and an Army tactical missile system (ATacMS) of surface-to-surface missiles with a range of 300 km. Its duty is to neutralize the North's artillery, including long-range guns that target the Seoul metropolitan area, in the initial stage of a war. "We expect that once the combined artillery brigade is launched, our defense posture will improve," a military spokesman here said. In 2015, the two allies launched a combined division based on the 2nd U.S. Infantry Division. In peacetime, South Korean and U.S. Army officers run the division, but in wartime a South Korean mechanized infantry unit or special forces will join it. The plans come ahead of the transfer of full wartime operational control of South Korean troops to Seoul. [Joint US military] [US dominance] [Rocket artillery] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/08/07/2018080701546.html><B> Did Kim Jong-un Promise Moon to Denuclearize 'in a Year'? </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> August 07, 2018 13:32 U.S. White House National Security Adviser John Bolton claimed on Fox News on Sunday that North Korean leader Kim Jong-un told South Korean President Moon Jae-in he would complete denuclearization "within a year" during their April 27 summit. "Kim Jong-un promised South Korean President Moon Jae-in at Panmunjom on April 27 that he would do it and that he would do it within a year," Bolton said. He added that the comment definitely "comes from Kim Jong-un." Bolton is an eccentric official and was North Korea's most vocal critic when he became involved in diplomacy leading up to U.S. President Donald Trump's summit with Kim, only to turn into a vocal defender of Trump's lackluster achievements at the event. Who knows which side of his persona was coming to the fore in the interview? If Kim pledged to scrap his nuclear weapons within a year and told Moon so, it would be very welcome indeed. But the process of how this putative revelation became public and the fact that it came from the White House at this point in time is rather troubling. [Bolton] [Denuclearisation] [Pushback] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/08/07/2018080701419.html><B> U.S. Opposes Resumption of Package Tours to N.Korea </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Cho Yi-jun August 07, 2018 13:00 The U.S. State Department is against attempts by the South Korean government to revive package tours to Mt. Kumgang in North Korea. Asked to comment on recent remarks by Hyundai Group chairwoman Hyun Jeong-eun on the issue, a State Department spokesperson told Voice of America on Aug. 4, "Sanctions remain in full effect until North Korea takes concrete action to denuclearize." Hyun, whose group has little other business except elevators and containers, expressed hope that the package tours will resume this year. "The full implementation of UN Security Council resolutions by the international community brought us to this moment, and will ensure a successful outcome of this process," the spokesman added. "We remain in close coordination with [South] Korea in regard to North Korea." The U.S. is getting increasingly worried that Seoul is trying to jump the gun and revive cross-border projects before North Korea takes any steps toward denuclearization. Another issue Seoul has been making optimistic noises about is reopening the joint-Korean Kaesong Industrial Complex. Last week, a State Department official told VOA, "We support the 2016 decision to shut down the Kaesong complex in the face of the [North Korea]'s destabilizing and provocative actions." Meanwhile, the White House has worked out a draft executive order imposing a 45 percent tariff on imports from countries that did business with North Korea last year, according to American news website Axios on Sunday. The draft was reportedly prepared by Peter Navarro, one of U.S. President Donald Trump's top trade advisers, last September. [Kumgangsan] [US dominance] [Sanctions] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/08/356_253491.html><B> North Korea coal shipment tests Seoul-Washington sanctions alliance </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-08-07 17:05 Updated : 2018-08-07 17:19 By Kim Bo-eun Multiple reports of ships allegedly carrying North Korean coal to South Korea are expected to weigh on the alliance between South Korea and the U.S., despite the two governments stating that this is an excessive concern. But these discoveries are becoming a sensitive issue for the U.S., which has vowed to maintain sanctions strictly until the North takes concrete denuclearization steps. The government is currently investigating nine instances of suspected North Korean coal imports. The United Nations Security Council (UNSC) sanctions imposed last August ban Pyongyang from exporting coal, iron and other mineral resources, and member states from buying them. [Coal] [Sanctions] [US dominance] [UNUS] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.peaceaction.org/2018/08/02/letter-to-the-president-on-implementing-the-joint-statement-of-the-singapore-summit/><B> Letter to the President: On Implementing the Joint Statement of the Singapore Summit </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Kevin Martin Posted August 2, 2018 In diplomacy, North Korea, Nuclear Weapons, Trump Administration In light of ongoing efforts to secure lasting peace and denuclearization on the Korean Peninsula, civil society groups and leaders from the Korea Peace Network sent this letter to President Trump to lay out concrete steps we believe the administration should take to advance the diplomatic process with North Korea. President Donald Trump The White House 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue Washington, D.C. 20500 August 2, 2018 Re: Implementing the Joint Statement of the Singapore Summit Dear Mr. President: As concerned U.S. civil society groups and individuals working for peace, disarmament and development projects in Korea, we urge you to continue to pursue a  maximum engagement policy with the DPRK (North Korea), and not return to the dangerous and counter-productive  maximum pressure campaign that some misguided hardliners advocate. First, we congratulate you for holding the historic U.S.-DPRK Summit with Chairman Kim Jong Un in Singapore on June 12 and thank you for your decision to suspend the large-scale U.S.-ROK joint war drills that have provoked North Korea for decades. Unlike some critics, we are pleased with the Summit s Joint Statement which provides an excellent framework to achieve both a peace regime and nuclear disarmament on the Korean Peninsula. In particular, we appreciate your commitment to establishing  new U.S.-DPRK relations, building  a lasting and stable peace regime on the Korean Peninsula, and providing  security guarantees to the DPRK since such measures are essential to realizing a peaceful  denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula. [Peace effort] [Singapore summit] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/08/03/2018080301074.html><B> U.S. Senate Approves Bill Securing Troop Numbers in Korea </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Jung Ji-sup August 03, 2018 10:44 The U.S. Senate has passed a bill that will ensure that the U.S. Forces Korea do not fall below 22,000 troops without authorization from Congress. The bill passed by 87-10 votes in a full session of the Senate on Wednesday. The two chambers of Congress merged two different bills that had passed the House and the Senate into a single bill. It will go into effect once U.S. President Donald Trump signs it. Under the bill, the number of American troops in South Korea, currently 28,500, cannot be reduced to less than 22,000 unless Congress accepts a report from the secretary of defense that further reduction will not seriously compromise the security of the U.S. and its allies, i.e., South Korea and Japan. It also obliges the government to report to Congress any verification and assessment in implementing a nuclear agreement it will conclude with North Korea in the future. The bill states that the withdrawal or reduction of the USFK is a long-time goal of China, Russia and North Korea and the North's nuclear weapons development is a security threat to the entire Indo-Pacific region, including South Korea and Japan, as well as to the U.S. [Singapore summit] [Pushback] [Congress] [Military presence] [China confrontation] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://breakingdefense.com/2018/08/north-korean-denuclearization-moving-in-positive-direction-stratcoms-hyten/><B> North Korean Denuclearization Potentially Moving In  Positive Direction : Gen. Hyten </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> "Things are moving (in) a positive direction," Gen. Hyten said of North Korean, while Russia's new 2-megaton underwater drone "does not change" the strategic balance. By Colin Clark on August 01, 2018 at 6:41 PM OMAHA: Gen. John Hyten, the man who might wage nuclear war should North Korea strike, says the prospects for  the potential denuclearization of North Korea are moving  in a positive direction since the Singapore summit.  From my perspective, the belief in a potential denuclearization of North Korea has changed, Hyten told me at a press roundtable during Strategic Command s annual deterrence conference.  The direction that things are moving is a positive direction. I don t think anyone can deny that. That is a stark contrast to what we heard last year ago from Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats, who said Kim Jong-un  does not intend to negotiate those (nuclear) capabilities away at any price. [US NK Negotiations] [US military] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/08/177_253124.html><B> Sex trade victims' guardian plans to follow US troops to Pyeongtaek </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-08-01 09:30 Updated : 2018-08-01 17:37 Members of Durebang scout an entertainment district near United States Forces Korea's Camp Stanley in Uijeongbu, Gyeonggi Province, in an outreach program to help migrant women, mostly from the Philippines, who were forced into prostitution as a result of human trafficking. Photos courtesy of Durebang's homepage. By Ko Dong-hwan The sex trade has been rife near U.S. military camps across Korea. Many of the prostitutes were tricked by brokers in Korea who targeted migrants entering the country with E-6 entertainer visas. Durebang, a welfare agency for prostitutes in the entertainment districts near U.S. Forces Korea military camps in Uijeongbu and Dongducheon, is planning to move to Pyeongtaek where 90 percent of American forces across South Korea are relocating. The agency plans to move its main office in Gosan-dong in Uijeongbu ? next to Camp Stanley ? and a branch office in Dongducheon, both in Gyeonggi Province, to Pyeongtaek, the site of Camp Humphreys, which houses the largest U.S. Army garrison in Northeast Asia. "There have been districts or camp towns, populated by prostitutes, near all U.S. camps in Korea," Durebang Director Kim Eun-jin told The Korea Times. "The prostitutes were originally Koreans but, during the 1980 to '90s, they were replaced by Russians and Filipinas. But after the government stopped issuing visas to Russians who came to become dancers, Filipinas make up most of the prostitutes." [Prostitution] [USFK] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://popularresistance.org/on-65th-anniversary-of-korean-truce-activists-criticize-us-for-delaying-real-peace/><B> On 65th Anniversary Of Korean Truce, Activists Criticize US For Delaying Real Peace </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Kevin Zeese, Popular Resistance July 31, 2018 Above and: South Korean  Youth Resistance protests at the US embassy in Seoul demanding a permanent peace treaty and normalizing relations with North Korea. South Korean peace and justice activists have been writing to us at Popular Resistance complaining that the United States is not responding to the positive steps being taken by North Korea before and after the meeting between President Trump and Chairman Kim. They have sent us information about protests they are organizing in South Korea aginst the United States as well as in Washington, DC. Their views show a great divide between the United States and the calls for a permanent peace which includes removal of US troops as just last week the Congress passed a National Defense Authorization Act which forbids removal of US troops from Korea. The John S. McCain Act states the  significant removal of US troops is  a non-negotiable item as it relates to the complete, verifiable, and irreversible denuclearization of North Korea.. [Protest] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.counterpunch.org/2018/07/31/brutal-billionaires-big-border-bucks/><B> Brutal Billionaires Big Border Bucks </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> by Joseph Essertier July 31, 2018 The US-Mexico Border Children are alone in  detention centers. The government of the USA, Our Government, has been engaging in kidnapping. They tookover 2,000 children from countries such as Guatemala, El Salvador, and Honduras. They moved them straight from the arms of their parents into abandoned Wall-Marts, office buildings, cages, and what looked like  dog kennels. Most of the children have been returned to their parents, but at the time of this writing, 900 have not. Many of the children, some of them toddlers, are still being abused. (Forced separation itself is abuse). It is anyone s guess when the parents and children will be reunited. Many of the parents will have to go through reams of red tape and spend many thousands of dollars before they can get their children back. Altogether in the end, perhaps a million dollars will be spent by innocent, impoverished families seeking asylum in a land of ten million millionaires, in the land where stands the Statue of Liberty. On what? On expensive DNA tests to prove they are the parent, and on airplane tickets for their childandfor the government employee escorting the child.  We re not paying to right our country s wrongs. We have bankers to bail out. Is USA, Inc. actually profiting from Our Government s kidnappings? Take the case of Jefferson Che Pop, a 6-year-old child from Guatemala (LA Times, 15 July 2018). He and his father were separated by Our Government for two months. When they finally gave Jefferson back, he had a rash on his arms, stomach, and back; one bruised red eye; and a cough and runny nose. He was thinner than the day he was taken away and hardly talking. He is fluent in Mayan Q eqchi , not Spanish or English. Who sat by his side each night as he cried himself to sleep? [Divided families] [US NK policy] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.spreaker.com/user/radiosputnik/washington-post-joins-campaign-to-sabota><B> Washington Post joins campaign to sabotage Korea peace talks </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> From: Loud & Clear Interviews In a classified leak to the Washington Post, US intelligence officials say that North Korea is constructing new missiles at a factory that produced the country s first intercontinental ballistic missiles capable of reaching the United States. Is North Korea rearming or is the intelligence community trying to kill the warming of relations between the two countries? Author and professor Tim Beal, whose most recent book is  Crisis in Korea, joins the show. [Singapore summit] [Pushback] [Washington Post] [Intelligence] </FONT> </UL> <HR> <A NAME="july18"> <A HREF="#top">Return to top of page</A><BR> <font size=5 color =maroon"> JULY 2018</FONT> <UL> <!--point--> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/07/30/2018073000780.html><B> U.S. Could Send Officials to N.Korea to Search for War Dead </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Lee Min-seok July 30, 2018 09:27 U.S. Defense Secretary James Mattis on Friday said the Pentagon could send officials to North Korea to help with the search for the remains of American soldiers killed in the Korean War. "That is certainly under consideration. Absolutely," Mattis told Pentagon reporters when asked if Washington could send personnel. North Korea handed over the first set of 50 remains the day earlier under an agreement reached at the summit with the U.S. in June. An American soldier salutes caskets with the remains of American servicemen killed during the Korean War at Osan Air base in Pyeongtaek, Gyeonggi Province on Saturday. /Yonhap U.S. President Donald Trump said, "I'm sure that [North Korean leader Kim Jong-un] will continue to fulfill that promise as they search and search and search." Some 5,300 American soldiers were killed in North Korea during the Korean War, according to the Pentagon. "It's a very important political project for the U.S., which honors military casualties and veterans, to search and carry home remains of its soldiers killed overseas," a government official here said. "The Trump administration considers this issue a chance to regain public trust." But many are skeptical that North Korea will keep its promise without demanding anything in return. "They'll give a certain amount of remains for free right away," former New Mexico Governor Bill Richardson, who worked on the repatriation of remains in the past, told the Washington Post. "But then they'll say, 'The next ones, we need to find them, locate them, restore them.' And then they'll start charging, and they'll milk this." [MIA] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/07/30/2018073000998.html><B> U.S. Demands Details of N.Korea's Nuke Program </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Kim Jin-myung July 30, 2018 10:30 The U.S. has made it clear that talks about declaring a formal end to the Korean War can begin only after North Korea submits details of its nuclear weapons program. "The U.S. State Department is demanding that North Korea fully denuclearize as a precondition for the talks," a diplomatic source said. "The top priority is for Pyongyang to submit a complete list of all the details of its nuclear weapons program, including locations of nuclear weapons and missile stockpiles." During a visit to Pyongyang early this month, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo reportedly urged the North to submit the details in response to demands for a peace treaty from the North. North Korea promptly accused him of "gangster-like" tactics. "Washington believes that it can only gauge how serious North Korea is about denuclearization when it submits the full details of its nuclear program," a government official here said. Recent U.S. media reports have highlighted instances where the North has apparently been trying to hide its nuclear and missile capabilities. [Peace declaration] [Preconditions] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/07/30/2018073000585.html><B> U.S. Denies Paying N.Korea for Return of Soldiers' Remains </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Arirang News July 30, 2018 08:28 The U.S. said Sunday it did not give any money to North Korea in exchange for the recovery and return of the remains of 55 American soldiers killed during the Korean War. State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert said that while U.S. code grants it the authority to reimburse a country for expenses related to the recovery and storage of remains, adding, "In this instance, North Korea did not ask for money and no money was exchanged." Last week, a U.S. transport plane carried the remains of the American soldiers to Osan Air Base in Pyeongtaek, Gyeonggi Province here. The handover was part of an agreement between North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and U.S. President Donald Trump during their summit in Singapore in June. [MIA] [Gesture] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://mailchi.mp/pacforum/pacnet-1167377?e=3bc65b0609><B> Losing the Political Forest for the Nuclear Trees: Denuclearizing North Korea Is Neither a Sufficient nor Necessary Condition for Peace </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Karl Hendler Karl Hendler (karl.hendler@columbia.edu) is a veteran of the U.S. Marine Corps, M.P.A. candidate at Columbia University, and a policy intern at The Korea Society.  Denuclearization has been an essential goal of US policy toward North Korea since well before Donald Trump took office. But this administration s latest effort at negotiations has had a nearly single-minded focus on nuclear weapons, relegating issues like human rights, internal reform, and  most importantly  normalization of North Korea s relations with its neighbors and the wider international community, to the backburner. This approach to North Korea risks the long game. Although nuclear weapons do threaten global security, and nonproliferation and disarmament should be long-term priorities, a narrow focus on North Korea s nuclear weapons could detract from more fundamental US interests. Simply put, the core issue is peace. A peaceful nation in possession of nuclear weapons is less of a threat than a belligerent nation without them. Peace will not come to the Korean Peninsula until North Korea transitions from belligerent threat to cooperative partner; ridding itself of nuclear weapons is neither a sufficient, nor necessary, condition for such peace. [US NK policy] [Inversion] [Denuclearisation] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_editorial/855286.html><B> [Column] Trump s Next Move on North Korea </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted on : Jul.29,2018 10:09 KST Modified on : Jul.29,2018 10:09 KST John Feffer Donald Trump loves to talk about war. Last year, Trump was ready to invade Venezuela, until calmer heads in his inner circle persuaded him that it wasn t a good idea. He has recently escalated his threats against Iran, and his secretary of state has explicitly endorsed regime change there. After his meeting with NATO leaders, he even broached the subject of a World War III started by the  very aggressive people of Montenegro. The current U.S. president is the most bellicose-sounding leader in modern American history. Not that long ago, Trump was also talking about war with North Korea, promising to rain  fire and fury down upon Pyongyang. But in recent months he has changed his tune. In fact, North Korea is one of the few longstanding adversaries of the United States that Trump hasn t threatened recently. The contrast between Trump s rhetoric toward Iran (which has no nuclear weapons) and North Korea (which does) is quite stark. [Trump] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.spreaker.com/user/radiosputnik/65-years-after-korean-war-armistice-peac><B> 65 years after Korean War armistice, peace treaty badly needed </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Simone Chun From: Loud & Clear Interviews Today marks the 65th anniversary of the armistice agreement in the Korean War, but the peninsula technically remains in a state of war to this day. To mark the occasion and push forward towards a permanent peace treaty, North Korea today repatriated the remains of 55 US servicemen killed during the Korean war, the result of a promise North Korean leader Kim Jong Un made to President Trump when they met in Singapore last month. More than 7,000 Americans are still listed as missing in action in North Korea. Brian and John speak with Simone Chun, a fellow at the Korea Policy Institute and a member of the Korean Peace Network. [Armistice] [Peace process] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/07/103_252961.html><B> Trump thanks Kim Jong-un for 'fulfilling a promise' </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-07-28 13:30 Updated : 2018-07-28 13:32 U.S. President Donald Trump gives the thumbs-up as he boards Air Force One, Friday, July 27, 2018, in Andrews Air Force Base, Md., en route to Morristown Municipal Airport, in Morristown, N.J., and on to Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, N.J. / AP U.S. President Donald Trump thanked North Korean leader Kim Jong Un on Friday for ''fulfilling a promise'' to return the remains of U.S. soldiers missing from the Korean War, as a U.S. military plane made a rare trip into North Korea to retrieve 55 cases said to contain remains. Close to 7,700 U.S. soldiers remain unaccounted for from the 1950-53 Korean War, and about 5,300 of those were lost in North Korea. North Korea's move signals a positive step in Trump's diplomacy with Pyongyang, and may restart efforts to send U.S. teams into the country to search for additional war dead. Defense Secretary Jim Mattis cautioned that the transfer of remains ''is separate'' from what has so far been troubled efforts to negotiate the complete denuclearization of North Korea. But he said it was a step in the right direction following the Trump-Kim summit in Singapore. ''This is obviously a gesture of carrying forward what they agreed to in Singapore and we take it as such,'' Mattis told reporters Friday. ''We also look at it as a first step of a restarted process. So we do want to explore additional efforts to bring others home.'' [MIA] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/07/205_252937.html><B> South Korea to cut 17% of generals, merge Army commands in military reform </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-07-27 16:17 Updated : 2018-07-27 17:18 South Korea will reduce the number of general-grade officers by about 17 percent over the next four years, in line with the overall troop drawdown scheme, as part of a new defense reform initiative aimed at creating a slimmer yet stronger military. The initiative also calls for launching the Ground Operation Command by merging the First and Third Army commands, an integration based on technological advancements that have reduced operational redundancies and allowed greater efficiency. The military will retain an aggressive program to counter North Korea's nuclear and missile threats, contrary to speculation that it will be diluted amid Seoul's push for inter-Korean reconciliation and North Korea's denuclearization. Following its briefing to President Moon Jae-in, the defense ministry announced the Defense Reform 2.0. blueprint that was forged in light of "uncertainties" in the peninsula's security landscape, regional arms competition, and evolving transnational and nonmilitary threats. "Our military has established Defense Reform 2.0. based on the recognition that reform is an order from the people that can no longer be delayed, in light of the transitional security situation that we have never experienced before, and social changes, such as the demographic change and the fourth industrial revolution," the ministry said in a press release. "It is a set of special measures to realize a strong military and responsible defense that can buttress a peaceful and strong Republic of Korea in the security situation of a transitional period and amid constraints in policy formulation," it added. According to the blueprint, the number of general-grade officers will be reduced from the current 436 to 360 by 2022 when Moon's five-year term ends. This means the removal of 66 general-level positions for the Army and five each for the Navy and Air Force. The reduction, if completed, will be a return to the level of the mid 1970s when the country was pushing for military modernization following the withdrawal of its troops from the 1960-75 Vietnam War. Despite earlier reduction proposals to streamline the bloated top command apparatus, those proposals floundered due in part to resistance from the top brass. The cut will come in sync with plans to pare down the number of active-duty troops to 500,000 by 2022 from the current 618,000, and increase the proportion of the civilian staff in the defense establishment to 10 percent from the current 5 percent. [ROK military] [Moon Jae-in] [OPCON] [ROK control USFK] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.zoominkorea.org/give-peace-a-chance-on-the-korean-peninsula-lecture-by-rev-jesse-jackson/><B>  Give Peace a Chance on the Korean Peninsula  Lecture by Rev. Jesse Jackson </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Jul 27, 2018 | Peace and Militarism, Special Features, US-DPRK | 0 comments  Give Peace a Chance on the Korean Peninsula  Lecture by Rev. Jesse Jackson  Give Peace a Chance on the Korean Peninsula Break down walls of hostility and division and build new bridges of hope and unity Lecture Korea International Peace Forum Reverend Jesse L. Jackson, Sr.  President and Founder Rainbow PUSH Coalition July 27, 2018  65th Anniversary of the Armistice Agreement Introduction I want to thank my gracious hosts, the Minjung Party, for inviting me to Korea this week, and the Council of Churches of Korea and National Assembly leaders for their kind welcome. It is an honor and privilege to be with you today. Turning Crisis into Opportunity  A new zone of peace The Korean Peninsula is undergoing a momentous period of historical transformation. And the prospects for winning sustainable enduring prosperity and unification  transforming the region into a Zone of Peace, have never been greater. It is a moment in time to turn crisis into opportunity. To tear down historic walls of division and hostility and build new bridges of hope and unity. Approaching 65 years since the signing of the cease fire armistice on July 27, Koreans still wait for a peace treaty to end the war. But the roar of peace on the peninsula and in the diaspora cannot be ignored, nor the hopes of 75 million people on the peninsula and the entire global community. Hope is in the Air 65 years on, hope is in the air: HOPE, that the talks between North Korea and South Korea, between the US and North Korea will indeed lead to a unified Korea and normalized relations between the United States and North Korea. That they will lead to peace and unification of the Korean peninsula. 65 years on, hope is in the air: Hope: that the summits will resolve the military tension between the two sides and open a path toward cross-border exchanges and cooperation that lead to unification. Hope: to halt all hostile actions against each other. North Korea must honor its pledge to freeze its nuclear and missile tests while talks continue, and the United States must halt its U.S.-South Korea joint military exercises and lift its sanctions against North Korea. [Peace effort] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://madmimi.com/p/ac137c?fe=1&pact=7653-146407243-7672555222-a49d91470de6a19bcacc7a91c776f55472a05509Op-Ed><B> Memories of Albright visit </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Roger Barrett, Korea Business Group CEO <BR> I landed at Pyongyang Airport in May 2000, and was greeted by the sight of an airliner on the tarmac emblazoned with the words  United States of America." The small business delegation of just two Europeans that I was bringing to meet and have discussions with Trade Fair leaders, were shocked! "What on earth is that aircraft doing here? they shouted. "It's carrying the US Secretary of State Madeleine Albright" I replied, and we happily took photos of the VIP plane before we were gently reminded that we should not be taking photos of that "sensitive carrier." My Foreign Trade Ministry host Mr. Li greeted us warmly a few minutes later, after we had been bussed into the building and cleared immigration and customs, and he seemed to have an even bigger grin than usual. When we sat down away from the crowds, in the Mercedes limousine provided by the Ministry of Foreign Trade - as it was called then - for the 30 minute ride into the city, he enthusiastically said  So we are going to be friends with America! Was it a question, or a statement? Actually, upon reflection, it was both. The following evening, in the break before dinner, I said  I m just going to go upstairs to the ballroom. Our hosts looked puzzled, and asked "why?" I said that the US Secretary of State is holding a press conference, which is about to start, and I d like to be there for that. "You ll never get in!" our European visitors insisted. "Let s see" I said. I remember clearly that walk up the escalators and along the wide open area to the ballroom. Never in my life have I seen so many Americans in dark glasses, and leading sniffer dogs, all with dead-pan faces, patrolling the area outside the room where the event was being held. No-one responded to my  hi or  hello as I walked towards the room - which had an open door. I boldly, or casually, strolled up to the door, and as I entered the room there was a cry, a shout of exclamation,  Roger! good to see you & welcome, take a seat! It was Andrew Morton, the UN Resident Representative, who was hosting the event. (Of course there has never been an American Embassy in Pyongyang & and how long before one opens?) [Albright] [US NK Negotiations] [EWA] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://world.kbs.co.kr/service/news_view.htm?lang=e&Seq_Code=138119><B> N. Korea Likely to Return War Remains Friday </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Write: 2018-07-26 10:23:03 / Update: 2018-07-26 11:31:54 Photo : YONHAP News North Korea has reportedly completed preparations for the transfer of the remains of American soldiers killed in the Korean War. A diplomatic source in Seoul said Thursday that North Korea recently received two truckloads of wooden boxes from the U.S. to be used for the repatriation. The source added that the North is expected to hand over the remains on Friday, which marks the 65th anniversary of the signing of the Korean War armistice agreeme [MIA] [US NK Negotiations] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://thepeacereport.com/rev-jesse-jackson-in-korea-make-tomorrow-a-peace-day/><B> Rev. Jesse Jackson in Korea:  Make Tomorrow a Peace Day </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> July 26, 2018 Peace Report Jesse Jackson, North Korea, South Korea Share now: Rev. Jesse Jackson is in South Korea to spread the word of peace. Jackson has been traveling South Korea calling for more efforts to bring North Korea out of isolation, saying the country needs food and trade, not sanctions and starvation, according to Yonhap News. Jackson has been speaking to representatives of the South Korean government, speaking at their National Assembly. Here he is speaking to U.S. Ambassador to South Korea, Harry Harris: Productive conversation today with US Ambassador Harris in Seoul this morning. Hope can be a weapon for peace. #KeepHopeAlive! #RPCSouthKorea pic.twitter.com/qoZ3nM6yNh  Rev Jesse Jackson Sr (@RevJJackson) July 26, 2018 Jackson said,  My heart is on fire. I am excited with the new possibility for a break of peace on this region , in a press conference, a day before the country celebrates the 65th anniversary of the signing of the Armistice which brought the Korean War to a pause. He went on to say,  I hope tomorrow will be the last armistice day and officially make tomorrow a peace day from then on& a treaty to be signed to end the war . Jesse Jackson s week long trip was organized by a mixture of Korean-American and South Korean activists who are involved with the Minjung Party. Jackson said he had previously visited South Korea in 1986 when he met with Kim Dae-Jung, who was then an activist for democratization under house arrest and later went on to be South Korea s president, 1998-2003. </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/07/26/2018072600948.html><B> Moon Welcomes New U.S. Ambassador </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Lee Min-seok July 26, 2018 10:55 President Moon Jae-in on Wednesday received the credentials from the new U.S. Ambassador to South Korea Harry Harris. Moon stressed cooperation between the two countries in trying to persuade North Korea to denuclearize. "A strong alliance between Seoul and Washington is more important than ever before to achieve joint goals on the Korean Peninsula at a crucial time of dialogue between the two Koreas and between the North and the U.S.," he said. "I expect Ambassador Harris, who has a special relationship with South Korea, to play a big role." "Intelligence authorities in Seoul and Washington think that North Korea is scrapping a missile engine test and missile launch facility in the wake of the dismantlement of its nuclear test site," Cheong Wa Dae spokesman Kim Eui-kyeom quoted him as adding. "It's a good sign for the denuclearization of the North." Harris told Moon the U.S. also anticipates the scrapping of the missile site and the repatriation of the remains of U.S. soldiers killed during the Korean War, which will serve as a positive sign showing North Korea's commitment to denuclearization. Harris takes up a post that had been vacant for a year-and-a-half after U.S. President Donald Trump took office and Harris' predecessor, a political appointment by the Obama administration, resigned. A former commander of the U.S. Pacific Command, Harris is the son of a U.S. Navy officer and veteran of the Korean War. Moon said he heard that Harris likes Andong soju and suggested they have a drink together some day. Harris quipped that they would need to drink a lot of it to cover the many pending issues between the two countries. [Harry Harris] [Subservience] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/opinion/2018/07/638_252851.html><B> Happy 65th anniversary </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-07-26 17:11 Updated : 2018-07-26 17:11 By Donald Kirk Remember those initials UNC/MAC and NNSC for United Nations Command/Military Armistice Commission and Neutral Nations Supervisory Commission? It's difficult to believe these terms still exist 65 years after the signing of the truce that ended the Korean War on July 27, 1953. Today, commanders of the UNC, the umbrella organization under which the South Koreans, Americans and troops from 15 other nations fought during the Korean war, will be at Panmunjom marking the anniversary. So will officers from what's left of the NNSC, formed when the armistice was signed to insure that everyone lived up to the deal, at least within the JSA, that is the Joint Security Area straddling the line at Panmunjom. [Korean War] [Hack] [MIA] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/07/25/2018072501294.html><B> U.S. Wants Korea to Foot Bill for Sending Strategic Assets </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Ahn Jun-yong July 25, 2018 12:14 Washington wants Seoul to foot a bigger portion of the cost of keeping U.S. troops on the Korean Peninsula, including the entire bill for the deployment of so-called strategic assets. The two sides have been in talks since March on how to split the costs. U.S. and Korean officials held a fifth round of talks last Wednesday and Thursday at a military base near Seattle. A Korean official who took part said Tuesday, "The U.S. side demanded the addition of a new category called 'operational support' in the joint cost-sharing plan" that would be paid for by Seoul alone and covers the dispatch of strategic assets like nuclear-powered submarines or aircraft carriers. Under the defense cost-sharing agreement signed in 1991, Seoul has been paying more than half of the upkeep cost of the U.S. Forces Korea. This year, it must shoulder W960.2 billion (US$1=W1,135). [Tribute] [USFK] [Strategic assets] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/07/25/2018072501349.html><B> U.S. Warns Against Evading N.Korea Sanctions </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Kim Deok-han July 25, 2018 12:54 The U.S. in an advisory Monday warned of ways North Korea is trying to bypass international sanctions. The advisory was a shot before the bow of businesses and individuals around the world who might try to help the North dodge the sanctions. It could at the same time be an evident warning sign to the South Korean government, who is suspected to have deliberately overlooked North Korean coal being shipped into Incheon and Pohang last October. Earlier, Washington singled out 239 North Korean companies involved in illegal trade and warned against doing business with them "in order to implement effective due diligence policies, procedures, and internal controls to ensure compliance with applicable legal requirements." The 17-page advisory lists "deceptive practices" used by the North in trade and sending of slave labor abroad. It singles out Pyongyang's use of fake country-of-origin labels for its products, like a Chinese business subcontracting production of clothes to a North Korean company and selling them as Chinese products, or another Chinese business importing and reprocessing North Korean seafood. It also lists 42 countries where North Korean laborers are still being exploited, including Algeria, Angola, China, Equatorial Guinea and Russia, adding that the U.S. is monitoring them to see whether they violate UN Security Council resolutions. It warns that violators could be fined double the amount of each transaction or a penalty of US$300,000 per violation, and face prosecution. The State Department said in a press release that sanctions will remain in effect, and the international community cannot afford to loosen pressure until the North is denuclearized. [Sanctions] [US dominance] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/07/25/2018072501215.html><B> Locals up in Arms Against Jeju Naval Parade </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Oh Jae-yong July 25, 2018 11:42 The International Fleet Review in Jeju scheduled for October faces stiff opposition from locals who do not want the noisy display of maritime force in their backyard. The fleet review is an event held every 10 years to mark the anniversary of the armed forces. Top naval officials from 30 countries are invited, and 20 to 30 foreign warships will take part. President Moon Jae-in is scheduled to attend and inspect the vessels. Residents of Jeju Island rally in front of Cheong Wa Dae in Seoul on July 17. /Newsis But residents near the naval base and left-wing civic groups have teamed up to oppose the event. Residents of Gangjeong Village held a debate on Sunday, where government officials tried in vain to convince them to support the fleet review. The Defense Ministry and the Navy have been trying to impress on the villagers the importance of the 70th anniversary of armed forces. The Navy says time is running out, since it needs to select a venue by the end of this month so that invitations can be sent out and accommodation arranged. Construction of Disputed Naval Base Resumes on Jeju Island Jeju to Get New Naval Base by 2014 [Jeju] [China confrontation] [Protest] [US Asia strategy] [Bases] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_northkorea/854832.html><B> Repair materials for Mt. Kumgang site of inter-Korean family reunions exception to UN sanctions </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted on : Jul.25,2018 17:36 KST Modified on : Jul.25,2018 17:36 KST Unification minister confirms UN approval to renovate facilities in North Korea South Korean Minister of Unification Cho Myung-gyon gives a briefing at the National Assembly s Foreign Affairs and Unification Committee on July 24. (Yonhap News) On July 24, South Korean Unification Minister Cho Myung-gyon said that the UN had confirmed that transporting the materials needed to repair and renovate the meeting hall at Mt. Kumgang for upcoming reunions of the divided families was an exception to sanctions.  We asked the UN to grant an exception to the sanctions [on North Korea] that we need to repair and renovate the meeting hall for the divided family reunions, and today we were notified that that exception has been granted, Cho said during an appearance before the National Assembly s Foreign Affairs and Unification Committee on Tuesday. After South and North Korea agreed to repair the meeting hall, Mt. Kumgang Hotel and the Onjonggak complex before the reunions, 22 South Korean workers with the Unification Ministry, the South Korean Red Cross and Hyundai Asan have been staying near Mt. Kumgang and working on the repairs since July 9. Repairing the meeting hall and holding the reunions required an exception from the UN sanctions because of the need to bring trucks, fuel and other sanctioned materials into the Mt. Kumgang area. [US dominance] [Detente] [Divided families] [Sanctions] [UNUS] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_northkorea/854827.html><B> [Photo] US officials to visit North Korea to repatriate POW/MIA remains </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted on : Jul.25,2018 17:26 KST Modified on : Jul.25,2018 17:26 KST CNN reported on July 24 that officials from the US Department of Defense are set to visit North Korea to conduct the repatriation of US POW/MIA remains from the Korean War. The report also indicated that North Korea has yet to confirm details and dates regarding the visit, although the expected date is July 27. The US officials are expected to photograph and confirm the remains and file the necessary documentation before transporting them back to the US. If the repatriation is completed, it will be the first one since Nov. 2007. [MIA] [US NK Negotiations] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/07/24/2018072400391.html><B> Trump 'Very Happy' with N.Korea Nuclear Weapons Talks </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> VOA News July 24, 2018 08:16 U.S. President Donald Trump declared Monday that he is "very happy" with the pace of ongoing negotiations with North Korea to end Pyongyang s nuclear weapons program, rebuffing news accounts to the contrary. "A Rocket has not been launched by North Korea in 9 months. Likewise, no Nuclear Tests. Japan is happy, all of Asia is happy," Trump said on Twitter. "But the Fake News is saying, without ever asking me (always anonymous sources), that I am angry because it is not going fast enough. Wrong, very happy!" A day after his Singapore summit last month with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un calling for the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, Trump said in a tweet, "There is no longer a Nuclear Threat from North Korea." U. S. President Donald Trump shakes hands with North Korea leader Kim Jong-un at the Capella resort on Sentosa Island in Singapore on June 12, 2018. /AP But their agreement contained no details about when or how North Korea would abandon its nuclear weapons program or shut down its existing nuclear facilities. U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo met in Pyongyang recently with North Korean officials to try advance discussions, but there appeared to be little progress. Some diplomats say the North Koreans have canceled meetings and failed to maintain basic communications with the U.S. As he did Monday, Trump has publicly professed satisfaction at the pace of negotiations with North Korea, saying last week there was "no rush" in completing talks with Pyongyang because U.S. and United Nations economic sanctions against North Korea remain in place. On Monday, the U.S. State, Treasury and Homeland Security departments said, "The international community cannot let up on pressure" until North Korea ends its nuclear weapons program. Trump said last week that U.S. relations with North Korea "are very good and the process is moving along." He said that with eventual denuclearization, there would be "big benefits and exciting future for North Korea at end of process!" But several news outlets have reported in recent days that behind the scenes at the White House Trump has voiced his displeasure to aides at the pace of talks in pushing North Korea to abandon its nuclear weapons program. [Trump] [US NK Negotiations] [Moratorium18] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.zoominkorea.org/interview-towards-ending-the-65-years-of-armistice-understanding-the-process-for-peace-in-korea/><B> [Interview] Towards Ending the 65 Years of Armistice: Understanding the process for peace in Korea </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Jul 24, 2018 July 27, 2018 marks the 65th anniversary of the Armistice Agreement which brought about a ceasefire to the Korean War. The agreement was signed by North Korean General Nam Il representing both the Korean People s Army (KPA) as well as the Chinese People s Volunteer Army (PVA) and U.S. Army Lieutenant General Harrison, Jr. representing the United Nations Command (UNC). While the purpose of the agreement was to  ensure a complete cessation of hostilities and of all acts of armed force in Korea until a final peaceful settlement is achieved, the effect was an unending Korean War with decades of escalating military tension on the Korean Peninsula. And a number of arrangements made on July 27, 1953 have yet to be implemented. Most notably, the U.S. has failed to contribute a plan for withdrawing its troops within the timeframe that was discussed in Article IV of the agreement: In order to ensure the peaceful settlement of the Korean question, the military Commanders of both sides hereby recommend to the governments of the countries concerned on both sides that, within three (3) months after the Armistice Agreement is signed and becomes effective, a political conference of a higher level of both sides be held by representatives appointed respectively to settle through negotiation the questions of the withdrawal of all foreign forces from Korea, the peaceful settlement of the Korean question, etc. While all other foreign forces eventually withdrew, the U.S. military never left Korean soil. To this day, the U.S. has more than 28,500 of its troops stationed all over South Korea. With the anniversary of the Armistice Agreement just around the corner, ZoominKorea spoke with Gregory Elich  member of the Solidarity Committee for Democracy and Peace in Korea and frequent contributor for ZoominKorea  about the significance of the armistice and the conditions necessary to establish permanent peace on the Korean Peninsula. [Armistice] [Peace process] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/07/103_252611.html><B> US presses China and Russia to enforce sanctions on North Korea </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-07-21 14:45 Updated : 2018-07-21 14:50 The United States on Friday welcomed the U.N. Security Council's united support for the fully verified denuclearization of North Korea and pressed China and Russia to strictly enforce U.N. sanctions to get Pyongyang to give up its nuclear weapons. U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo accused North Korea of violating an array of tough sanctions imposed by the council. He warned that ''when sanctions are not enforced, the prospects for the successful denuclearization of North Korea are diminished.'' Nonetheless, Pompeo told reporters after meeting behind closed doors with the 15 council members that President Donald Trump ''remains upbeat about the prospects for denuclearization'' following his historic summit in Singapore with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. ''So do I, as progress is happening,'' he added without elaborating. The Trump administration hopes that one day North Korea will be at the United Nations ''not as a pariah but as a friend,'' Pompeo said. But ''it will take full enforcement of sanctions for us to get there'' as well as Kim following through ''on his personal commitments'' to Trump. At the summit, Trump and Kim agreed to work toward denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, without describing when and how it would occur. Follow-up talks this month between Pompeo and North Korean senior officials in Pyongyang had a rocky start, with North Korea accusing the United States of making ''unilateral and gangster-like'' demands. Pompeo stressed Friday that the 15 Security Council nations ''are united on the need for final, fully verified denuclearization of North Korea.'' Pyongyang for decades has been pushing a concept of ''denuclearization'' that bears no resemblance to the American definition, vowing to pursue nuclear development unless Washington removes its 28,500 troops from South Korea and the nuclear umbrella defending South Korea and Japan. China, which is North Korea's closest ally and responsible for more than 90 percent of the isolated country's trade, backs North Korea's call for a ''phased and synchronous'' approach to denuclearization. Last month, Beijing suggested the Security Council consider suspending or lifting sanctions on North Korea if it is in compliance with U.N. resolutions and making progress in negotiations. Russia said Friday it also backs this approach. Russia's deputy U.N. ambassador, Dmitry Polyansky, said that Pompeo confirmed the U.S. ''will seek the full denuclearization'' of North Korea. ''It is necessary that the denuclearization go step by step with parallel actions by the international community,'' Polyansky said. ''We are talking about easing sanctions pressure through the U.N. Security Council, as well as the removal of unilateral U.S. sanctions.'' Some exemptions have already taken place. [US NK policy] [Sanctions] [UNUS] [China] [Russia] [Resistance] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://savejejunow.org/12741-2/><B> No to International Fleet Review in Jeju </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted by Save Jeju Now | Thursday, 12 July 2018 | English, Featured We absolutely oppose international fleet review in Jeju! On March 30, this year, Gangjeong villagers have already expressed their strong opposition against International Fleet Review in Jeju navy base in coming October 10 (Wed.) to 14 (Sun). The navy who lies to people that they would not hold the review in Jeju navy base if villagers oppose to it, has not given up its desire to hold the review in Jeju navy base. It is not 100% ceratin yet on the venue of it. (It could be Jeju or Busan or somewhere else). But we expect the navy would make public on the venue sooner or later. What we would see in the  review will be a parade/show of warships and weapons including US nuclear aircraft carrier/submarine. The navy is planning to invite 70 nations including 17 NATO member countries. The  review would not only waste people s tax (planned of around 3million USD) but instigate war culture. Above all, it will be very likely that Jeju navy base would be nailed both nominally and virtually as a strategic war base. That already contradicts with the spirits of non-nuclearization of Korean peninsula and peace & disarmament shown in April 27 inter-Korean Summit meeting. We oppose international fleet review to be held in any place of Korea, too. Former vice-mayor Go Gwon-il concerns about, saying  For tens of warships and fighter planes to line up, they may need all ports of Seogwipo area (wider area than Gangjeong village). The navy intends to expand its facilities into Seogwipo area. ( http://www.ijejutoday.com/news/articleView.html?idxno=210403 ) Photo by Pang Eunmi [China confrontation] [Jeju] [ROK military] [US dominance] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_northkorea/853841.html><B> US POW/MIA remains expected to be returned by July 27, 65th anniversary of armistice agreement </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted on : Jul.18,2018 17:02 KST Modified on : Jul.18,2018 17:02 KST North Korea and US reach agreement on repatriation during working-level talks in Panmunjeom US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo (left) meets with Vice Chairman of the Central Committee of the Workers Party of Korea (WPK) Kim Yong-chol during his third visit to North Korea on July 7. (Yonhap News) North Korea and the US are planning to repatriate 55 sets of remains of American soldiers who died during the Korean War by plane on July 27, according to a July 17 report by Stars and Stripes, the newspaper associated with the US military. Quoting US government officials, Stars and Stripes reported that the two sides reached this agreement during working-level talks that were held in Panmunjeom on July 16. The newspaper said that Americans will load trucks with wooden cases for holding the remains and send them into North Korea, quoting an official as saying that the North Koreans are  going to use our cases for the remains and give them back to us. [MIA] [US NK Negotiations] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/07/103_252456.html><B> What's on Kim Jong-un's mind? </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-07-18 16:17 Updated : 2018-07-18 23:45 Hardliners may press Kim to slow denuclearization By Kim Jae-kyoung More than one month has passed since the historic Singapore summit between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. The two leaders signed a landmark agreement on complete denuclearization of North Korea but so far little progress has been made. One month is too short a period to see meaningful progress but Pyongyang's lukewarm attitude has raised questions about Kim's seriousness about denuclearization. [US NK Negotiations] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/07/16/2018071601505.html><B> N.Korea to Hand Over U.S. Soldiers' Remains Next Week </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Kim Myong-song, Jun Hyun-suk July 16, 2018 13:11 Generals from the U.S. and North Korea agreed in the truce village of Panmunjom on Sunday that the North will hand over the remains of U.S. soldiers killed in the Korean War next week. North Korea finally agreed to hand them over on July 27, the 65th anniversary of armistice that halted fighting in the war. The talks came after North Korea last week stood up a group of American officers who had come to Panmunjom to discuss the matter as the North declined to take delivery of 100 wooden coffins the U.S. had delivered to the border. After frantic phone calls from the U.S., the North Korean side proposed this round of talks between generals "to upgrade the level of the issue." U.S. generals are driven in a car with a UN flag in Paju, Gyeonggi Procvince on Sunday. /Yonhap "The U.S. and the North reached common ground after two hours of talks" on Sunday, a diplomatic source said. "They're seeking ways for the North to return the remains of American war dead on July 27." North Korean leader Kim Jong-un made the promise to U.S. President Donald Trump at their summit in Singapore, but no sooner was Trump's back turned than the North started dragging its heels. The U.S. Defense Department believes that a total of 7,697 American soldiers went missing in action in the Korean War, with the remains of 5,300 of them lying buried in the North. In an interview with Reuters last week, an official with the U.S. Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency said Washington never pays any foreign government or individual to return the remains of American citizens but can pay expenses. This may be what caused the cash-strapped North to stall. [US NK Negotiations] [MIA] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_northkorea/853493.html><B> North Korea-US agree to excavate POW/MIA remains </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted on : Jul.16,2018 17:24 KST Modified on : Jul.16,2018 17:24 KST Working-level talks held in Panmunjeom following general-level meeting A US Army vehicle flying the UN flag crosses the Imjin River on its way to Panmunjeom on July 15, the day of the North Korea-US talks on the repatriation of US POW/MIA that died during the Korean War. (Yonhap News) North Korea and the US have agreed to reinitiate the excavation of the remains of US POW/MIA that perished during the Korean War. If excavations are reinitiated, it will be the first time in 13 years since excavations were suspended in 2005 during the George W. Bush administration. The two sides also agreed to hold working-level talks regarding the repatriation of remains already in possession by North Korea on July 16. US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo also announced on July 15, after talks with North Korean officials, that North Korea and the US have agreed to reinitiate field excavations of the estimated 5,300 US soldiers who never returned home from the Korean War. Pompeo did not mention any specific dates or methods regarding the excavation. With the talks being held to implement terms in the agreement reached by the North Korean and US leaders, observers are predicting a positive impact on future improvements in the two sides relations and negotiations on the North Korean nuclear issue.  Delegations from North Korea and the US met this morning at Panmunjeom s Joint Security Area (JSA) to discuss the timeline and methods for repatriating the remains of US soldiers who died on North Korean territory during the Korean War, a foreign affairs source reported that day. The US delegation to the talks was reportedly headed by Air Force Maj. Gen. Michael Minihan, who serves as Chief of Staff for the UN Command and US Forces Korea. No details were confirmed on the North Korean delegation, but it is seen as likely to have been headed by a lieutenant or major general of equivalent rank. [MIA] [US NK Negotiations] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_northkorea/853490.html><B> Trump says denuclearization  probably a longer process than anybody would like </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted on : Jul.16,2018 17:20 KST Modified on : Jul.16,2018 17:20 KST US President addresses need to adjust tempo of NK negotiations during UK summit US President Donald Trump meets with UK Prime Minister Theresa May at Chequers, the prime minister s country house in Aylesbury, England, on July 13. Trump had criticized May s handling of Brexit the day before in an interview with The Sun. (Reuters) US President Donald Trump said that North Korea s denuclearization could be a long process, leaving open the possibility that the negotiations will become protracted. Trump also repeated that he has confidence in North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. During a joint press conference following his summit with UK Prime Minister Theresa May in London on May 13, Trump said,  [Denuclearization is] a process. It s probably a longer process than anybody would like, but I m used to long processes too. Trump s remarks appeared to reflect his awareness of critics in the US claiming the rate of progress in negotiations with North Korea is  too slow. They could also be read as indirectly acknowledging that the talks with Pyongyang are proving to be difficult. Trump previously stressed the need to adjust the tempo late last month.  When people rush [denuclearization] [. . .] it's like rushing the turkey out of the stove. It's not going to be as good, he said at the time. Referring to a letter from Kim that he had shared in a Twitter message the day before, Trump said,  You saw the letter yesterday. And we re doing very well.  We haven t taken off the sanctions [against North Korea]. The sanctions are biting, he continued. In the past, Trump has maintained that the US cannot make concessions to Pyongyang because it has not lifted its sanctions against North Korea. [Trump] [US NK Negotiations] [Sanctions] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/07/103_252301.html><B> US, North Korea to resume search for remains from Korean War </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-07-16 10:27 Updated : 2018-07-16 15:10 The United States and North Korea have agreed to resume searching for the remains of thousands of American soldiers killed in the 1950-53 Korean War, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said Sunday. The agreement came at a general-level meeting between the two sides earlier in the day, Pompeo said in a statement. On Monday the two countries will begin working-level talks to coordinate the repatriation of remains already found in the North, he added. "This meeting was aimed at fulfilling one of the commitments made by Chairman Kim at the Singapore Summit," Pompeo said in the statement, noting that it was the first general-level talks between the two countries since 2009. "Today's talks were productive and cooperative and resulted in firm commitments." [MIA] [US NK Negotiations] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/07/103_252288.html><B> UN allows sanctions exception for military hotline recovery </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-07-15 17:00 Updated : 2018-07-15 21:30 By Kim Rahn The United Nations has temporarily allowed South Korea's provision of fuel and vehicles for North Korea as an exception to the U.N. Security Council (UNSC) sanctions, because the materials would be used for recovering military communication lines between the two Koreas, a Japanese media company reported, Saturday. Citing a source at the UNSC, the Kyodo News said the U.N. sanctions committee decided to accept the exception for Seoul to offer the materials to Pyongyang. According to the report, the South Korean government asked the committee to allow it to send 51 items on the sanctions list including gasoline, optical cables, buses and trucks, which would be used for communication line recovery work, to the North. And the committee concluded sending the supplies would be an exception to the sanctions. [Sanctions] [UNUS] [US dominance] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_northkorea/853282.html><B> US submits report to UN saying North Korea passed the annual limit of petroleum imports </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted on : Jul.14,2018 16:32 KST Modified on : Jul.14,2018 16:32 KST Trump admin s stance of not lifting sanctions without denuclearization The North Korean petroleum tanker Ansan 1 was captured illegally transporting petroleum products in international waters in the East China Sea on June 29. (provided by the Japanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs) The US government submitted a report to the UN Security Council s North Korea sanctions committee claiming North Korea is using illegal means to skirt UNSC resolutions to import petroleum products. In the document, the US asked the committee to notify UN member countries that exports of petroleum products to North Korea are banned through the end of the year. The report submitted to the North Korea sanctions committee on July 12 by the US mission to the UN claims that on at least 89 occasions between January and May of this year, North Korea acquired petroleum products through illegal ship-to-ship transfers in international waters and other means. UNSC Resolution 2397, adopted in Dec. 2017 amid nuclear and missile tests by North Korea, reduced the total allowable supplies of petroleum products to North Korea to 500,000 barrels from 2 million. The US government also provided photographic evidence showing North Korea receiving petroleum products through illegal ship-to-ship transfers, adding that the total amount of products illegally imported in this way appeared to have already passed the annual limit of 500,000 barrels imposed by the sanctions. If the US s claims are accepted as true, countries will no longer be able to officially export petroleum products to North Korea for the rest of the year. As an example, the Japanese Foreign Ministry announced on July 4 that the vessel Sendai with the Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force s 14th Escort Flotilla confirmed the North Korean petroleum tanker Ansan 1 to have received something on June 29 from another unidentified vessel in international waters in the East China Sea (approximately 350 km southeast of Shanghai). The ministry s home page shows nine similar instances confirmed by JMSDF between January and late June of this year. US President Donald Trump has repeatedly stated that while Washington is engaged in dialogue with Pyongyang to resolve the North Korean nuclear issue, economic sanctions cannot be lifted until the North denuclearizes. But countries like China and Russia have maintained that sanctions should be reduced now that North Korea-US dialogue has begun. The report from the US government is being interpreted as a reiteration of the Trump administration s policy of not lifting sanctions without denuclearization. Trump has voiced particular wariness of China using the North Korea  variable to gain concessions from the US in the two sides trade war, which began in earnest on July 6. In a Twitter message on July 9, he wrote,  I have confidence that Kim Jong Un will honor the contract we signed &, even more importantly, our handshake. We agreed to the denuclearization of North Korea. China, on the other hand, may be exerting negative pressure on a deal because of our posture on Chinese Trade-Hope Not! By Gil Yun-hyung, staff reporter [Sanctions] [UNUS] [Oil] [China NK] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/07/13/2018071300954.html><B> N.Korea Stands up U.S. Over Return of Soldiers' Remains </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Ahn Jun-yong July 13, 2018 09:43 North Korean officials failed to show up to talks with American officers on Thursday about repatriating the remains of U.S. soldiers killed in the Korean War. Kim Jong-un promised to return them in his summit with U.S. President Donald Trump in Singapore on June 12, but some 100 caskets the U.S. delivered have been waiting at the border since June 24. Five UN Command officers representing the U.S. arrived in a meeting room of the Military Armistice Commission in the Joint Security Area around 10 a.m. But no North Korean officials showed up, nor did they send a message until 2 p.m. When the UNC finally made a phone call, the North Korean side abruptly counterproposed a round of talks between generals "to upgrade the level of the issue." The fresh talks are slated for Sunday. [MIA] [US NK Negotiations] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/07/13/2018071301546.html><B> N.Korea Gets Away with Unacceptable Behavior </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> July 13, 2018 13:29 Officers from the U.S. and North Korea were scheduled to meet in the border truce village of Panmunjom on Thursday to discuss the handover of the remains of U.S. soldiers who died in the 1950-53 Korean War, but the North Koreans failed to show up. This is unimaginable elsewhere in international diplomacy. U.S. President Donald Trump was very proud of winning a pledge from North Korean leader Kim Jong-un at their summit in June to hand over the remains, and it was one of very few concrete measures in an agreement they signed. Soon afterwards the U.S. sent about 100 coffins to Panmunjom to put the remains into, but they have been sitting there ever since. [MIA] [US NK Negotiations] [Conservatives] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.counterpunch.org/2018/07/13/korea-after-the-handshake/><B> Korea After the Handshake </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> by Manuel E. Yepe July 13, 2018 The recent easing of tensions between North and South Korea, two countries that are still technically at war, has given new life to the debate on the unification of the two countries, which have been divided and confronted since the 1950s. In my opinion, the most favored part of the development of the events that led to the meeting of the leaders of the two Koreas was South Korea! The extensive and intense military presence of the United States in the south of the Korean peninsula has always been the main obstacle to the reunification efforts of the Korean nation. Thus, the only net loser at the end of these events has been Washington, which has seen its absolute empire on the southern part of the Korean peninsula threatened. [Detente] [US Korea] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/07/103_252223.html><B> NK, US in course of building mutual trust for nuclear bargain </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-07-13 16:31 Updated : 2018-07-13 18:24 By Yi Whan-woo North Korea and the United States are apparently building up mutual trust as they proceed with follow-up dialogue to a denuclearization agreement reached between their leaders in Singapore last month. Doubts remain strong about the North's commitment to complete denuclearization. There also have been news reports about a possible rift in ongoing negotiations since the two sides failed to make a breakthrough during U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo's trip to Pyongyang from July 5 to 7. The North recently accused the U.S. of making a "gangster-like demand," but this was largely viewed as a tactic to secure more concessions as both sides are engaging in a tug-of-war over concrete denuclearization steps. Pyongyang never mentioned a peace regime on the Korean Peninsula although it was included on the joint statement issued by North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and U.S. President Donald Trump in Singapore. The North wants a security guarantee from the U.S. in return for complete denuclearization. Against this backdrop, Trump on Thursday tweeted a letter to him from Kim, claiming it was a "very nice note" and there was "great progress being made!" [US NK Negotiations] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_northkorea/853052.html><B> Pentagon asserts right to pay for costs of excavating US POW/MIA </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted on : Jul.12,2018 17:03 KST Modified on : Jul.12,2018 17:03 KST Still no confirmation regarding North Korea s willingness to repatriate remains Five sets of the remains of US soldiers who died in North Korea were repatriated to the US via Panmunjeom in Oct. 1998. (Lee Jung-woo, staff photographer) With working-level talks scheduled between North Korea and the US on July 12 for the return of the remains of US POW/MIA from the Korean War, the Pentagon asserted its right to pay costs related to the remains excavation. But with the question of whether and when North Korea will return the remains still up in the air, the Pentagon said it would  inappropriate to discuss the handling of costs for the future repatriation process. A July 10 Voice of America (VOA) report quoted an official with the US Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency (DPAA) as saying the US government  does not pay any government or individual for the remains of missing Americans as a matter of policy.  But we are authorized to reimburse for the costs incurred with recovering and repatriating U.S. remains, the official added. [MIA] [US NK Negotiations] [Singapore summit] [Pushback] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.oikoumene.org/en/resources/documents/wcc-programmes/public-witness/peace-building-cf/cultivating-peace-proclaiming-hope><B> Cultivating Peace, Proclaiming Hope </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> 07 March 2018 Communique for  International Conference in Celebration of the 30th Anniversary of the 88 Declaration  For he is our peace; in his flesh he has made both groups into one and has broken down the dividing wall, that is, the hostility between us. (Ephesians 2:14) God s vision for this world sees swords being beaten into ploughshares (Isaiah 2:4), nations gathering together under the light of God s justice and peace, sisters and brothers once in conflict embracing each other, and all God s children fearing neither hunger, nor thirst nor threats of war. So long as nations practice invading each other, developing bombs and missiles to destroy each other, and refusing to sit at the table until unrealistic conditions are met then we move further away from God s vision for our world. We invite Christians around the world and all people of good will to join us as we walk the path of peace with our God proclaiming the promise that God will one day redeem this whole creation. We have gathered as Christian leaders from around the world together with Korean Christian leaders to reflect upon the significance of the 1988 Declaration of the Churches of Korea on National Reunification and Peace and its implications for our lives and actions in today s context. After a period of explosively escalating tensions, we have welcomed the PyeongChang Olympic Truce and the new steps towards dialogue between North (DPRK) and South (ROK) as an historic opportunity. [Detente] [Religion] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/07/11/2018071101621.html><B> Trump Insists He'll Get 'Rocket Man' CD to Kim Jong-un One Day </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> July 11, 2018 13:13 U.S. President Donald Trump's devotion to trivia was much in evidence after his secretary of state, Mike Pompeo, failed to meet North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in Pyongyang last weekend. To Trump, what mattered more than Pompeo's failure to make concrete progress on denuclearization was that he did not manage to hand over a CD of Elton John's "Rocket Man" to his rotund new friend. Trump told reporters in the White House on Tuesday, "They didn't give it. I have it for him. But it will be given at a certain period -- I actually do, I actually do have a little gift for him, but you ll find out what that gift is when I give it." Trump famously called Kim "Rocket Man" in front of a bemused UN General Assembly after Pyongyang's flurry of ballistic missile tests last year. Kim reportedly asked him about the epithet over lunch in Singapore on June 12, and Trump decided to send him a copy through Pompeo. [Trump] [Kim Jong Un] [Banality] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.counterpunch.org/2018/07/11/gangsterism-or-progress-examining-north-koreas-latest-statement-on-denuclearization/><B>  Gangsterism or  Progress ? Examining North Korea s Latest Statement on Denuclearization </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> by Mel Gurtov Most July 11, 2018 US news reports are suggesting that the North Koreans may be backtracking on their commitment to denuclearization, calling the US position  gangster-like following the visit of Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to Pyongyang. What the North Korean foreign ministry actually saidin its statement of July 7 is far more nuanced, and speaks directly to the longstanding differences between Pyongyang and Washington. I urge readers to judge for themselves whether or not it is a rational, reasoned statement and then consider Pompeo s assessment of progress in the talks with the North Koreans. Here are my brief assessments: " The North Koreans believe Trump promised  a new way to deal with US-DPRK relations and denuclearization, namely, step by step. Their view is clear: denuclearization comes last, not first a longstanding position. Instead, Pompeo brought only renewed US insistence on the old US position: CVID (comprehensive, verifiable, irreversible denuclearization). [Pompeo_July18] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/07/09/2018070901165.html><B> New U.S. Ambassador Arrives in Seoul </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Lee Yong-soo July 09, 2018 11:01 New U.S. ambassador Harry Harris arrived at Incheon International Airport last Saturday to take up the long vacant post. Harris told reporters Korea has "no better friend" than the U.S. and the Seoul-Washington alliance has been a pillar of peace and stability over the past 65 years. Harris, a former chief of the U.S. Pacific command, fills a position that had been vacant since Donald Trump became president in January 2017. Harris said the Trump administration has made it clear that strengthening the Seoul-Washington alliance is one of its priorities, Harris said. New U.S. Ambassador Harry Harris and his wife arrive at Incheon International Airport on Saturday. /Yonhap Asked about Washington's position on the ongoing talks over defense cost-sharing, he said, "I don't want to get ahead of the process and I don't want to discuss the opening stances if you will in public." On a lighter note, Harris said he thought his new mustache "would be a nice break from wearing the uniform as a flag officer through now wearing the uniform of a diplomat, or trying to fit in one." Born to an American father, who was a Navy officer, and a Japanese mother in 1956, he was the first U.S. Navy admiral of Asian descent. [Harry Harris] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/07/103_251938.html><B> Trump's joke on Kim Jong-un or the other way around? </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-07-09 14:19 Updated : 2018-07-09 19:51 By Oh Young-jin So a CD of "Rocket Man" by Elton John was not delivered to Kim Jong-un. Or was it? Or did it mean U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo carried the gift but failed to give it to the North Korean leader in Pyongyang? The U.S. State Department confirmed that the CD was not given to Kim, but Trump's personal letter was. But according to the Washington Post, the department did not say whether or not Pompeo brought the gift to Pyongyang in the first place. It is still possible that Pompeo had it with him, but did not give it to Kim because he did not get a chance to meet the North Korean leader. [Pompeo_July18] [Banality] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/07/356_251957.html><B> US proposes 'Vietnamese model' for North Korea </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-07-09 16:36 Updated : 2018-07-09 18:31 By Kim Bo-eun U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Sunday said North Korea could become as prosperous as Vietnam if it partners with the U.S., and that this could become possible even if the countries were formerly enemies. "In light of the once-unimaginable prosperity and partnership we have with Vietnam today, I have a message for Chairman Kim Jong-un: President Trump believes your country can replicate this path," Pompeo said in a meeting with the U.S.-Vietnamese business community in Hanoi. "It's yours if you'll seize the moment. This miracle can be yours. It can be your miracle in North Korea," he said. Pompeo added if North Korea follows this path, "Chairman Kim will be remembered as a hero of the North Korean people." He headed to Vietnam and met with its prime minister and foreign minister after talks with North Korean officials on the regime's denuclearization in Pyongyang, and meetings with foreign ministers of South Korea and Japan in Tokyo. The U.S. and Vietnam normalized relations in 1995 after decades of being enemies after the Vietnam War. Pompeo mentioned that bilateral trade between the countries increased by 8,000 percent in two decades, and that the U.S. invested billions of dollars in the state. The proposal comes at a time when North Korean leader Kim Jong-un is focusing on building the nation's economy. Economic development, however, is barred by multiple sanctions the North has been placed under for its nuclear provocations. North Korea and the U.S. are now engaging in talks for the former to give up its nuclear program. North Korea is hoping to establish diplomatic relations with the U.S. to remove threats and have its sanctions lifted through its denuclearization. The high-level talks held last week, however, confirmed that the two states are still apart on how to achieve this, with North Korea afterward referring to the U.S. requests as "gangster-like." [Pompeo_July18] [Vietnam] [False analogy] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/opinion/2018/07/197_251440.html?utm_source=dable><B> My grandfather's legacy </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-06-29 15:09 Updated : 2018-06-29 15:09 By Jimmy Doyle General Douglas MacArthur remains a larger-than-life figure and war hero in the eyes of many Americans and Koreans. But without the U.S. Navy and my grandfather, our Marines could not have stormed the Korean Peninsula in the early 1950s. It took senior Naval officers with extensive experience in planning, staging and executing a sea assault to carry out the landing at Incheon and, months later, the Hungnam withdrawal. Amphibious landings, with their combined use of land, sea and air power, are among the most complex military operations. It was no accident that my grandfather, Rear Admiral James Henry Doyle ? commander of Amphibious Forces, Far East ? knew how to lead the attack at Incheon. During World War II, he had led amphibious forces, most notably at Guadalcanal and Tulagi in the Solomons campaign. MacArthur chose Incheon as the site for a sea assault in the hopes of cutting enemy supply lines. Incheon is only 15 miles from Seoul, yet at that time was deep in enemy-held territory. In a stroke of genius, MacArthur reasoned that North Korea's top brass would consider a landing at Incheon incredibly foolish, and thus be taken by surprise. Natural hazards, especially the Yellow Sea's swift currents and extreme tides, made landing at Incheon at the height of typhoon season one of the most daring gambles in military history. But Admiral Doyle advised MacArthur that such a high-risk assault was "not impossible." Doyle drew up plans for the landing, which called for widespread shelling and initial assault on Wolmi Island before establishing beachheads closer to Incheon. For two days, destroyers and cruisers pounded the shoreline, as well as Gunsan and Pyongyang ? bombarding shore batteries and other targets to confuse the enemy. Doyle launched the attack at high tide on the afternoon of Sept. 15, 1950, from his flagship, the USS Mount McKinley. An armada of 261 Navy vessels and 75,000 troops made the assault. Doyle's warships provided close air support for the soldiers who climbed over Inchon's tall sea walls that day. The capture of the port served its purpose of cutting enemy supply lines and, 10 days later, the capture of Seoul ? temporarily turning the war's tide in favor of U.N. forces. [Korea War] [Inchon] [Seapower] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-zpSNyyShrs&list=PLHVDoUoJDQq95TByOV0OQq3JCqMA9cLTg><B> Jenny Town on Deterrence and North Korea's Nuclear Program </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Nuclear Learning Published on Jul 10, 2018 Deterrence and North Korea's nuclear program featuring Jenny Town, research analyst at the Stimson Center and managing editor and produce of 38 North. Part of Stimpon Center's South Asia Program (sic) [US NK policy] [Deterrence] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://twitter.com/TheBlueHouseKR/status/1015789475182489601><B> Blue House spokesperson on the US-NK talk: </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Blue House Twitter (in Korean): <BR> The US-NK high-level talks in Pyongyang was the first step in the journey toward denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula. As the saying "A journey of a thousand miles must begin with the first step" goes, the beginning is the most important part of the whole. There is also the saying, "You must not expect too much at your first attempt." There may be various obstacles in the future negotiations and implementation of denuclearization, but as both North Korea and the US are serious and sincere, we expect them to solve those problems well. Especially, Chairman KJU and President Trump have shown deep trust for each other. It was once again confirmed in the high-level talks. A building can rise high when the foundation is firm. The SK government will closely consult the US and NK for complete denuclearization and establishment of peace ["peace's taking roots"]. We will make every effort possible. (Translation by Simone Chun) [Pompeo_July2018] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.globalresearch.ca/washingtons-message-to-north-korea-denuclearize-accept-neoliberalism-and-the-vietnam-miracle-meanwhile-kim-remains-on-the-cia-assassination-list/5646853><B> Washington s Message to North Korea: Denuclearize, Accept Neoliberalism and the  Vietnam Miracle . Meanwhile Kim Remains on the  CIA Assassination List </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Prof Michel Chossudovsky Global Research, July 09, 2018 US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was in Pyongyang on a two day visit  to press leader Kim Jong-un for details on his plans for denuclearisation. It was a polite and courteous welcome, Korean style. But with Pompeo in charge of negotiations, what are the prospects? Back in October 2017, Pompeo hinted in no uncertain terms when he was head of the CIA:  If Kim Jong-un suddenly dies, don t ask me about it &   With respect, if Kim Jong-un should vanish, given the history of the CIA, I m just not going to talk about it,  We are going to become a much more vicious agency&  And that s the guy who s in charge of  negotiating peace with North Korea. [Pompeo_July18] [CIA] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://kcnawatch.co/newstream/1531000080-429116112/fm-spokesman-on-dprk-u-s-high-level-talks/><B> FM Spokesman on DPRK-U.S. High-level Talks </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Date: 08/07/2018 Pyongyang, July 7 (KCNA) -- A spokesman of the Ministry of the Foreign Affairs of the Democratic People's Republic of Korea on Saturday released the following statement: International society has focused its expectation and attention on the DPRK-U.S. high-level talks for the implementation of the Joint Statement of the DPRK-U.S. summit after the first historic summit meeting and talks were held between the DPRK and the U.S. We expected that the U.S. side would bring itself with a constructive proposal which would help build up trust true to the spirit of the DPRK-U.S. summit meeting and talks. We, on our part, were also thinking of doing something which corresponds with it. It was, however, so regretful to mention what the U.S. side had shown in its attitude and stand at the first DPRK-U.S. high-level talks held on 6 and 7 July.... <BR> But, the U.S. side came up only with its unilateral and gangster-like demand for denuclearization just calling for CVID, declaration and verification, all of which run counter to the spirit of the Singapore summit meeting and talks..... <BR> We still cherish our good faith in President Trump. <BR> The U.S. should make a serious consideration of whether the toleration of the headwind against the wills of the two top leaders would meet the aspirations and expectations of the world people as well as the interests of its country. [US NK Negotiations] [Pompeo_July18] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_northkorea/852250.html><B> Kim Yong-chol declares plans for  good discussions with Pompeo in Pyongyang </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted on : Jul.6,2018 17:58 KST Modified on : Jul.6,2018 17:58 KST WPK vice chairman explains to South Korean delegation Kim Jong-un s will of better inter-Korean relations The South Korean delegation for the unified friendly basketball matches, led by Minister of Unification Cho Myung-gyon (right), engages in talks with North Korean Vice Chairman of the Workers Party of Korea (WPK) Kim Yong-chol (left) in Pyongyang on July 5. Kim Yong-chol, vice chairman of the Workers Party of Korea (WPK) Central Committee, declared plans to hold  good discussions in a July 6 meeting in Pyongyang with US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, South Korean Minister of Unification Cho Myung-gyon reported. Meeting on the morning of July 5 with Cho and other visiting South Korean government delegation members at Pyongyang s Koryo Hotel, where they are staying while in the city to attend unified inter-Korean basketball matches, Kim said he was  scheduled to meet with Secretary Pompeo on July 6. During the 50-minute-long meeting, Kim also explained why leader Kim Jong-un, who proposed the unified matches, would not be viewing them himself at the Ryugyong Chung Ju-yung Gymnasium (Pyongyang Arena).  Our Chairman is traveling for on-the-spot guidance in the provinces, far away, and he will therefore be unlikely to watch the match today, Kim Yong-chol was quoted as saying.  The general trends for activities related to the organization of this event were individually decided by the Chairman, he reportedly said, adding that Kim Jong-un had  provided individual instructions on detailed aspects. In particular, he said Kim Jong-un had asked that the South Koreans be  encouraged to bring their own broadcasting personnel and music and suggesting that they be  accommodated in such a way that all 100 or so [visiting South Korean delegation members] can use the Koryo Hotel. [Kim Yong Chol] [Pompeo] [SK NK relations] [Detente] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/07/103_251821.html><B> Pompeo tasked with detailed plan for denuclearization </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-07-06 09:43 Updated : 2018-07-06 17:21 By Kim Bo-eun U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo began talks with North Korean officials on North Korea's denuclearization, Friday, after arriving in Pyongyang earlier in the day. The follow-up talks come more than three weeks after North Korean leader Kim Jong-un had a summit with U.S. President Donald Trump to discuss the matter in Singapore, June 12. The agreement reached at the summit was only made in broad terms without specific measures and a timeline for the denuclearization process. Pompeo has been tasked with making a detailed plan with the North Koreans for these; if he returns home empty-handed or makes a deal for only a minor part of the entire process, skepticism will grow among U.S. government officials and experts that Pyongyang is not really committed to denuclearization. This is Pompeo's third visit to Pyongyang _ the first was in March and second in May. The U.S. appears to have shifted from its initial "all or nothing" position on North Korea's denuclearization to a more flexible position to make progress, after weeks of stalled talks. [US NK Negotiations] [Pompeo] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/07/371_251781.html><B> USFK to drastically layoff Korean employees </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-07-05 15:55 Updated : 2018-07-05 18:29 Camp Humphrey to station more than half of the 28,500 U.S. troops stationed in Korea. Yonhap By Kim Hyun-bin Hundreds of Koreans working on U.S. military bases are on the verge of losing their jobs, as most of these are being merged and relocated to the new headquarters of the U.S. Forces Korea (USFK). Last week, Camp Humphreys officially opened, replacing Yongsan Garrison in central Seoul, and will be home to more than half of the 28,500 U.S. troops stationed in Korea. Most U.S. forces located in the northern part of Gyeonggi Province, including the 2nd Infantry Division (2ID) at Camp Casey in Dongducheon, are scheduled to move to Pyeongtaek by the end of the year or early next year. The redeployment is raising fears that the Korean workers could be let go. [USFK] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/07/120_251810.html><B> Amb. Harris says hello to Koreans on Twitter </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-07-05 17:07 Updated : 2018-07-05 17:07 U.S. Ambassador to South Korea Harry Harris in a video clip released by the U.S. Embassy in Seoul on Thursday. New U.S. Ambassador to South Korea Harry Harris pledged Thursday to do his best to maintain the "closest friendship and strongest alliance" between the two sides as he's expected to begin formal work here next week. Saying hello to South Koreans in a video posted on the Twitter account of the U.S. Embassy in Seoul, he emphasized the importance of their relations as well as his personal ties with Korea and affection for the Asian country. "It will be a great privilege for me to serve as President Trump's representative in a country that's an ally and an important partner of the U.S., not only in Northeast Asia but globally," he said in the 89-second clip. "For decades, our two nations have stood together, the closest friends and the strongest allies. I intend to do everything I can to maintain that bond." [Harry Harris] [Moustache] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.spreaker.com/user/radiosputnik/secretary-of-state-pompeo-heads-to-north?utm_medium=widget&utm_source=user%3A8544886&utm_term=episode_title><B> Secretary of State Pompeo heads to North Korea </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> From: Loud & Clear Interviews Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is on his way to Pyongyang for talks with North Korean officials, his third trip in as many months. Pompeo is under the gun to produce tangible evidence of forward progress in denuclearization talks in the shadow of reports from anonymous US intelligence sources that Pyongyang is not serious. Author and professor Tim Beal, whose most recent book is  Crisis in Korea, joins the show. [US NK Negotiations] [Pompeo] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-northkorea/as-pompeo-heads-to-north-korea-state-department-denies-softening-idUSKBN1JV2R3><B> As Pompeo heads to North Korea, State Department denies softening </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Reuters Staff The State Department on Thursday denied that the United States had softened its approach toward North Korean denuclearization, as U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo heads to Pyongyang hoping to agree a roadmap for its nuclear disarmament. U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo boards his plane to travel to Anchorage, Alaska on his way to Pyongyang, North Korea in Andrews Air Force Base, Maryland, U.S. July 5, 2018. Andrew Harnik/Pool via REUTERS  Nothing could be further from the truth. Our policy toward North Korea has not changed, State Department spokeswoman Heather Nauert told reporters on the way to Pyongyang. [US NK Negotiations] [Pompeo] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uJ-95m0gBsU&feature=youtu.be&a=> ClipArt with Boris Malagurski.  Libyan Denuclearization Model for North Korea s Kim Jong Un </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Published on Jun 27, 2018 In this episode of Clipart, Boris Malagurski gives historical perspective on the wisdom of accepting the  Libyan Model for denuclearization that the US has proffered to North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. [US NK policy] [Imperialism] [Libya] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.bwcumc.org/event/1173864-2018-07-26-korea-peace-festival-vigil-2018/><B> Korea Peace Festival & Vigil 2018 </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Thursday, July 26, 2018 - Saturday, July 28, 2018 Korea Peace Festival & Vigil 2018 Purpose of the Event: To Celebrate the renewed sense of peace and reconciliation around the Korean Peninsula To Learn what and how ecumenical and civilian partners can do to help this renewed peace process being fulfilled into a lasting peace in the Korean Peninsula [Peace effort] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/07/356_251707.html><B> 'Kim Jong-un is sincere about denuclearization' </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-07-04 14:49 Updated : 2018-07-04 18:43 Halting joint military drills is 'good decision to build trust' By Kim Jae-kyoung Skepticism about North Korea's complete denuclearization still prevails both at home and abroad. With a history of breaking promises over the past 25 years, the reclusive regime has not taken any tangible actions toward denuclearization since the historic summit between the United States and North Korea in Singapore on June 12. Skeptics say that the North's recalcitrant leader will never give up nuclear weapons but Joseph DeTrani, a former special envoy for the six-party talks with North Korea, remains optimistic about the ongoing and future negotiations. Joseph DeTrani, a former U.S. special envoy for the six-party talks with North Korea, speaks to The Korea Times during an interview at The Shilla in Seoul on June 29. / Korea Times photo by Choi Won-suk DeTrani, currently a professor at Missouri State University's Graduate Department of Defense and Strategic Studies in Fairfax, Virginia, believes that this time will be totally different from the past in three aspects. 3 reasons to be optimistic The first thing that he thinks we should pay attention to is that the ongoing movement has been spearheaded by the top two leaders ? U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, not negotiators. "The difference is that the two leaders are talking about these critical issues and coming up with the path to resolve it. It's their words and commitment. That changed the equation," he said in an interview with The Korea Times at The Shilla hotel in Seoul on June 28. [US NK Negotiations] [DeTrani] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://lobelog.com/trumps-investment-in-north-korea/><B> Trump s Investment in North Korea </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> July 2, 2018John Feffer by John Feffer Donald Trump loves to tell the following story. You go to a bank and borrow $3 million. If you can t pay it back, you have a problem. But say you go to a bank and borrow $300 million. Then, if you can t pay it back, both you and the bank have a problem. In other words, the bank has made such a huge investment in you that it can t let you fail. Your success becomes the bank s success. Donald Trump has made a similar investment into North Korea. That investment is not monetary. There is no Trump Tower (yet) in Pyongyang. Rather, Trump has a major investment of political capital in North Korea. He has ignored the advice of the entire U.S. foreign policy establishment by meeting with Kim Jong Un in Singapore. He is gambling that the North Korean leader is truly willing to embark on denuclearization. [Singapore summit] [Liberal] [Anti-Trump] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_international/851568.html><B> American investigative journalist highlights US role in suppression of Korean democracy movements </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted on : Jul.2,2018 17:09 KST Modified on : Jul.2,2018 17:09 KST Tim Shorrock relates similarities of US involvement in 1980 Gwangju and 1948 Jeju uprisings US journalist Tim Shorrock has been covering Korean Peninsula issues since the 1970s.  After examining the Jeju Uprising in the 1940s and the Gwangju Uprising in 1980, I was shocked at how similar they were despite the passage of over three decades in between. The Jeju Uprising [starting on Apr. 3, 1948] was an armed struggle against the US military administration formed in South Korea, while the Gwangju Uprising [starting on May 18, 1980] was an armed struggle against a South Korean military administration backed by the US, so you can see the commonalities in terms of the US s involvement with the forces behind the suppression. Tim Shorrock, a US journalist specializing in investigative reporting, was speaking at a June 28 panel discussion sponsored by Jeju Island and organized by the Jeju 4/3 Research Institute on the topic  April 3: State Violence and Memory. Shorrock has been covering Korean Peninsula issues since the 1970s was named an honorary citizen of Gwangju for his reporting uncovering secret US government documents in connection with the Gwangju Uprising. [Repression] [Kwangju] [Massacre] [Jeju] [US complicity] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/07/103_251568.html><B> Bolton: US has plan to dismantle NK nuclear program in year </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-07-02 10:29 Updated : 2018-07-02 16:30 U.S. National security adviser John Bolton / AP The United States has a plan that would lead to the dismantling of North Korea's nuclear weapons and ballistic missile programs in a year, President Donald Trump's national security adviser said Sunday, although U.S. intelligence reported signs that Pyongyang doesn't intend to fully give up its arsenal. John Bolton said top U.S. diplomat Mike Pompeo will be discussing that plan with North Korea in the near future. Bolton added that it would be to the North's advantage to cooperate to see sanctions lifted quickly and aid from South Korea and Japan start to flow. Bolton's remarks on CBS' ''Face the Nation'' appeared to be the first time the Trump administration had publicly suggested a timeline for North Korea to fulfill the commitment leader Kim Jong-un made at a summit with President Donald Trump last month for the ''complete denuclearization'' of the Korean Peninsula. [Bolton] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/06/29/2018062900961.html><B> N.Korea Drags Heels on Repatriation of U.S. Soldiers' Remains </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Jun Hyun-suk, Kim Jin-myung June 29, 2018 09:37 North Korea is dragging its heels over the repatriation of the remains of U.S. soldiers who died in the Korean War, a solemn pledge it made to in a summit with the U.S. earlier this month. Some 100 caskets are waiting in the truce village of Panmunjom to carry the remains home, but North Korea has made no move to take them over. Follow-up high-level talks to the summit have also yet to take place, despite promises from both sides. The U.S. sent the wooden caskets to Panmunjom on June 23 under an agreement a U.S. team reached with North Korean officials on its recent visit to the North. The U.S. had expected that the North would take them over the next day and the repatriation of remains could begin. But as of Thursday they were still sitting at the border. "The North won't renege on its promise to repatriate remains, but it's possible that Pyongyang will try to get the most out of it by dragging its feet and making Washington fret," a diplomatic source said. Washington seems confused. U.S. President Donald Trump was vague in his reach after metaphors on Thursday, saying, "So we have things cooking now, you are going to be so happy. When people rush it, it is like rushing the turkey out of the stove, it is not going to be as good." [Singapore summit] [MIA] [Reciprocity] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/07/120_251508.html><B> Harris confirmed as US ambassador to South Korea </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-06-30 10:50 Updated : 2018-06-30 10:50 The United States Senate has confirmed President Donald Trump's pick for ambassador to South Korea, filling a post that has been vacant since the launch of the administration. The Senate voted unanimously in favor of retired Adm. Harry Harris on Thursday, according to a diplomatic source. The former chief of the U.S. Pacific Command is expected to take office early next month. Harris will serve as Washington's top envoy to Seoul at a time when the allies have been seeking close coordination on a range of issues, including North Korea's nuclear weapons program and bilateral trade. [Harry Harris] </FONT> </UL> <HR> <A NAME="june18"> <A HREF="#top">Return to top of page</A><BR> <font size=5 color =maroon"> JUNE 2018</FONT> <UL> <!--point--> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/06/28/2018062801516.html><B> USFK Chief Dismisses Fears Over Military Readiness </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Jun Hyun-suk June 28, 2018 09:24 The commander of the U.S. Forces Korea on Wednesday dismissed concerns that all joint South Korea-U.S. military drills will be halted. But Gen. Vincent Brooks admitted that the timing and scope of joint exercises will change while talks with North Korea about denuclearization are underway. "I will eliminate the doubt and concerns about all military training going away. I don't have any such instruction coming my way," Brooks told a forum at the Defense Ministry in Seoul. The large-scale Freedom Guardian command post exercise in August well as the company-level Korean Marine Exchange Program drills have already been suspended. "I don't anticipate that this is an end of all exercises and training as we know it, but rather these visible exercises that are right up front that may cause unnecessary irritation at a time when the need for trust building is so important," he said. North Korea has in turn has not reduced its military arsenal and taken no steps to dismantle its missiles, nuclear weapons, conventional weapons or troops in frontline areas, he pointed out. "So my encouragement is we maintain that spirit of moving forward even with the doubt, and we look for ways to help North Korea save face where possible but while also keeping pressure on them to not back up," Brooks added. He stressed the need to maintain military preparedness despite the suspension of large-scale drills. He denied that pulling U.S. troops out of South Korea is a matter of interest to the leaders of South Korea and the U.S., despite remarks by U.S. President Donald Trump that he wants to "bring the troops back home." "We shouldn't have any worry or doubt about the departure of U.S. forces," Brooks said. [USFK] [Military presence] [Pushback] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/06/28/2018062801541.html><B> U.S. Senators Demand Oversight of N.Korea's Denuclearization </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Jeong Si-haeng June 28, 2018 09:26 A bipartisan group of U.S. senators tabled a bill on Tuesday calling on U.S. President Donald Trump to report to Congress regularly what is going on in his administration's denuclearization talks with North Korea. Robert Menendez (left) and Cory Gardner The bill was proposed jointly by Robert Menendez, a ranking Democrat on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, and Cory Gardner (Republican), the chairman of the Subcommittee on East Asia, the Pacific and International Cybersecurity Policy. It urges the president to submit a written report to Congress every 30 days on how the negotiations with the North are expected to proceed. It also stresses the need for continued sanctions until there is "meaningful and verifiable denuclearization" and prohibits the U.S. from pursuing military action against the North contrary to international law. "After the administration signed a vague joint statement in Singapore without any details on a pathway forward on denuclearization, the need for congressional oversight is more evident than ever," Menendez said in a statement. AP said the bill refers to North Korean leader Kim Jong-un as a "ruthless and cruel despot" whereas Trump has recently called him a "talented man" who "loves his country very much." "The prospects for its passage are uncertain, but it reflects concern on both sides of the aisle about how the mercurial president deals with North Korea, which has a record of failing to live up to its diplomatic commitments," it added. [Singapore summit] [Blob] [Pushback] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/06/356_251420.html><B> Defense chiefs pledge peaceful security </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-06-28 16:40 Updated : 2018-06-28 21:34 South Korean Defense Minister Song Young-moo, right, shakes hands with his U.S. counterpart James Mattis before holding talks at his office in Yongsan, Seoul, Thursday. They discussed a series of defense issues including follow-up measures to realize a peace agreement from the Washington-Pyongyang summit. / Yonhap Washington has no plans to downsize USFK By Lee Min-hyung Defense chiefs of the United States and South Korea pledged Thursday to tighten security readiness in a peaceful manner under the common goal of the complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula. "If North Korea continues to take action to realize its pledge for denuclearization, Seoul and Washington will come up with measures to show peace and trust to Pyongyang," Minister of National Defense Song Young-moo said during talks with his U.S. counterpart James Mattis. The meeting comes at a time when inter-Korean relations are showing signs of a rapid thaw, with the regime's young leader Kim Jong-un pledging to scrap his nuclear arsenal. In a show of his willingness to denuclearize the peninsula, he has in recent months made unexpected public appearances _ holding summits with President Moon Jae-in and President Donald Trump. Earlier this month, Seoul and Washington decided to suspend the large-scale Ulchi Freedom Guardian joint military exercise scheduled for autumn in response to Kim's rare peace gestures. Mattis also spoke highly of the bilateral decision to suspend the drill, pledging to fulfill a shared goal for peace here. "The recent decision to suspend the exercise creates an increased opportunity for our diplomats to negotiate, increasing the prospects for a peaceful solution on the peninsula," the U.S. defense secretary said. [US SK Alliance] [Singapore summit] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/06/26/2018062601092.html><B> U.S. Launches N.Korea Nuke Task Force </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Kang In-sun June 26, 2018 11:03 The U.S. State Department has launched a special task force to oversee follow-up negotiations with North Korea on denuclearization. A diplomatic source in Washington said Sunday the taskforce combines the State Department's Northeast Asia, disarmament and non-proliferation divisions. When he was CIA chief in May last year, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo also created a Korea Mission Center that was tasked with dealing with North Korea's nuclear and missile threats. It played a pivotal role in behind-the-scenes contacts with the North. "Pompeo felt that the existing functions of the State Department were not enough to resolve the urgent task of North Korean denuclearization," an expert in Washington said. Washington has started full-fledged negotiations with the North and upped the pressure again now that North Korea seems to be dragging its heels in making good on its denuclearization pledge. The two sides are discussing a date for Pompeo's visit to North Korea, and the U.S. is pushing the North to take specific steps to demonstrate its willingness to achieve complete denuclearization. Washington is expected to present North Korea with a concrete time frame along with specific demands for denuclearization. Reuters reported that a U.S. Defense Department official said ahead of Defense Secretary James Mattis' visit to South Korea, China and Japan starting Tuesday, "There will be specific asks and there will be a specific timeline when we present the North Koreans with our concept of what implementation of the summit agreement looks like... We'll know pretty soon if they're going to operate in good faith or not." Read this article in Korean [Singapore summit] [Denuclearisation] [Unilateral] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/06/26/2018062601275.html><B> S.Korea, U.S. to Carry on Bare-Bones Military Drills </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Yu Yong-weon June 26, 2018 11:43 South Korea and the U.S. on Monday agreed to prevent annual joint military exercises from being scrapped altogether and continue vital bare-bones exercises. The agreement came in talks between Defense Minister Song Young-moo and Adm. Philip Davidson, the commander of the U.S. Indo-Pacific Command, in Seoul. It was Davidson's first visit to South Korea since he took the job last month. He also met with Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha. A government source said Song and Davidson "agreed to continue small-scale search and rescue training exercises." But Seoul and Washington have agreed to halt the annual Freedom Guardian joint drills normally held in August and indefinitely postpone small-scale tactical marine drills. All signs suggest that they will also halt the Key Resolve and Foal Eagle drills between February and April, so any larger exercises are essentially over while denuclearization talks with North Korea are in progress. The South Korean and U.S. navies hold annual search and rescue drills with Japan's Maritime Self-Defense Force each year, and South Korea and the U.S. also hold the biannual Pacific Thunder joint search and rescue drills. These are less likely to seem provocative to North Korea. A military source said, "Joint drills have been halted, but military officials on both sides have a strong desire to maintain their alliance." The U.S. has recently renamed the Pacific Command to the Indo-Pacific Command with a clearer mission to keep China's naval aspirations in check. And it is here that it is interested in keeping South Korea on side and continue joint drills. [Joint US military] [Continuities] [Pretend equality] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/06/26/2018062601244.html><B> Boeing Wins Deal for Korea's Next Maritime Patrol Plane </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Jun Hyun-suk June 26, 2018 11:33 Boeing has won a W1.9 trillion contract from Korea to supply its next-generation aerial surveillance aircraft (US$1=W1,118). The Defense Acquisition Program Administration said Monday that it picked the Boeing P-8A Poseidon as Korea's next maritime patrol plane. Korea plans to buy six of the aircraft through the Foreign Military Sales process, which is a form of contract guaranteed by the U.S. government. Each Poseidon costs W220 billion. Industry watchers believe the purchase is a propitiatory gift to U.S. President Donald Trump, who dropped unsubtle hints when he visited Seoul in November last year that he wants Korea to buy cutting-edge military assets. Acting U.S. ambassador to Korea Marc Knapper has also mentioned the Poseidon in a meeting with reporters. [Military balance] [Arms sales] [Tribute] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://koreareport2.blogspot.com/2018/06/reduction-of-tensions-in-korean.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+KoreaReport+%28Korea+Report%29><B> Reduction of Tensions in the Korean Peninsula </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Tension-reducing developments in the Korean Peninsula following the US-DPRK Summit: 1) Suspension of joint US-South Korea military exercises 2) Return of remains of Korean War-era US war dead in North Korea 3) Suggestion of demilitarizing the DMZ ... 4) Talks of moving North Korean artillerary installations away from the front. 5) Cancellation of anti-US rally in Pyongyang 6) Work underway to link railway between the two sides of Korea 7) Possible performance by North Korean musical group in Washington, DC in the fall [Detente] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_northkorea/850549.html><B> South Korea and US to suspend joint marine exercises </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted on : Jun.25,2018 17:09 KST Modified on : Jun.25,2018 17:09 KST Suspension of small-scale exercises part of good-faith measures in denuclearization negotiations South Korea-US joint military exercises (Yonhap News) The South Korean and US militaries have decided to suspend the Korea Marine Exercise Program (KMEP)  a series of joint exercises between the two countries marines  through September. This appears to be a preemptive move designed to set the mood for North Korea-US talks aimed at the North s denuclearization. Since this suspension affects small-scale exercises of battalions and smaller units, attention is focusing on how many other joint exercises will be suspended moving forward.  After close deliberations, [South Korea and the US] have decided to indefinitely postpone two rounds of the Korea Marine Exercise Program that were scheduled to take place over the next three months. These deliberations have led to the suspension of exercises scheduled between July and September, South Korea s Defense Ministry announced on June 23. [Joint US military] [Suspension] [Marines] [Pretend equality] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_northkorea/850242.html><B> [News analysis] Trump says remains of 200 US soldiers already repatriated </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted on : Jun.22,2018 15:51 KST Modified on : Jun.22,2018 15:51 KST First tangible sign of implementation of Singapore summit agreement The last remains to be repatriated were of six soldiers handed over to Bill Richardson, then governor of New Mexico, at the US military s Yongsan Garrison in Apr. 2007. The photo shows a repatriation ceremony for the remains of six US soldiers at the US 8th Army Command s Yongsan Garrison. (photo pool) US President Donald Trump said that the remains of 200 US soldiers who had died in the Korean War had already been repatriated to the US, which was one of the agreements reached during his summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in Singapore. This is the first tangible sign that Kim and Trump s agreement is being implemented.  We got back our great fallen heroes, the remains sent back today, already 200 got sent back, Trump said during a rally in Duluth, Minnesota, on June 20. Trump s remarks appear to mean that the process of repatriating the remains from North Korea has begun. [Singapore summit] [MIA] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.mcclatchydc.com/opinion/article213416574.html#cardLink=row7_card2><B> Inside the Trump-Kim summit: What it really means </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Andrew Malcolm Special to McClatchy June 19, 2018 05:00 AM Clearly, the Trump-Kim nuclear-weapons summit had all the elements to make it historic, must-see TV  the first meeting of its kind ever, big stakes involving weapons of mass destruction, an exotic foreign locale and an outcome no one could know. It also met other media needs to help hype coverage  a set stage with pretentious decorations and pre-positioned cameras to capture every nano-second and a red carpet for two consciously unpredictable men to walk at each other like a Dodge City showdown. All of it under the 10,000-watt global glare of publicity that follows any president anywhere, especially a celebrity like Donald Trump. As executive producer of his latest reality TV show, President Trump knew all this. Both he and Kim played their roles well. [Singapore summit] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/06/22/2018062201218.html><B> USFK Command Poised to Move to New Headquarters </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Jun Hyun-suk June 22, 2018 10:52 The U.S. Forces Korea Command and the UN Command headquarters relocate to their new multibillion-dollar headquarters in Pyeongtaek, Gyeonggi Province next week. USFK headquarters finally moves out of the old garrison in Yongsan, Seoul it has occupied for 73 years. The two commands formally open their new offices at Camp Humphreys in Pyeongtaek on June 29. The entire relocation of the USFK to Pyeongtaek will be finished by year's end, a USFK officer said. The leaders of South Korea and the U.S. agreed to relocate the USFK base from Yongsan in May 2003 in what was then thought a daring bid to move them further away from the frontline with North Korea. Relocation began in April 2017 after the two countries spent billions of dollars building the new site. The Eighth U.S. Army headquarters moved in August last year. The Combined Forced Command will remain in Yongsan for the time being but move to a seven-story building in the South Korean Defense Ministry compound later this year. The old garrison is to be replaced with a park. The ministry is also considering returning the 87,000 sq.m site of the Defense Media Agency and the Defense Acquisition Program Administration, which also sit in the old garrison, to the government to clear the entire site. The Dragon Hill Hotel, which serves U.S. officers and occupies another 84,000 sq.m lot, will also probably be relocated or closed, increasing the size of the park to 2.6 million sq.m. [USFK] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.counterpunch.org/2018/06/22/trump-north-korea-and-the-death-of-ir-theory/><B> June 22, 2018 Trump, North Korea, and the Death of IR Theory </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> by Mir Alikhan The dominant theme in media commentary regarding President Trump s foreign policy has been his unpredictability. While this carries relatively innocuous implications, as far as the women entangled in his sexual dalliances are concerned, the double-dutch policy towards the recently concluded summit with North Korea has the potential to ignite a serious violent conflict among major powers. In an article trying to ascertain Russian attitudes on the matter, the Christian Science Monitor reported that  trying to read the intentions of the Trump White House has become an exercise for Russian foreign-policy experts that makes old-fashioned Kremlinology look like an exact science by comparison. [Singapore summit] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.pbs.org/newshour/world/most-americans-approve-of-how-trump-handled-north-korea-according-to-new-poll><B> Most Americans approve of how Trump handled North Korea, new poll finds </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> World Jun 21, 2018 10:22 AM EDT WASHINGTON  A majority of Americans now approve of President Donald Trump s handling of U.S. relations with North Korea, a change that comes after his historic summit with that country s leader, Kim Jong Un. But most don t believe Kim is serious about addressing the international concerns about his country s nuclear weapons program. A new poll from The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research released Thursday finds that 55 percent of Americans approve of Trump s diplomacy with North Korea, up from 42 percent in March and 34 percent last October. It s the highest rating for the Republican president on any individual issue on an AP-NORC poll since his inauguration. The survey was conducted immediately after Trump concluded a one-day meeting with Kim, the first between a U.S. and North Korean leader in six decades of hostility, at which they agreed North Korea would work toward denuclearization in exchange for U.S. security guarantees. [Singapore summit] [Public opinion] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.atimes.com/trump-kim-deal-on-denuclearization-could-be-on-hold-indefinitely/><B> Trump-Kim deal on denuclearization could be on hold indefinitely </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Ken Moak June 21, 2018 Asia-Pacific countries have hailed the Trump-Kim  deal on Korean Peninsula denuclearization as a historic event that could lead to lasting peace and economic prosperity in the region. However, before the ink was dry on the documents signed in Singapore, some members of the US Congress and neoconservative media and pundits blasted it as a  great giveaway to North Korea, China and Russia without getting anything in return. These groups were particularly irked by US President Donald Trump giving up military exercises that he described as costly and provocative, fearing a loss of America s influence and trust among its allies South Korea and Japan. Terminating the large exercise involving tens of thousands of troops and hundreds of warships and jet fighters will, it is said, erode America s military preparedness. For example, Republican Senator Lindsey Graham said the war games were worth the cost to keep China from  dominating the Asia-Pacific. Trump could face enormous opposition from his political opponents and other anti-China crowds over the deal. But whether his critics have a case depends on one s perspective. [Singapore summit] [Pushback] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://secure.ucsusa.org/onlineactions/orhgZBQfEUak-rSaijrqpA2?emci=5c8f41b1-6675-e811-80c2-00155dc33681&emdi=87c4a7f6-9775-e811-80c2-00155dc33681&ceid=955372&smartlinkdata=JmZuPUphY3F1ZWxpbmUmbG49Q2FiYXNzbyZlbT13c2xmJTQwZWFydGhsaW5rLm5ldCZhZGQxPTU1MCs0Mm5kK1N0KyZjaT1PYWtsYW5kJnN0PUNBJnBjPTk0NjA5JnA9TXM%3d><B> After the United States North Korea Summit Are We Safer? </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> The Union of Concerned Scientists invites you to a national conference call to discuss the recent historic summit in Singapore between President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. Date: Wednesday, June 27 Time: 7:00 8:00 p.m. EDT President Trump heralded the meeting as a complete success and claimed, "there is no longer a nuclear threat from North Korea" and that as a result, Americans could "sleep well." Are Mr. Trump's claims true? What exactly did he and the North Korean leader agree to? If North Korean missiles are no longer a threat to the US homeland, do we still need our current missile defense program? Join the call to help answer these and other questions and hear from our nuclear weapons and global security experts: " Dr. David Wright, senior scientist and co-director, UCS Global Security Program " Dr. Laura Grego, senior scientist, UCS Global Security Program " Sean Meyer, manager of strategic campaigns, UCS Global Security Program [Singapore summit] [Threat] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://consortiumnews.com/2018/06/21/an-elite-coalition-emerges-against-a-trump-kim-agreement/><B> An Elite Coalition Emerges Against a Trump-Kim Agreement </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> June 21, 2018 Media coverage of the Trump-Kim summit has highlighted a political reaction that threatens to torpedo any possible U.S-North Korean agreement on denuclearization of the Korean peninsula, says Gareth Porter. By Gareth Porter Special to Consortium News An implicit coalition of corporate media, Democratic partisans and others loyal to the national security state are actively hostile to any agreement that would endanger the continuation of the 70-year-old Cold War between the United States and North Korea. The hostility toward Donald Trump on the part of both corporate media (except for Fox News) and the Democratic Party establishment is obviously a factor in the negative response to the summit. Trump s dysfunctional persona, extremist domestic strategy and attacks on the press had already created a hyper-adversarial political atmosphere that surrounds everything Trump says or does. But media coverage of the Singapore summit shows that something much bigger and more sinister is now in play: a consensus among foreign policy and national security elites and their media allies that Trump s pursuit of an agreement with Kim on denuclearization threatens to undo seventy years of U.S. military dominance in Northeast Asia. Those elites are determined to resist the political-diplomatic thrust of the Trump administration in negotiating with Kim and have already begun to sound the alarm about the danger Trump poses to the U.S. power position. Not surprisingly Democrats in Congress are already aligning themselves with the national security elite on the issue. [Singapore summit] [Pushback] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.veteransforpeace.org/our-work/position-statements/vfp-welcomes-joint-statement-us-dprk-summit><B> VFP Welcomes the Joint Statement from the US-DPRK Summit </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Veterans For Peace (VFP) is very moved that the historic US-DPRK summit took place in Singapore on June 12. We welcome the Joint Statement issued from the summit in particular, and congratulate President Trump and Chairman Kim Jong Un for the successful summit. The joint statement from the two leaders provides an important roadmap for achieving permanent peace and denuclearization on the Korean Peninsula. We hope this statement will serve as a great turning point from the hostile relations between the United States and the Democratic People's Republic of Korea (DPRK) for the past 70 years. We urge them to pursue a maximum engagement policy of further talks in good faith, as well as mutual exchanges and cooperation, including a speedy resumption of the joint recovery and repatriation operations of the remains of U.S. soldiers left in North Korea. [Singapore summit] [Peace effort] [MIA] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://peaceboat.org/english/?page=view&nr=51&type=23&menu=62><B> Peace Boat Statement on the Singapore Summit: Building a New Era of a Peaceful, Nuclear-Free Korean Peninsula - Civil Society Must Act Now </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Participants on the joint Korean-Japanese East Asia Peace & Green Boat Voyage in 2016 Peace Boat welcomes the agreements made at the US-DPRK Summit in Singapore on June 12, 2018 by the leaders of both states to move away from hostile relations and towards cooperation for the permanent peace and denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula. The people of the Korean Peninsula have experienced a tragic history, including colonial rule by Japan, World War II, the subsequent division of their country and the Korean War. There has been no official end to the Korean War, which has continued in a state of ceasefire for 65 years an extremely unusual situation in today's world. In late 2017 the situation on the Peninsula reached a critical point of potential warfare, through the development of nuclear weapons and ballistic miles by the DPRK, and what could be described as emotional, hostile remarks exchanged by the leaders of both the DPRK and the US. [Singapore summit] [Liberal] [Victim] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://panetta.house.gov/media/press-releases/democratic-national-security-task-force-statement-north-korea-summit><B> Democratic National Security Task Force Statement on North Korea Summit </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> June 12, 2018 Press Release Washington, D.C. - The co-chairs of the Democratic Caucus National Security Task Force Reps. Jimmy Panetta of California, Seth Moulton of Massachusetts, and Stephanie Murphy of Florida issued the following statement after President Trump s meeting with North Korea leader Kim Jong-Un:  The summit between President Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un is an important first move toward averting a catastrophic war on the Korean Peninsula. Our task force has advocated for strong and steady diplomacy, combined with economic pressure and a credible military deterrent, as the best way forward, and that is why we are encouraged by this initial step.  However, the joint U.S.-North Korea statement falls far short on specifics. Without a timeline for complete denuclearization, specific inspection and verification requirements, and a halt to ballistic missile and nuclear development, we are concerned that this agreement is more show than substance. Those are elements that arms control experts, as well as the Trump administration itself, have explicitly articulated as  must-haves.  Finally, President Trump s declaration that the U.S. will suspend joint military exercises with South Korean forces in exchange for no concessions on North Korea s part harms military readiness. This action also undermines a key democratic ally - consistent with an all-too-familiar pattern with this President.  As co-chairs of the Democratic National Security Task Force and members of the House Armed Services Committee, we will continue to hold the Trump administration accountable and ensure the U.S. takes a strong, smart, and strategic approach to the threat posed by North Korea. The Democratic Caucus National Security Task Force was established in June 2017 by the House Democratic Caucus to support the creation, execution, and public messaging of national security policies that are strong, smart, and strategic. [Singapore summit] [Democratic Party] [Blob] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.peoplesworld.org/article/koreans-demand-peace-but-will-trump-stick-to-his-pledges/><B> Koreans demand peace, but will Trump stick to his pledges? </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> June 18, 2018 10:27 AM CDT By Joe Bernick Koreans demand peace, but will Trump stick to his pledges? In this April 21 photo, a girl writes a message next to a map of the Korean peninsula during the welcoming event for the summit between South Korea and North Korea in downtown Seoul, South Korea. Both North and South have distinct visions of what a unified future might look like. North Korea s founder Kim Il Sung had a plan along the lines of what Hong Kong has with China, a unified nation with two separate systems of government. South Korea s three-step proposal ends in in its own system writ large across the peninsula. | Lee Jin-man / AP So Donald Trump and his hawkish right-wing advisors meet with North Korean leaders, and some Democrats and liberals are criticizing what appear to be steps towards peace. What gives? Why is this so confusing? It s confusing because the American public has been lied to for decades by Republican and Democratic administrations, who have been aided by a massive media cover up. [Singapore summit] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.globalresearch.ca/north-korea-what-price-peace/5644598><B> North Korea: What Price Peace? </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Askiah Adam Global Research, June 19, 2018 First it was the Panmunjom Declaration and now, after some two months, on 12 June the Singapore Joint Declaration was signed, the former between the leaders of the two Koreas, Chairman Kim Jong-un of the Democratic People s Republic of Korea (DPRK) or North Korea and President Moon Jae-in of the Republic of Korea (ROK) or South Korea. The latter, meanwhile, was inked by Donald Trump, the President of the United States, and Kim. The central theme for both is peace for the Korean Peninsula premised on its denuclearization. Item 3 of the Singapore Declaration was unequivocal:  Reaffirming the April 27, 2018 Panmunjom Declaration, the DPRK commits towards complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula. The continuity between the two declarations then is unmistakeable. Unfortunately, reasons exist to cast a shadow over this ray of hope. Indeed the Singapore Declaration was much anticipated and is well received. But there is, too, much pessimism. The recent unilateral abandonment of the Iran nuclear agreement, formally known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) by the United States is one. Iran, naturally, advised Kim to be wary. Simply put, Washington s words are not worth the paper they re printed on because there have been many previous instances where it reneged on its commitments. [Singapore summit] [Renege] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.spreaker.com/user/radiosputnik/trump-cancels-war-games-aimed-at-north-k_1><B> Trump Cancels War Games Aimed at North Korea </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> From: Loud & Clear Interviews On today's episode of Loud & Clear, Brian Becker and John Kiriakou are joined by Medea Benjamin, an anti-war and anti-torture activist and the co-founder of Code Pink, and Simone Chun, a fellow at the Korea Policy Institute and a member of the Korean Peace Network. The US and South Korea have canceled a major military exercise scheduled for August after President Trump made the surprise concession in Singapore last week. Meanwhile, North Korean leader Kim Jong Un is in Beijing for consultations. He has also been invited to visit Moscow and Washington, and rumored to have been invited to Japan. [Joint US military] </FONT> <UL> <LI><A HREF= https://sputniknews.com/analysis/201806201065570332-Strong-Momentum-Korean-Peace-Jeers/><B>  Strong Momentum for Korean Peninsula Peace Despite Media, Democrats Jeers </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> On Monday, the US cancelled  war games with South Korea slated for August, one of the largest military exercises in the world, following US President Donald Trump s surprise announcement after his historic meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un on June 12. Peace activist Medea Benjamin, co-founder of CodePink and Simone Chun, a fellow at the Korea Policy Institute and a member of the Korean Peace Network, joined Radio Sputnik's Loud & Clear Tuesday to discuss the cancellation of the annual military exercise "Ulchi Freedom Guardian." [Joint US military] </FONT> </UL> <LI><A HREF= https://abcnews.go.com/Politics/wireStory/bolton-nk-dramatic-choice-talks-move-quickly-56024145><B> Bolton: NK has 'dramatic choice,' talks will move quickly </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> " By The Associated Press WASHINGTON  Jun 20, 2018, 7:26 AM ET President Donald Trump's national security adviser John Bolton says North Korea is facing a "decisive and dramatic choice" on whether to give up its nuclear program and ballistic missiles. Bolton told Fox News' "Fox & Friends" on Wednesday that the U.S. will find out soon enough because diplomatic engagement will proceed quickly. He says Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and others will be meeting with North Korean officials. Bolton says the U.S. has no interest in lengthy talks. He says that until the U.S. gets real evidence of denuclearization, all U.S. sanctions will stay in force. Following this month's summit with North Korea leader Kim Jong Un in Singapore, Trump tweeted last week that "there is no longer a nuclear threat from North Korea." [Singapore summit] [Bolton] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.politico.com/story/2018/06/15/trump-korea-summit-successful-poll-649400><B> Poll: 54 percent of voters say North Korean summit was successful </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Candice Norwood 06/15/2018 02:41 PM EDT A little more than half of voters said the summit between North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and President Donald Trump was "very" or "somewhat" successful, but they are divided on whether it favors the United States, according to a new POLITICO/Morning Consult poll. Fifteen percent of those polled said the summit between Trump and Kim was  very successful, and 39 percent said the summit was  somewhat successful. Fourteen percent said the summit was  not too successful, while 10 percent said it was  not successful at all. Voters, however, appear to be less sure when it comes to the details of the negotiations at the summit and whether it could have positive outcomes for the U.S. Thirteen percent believe the agreement  strongly favors the U.S., 21 percent believe it  somewhat favors the U.S. Thirteen percent say the deal  somewhat favors North Korea, and 11 percent say it  strongly favors North Korea. Forty-two percent said they either do not know, or do not have an opinion. [Singapore summit] [Public opinion] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.afp.com/en/news/23/major-us-military-exercises-skorea-suspended-indefinitely-doc-15x22d11><B> Major US military exercises with S.Korea 'suspended indefinitely' </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> South Korean Defence Ministry/AFP/File / HANDOUT US-South Korea military exercises have long been a source of irritation for North Korea, which considers them preparation for an invasion The US military has indefinitely postponed major joint exercises with South Korea, an official told AFP on Thursday, acting on President Donald Trump's pledge to halt the "provocative" military drills following his summit with North Korea's Kim Jong Un. The move, a significant break in how the US and South Korean militaries have worked together for decades, came even as Secretary of State Mike Pompeo warned that peace efforts still face risks, and insisted sanctions must be maintained until Pyongyang dismantles its nuclear arsenal. "Major military exercises have been suspended indefinitely on the Korean peninsula," a senior US official told AFP. Trump on Tuesday had said the US would halt "war games" with its South Korean security ally -- but he did not make clear when the freeze would kick in. [Singapore summit] [Joint US military] [Pentagon] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-trump-korea-harris/trump-nominee-to-be-south-korea-ambassador-backs-pause-in-military-exercises-idUSKBN1JA2FE><B> Trump nominee to be South Korea ambassador backs 'pause' in military exercises </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Reuters Staff By Patricia Zengerle WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Donald Trump s nominee to be ambassador to South Korea on Thursday backed the idea of a  pause in major military exercises between U.S. and South Korean forces, while talks on North Korea s nuclear program continue.  The whole landscape has shifted, and I believe that we should give exercises, major exercises, a pause to see if (North Korean leader) Kim Jong Un is in fact serious about his part in negotiations, retired Admiral Harry Harris, who just stepped down as head of the U.S. military s Pacific Command, told a Senate hearing. Immediately after his historic summit in Singapore with Kim on Tuesday, Trump announced he would halt U.S.-South Korea military exercises, a move long sought by North Korea. Harris said his understanding was that any suspension would involve only major military exercises and that regular training of U.S. forces in South Korea would continue, although final decisions were up to the Department of Defense.  I m convinced that our alliance commitments to South Korea remain ironclad and have not changed, he told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee. [Joint US military] [Harry Harris] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.globalresearch.ca/the-kim-trump-summit-geopolitical-implications/5644204><B> The Kim-Trump Summit. Geopolitical Implications </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Prof Michel Chossudovsky and Michael Welch Global Research, June 15, 2018 In this interview recorded the morning after U.S. President Trump s  historic meeting with Chairman Kim Jong-Un of the Democratic Republic of Korea, Professor Michel Chossudovsky of the Centre for Research on Globalization gives his assessment of the meeting, outlines the threat of a reunified Korean peninsula to U.S. military and economic interests, comments on the coincidence of the G7 and other international summits taking place in the same week, and elaborates on the cross-cutting [Singapore summit] [Geopolitics] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://drive.google.com/file/d/1t7hEs0vpcJAccrnxWwCU7FfmPgF2MNyk/view?usp=sharing><B> Support Diplomacy With North Korea, Oppose War </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Diplomacy Is  The Only Realistic Option, and It Works " Last year, a bipartisan group of former national security officials focused on North Korea policy sent a letter1 to the president calling diplomacy  the only realistic option, and urging him to prioritize diplomacy to address North Korea s nuclear weapons program. " War with North Korea is not a viable option, as even a conventional war with North Korea [Singapore summit] [Peace effort] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/trump-praises-kims-authoritarian-rule-says-i-want-my-people-to-do-the-same/2018/06/15/cea20aa2-70a5-11e8-bf86-a2351b5ece99_story.html?noredirect=on&utm_term=.d3128a53db1b&wpisrc=nl_evening&wpmm=1><B> Trump praises Kim s authoritarian rule, says  I want my people to do the same </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Appearing on "Fox & Friends" on June 15 President Trump said he would not support a compromise immigration bill and said what James B. Comey did was  criminal." (JM Rieger/The Washington Post) by Philip Rucker June 15 at 10:44 AM Email the author President Trump on Friday complimented Kim Jong Un s authoritarian rule in North Korea, observing with apparent envy that when the 35-year-old dictator speaks,  his people sit up at attention.  He s the head of a country, and I mean he s the strong head, Trump told Fox News Channel.  Don t let anyone think anything different. He speaks and his people sit up at attention. I want my people to do the same. It was unclear whether Trump was referring to the American people or only to his staff. His interview with  Fox & Friends co-host Steve Doocy took place along the West Wing driveway, and as the president talked about  my people he gestured toward the White House. [Trump downplays the human rights record of Kim Jong Un] Later, when pressed by a CNN reporter about the comment, Trump claimed it had been a joke.  I m kidding, he said. Admonishing the journalist, the president added,  You don t understand sarcasm. [Anti-Trump] [Singapore summit] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.johnmenadue.com/ramesh-thakur-the-kim-trump-summit-the-good-the-bad-and-the-ugly-australian-outlook-15-6-2018/><B> The Kim Trump Summit: the Good, the Bad and the Ugly </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Ramesh Thakur. (Australian Outlook. 15/6/2018) 16 June 2018 Despite praise for Tuesday s  unprecedented meeting, there were good reasons why previous US administrations had refused multiple requests from North Korean leaders to meet. The results of the Kim Trump summit so far can be divided into the good, the bad and the ugly. The words  historic and  unprecedented to describe the meeting between President Donald Trump and Chairman Kim Jong-un are literally true. But there were good reasons why previous US administrations had refused multiple requests from North Korean leaders to meet with the president. Against the historical and strategic backdrop, the results of the Kim Trump summit so far can be divided into the good, the bad and the ugly. [Singapore summit] [MISCOM] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.johnmenadue.com/mike-scrafton-looking-down-from-the-trump-kim-summit-a-geopolitical-view/><B> Looking down from the Trump/Kim summit: a geopolitical view </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Mike Scrafton 15 June 2018 Of the risks attendant on the summit between President Trump and Chairman Kim Jung-un, the most grave is that the geopolitical consequences will be ignored. Perhaps, in private, the US and North Korea now have a mutual understanding of denuclearisation. The path towards complete, verifiable, and irreversible removal of nuclear weapons may have been settled in far more detail in the discussions in Panmunjom, Washington and Singapore than has been revealed. [Singapore summit] [MISCOM] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.pcusa.org/news/2018/6/8/stated-clerk-issues-statement-us-north-korea-summi/><B> Stated Clerk issues statement on U.S.-North Korea summit </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Nelson reiterates PC(USA) s repeated calls for a lasting peace Office of the General Assembly Communications - June 8, 2018 LOUISVILLE Image of Stated Clerk of the General Assembly, the Rev. Dr. J. Herbert Nelson, II With the historic summit between President Donald Trump of the U.S. and North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un nearing, Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) General Assembly Stated Clerk the Rev. J. Herbert Nelson, II has issued a statement reiterating the denomination s persistent calls for a lasting peace on the Korean Peninsula.  We lift our hearts in prayer for the success of this meeting, and the negotiations that emerge from it, remembering that there are literally millions of Koreans in the diaspora who long for genuine peace, Nelson wrote,  and, for many, the chance to be reunited with family members long-separated by this conflict. The full text of Nelson s statement, dated June 8, 2018: STATEMENT BY PRESBYTERIAN CHURCH (U.S.A.) STATED CLERK The Reverend Dr. J. Herbert Nelson, II June 8, 2018 Regarding the upcoming summit between leaders of the United States and North Korea As people of Christian faith, Presbyterians in Korea and the United States have a long-shared history. The Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) has been in mission partnership on the Korean peninsula for over 130 years. That partnership was disrupted when Japan arrested all U.S. missionaries at the start of World War II -- including those who had been advocating for Japanese occupation of Korea -- and more recently by the Korean War and the division of Korea into North and South regions along the 38th parallel [Singapore summit] [Religion] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.effinghamradio.com/2018/06/13/duckworth-murphy-amendment-would-prevent-trump-from-withdrawing-u-s-troops-from-south-korea/><B> Duckworth-Murphy Amendment Would Prevent Trump from Withdrawing U.S. Troops from South Korea </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Effingham, IL / Effingham Radio Dustin Osteen June 13, 2018 09:00 pm The U.S. Army / CC WASHINGTON, D.C.-(Effingham Radio)- In light of Donald Trump s comments that he is considering unilaterally withdrawing the nearly 30,000 U.S. troops who are stationed in South Korea, combat Veteran and U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) and U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (D-CT) introduced an amendment to the John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2019 that would help prevent the President from making a rash decision about troop reductions on the Korean Peninsula that negatively impacts our national security. The Senators amendment would prohibit President Trump from withdrawing U.S. forces from South Korea unless the U.S. Secretary of Defense certifies it is in our national security interest and would not significantly undermine the security of our allies in the region. [Singapore summit] [Pushback] {Governance] [Congress] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://blackallianceforpeace.com/bapstatements/decolonizekorea><B> Black Alliance for Peace Welcomes Outcome of Meeting Between the United States and North Korea </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> June 12, 2018 The Black Alliance for Peace (BAP) calls on the people of the United States to ensure the leaders of the U.S. state remain committed to continued diplomacy to end the U.S.-Korea conflict. The meeting between Kim Jong Un and the president of the United States was a positive step toward a peaceful resolution of the 68-year Korea war. The decision on the part of the U.S. occupying power to end the provocative and illegal war games with the South Korea state is a necessary concession to demonstrate a commitment to easing military tensions on the Korean peninsula. As the foreign power with 32,000 soldiers and a nuclear umbrella over the North from its bombers and submarines, the United States was correct in responding to North Korea s unilateral decision to halt nuclear tests and testing of ballistic missiles with the decision to end the U.S.-South Korea military drills. [Singapore summit] [Peace effort] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.jacobinmag.com/2018/06/singapore-summit-korea-kim-trump-moon><B> The North Korea Summit Through the Looking Glass </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Branko Marcetic As much of the world celebrates a modest step towards peace in Korea, Western pundits seem to be panicking. On Tuesday, as Donald Trump and Kim Jong-un shook hands for their much-anticipated summit in Singapore, one Korean reporter observed a curious episode. Koreans watching the scene unfold on a TV screen at a railway station in Seoul began applauding. Meanwhile, some nearby Western tourists, perturbed by this development, scratched their heads in confusion.  I am actually baffled to see them clapping here, said one British tourist. There s perhaps no better symbol of the gulf in worldwide reactions to the summit than this episode. While South Koreans cautiously celebrated a historic step in the thawing of hostilities that have hung over them for almost seventy years, the Western media seemed to look on with alarm  even anger [Singapore Summit] [Media] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://inthesetimes.com/article/21210/liberals-are-attacking-trump-from-the-right-on-north-korea.-heres-why-they><B> Liberals Are Criticizing the Korea Summit From the Right. Here s Why They Have it All Wrong. </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> With an end to the 68-year Korean War finally in sight, some U.S.  progressives are pushing Trump to be more hardline despite the fact that Koreans overwhelmingly want peace. BY Sarah Lazare "It is very dangerous to pressure Trump to be hardline." Poll after poll shows that the 51 million residents of South Korea overwhelmingly want an end to the 68-year Korean War which the United States is still officially involved in. A recent survey found that 88.4 percent of South Koreans support the April 27 joint peace declaration by North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and his South Korean counterpart, Moon Jae-in. And 81 percent of South Koreans expressed optimism about the Trump-Kim summit. Despite widespread concerns that U.S. President Donald Trump would torpedo an historic opportunity for peace including through his repeated threats to annihilate the entire Korean Peninsula with nuclear weapons this worst-case scenario has not yet come to pass. When North Korean leader Kim Jong-un met with Trump in Singapore on June 12 and etched out a four-point agreement, the reaction in South Korea was largely a sigh of relief.  Koreans see the Singapore summit not just as another sensational episode in the story of Donald Trump but as a step away from a sixty-eight-year-old unfinished war, writes E. Tammy Kim for The New Yorker. Yet, there is a yawning gap between the optimistic mood in South Korea and the response among liberal media circles in the United States, where many are reacting with a mix of sanctimony and scorn. [Singapore summit] [Liberal] [Pushback] [Blob] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.umcjustice.org/news-and-stories/the-promise-of-diplomacy-on-the-korean-peninsula-696><B> The promise of diplomacy on the Korean Peninsula </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Leaders from four United Methodist groups  Church and Society, Global Ministries, the United Methodist Korea Peace Committee and United Methodist Women  join together to pray for peace, the work of diplomacy, disarmament and denuclearization on the Korean Peninsula. Come now, let us reason together. (Isaiah 1:18a) Depart from evil, and do good; seek peace and pursue it. (Psalm 34:14) We welcome the Singapore Summit between the U.S. and North Korea as an important step toward peace. It is our hope and prayer that the people on the Korean Peninsula will finally live in peace. [Singapore summit] [Religion] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.counterpunch.org/2018/06/13/a-blow-to-interventionists-as-us-and-north-korea-move-toward-peace/><B> A Blow to Interventionists, as US and North Korea Move Toward Peace </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> by Jeffrey Sommers  Peter Paik Photo by Dan Scavino Jr. | Public Domain Critics and pundits have been reacting dismissively to President Donald Trump s engagement with North Korea s Kim Jong Un. A few weeks ago Donald Trump was going to start World War III with the Korean peninsula s  Rocket Man, or so observers said. Now, the prospect for peace, which has never been formally codified by treaty with North Korea since 1953, seems to have critics equally vexed and upset. Yet, hoping for peace to fail in order to prevent Trump from gaining a victory is to engage in precisely the type of behavior his critics accuse him of displaying. It is premature to determine the ultimate outcome of this meeting between Trump and Kim. But such a meeting is precisely what President Barack Obama suggested doing in 2008. The GOP derided Obama for this proposal, and many Democrats likely scorned it at the time as well, and they certainly are now. [Singapore summit] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://aloha.votetulsi.com/page/s/north-korea?source=em180612-subb><B> Add your name in support of Tulsi's North Korea resolution </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> For the first time since the start of the Korean War, the prospects for peace are gaining serious momentum. We must pursue direct diplomacy in order to remove the threat of nuclear war. Tulsi's resolution calls on the following steps: 1) Welcoming the United States-North Korea summit that will follow the North-South summit. 2) Reaffirming our commitment to peace, diplomatic negotiation, and the complete, verifiable, and irreversible denuclearization of North Korea. 3) Urging the President, Kim Jong Un, and regional leaders to engage in direct diplomacy that exhausts all non-military policy tools before any use of military force. 4) Urging the President, our international partners, and United Nations members to keep up the economic and diplomatic pressure until North Korea is rid of its nuclear, chemical, biological, and radiological weapons programs. [Democrats] [Unilateral disarmament] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://fpif.org/call-it-unileaderism-trumps-foreign-policy-of-one/?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=6-14-18><B> Call It  Unileaderism : Trump s Foreign Policy of One </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Unileaderism, at least as it s embodied by Donald Trump, is a philosophy bound up entirely in the personal quirks of the president himself. Instead of strategy, there are only tactics: wheedling, bluffing, threatening. It s like playing tennis against someone with John McEnroe s legendary temper and will to win, but few if any of his actual skills. Neither unilateralism nor unipolarism can explain the spectacle of the last week, when Trump blasted U.S. allies at the G7 meeting in Canada and then blasted off for Singapore to negotiate with the leader of the longest standing adversary of the United States. Only unileaderism can capture this surreal reversal of traditional U.S. foreign policy norms. The summit with Kim Jong Un was Trump at his most theatrical. He flattered the North Korean tyrant and signed a declaration of little substance. He showed off his limousine. He played Kim a White House-produced video crafted to appeal to the North Korea leader s vanity and nationalism (for instance, by juxtaposing images from North Korea with those from around the world, by barely mentioning South Korea, and by ignoring China and Japan altogether). [Anti-Trump] [Foreign policy] [Singapore summit] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://fpif.org/trumps-giving-diplomacy-a-chance-his-critics-should-too/?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=6-14-18><B> Trump s Giving Diplomacy a Chance. His Critics Should, Too. </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> But for the Korea talks to work, the administration will have to value diplomacy far more than it did on Iran. By Lindsay Koshgarian, June 13, 2018. Originally published in OtherWords. Some critics have knocked President Trump for making  too many concessions to North Korean leader Kim Jong-un at the historic Singapore Summit  the first-ever meeting between a U.S. president and North Korean leader. Trump s foreign policy instincts have had me white-knuckled for the past year and a half. But against a backdrop of possible nuclear war, it would be overly cynical not to recognize the meeting s potential for good. At best, the meeting set the stage for North Korea s denuclearization  and possibly even an end to the nearly 70-year-old, stalemated Korean War. If you re against war, this is a good development. [Singapore summit] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.commondreams.org/views/2018/06/14/everybody-especially-congressional-democrats-take-deep-breath-and-follow-presidents><B> Everybody, Especially Congressional Democrats, Take a Deep Breath and Follow the President's Lead (President Moon's, Not Trump's) </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> South Korea s Moon Jae-in has been brilliant in pursuing peace and diplomacy with both Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un in just over a year in office. by Kevin Martin "One would never know it from the mainstream US media, but the president who matters most in this process is not Trump, it s South Korea s Moon Jae-in." (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images) "One would never know it from the mainstream US media, but the president who matters most in this process is not Trump, it s South Korea s Moon Jae-in." (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images) So it turns out U.S. President Donald Trump is inept at international diplomacy. Who knew? Well, pretty much everybody knew, or at least suspected. But he s not always wrong about everything (more on that in a bit). The ridiculous video, overblown self-aggrandizement, off-the-cuff declarations of policy that apparently surprised many, and declaration upon his return there is no more nuclear threat from North Korea (um, did Trump make the North s nukes go poof somehow?) are par for the Trumpian course. [Singapore summit] [Peace effort] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://donate.globalministries.org/emailviewonwebpage.aspx?erid=7882701&trid=232ddf2b-45f0-4c0b-be91-e2e5a2c0bad6><B> Leaders of the UCC and Disciples issued this statement following the summit meeting between President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> The UCC and Disciples have worked and prayed for peace alongside our Global Ministries partners, the Presbyterian Church in the Republic of Korea (PROK) and the National Council of Churches in Korea (NCCK). After 70 years of separation and conflict, we are heartened by the Singapore Summit held between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean Chairman Kim Jong Un as a first step toward peace. We echo the hope expressed by these leaders for a "lasting and robust peace regime on the Korean Peninsula" and call on our policymakers to take concrete actions to make this hope a reality. Click here to read the complete statement [Singapore summit] [Religion] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://consortiumnews.com/2018/06/13/why-americans-and-koreans-can-sleep-better-after-the-summit/><B> Why Americans (and Koreans) Can Sleep Better After the Summit </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> June 13, 2018 The summit has already relaxed tensions but the reason is not because of a lessened threat from Pyongyang, as Jonathan Marshall explains. By Jonathan Marshall Special to Consortium News Scads of analysts and pundits have weighed in on the Trump-Kim summit talks in Singapore, parsing the brief agreement and presidential tweets for signs of just how strongly it actually commits North Korea to total, verifiable  denuclearization. Most of them are missing the point. The real threat to U.S., Korean, and Japanese security of late has come not from North Korean nukes, but from threats by President Donald Trump and his closest advisers to launch a regional war to preempt any further North Korean progress on warhead and missile technology. Some experts were giving even odds of a U.S.-initiated war as recently as a few months ago. So even if the spectacle in Singapore was more theater than substance, even if the president s effusive praise for a totalitarian leader was hard to swallow, we should applaud Trump for belatedly making good on his 2016 campaign promise to sit down with Kim Jong-un over a hamburger in search of peace. [Singapore summit] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://consortiumnews.com/2018/06/13/democrats-put-partisanship-before-prospects-for-peace/><B> Democrats Put Partisanship Before Prospects for Peace </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> June 13, 2018 In 1972 Democrats were able to praise Nixon for going to China, but the reaction to Trump s summit in Singapore shows how far we ve come since then, says Joe Lauria. By Joe Lauria Special to Consortium News When Richard Nixon returned to Washington after his historic 1972 trip to China, he was welcomed with strong support from Democrats.  From the initial Congressional reaction, it was apparent that the President, home from his China trip, would find broad bipartisan support for his move toward closer relations with Peking, The New York Times reported on Feb. 29, 1972. Even Democratic Senate leaders Edward Kennedy and Mike Mansfield praised Nixon s diplomatic gamble. Forty-six years later President Donald Trump took a similar political risk in agreeing to the first ever summit with a North Korean leader. Cautious optimism emerged from the summit that peace on the Korean peninsula may finally be within reach 65 years after a truce silenced the guns of the Korean War. But instead of the support Nixon received from the opposition party, Trump has been blasted by Democrats, who ve put any prospect for peace behind their partisan quest to regain power. [Singapore summit] [Democrats] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.antiwar.com/blog/2018/06/14/veterans-applaud-progress-for-peace-in-korea/><B> Veterans Applaud Progress for Peace in Korea </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Gerry Condon Posted on June 14, 2018 Veterans For Peace is absolutely delighted that peace is breaking out on the Korean Peninsula. We congratulate the Korean people, who cried out for peace and unity, and we applaud their leaders, who listened and acted courageously. The joint statement from the historic summit between President Trump and Chairman Kim Jong Un is a hopeful departure from hostile relations between the United States and the Democratic People s Republic of Korea (DPRK). Just months ago, the two leaders were threatening nuclear war. The world can breathe much easier today. [Singapore summit] [Peace effort] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.independent.co.uk/trump-kim-jong-un-summit-us-north-korea-singapore-chuck-schumer-a8396106.html><B> Trump-Kim summit was  purely a reality show , senator says </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Senator Chuck Schumer called the recent Singapore meeting between US President Donald Trump and Kim Jong-un  purely a reality show summit . Other Congressional Democrats and Republicans are not exactly celebrating what the White House labelled a  historic step towards peace in the Korean peninsula and touted the agreement for future talks as a major victory which previous administrations were not able to achieve. Mr Schumer pointed out that the definition of denuclearisation has not yet been set between the parties, adding that Mr Trump  has granted a brutal and repressive dictatorship the international legitimacy it has long craved . Senator Mark Warner, head of the Senate intelligence committee continuing to investigate Mr Trump s 2016 campaign team for alleged collusion with Russian officials, was none too happy with the summit delivering Mr Kim  exactly what he wanted . He said the leader, accused of keeping up to 130,000 prisoners in labour camps and a slew of human rights violations as told by defectors,  walked away from Singapore with...the pomp, circumstance and prestige of a meeting with the President of the United States  while making no specific commitments in return . Fellow Democratic Senator Chris Coons added that the  TV handshake summit was a  dream come true for the young, isolated leader. He received  legitimacy on the world stage, an invitation to the White House, no concessions on human rights, and no clear concessions on a timeline or a process for getting rid of his nuclear weapons programme, Mr Coons noted. [Singapore summit] [Blob] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://bellacaledonia.org.uk/2018/06/11/nae-nukes-the-singapore-summit-puts-global-focus-on-peace/><B> Nae Nukes  the Singapore Summit Puts Global Focus on Peace </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> by Janet Fenton 11th June 2018 12 comments Ahead of the Singapore summit  and the forthcoming Nae Nukes mass rally at Faslane  the International Campaign to Abolish Nuclear Weapons (ICAN) argues that the summit should lead to North Korea s denuclearization, and that it should serve as the first step for the US, and all other nations that possess nuclear weapons, to disarm. [Singapore summit] [Naivet] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.nytimes.com/2018/06/12/opinion/trump-kim-summit-north-korea.html?emc=edit_nk_20180612&nl=nickkristof&nlid=7953487520180612&te=1><B> Trump Was Outfoxed in Singapore </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Nicholas Kristof Opinion Columnist June 12, 2018 in Singapore on Tuesday.CreditDoug Mills/The New York Times It sure looks as if President Trump was hoodwinked in Singapore. Trump made a huge concession  the suspension of military exercises with South Korea. That s on top of the broader concession of the summit meeting itself, security guarantees he gave North Korea and the legitimacy that the summit provides his counterpart, Kim Jong-un. Within North Korea, the  very special bond that Trump claimed to have formed with Kim will be portrayed this way: Kim forced the American president, through his nuclear and missile tests, to accept North Korea as a nuclear equal, to provide security guarantees to North Korea, and to cancel war games with South Korea that the North has protested for decades. In exchange for these concessions, Trump seems to have won astonishingly little. In a joint statement, Kim merely  reaffirmed the same commitment to denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula that North Korea has repeatedly made since 1992. [Singapore summit] [Blob] [Media] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/2018/06/12/north-korea-kim-jong-un-denuclearization-donald-trump-column/694172002/><B> Donald Trump's North Korea summit was just the beginning  now comes hard diplomacy </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Thomas Countryman and Daryl G. Kimball, Opinion contributors Published 1:31 p.m. ET June 12, 2018 | Updated 5:11 p.m. ET June 12, 2018 The historic summit between the US and North Korean leaders in Singapore ended with no immediate signs of denuclearizing the Korean peninsula. But analyst Dr. Peter Brooks says it was a "good start" but expect progress to be long journey ahead. (June 12) AP President Trump and Kim Jong Un's Singapore summit marks the beginning of a years-long process of North Korean denuclearization. AFP AFP_15U91X I DIP DIP SGP The conclusion of the US-North Korea summit in Singapore offers a moment of cautious hope. The joint statement by President Trump and Kim Jong Un provides a basis for further negotiations on denuclearization and a lasting state of peace on the Korean peninsula. But what is still not clear, and what will determine the real success of this summit, is whether the two side can agree on the process and sequence steps in this years-long process. The photo opportunity was positive, but now the real work begins. This is how it should proceed. The ultimate goal of the United States should be to halt, then reverse and ultimately eliminate North Korea s nuclear strike potential  in that order  and to succeed, this must be done in coordination with our closest regional allies: South Korea and Japan. We should have no illusions that the denuclearization effort would be simple. There is no precedent for a country with a nuclear arsenal and infrastructure as substantial as North Korea s to give up its nuclear weapons program. The North Korean nuclear and missile programs involve dozens of sites, hundreds of buildings, and thousands of people. Rapid progress should be the goal, but a comprehensive denuclearization process is complex and will take years to accomplish. [Singapore summit] [Liberal] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://kpfa.org/player/?audio=288257><B> Trump Meets Kim Jong Un </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> KPFA Berkeley California Hosted by Dennis Bernstein, with KJ Noh, Christina Ahn and Tim Beal [Singapore summit] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/06/103_250579.html><B> Mr. Trump, where's the beef? </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-06-13 11:49 Updated : 2018-06-13 16:27 This is the first in a series of commentaries assessing the post-June 12 summit landscape. ? ED. By Oh Young-jin For U.S. President Donald Trump, the June 12 summit in Singapore was supposed to be all about the denuclearization of North Korea. By that standard, Trump almost flunked but got by with an unbearable D. There is a chance his D can be upgraded to a passable C or proud B. Prior to the meeting with Kim Jong-un, a dictator less than half his age, Trump pledged to get the North to commit itself to the complete, verifiable and irreversible dismantling (CVID) of the North's nuclear program that has come to the stage of testing an H-bomb with an intercontinental delivery capability. On top of that, a timetable for dismantling would come. In the post-summit joint statement, Trump's priority issue got noted only as the third out of four bullet-point agreements. "& the North commits to work toward complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula," it says. So Trump has lost "verifiable and irreversible" or VI out of the CVID. [Singapore summit] [Conservatives] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/gop-senator-questions-suspension-of-joint-military-exercises-with-south-korea/ar-AAyy1iX?ocid=spartandhp><B> GOP senator questions suspension of joint military exercises with South Korea </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Alexander Bolton Alex M. Azar II, secretary of health and human services, conceded that President Trump s promise late last month that drug companies would come forward with  voluntary massive drops in prices within two weeks was not likely to meet that deadline.  Sick Joke : Dems Attack Health Secretary on Pre-existing Conditions U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korea's leader Kim Jong Un walk together before their working lunch during their summit at the Capella Hotel on the resort island of Sentosa, Singapore June 12, 2018. Poll: Half of Americans approve of Trump's handling of N. Korea a man wearing glasses Provided by The Hill Sen. Joni Ernst (Iowa), a key Republican on the Senate Armed Services Committee, is raising questions about President Trump's decision to suspend joint military exercises with South Korea, something that appeared to surprise military officials. "I don't think that's wise because we have done these exercises for years," Ernst, who chairs an Armed Services subcommittee, said Tuesday. "I would just ask the president, why do we need to suspend them? They are legal." U.S. military officials said Tuesday they still plan to conduct a major exercise with South Korean troops in the fall, saying they have not received updated guidance on ending training exercises with the South. [Singapore summit] [Joint US military] [Pushback] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://amp.timeinc.net/time/5309671/donald-trump-video-kim-jong-un><B> 'Will He Shake the Hand of Peace?' Here's the Video President Trump Showed to Kim Jong Un </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> The dramatic four-minute video was like a movie trailer for the meeting Siobhan Morrin June 12th, 2018 Just before President Donald Trump addressed the world s media in Singapore after his meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, journalists were shown a video, first in Korean, then in English. When he walked out onto the stage, the U.S. president revealed it was a  tape he showed the chairman prior to their meeting. The four-minute video opens on a shot of the Earth from space, followed by shots of cities around the world, with a movie trailer-worthy voiceover telling the viewer that  only a small number will leave a lasting legacy. The film mixes footage of North and South Korea, using black and white imagery of border guards and barbed wire when referencing the war, and colorful footage of South Korea and other parts of the globe where  the light of prosperity has burned bright. [Singapore summit] [Video] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://blogs.state.gov/stories/2018/06/12/en/singapore-summit-building-lasting-peace-korean-peninsula><B> The Singapore Summit: Building a Lasting Peace on the Korean Peninsula </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By DipNote Bloggers on June 12, 2018 President Donald J. Trump and North Korea Chairman Kim Jong Un held a historic summit in Singapore on June 12, 2018. During their meetings, President Trump and Chairman Kim conducted a comprehensive, in-depth, and sincere exchange of opinions on the issues related to the establishment of new U.S. DPRK relations and the building of a lasting and robust peace regime on the Korean Peninsula. In a joint statement, the two leaders committed to establish new U.S. DPRK relations, to join their efforts to build a lasting and stable peace regime on the Korean Peninsula, and to recovering POW/MIA remains. Chairman Kim also committed to to work toward complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula. Here are some key moments from the Singapore Summit: [Singapore summit] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://stalinsmoustache.org/2018/06/13/full-report-on-singapore-summit-from-kcna/><B> Full report on Singapore Summit from Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> 13 June, 2018 This is the fullest report you will find on the Singapore Summit, including more details on items discussed and agreed: Halting US-South Korean military exercises. Invitations for Kim Jong Un to visit Washington and Trump to visit Pyongyang  invitations accepted. Step-by-step simultaneous action for peace, security and stability. I should also point out that this follows China s long-held proposal of  suspension for suspension . And, as this item from the Global Times points out, Trump has also indicated that he hopes to remove US troops occupying the peninsula. The report can be found at the DPRK s official news outlet, Korean Central News Agency. [Singapore summit] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.rt.com/op-ed/429602-singapore-trump-kim-north-korea/><B> Singapore slings and arrows: How Donald Trump confounded his enemies </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> George Galloway George Galloway was a member of the British Parliament for nearly 30 years. He presents TV and radio shows (including on RT). He is a film-maker, writer and a renowned orator. Little more needs to be said about events in Singapore. Slings and arrows finally parked after a 65-year war in which millions died on a divided Korean peninsula where a nuclear slingshot was assembled and decommissioned. The world was taken to the brink of war and then back again. That Donald J Trump will now become a Nobel Laureate is axiomatic however surprising such a sentence might be, but a second term as president, which is looking more likely by the day, may almost be as surprising. With the US economy on the up, his G7 "partners" roasted in insults, and the Korean imbroglio basted in Trumpian batter - seasoned by the oft-reviled China and Russia, it is more entertaining to take a look at the smoking wreckage of Trump's domestic opposition. Read more You could measure President Trump's triumph not just by size of the smile on his face but the length of the faces of his enemies [Singapore Summit] [Trump] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://boston.cbslocal.com/2018/06/11/high-hopes-us-north-korea-summit-trump-kim/><B> High Hopes Ahead Of Unprecedented US-North Korea Summit </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Mike LaCrosse June 11, 2018 at 5:28 pm BOSTON (CBS)  In New England, there are high hopes the meeting between President Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un will produce a peaceful outcome. A handful of people holding signs saying things like  Negotiate Don t Escalate tried to drum up support for the US-North Korea summit in front of Monday evening commuters outside the Park Street T stop.  I m really hoping good things happen from this summit, said Susan McLucas, a resident of Somerville who attended the rally. They re hoping President Trump can push forward a peace treaty and begin the process of removing nuclear weapons from the peninsula. [Singapore summit] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.opendemocracy.net/rebecca-johnson/as-trump-and-kim-shake-hands-what-does-this-mean-for-koreans><B> As Trump and Kim shake hands, what does this mean for Koreans? </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Rebecca Johnson 13 June 2018 To implement the Singapore and Panmunjom commitments, what is needed is a collective plan to denuclearize security relations across North-East Asia. lead The signing ceremony of a joint statement in Singapore on June 12, 2018. Li Peng/Press Association. All rights reserved.Two vain men met in Singapore, posed for the cameras and signed a joint statement. Neither US President Donald Trump nor North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un deserve to be trusted, so why should we be cautiously hopeful that the Singapore Summit might this time lead to more sustainable peace and disarmament in the Korean Peninsula? The answer came in a text from a South Korean friend: "Now we can start to hope." [Singapore summit] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/policy/defense-national-security/pentagon-begins-planning-which-south-korea-exercises-should-be-sped-up-scaled-back-or-suspended><B> Pentagon begins planning which South Korea exercises should be 'sped up, scaled back or suspended' </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> by Jamie McIntyre | June 12, 2018 11:12 AM | Updated Jun 12, 2018, 02:08 PM The U.S. military is making plans to restructure, scale down, and reschedule military training with South Korea, while ensuring troops remain at a high state of readiness, Pentagon officials said Tuesday after President Trump's surprise announcement that the exercises will end.  We will maintain the fighting readiness of our forces, said one official who spoke on condition of anonymity because the policy is still being refined. But several sources said training would continue without the high-profile "in-your-face named exercises that are regularly announced and given aggressive code names such as Max Thunder and Key Resolve. 2020 visions: Democrats eye presidential runs Watch Full Screen to Skip Ads "The Department of Defense welcomes the positive news coming out of the summit and fully supports the ongoing, diplomatically-led efforts with the Democratic People's Republic of Korea," said a statement from chief Pentagon spokesperson Dana White. "Our alliances remain ironclad, and ensure peace and stability in the region. The Presidential summit outcome is the first step along the path to the goal: complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula and a free and open Indo-Pacific." [Joint US military] [Pentagon] [Singapore summit] [Pushback] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= lee.house.gov/news/press-releases/congresswoman-barbara-lees-statement-on-singapore-summit-with-kim-jong-un><B> Congresswoman Barbara Lee s Statement on Singapore Summit with Kim Jong-Un </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Washington, D.C.  Congresswoman Barbara Lee released the following statement on President Trump s summit with Kim Jong-Un in Singapore:  As a lifelong advocate for diplomacy, I am pleased that the U.S. has started direct talks with North Korea to denuclearize and deescalate tensions on the Korean Peninsula.  Diplomacy takes time. The Trump Administration must be prepared to engage in the hard work of negotiation. President Trump needs to stop sidelining experts and rebuild our diplomatic staff at the State Department, so that we can achieve a verifiable agreement that helps rid the world of nuclear weapons. [Singapore summit] [Blob] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://winwithoutwar.org/singapore-summit-shows-the-promise-and-potential-of-diplomacy/><B> Singapore Summit Shows the Promise and Potential of Diplomacy </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Win Without War Director Stephen Miles released the following statement on the Singapore Summit:  The Singapore Summit has the potential to mark an incredible turning point in relations between North Korea, the United States, and its allies in the region, and serves as a compelling reminder of the power of diplomacy.  We welcome commitments towards establishing a peace regime, the repatriation of American service member remains, and a renewed push for denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.  But now, the hard work begins. This first joint statement must be followed up with detailed negotiations on implementing these commitments and on garnering new agreements to fulfill the Korean people s desire for peace and security. While we ve seen similar processes and agreements with North Korea break down in the past, this summit is a positive first step toward a new direction that could provide all sides with an opportunity to build trust and build on their commitments. We hope all parties involved will act in good faith and continue down this diplomatic path, however long it takes and no matter the obstacles that will inevitably arise, to achieve peace and security on the Korean Peninsula. [Singapore Summit] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.counterpunch.org/2018/06/11/why-do-democrats-want-to-sabotage-north-korea-talks/><B> Why Do Democrats Want to Sabotage North Korea Talks? </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> by Gary Leupp Amazing how partisan politics shape this country s foreign policy. Seven Democratic senators have written the president urging that any agreement signed with North Korea must be permanent; must be subject to  anywhere, anytime inspections of all nuclear-related sites and facilities; and must include the dismantling and elimination of all of the regime s ballistic missiles and programs. (One thinks of Mike Pompeo s demands on Iran to renegotiate the Iran Deal by making infinite concessions.) It is a tit-for-tat for the solid Republican opposition to the JCPOA in 2015. Five of the seven senators (Durbin, Warner, Feinstein, Leahy, and Brown) had voted for the Iran agreement while two (Schumer and Menendez) had been among a mere four Democrats to (expressing devotion to Netanyahu) vote against. So this is a display of Democratic unity towards the end, not of bringing permanent peace to the Korean peninsula, but to make it as difficult as possible for an unpopular beleaguered president to score a diplomatic triumph (which could shift momentum to the Republicans in the interim election). [Democrats] [Blob] [Kim_Trump_talks18] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://stalinsmoustache.org/2018/06/12/full-text-of-singapore-statement-between-kim-jong-un-and-donald-trump/><B> Full text of Singapore Summit Statement between Kim Jong Un and Donald Trump </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> 12 June, 2018 Here is a translation of the full statement from the Singapore Summit today: President Donald J. Trump of the United States of America and Chairman Kim Jong Un of the State Affairs Commission of the Democratic People s Republic of Korea (DPRK) held a first, historic summit in Singapore on June 12, 2018. President Trump and Chairman Kim Jong Un conducted a comprehensive, in-depth, and sincere exchange of opinions on the issues related to the establishment of new U.S.-DPRK relations and the building of a lasting and robust peace regime on the Korean Peninsula. President Trump committed to provide security guarantees to the DPRK, and Chairman Kim Jong Un reaffirmed his firm and unwavering commitment to complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula. Convinced that the establishment of new U.S.-DPRK relations will contribute to the peace and prosperity of the Korean Peninsula and of the world, and recognizing that mutual confidence building can promote the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, President Trump and Chairman Kim Jong Un state the following: 1. The United States and the DPRK commit to establish new U.S.-DPRK relations in accordance with the desire of the peoples of the two countries for peace and prosperity. 2. The United States and the DPRK will join their efforts to build a lasting and stable peace regime on the Korean Peninsula. 3. Reaffirming the April 27, 2018 Panmunjom Declaration, the DPRK commits to work towards complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula. 4. The United States and the DPRK commit to recovering POW/MIA remains, including the immediate repatriation of those already identified. Having acknowledged that the U.S.-DPRK summit  the first in history  was an epochal event of great significance and overcoming decades of tensions and hostilities between the two countries and for the opening of a new future, President Trump and Chairman Kim Jong Un commit to implement the stipulations in this joint statement fully and expeditiously. The United States and the DPRK commit to hold follow-on negotiations led by the U.S. Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo, and a relevant high-level DPRK official, at the earliest possible date, to implement the outcomes of the U.S.-DPRK summit. President Donald J. Trump of the United States of America and Chairman Kim Jong Un of the State Affairs Commission of the Democratic People s Republic of Korea have committed to cooperate for the development of new U.S.-DPRK relations and for the promotion of peace, prosperity, and security of the Korean Peninsula and of the world. [Singapore summit] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://davidswanson.org/lets-continue-progress-toward-peace-in-korea/><B> Let s Continue Progress Toward Peace in Korea </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By David Swanson Less than a year ago, President Donald Trump was threatening North Korea with  fire and fury. Today such threats are completely absent from his remarks and tweets. Today Trump said,  We will be stopping the war games . . . I think it s very provocative. This move has been a central proposal in the People s Peace Treaty and other petitions and actions that Korean and American and global peace activists have advanced  and precisely for the reason that practice bombing flights are extremely provocative. It was their suspension during the Olympic truce that advanced peace, and their resumption more recently that  together with threatening comments from the likes of John Bolton  impeded progress and temporarily canceled the just-held summit. But we should not forget the earlier necessary focus on halting the verbal threats coming from Trump himself. That we have moved away from those is the big news. Yes it s embarrassing and annoying to watch Trump brag and praise himself falsely and present a false history of the world and of his own recent actions, all of which he did in Singapore following the screening of a ridiculous propaganda video that his team had produced and shown to the North Koreans as well as to the press. But these things are not more embarrassing or annoying than watching humanity actually end in  fire and fury. The important thing to notice about Tuesday s Singapore press conference is that every question from the U.S. media pushed for greater hawkishness, while Trump alone suggested anything in the direction of peace. [Singapore summit] [Blob] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.peaceaction.org/2018/06/12/korea-peace-network-leaders-cheer-success-at-singapore-summit/><B> Korea Peace Network Leaders Cheer Success at Singapore Summit </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Peace Action Posted June 12, 2018 Washington, D.C.  June 12, 2018  On the news of a successful first meeting between sitting leaders of the U.S. and North Korea at the summit in Singapore, with a statement in which the countries agreed to complete denuclearization of the Korean peninsula and security guarantees for North Korea, leaders of the Korea Peace Network, currently holding their third annual Advocacy Days on Capitol Hill, released the following statements: [Singapore Summit] [Peace effort] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/06/103_250438.html><B> Kim, Trump to discuss issues 'required by changed era': KCNA </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-06-11 09:57 Updated : 2018-06-11 14:39 North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and U.S. President Donald Trump will discuss issues of denuclearization, permanent peace on the Korean Peninsula and other matters "required by the changed era," when they meet this week, the North's state media said Monday. Kim and Trump arrived in Singapore on Sunday for what will be the first-ever summit between incumbent leaders of the long-time foes set for Tuesday. "Wide-ranging and profound views on the issue of establishing new DPRK-U.S. relations, the issue of building a permanent and durable peace-keeping mechanism on the Korean Peninsula, the issue of realizing the denuclearization of the Korean peninsula and other issues of mutual concern, as required by the changed era, will be exchanged at the DPRK-U.S. summit talks," the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) reported in English. [Kim_Trump_talks18] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.zoominkorea.org/on-the-eve-of-the-kim-trump-summit-facts-fantasies-and-prospects/><B> On the Eve of the Kim-Trump Summit  Facts, Fantasies and Prospects </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Tim Beal <BR> Jun 11, As the Singapore Summit between President Trump and Chairman Kim approach we have been submerged under a deluge of articles and op-eds. Most are uninformed, some are ignorant. Symptoms are confused with issues, consequences with causes. Causality is frequently inverted. For instance there is much concentration on North Korea s nuclear weapons (with little attention paid to America s) without examining the reason for their existence. North Korea has developed a nuclear deterrent in response to a threat from the United States. Without the threat there would be no deterrent. The question then is not why North Korea has a deterrent  that is obvious though apologists go to elaborate lengths to come up with bizarre explanations  but rather why the US threatens North Korea. What are the drivers of American policy? The key to understanding what is going on, and hence to arrive at solutions, is to ask the right questions. The burgeoning literature is infused with banality and trivialisation. Redundant pointing out of the obvious masquerades as insight; Jimmy Carter tells us that  The top priority of North Korea s leaders is to preserve their regime and keep it as free as possible from outside control. True enough but isn t that what all governments do, or should do? And then we get journalists tripping over the clichs; Eugene Robinson in the Washington Post pontificating that  North Korea is one of the most brutal dictatorships in the world, a hermit kingdom ruled by a fanatical and paranoid regime. Its leadership is not suicidal, though, and Kim is clearly envious of Western technology and affluence. A hermit kingdom by definition would not want foreign technology let alone be  envious of it. Why use just one clichd idea in a sentence if you can cram two in. Perhaps the silliest meme is exemplified by David Ignatius:  Trump and Kim Jong Un have a lot in common. Is that a good thing? We know rather more about Trump than Kim but it is clear that they have very dissimilar personalities. And their situations, which give rise to motivation and aspiration, could scarcely be more different. And so it goes. In order to clear the air on what is a very complex but also madly simple situation it useful to state briefly a few salient facts, and identify some illusions. [Kim_Trump_talks18] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/06/103_250402.html><B> Trump may open US embassy in Pyongyang: report </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-06-10 15:15 Updated : 2018-06-10 16:03 By Park Si-soo U.S. President Trump is considering establishing official diplomatic ties with North Korea and eventually opening an embassy in Pyongyang, American media outlet Axios reported on Sunday, citing sources familiar with preparations for Trump's meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in Singapore on Tuesday. "It would all depend what he gets in return," Axios quoted a source close to the White House as saying. "Denuclearization would have to be happening." This is one of many topics that could be discussed at the summit on June 12, it said. Opening a U.S. embassy in the North's capital was also discussed in pre-summit working-level talks, it added. "It's definitely been discussed," Axios quoted the source as saying. "His (Trump) view is: 'We can discuss that: It's on the table. Let's see.' Of course we would consider it. There's almost nothing he'll take off the table going in." [Diplomatic relations] [Kim_Trum_talks18] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/opinion/2018/06/715_250391.html><B> Trump is a nobleman, at least on the Korean Peninsula </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-06-10 12:59 Updated : 2018-06-10 14:05 By Hwang Jae-ho The world's attention is on Singapore, where the U.S.-DPRK summit will be held on June 12. It is also where the world's largest security dialogue, the Shangri-la Dialogue, was held. The topic of this year's security dialogue was, as expected, the Korean peninsula along with Indo-Pacific strategy, which was addressed by the keynote speaker, Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Until the present day, the situation on the Korean peninsula was always hard to be defined because it kept changing. The international community was thrown off guard due to the political imaginations of the leaders of North Korea, South Korea, and the U.S. Nevertheless, the huge change on the Korean peninsula is now a reality. The strong uncertainty and instability that comes to mind when we hear the name "Trump" is likely to disappear, especially among experts and the media. Uncertainty still exists at a micro level including his behavior patterns, but now it is no longer at the macro level where he aims to make compromises through deals. [Kim_Trump_talks18] [Bizarre] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.counterpunch.org/2018/06/08/trumps-singapore-mission-neutralize-north-korea-from-iran/><B> Trump s Singapore Mission: Neutralize North Korea From Iran? </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> by Sazzad Haider June 8, 2018 Photo by Matt Brown | CC BY 2.0 US President Donald Trump s decision to pull the US out of the Iran nuclear deal is neither unexpected nor insane; his move is very much related to his  North Korea peace mission . For a decade the US, the number one global player has faced two obstinate, unfathomable but tiny enemies, North Korea and Iran. If the USA is likened to Goliath of the Bible story North Korea or Iran will be embellished as David, who killed Goliath. During the decade, the increased nuclear capability of both Iran and North Korea is a great disgrace to the mighty USA and its allies especially Israel. Therefore they have sharpened their talons to tear apart their enemies. But the reality before the USA is stranger than fiction. Iran and North Korea have forged a strategic diplomatic alliance against US led western dominance. Therefore the US objective is to damage the ties between Iran and North Korea and to avoid a simultaneous offensive against them both. The USA s objective is to eliminate the weaker of them as a nuclear foe of the western allies. [Kim_Trump_talks18] [Iran NK] [Grand strategy] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/06/103_250374.html><B> Two South Korean journalists will be expelled from Singapore </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-06-09 10:21 Updated : 2018-06-09 14:53 By Kim Jae-kyoung SINGAPORE ? Two South Korean journalists will be expelled from Singapore Saturday for trespassing into the residence of the North Korean ambassador to Singapore, according to multiple sources, Saturday. They arrived in Singapore a week ago ahead of the historic summit between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un on June 12. Police check a car entering the Shangri-La Hotel at the hotel's entrance on June 3. Singapore has tightened security arrangements in and around the Donald Trump-Kim Jong-un summit venue and hotels ahead of the June 12 meeting. / Korea Times photo by Jeong Min-seung "The Singapore Police Force has decided to expel two Korean journalists over the criminal tresspass, and the official announcement will be made at 4:00 pm, Saturday," a source close to the police told The Korea Times asking not to be named. Given that those who receive an "expulsion" order must take a first flight after the official announcement, it is probable that they will leave Singapore, Saturday. The decision came a day after the police said in a statement Friday that they were investigating three journalists representing Korean Broadcasting System (KBS) and their interpreter after receiving a report of a case of criminal trespass at about 3.50pm,Thursday. [NK SK relations] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/06/103_250380.html><B> Former NBA star Rodman to fly to Singapore for Trump-Kim summit </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-06-09 14:35 Updated : 2018-06-09 14:35 Former NBA basketball player Dennis Rodman leaves Beijing airport after arriving from North Korea's Pyongyang on June 17, 2017. Reuters Former National Basketball Association star Dennis Rodman said on Friday he will be heading to Singapore for the planned June 12 summit between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. "I will be flying to Singapore for the historical Summit. I'll give whatever support is needed to my friends, @realDonaldTrump and Marshall Kim Jong Un," Rodman said in a Twitter post. There was no indication Rodman would be involved in any official talks at Tuesday's summit in Singapore. The White House did not immediately comment on his announcement. However, Trump, before leaving to attend the Group of Seven summit in Canada, was asked whether Rodman was invited to Singapore and he said, "No, he wasn't." [Rodman] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/opinion/2018/06/723_250362.html><B> Pompeo in Pyongyang </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-06-09 09:33 Updated : 2018-06-09 09:54 By Emanuel Pastreich Perhaps you watched the forced smiles on the faces of President Donald Trump and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo as they exchanged words with Kim Yong-chol, vice-chairman of the Central Committee of the Workers' Party of Korea, on the grounds of the White House. Or perhaps you observed how Trump first told the press that he had read the personal letter delivered to him from Kim Jong-un, and then stated a few hours later that he had not even looked at the letter. If you felt sick to your stomach, it is not because of the omelet that you eat for lunch. There is something so grotesque going on in Washington D.C. today that it rivals the institutional decay under Louis XVI or Nicholas II. Maybe you had solace in the suggestions that Trump might win a Nobel Peace Prize, or you read the editorials suggesting direct parallel between his daring actions and Ronald Reagan reaching out to Mikhail Gorbachev. {Kim_Trump_talks18] [Pompeo] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/opinion/2018/06/197_250378.html><B> How President Trump should play the summit </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-06-09 11:20 Updated : 2018-06-09 11:20 U.S. President Donald Trump / AP By Doug Bandow The summit almost certainly is going to happen. Neither party can afford to cancel this late. How best to make it a success? We know the result will not be denuclearization as defined by the U.S. We will not implement the so-called Libya model, collecting North Korea's nukes, despite what National Security Adviser John Bolton said. So what is the objective? Said President Donald Trump after announcing that the summit was on: "It's a process. We're not going in and sign something on June 12 and we never were. We are going to start a process. And I told them today: take your time. We can go fast, we can go slowly." It makes one wonder: who is this person, and where is the president who threatened to unleash "fire and fury" on the Korean peninsula? Process can be helpful. Still, process is only a means to bring about a substantive result. So what should the latter be? [Kim_Trump_talks18] [Libertarian] </FONT> </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/06/08/2018060800825.html><B> Kim Jong-un Has to Take Foreign Plane to Summit </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Kim Jin-myung June 08, 2018 09:11 North Korean leader Kim Jong-un will fly directly on a foreign plane from Pyongyang to Singapore for his summit with U.S. President Donald Trump next week. Talks are underway to use an aircraft provided by Singapore or China. A diplomatic source in Seoul said, "North Korea originally considered a refueling stop in China, but chose to fly straight to Singapore. There was some trepidation about flying the 4,800 km distance aboard Kim Jong-un's own aging plane, so a third country is expected to supply it." Singaporean Foreign Minister Vivian Balakrishnan visited North Korea on Thursday to discuss the matter. [Kim_Trump_talks18] [Logistics] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/06/103_250257.html><B> Trump urged to meet Kim halfway for success </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-06-08 17:00 Updated : 2018-06-08 17:00 off Southern Singapore. AFP By Kim Jae-kyoung SINGAPORE ? U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un must meet each other halfway to produce tangible outcomes at the June 12 summit, according to an international security expert, Wednesday. "Unless both leaders understand each other's red lines and come ready to compromise, this summit might turn out to be a wasted opportunity," Liang Tuang Nah, a research fellow of the Military Studies Program at the Institute of Defense and Strategic Studies, said in an interview. The institute is a constituent unit of the S. Rajaratnam School of International Studies (RSIS) at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore. </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/06/103_250267.html><B> Opposition leader says Trump should walk away if North Korea rejects CVID </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-06-07 14:10 Updated : 2018-06-07 15:36 The main opposition Liberty Korea Party chairman Hong Joon-pyo encourages people in Buk-gu, Pohang in North Gyeongsang Province, June 1, to vote for his party in the local elections on June 13. Yonhap The chief of the main opposition Liberty Korea Party (LKP) said Thursday that the United States should pull out of next week's summit with North Korea if Pyongyang does not agree to complete, verifiable and irreversible denuclearization (CVID). Hong Joon-pyo, the party chairman, also objected to a possible declaration of an end to the 1950-53 Korean War when U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un hold a summit on June 12 in Singapore. "If any moderate deal provides North Korea with assistance, there is a risk that Pyongyang would advance its nuclear and missile programs, posing a threat (to the Korean Peninsula)," Hong said in a press conference with foreign correspondents in Seoul. Hong's conservative party takes a hard-line stance toward the North, calling North Korea's recent olive branch a "fake peace show." [Kim_Trump_talks18] [CVID] [Conservatives] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.thunderclap.it/projects/70379-peace-with-north-korea><B> Peace with North Korea! </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> by Kevin Martin category: Cause  It's time to give peace a chance. Tell Congress to support peace and diplomacy with North Korea. Call 202.224.3121. http://thndr.me/0s41Yj profile image Kevin Martin Support Kevin Martin in sharing this message. Koreans want peace! Trump and Kim are about to meet in a historic summit, and Americans need to speak out for peace on the Korean Peninsula. The Korea Peace Network brings together peace, social justice, faith, veterans and Korean-American leaders to press the U.S. government to support peace and diplomacy, not threats of (nuclear) war. Congress needs to add its support for peace and diplomacy. [Peace effort] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.umc.org/news-and-media/korean-united-methodists-appeal-for-prayer?mkt_tok=eyJpIjoiTldRMk9UQTVaVGRsTWpaaiIsInQiOiJTbDFFN0ZjTyszNjhcL0RGWitSQ1pidlU4ZW5jK0FseGVPdTluNUVOdHNIOHlybk1uWFl1ZzZcL21vUlNnNlpDNWUrNldyRmI1ZG9qY1dFem5RVXN4SnZ2Yk92enhqMmdacmI5ak9SbEc3WjBHY1wvaTVmWDZNZjNIRmFBQkJTVlUyaSJ9><B> Korean United Methodists appeal for prayer </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Thomas Kim June 4, 2018 | UMNS Expectations and hopes among Korean-American United Methodists are rising high because of the possibility of the summit between the United States and the Democratic People s Republic of Korea (North Korea), and they have been praying for its success. The peace committee of The Korean United Methodist Church is asking for prayers for the upcoming U.S.-North Korea Summit on June 12 in Singapore. The National Christian Council in Korea also will initiate the prayer campaign in South Korea before and during the summit and have written a prayer. [Kim_Trump_talks18] [Religion] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/06/07/2018060701370.html><B> Trump-Kim Summit Planned for Maximum Publicity </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Cho Yi-jun More June 07, 2018 10:49 U.S. President Donald Trump's birthday falls on June 14, just two days after his historic summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in Singapore, which makes him even keener to drum up maximum publicity for the event. The summit has been scheduled to take place at 9 p.m. on Monday Eastern Standard Time (9 a.m. on Tuesday in Singapore). That means Trump can dominate TV in the U.S. as it is prime time there. CNN said it plans to air a documentary about the North Korean leader on the coming Sunday as a teaser for the historic summit. Lee Sung-yoon from Tufts University said at a seminar in Washington on Tuesday that the summit is only a political show, voicing concerns that the meeting will produce more sound bites and video footage than substantive agreements. [Kim_Trump_talks18] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/06/356_250283.html><B> How much more US insulting can North Korean leader take? </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-06-07 15:35 Updated : 2018-06-07 16:19 In this photo taken on Nov. 20, 2016, former New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani stands with then president-elect Donald Trump before their meeting at Trump International Golf Club in Bedminster, New Jersey. AFP-Yonhap By Oh Young-jin Can North Korea's Kim Jong-un take any more U.S. public insults and go to Singapore for the next week's summit with President Donald Trump? Rudy Giuliani, former New York mayor, ardent Trump supporter and his attorney, has added gasoline to the fire of Kim's temper, which is no doubt getting shorter in the face of verbal assaults from the U.S. Giuliani said on a trip to Israel that the North's leader begged Trump on his hands and knees for the summit. Reports were not clear whether Giuliani, 74, made the statement on the basis of what he had heard directly from Trump or described the situation as he saw it. The North has not made any reference to Giuliani's "on his hands and knees" remarks because he doesn't have any official position in the Trump administration. There are no reports that the U.S. administration has made any explanation. [KT_summit_cancellation] [Revival] [Giuliani] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/2018/06/06/keep-human-rights-from-nuclear-talks-editorials-debates/35769371/><B> Focus on North Korea's nukes </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> John Feffer Published 6:39 p.m. ET June 6, 2018 | Updated 8:58 p.m. ET June 6, 2018 Jim Mattis says North Korea rarely takes part in international negotiations, so talks with that country are are are 'going to be bumpy.' He also said North Korea 'loomed large' during multi-national security talks in Singapore. (June 4) AP At the nuclear summit in Singapore, bringing up human rights is a bad idea: North Korea has a terrible human rights record. One could reasonably believe the U.S. side should bring up these human rights violations when President Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un meet in Singapore on Tuesday. Here s why that s a bad idea. The focus of the summit is North Korea s nuclear program. As with previous arms control efforts, for instance between the United States and the Soviet Union, attempts to include issues unrelated to the central conflict generally derail the negotiations. Efforts to shame North Korea into improving its human rights record haven t been particularly successful; the North Koreans usually just walk out of the room. However, respectful engagement at an intergovernmental level, for instance on disability rights, has led to some progress. [Human rights] [Kim_Trump_talks18] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.zoominkorea.org/statement-of-unity-on-the-upcoming-u-s-north-korea-summit/><B> Statement of Unity on the Upcoming U.S.-North Korea Summit </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Jun 7, 2018 Since the historic April 27 summit between the leaders of North and South Korea at Panmunjom, longstanding tensions and war threats on the Korean peninsula have given way to the promise of peace and reconciliation. Soon, another historic summit, between the United States and North Korea, will take place in Singapore. The two parties, which not too long ago were on the brink of war, will finally sit down to discuss a peaceful settlement to the Korean War. All eyes of the world will be on this momentous event, which could determine not only the fate of the Korean peninsula and Northeast Asia but also the prospect of global peace. We Korean Americans who have long fought for peace and the self-determined unification of the Korean peninsula, and allies who stand on the side of peace and justice and share a critical stake in the struggle for peace in Korea wish to make clear our views on the recent inter-Korean summit and the upcoming U.S.-North Korea summit. [Kim_Trump_talks18] [Peace effort] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://nypost.com/2018/06/05/dennis-rodman-will-be-in-singapore-for-trump-kim-summit/><B> Dennis Rodman will be in Singapore for Trump-Kim summit </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Tina Moore June 5, 2018 | 4:29pm | Updated Modal Trigger Dennis Rodman will be in Singapore for Trump-Kim summit Kim Jon-Un, Dennis Rodman EPA More On: dennis rodman Dennis Rodman credits hoops diplomacy for Trump-Kim meeting Dennis Rodman praises Trump for planned meeting with Kim Hollis-Jefferson 'hunting rebounds' like Dennis Rodman Rodman wants to wine and dine Kim Jong Un to help ease tensions NBA star turned Kim Jong Un soulmate Dennis Rodman will be in Singapore during President Trump s summit with the North Korean dictator next week, The Post has learned.  The Worm will arrive in the country a day before the June 12 sitdown  and sources said he could even play some sort of role in the negotiations.  No matter what you might think about his presence. One thing s for sure the ratings will be huge, a source said.  A lot of times in situations that involve complex diplomacy countries like to identify ambassadors of goodwill and whether you agree with it or not Dennis Rodman fits the bill. The zany, 6-foot-7 ex-baller  who has struck up an unlikely bromance with the pint-sized, 5-foot-7 Kim, and has visited the rogue regime five times in the past  took some of the credit for getting the two leaders together. [Rodman] [Canard] [Bizarre] [Kim_Trump_talks18] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_editorial/847507.html><B> [Column] The Real Obstacle to Peace Between Washington and Pyongyang </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted on : Jun.3,2018 20:02 KST Modified on : Jun.3,2018 20:02 KST John Feffer If the summit between Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un doesn t happen, it s easy to finger the culprit. National Security Advisor John Bolton, who started in his position after the U.S. president agreed to meet with the North Korean leader, has never concealed his desire to effect regime change in Pyongyang. In February, he published an article in the Wall Street Journal urging the United States to launch a preemptive military attack against North Korea. It s hard to find anyone in the Pentagon or the foreign policy establishment who would endorse Bolton s extreme view. Although John Bolton has done what he can to prevent the proposed summit  such as bringing up the Libya case to send a negative signal to Pyongyang  he is not the real obstacle to peace. After all, he s only been in his position for a few weeks, and the Cold War between the United States and North Korea has lasted for nearly 70 years. Even before he joined the Trump administration, Bolton was not a particularly influential voice on Korean affairs. He might have attracted a lot of attention on Fox News, but he didn t really have any impact on U.S. policy. If not John Bolton, then who is the real obstacle to peace? [US NK Negotiations] [Bolton] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/06/103_250207.html><B> Four mysteries about US-North Korea summit </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-06-06 15:11 Updated : 2018-06-06 15:11 North Korean leader Kim Jong-un disembarks from his aircraft, a modified IL-62M from the Soviet era, during his recent trip to Dalian for a summit with Chinese leader Xi Jinping. Kim is expected to use the same aircraft on his trip to Singapore for the June 12 summit with U.S. President Donald Trump. / Yonhap By Oh Young-jin The time is set, the place decided and the agenda fine-tuned. All appears ready to go for the June 12 North Korea-U.S. summit at the Capella Hotel on Sentosa Island, Singapore, in a potential first round of what's supposed to be a bilateral effort to denuclearize the North and ease its way out of isolation. But each of the North, the U.S. and South Korea, the three key stakeholders in this grand game, ends up seeking something that is not in its element, resembles wishful thinking and so is lacking in its sincerity. Trump The U.S. is not a saint and has made many deals with devil in its foreign policy detail. But it has more or less represented the better side of global affairs. [Kim_Trump_talks18] [Conservatives] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/06/103_250192.html><B> Trump-Kim summit sparks media frenzy in Singapore [PHOTOS] </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-06-06 09:30 Updated : 2018-06-06 17:16 By Kim Jae-kyoung SINGAPORE ? The historic summit between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un is expected to stir up a media frenzy here. The meeting is scheduled to be held at the Capella Hotel on the resort island of Sentosa on June 12. In the lead-up to the summit, a significant number of journalists from all over the world, including South Korea, are coming to the city-state. "It has been hectic nowadays because of a flurry of media inquiries about the Trump-Kim summit," said an official from the South Korean embassy in Singapore. "We've got so many calls and request from media everyday and I think that things are likely to further heat up as the summit nears," he added. Major hotels, considered likely venues for the summit and accommodations, are also receiving a growing number of media inquiries and requests. "I am getting a lot of requests from Japan and Korea," said an executive from one of the five-star hotels in Singapore. "We are asked every day whether delegations from the U.S. and North Korea will stay at our hotel," she added. The Straits Times reported Tuesday that more than 3,000 journalists are expected to arrive in the city-state to?cover the June 12 summit. Around 3,000 journalists flocked to Seoul for the inter-Korean summit on April 27. According to Singapore's leading English daily, NHK, Japan's national public broadcaster, is expected to send about 100 people, including correspondents from around the world, while the BBC is said to be sending about 80 journalists. It also reported that the White House press corps is said to be operating its own media center for journalists who travel with the president. It said that the White House press corps usually numbers between 50 and 100 for overseas trips. Most Korean newspapers and broadcasters, including Chosun Ilbo, Hankook Ilbo, KBS and MBC, are sending a team of journalists to cover the summit. They include those from the Blue House and Foreign Ministry. According to a Singapore-based Korean travel operator, KBS and MBC called to ask room rates for reserving more than 100 rooms each right after Trump first announced the summit in May. It is widely expected that hordes of foreign journalists will be staking out at the summit venue and major hotels designated as special event areas ahead of the historic event next week. The Singapore government has designated the areas surrounding Sentosa and Shangri-La Hotel as special event zones from June 10 to 14 for the summit. [Kim_Trump_talks18] [Venue] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.commondreams.org/views/2018/06/06/toward-truly-indigenous-peace-korean-peninsula><B> Toward A Truly Indigenous Peace in The Korean Peninsula </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> It s time that American politicians, both Democratic and Republicans, give Koreans a chance to shape their own destiny. by Simone Chun Activists gather in front of the U.S. embassy to demand peace for the Korean peninsula after the cancellation of the U.S. and North Korea summit on May 25, 2018 in Seoul, South Korea. (Photo by Chung Sung-Jun/Getty Images) Activists gather in front of the U.S. embassy to demand peace for the Last month, I took part in an international women s peace delegation to South Korea, led by Nobel Peace Laureate Mairead Maguire and Women Cross DMZ founder Christine Ahn. It was my first visit to my native Korea in over 3 years. Everywhere I went, I witnessed the afterglow of the inspiring candlelight movement that restored democracy to the country, and sensed the deep conviction with which Koreans support the current peace process initiated by President Moon. Our delegation noted in one of its first official statements following its arrival in Korea:  What initiated the Panmunjom Declaration was the completely non-violent and peaceful civil revolution in 2016 that began with orderly marches of demonstration with warm candlelight through the winter. The candlelight revolution was a true example of the UN s Culture of Peace. [Peace effort] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/06/103_250135.html><B> What do North Korea's neighbors want from Trump-Kim summit? </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-06-05 14:26 Updated : 2018-06-05 14:56 When U.S. President Donald Trump announced in March that he would meet with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, the news set off a flurry of diplomacy -- not only between Washington and Pyongyang, but also throughout Asia. China, South Korea, Japan and Russia -- neighbors with a vested interest in the outcome of any Trump-Kim talks -- have been jockeying for influence, meeting with senior North Korean leaders and among themselves to promote their own hopes for what happens in Singapore. SOUTH KOREA South Korean President Moon Jae-in met with Kim at a historic summit in April in Panmunjom, located in the demilitarized zone (DMZ) that has divided North and South Korea since the Korean War ended in 1953 with an armistice agreement. Moon has long advocated dialogue as the best option for resolving the tense stand-off over Pyongyang's nuclear weapons program. During their summit, Seoul and Pyongyang declared their commitment to "a new era of national reconciliation, peace and prosperity" and "the common goal of realizing, through complete denuclearization, a nuclear-free Korean Peninsula." With the U.S. being a guarantor of South Korean security, and the main driver of sanctions on North Korea, the Trump-Kim meeting could bring the attainment of these goals one step closer. </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://edition.cnn.com/2018/06/04/politics/trump-north-korea-john-bolton-mike-pompeo/index.html><B> Bolton sidelined as Trump readies for North Korea </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Kevin Liptak, Jeff Zeleny, Jeremy Diamond and Michelle Kosinski, CNN Updated 0007 GMT (0807 HKT) June 5, 2018 Washington (CNN)As President Donald Trump huddled in the Oval Office on Friday with Kim Jong Un's right-hand man, he was accompanied by only one other US official: Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. Absent was the administration's most vocal North Korea hawk, national security adviser John Bolton. The White House insists the meeting was always intended to remain small. But the tableau reflected deeper rifts among Trump's national security team and a new reality as the President prepares for his historic meeting with Kim next week in Singapore: the voices advocating most forcefully to tighten the noose on Pyongyang have been sidelined as Trump seeks out a history-making handshake. Furious after Bolton raised the so-called "Libya" model to describe US intentions in North Korea -- with its suggestion of a grisly death for a dictator who relinquishes his nuclear arms -- Trump has publicly walked back his national security adviser's rhetoric as he works to ensure his summit talks with Kim proceed. In doing so, he's dramatically lowered the bar for his face-to-face session with Kim, who has made no concrete commitments toward abandoning his nuclear arsenal. Pompeo told Trump it would be "counterproductive" to allow Bolton to attend the Oval Office meeting with visiting North Korean official Kim Yong Chol, two people familiar with the matter said, citing an escalating feud between the top diplomat and Bolton. The simmering tensions between two of the President's top foreign policy advisers reached a boiling point after Bolton went on television last month and cited the Libya model when talking about North Korea abandoning its nuclear program -- and in doing so, also raising the specter of Libya's subsequent invasion and its leader's brutal murder. North Korea reacted furiously, lambasting Bolton in a statement. It revived long-held criticism from the regime, most notably in 2003 when North Korean state media described Bolton as "human scum and a bloodsucker" during the Bush administration. But the remarks about Libya also infuriated Pompeo, who angrily confronted Bolton in a heated conversation at the White House. "There has been considerable tension between them ever since," a person familiar with the West Wing confrontation said. Bolton was not alone in infuriating Pyongyang by publicly referencing Libya. Vice President Mike Pence also raised the "Libya model" in an interview with Fox News last month. "As the President made clear, this will only end like the Libyan model ended if Kim Jong Un doesn't make a deal," Pence had said. But unlike Bolton's comment, the President knew Pence would offer the remark in his Fox interview, a senior White House official said, and Pence was merely parroting Trump's comment from the previous week. The vice president had just returned from lunch with Trump when he taped his interview with Fox News, the official said, and the two men had agreed Pence would reiterate Trump's comments warning North Korea of Libya-style devastation if it did not agree to denuclearize. Still, the comment drew a fiery statement from North Korea which called Pence a "political dummy" and warned of a "nuclear showdown," prompting Trump to briefly cancel the summit. Pence's comment and the ensuing war of words has led to some speculation that Pence was aligning himself with Bolton's more hawkish views. One senior White House official rejected such claims while another senior administration official noted that Pence rarely strays from the President's views on foreign policy -- even in private discussions. [Bolton] [Pompeo] [Kim Yong Chol] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://original.antiwar.com/Stu_Smallwood/2018/06/04/for-lasting-peace-president-moon-must-lead-south-korea-out-of-americas-orbit/><B> For Lasting Peace, President Moon Must Lead South Korea Out of America s Orbit </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> by Stu Smallwood Posted on June 05, 2018 It didn t take much for the leaders of the two Koreas to put an end to the decades-long culture of crisis pervading the Korean Peninsula. With a phone call, a quick drive to the North Korean side of the Demilitarized Zone, and a public embrace, South Korean President Moon Jae-in and North Korean Supreme Leader Kim Jong-un emphasized the absurdity of the barrier wedged between a people with a common history, culture and language. It was the United States aversion to diplomacy that encouraged Moon and Kim into one another s arms on May 26th, and it may ultimately have been the impetus needed for South Korea to take the lead in ensuring this peace process  a top priority of the current administration  is a success. [US SK alliance] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/06/05/2018060501062.html><B> Shangri-La Hotel Declared Off-Limits for U.S.-N.Korea Summit </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Kim Kyeong-pil June 05, 2018 10:50 Singapore has designated the area surrounding the Shangri-La Hotel a special zone ahead of the June 12 summit between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. Singapore's Interior Ministry in a statement Sunday said the summit has been designated as a "special event" and the grounds of the luxury hotel are part of the zone from June 10 to 14. That means traffic will be diverted and all vehicles passing through will be checked for explosives. Neither the Fullerton Hotel nor the Capella Hotel on the resort island of Sentosa which were considered potential venues for the summit, were included in the zone. The Shangri-La Hotel is also the location of the annual Asia Security Summit, also known as the Shangri-La Dialogue, which brings together defense ministers of 40 countries in the region. The exact location where the leaders of the U.S. and North Korea will meet has yet to be announced, but the White House set the start for 9 a.m. [Singapore] [Kim_Trump_talks18] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/06/05/2018060501294.html><B> Trump Sparks Fears of Weakening Sanctions Against N.Korea </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Kim Jin-myung June 05, 2018 12:15 Worries are growing that international sanctions against North Korea might crumble before the regime even starts denuclearization. U.S. President Donald Trump was not helping last Friday, when he said after receiving a letter from North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, "I don't even want to use the term 'maximum pressure' anymore because I don't want to use that term because we're getting along." There are fears that his remarks could send the wrong signal. China is already helping the regime on its feet by opening back doors since Kim visited China twice in the last couple of months, with fresh indentured workers streaming across the border. North Korea's open-air market prices are stabilizing as daily necessities arrive from China, Radio Free Asia reported on Sunday. [Sanctions] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.reuters.com/article/us-northkorea-usa-peace/trumps-north-korea-summit-may-bring-peace-declaration-but-at-a-cost-idUSKCN1J121B><B> Trump's North Korea summit may bring peace declaration - but at a cost </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Matt Spetalnick, David Brunnstrom If Donald Trump s summit next week with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un produces a peace declaration formally ending the Korean War as he has suggested, it could give the U.S. president a big headline-grabbing, made-for-TV moment on the world stage. FILE PHOTO: A combination photo shows U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korea leader Kim Jong Un in Washignton, DC, U.S. May 17, 2018 and in Panmunjom, South Korea, April 27, 2018 respectively. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque and Korea Summit Press Pool/File Photos But the public relations value of such a historic event could quickly fade if Trump fails, in return, to wring any significant concessions from Kim toward the dismantling of his nuclear arsenal, former U.S. officials and analysts say. [Kim_Trump_talks18] [Establishment] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/06/103_250062.html><B> North Korea's denuclearization will be 'process,' not one-shot deal </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-06-04 10:09 Updated : 2018-06-04 10:09 A senior White House official acknowledged Sunday that it will take time to dismantle North Korea's nuclear weapons program even if the United States would like to see immediate denuclearization. Larry Kudlow, director of the National Economic Council, made the remark on Fox News as the two countries prepare for a high-stakes nuclear summit in Singapore June 12. "I think at the end of that process, that's the goal, unilateral denuclearization, disarming them and so forth," Kudlow said, noting that he is not directly involved in the talks. "It is going to be a process. But sure, these negotiations take time." [US NK Negotiations] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.democrats.senate.gov/imo/media/doc/06-04-18%20Menendez%20joint%20letter%20to%20Trump%20on%20NK%20Summit.pdf><B> Letter to Trump from Senators Menendez, Schumer, Durbin, Warner, Feinstein, Leahy and Brown </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> [Kim_Trump_talks18] [Blob] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.msn.com/en-us/news/politics/senate-democrats-vow-to-buck-trump-on-north-korea-without-tough-deal/ar-AAydlxo?ocid=spartanntp><B> Senate Democrats vow to buck Trump on North Korea without tough deal </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Patricia Zengerle President Donald Trump talks to the media after meeting with North Korea's envoy Kim Yong Chol at the White House in Washington, U.S., June 1, 2018. Trump Tweet Asserts an 'Absolute Right' to Pardon Himself Rep. David Young, R-Iowa, attends a House Appropriations Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies Subcommittee hearing in Rayburn Building on the FY2019 Budget on April 18, 2018. Iowa's tight, all-important 2018 House elections, explained Chuck Schumer wearing a suit and tie: Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) speaks to members of the media during a news conference at the U.S. Capitol in Washington REUTERS/Leah Millis Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) speaks to members of the media& Top Senate Democrats on Monday told President Donald Trump not to make a deal that leaves North Korea with nuclear weapons, and threatened to maintain or toughen sanctions on Pyongyang if that condition is not met. Senate Democratic Leader Chuck Schumer and ranking Democrats from national security committees released a letter to Trump laying out demands for any pact, which they said must be permanent. Trump plans a summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un on June 12, the latest twist in the high-stakes diplomacy over U.S. attempts to eliminate Pyongyang's nuclear arms program. [Kim_Trump_talks18] [Blob] [Democratic Party] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.reuters.com/article/us-northkorea-usa-pentagon/north-korea-to-get-relief-only-after-verifiable-and-irreversible-step-to-denuclearization-mattis-idUSKCN1IZ00Y><B> North Korea to get relief only after 'verifiable and irreversible step to denuclearization': Mattis </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Idrees Ali U.S. Defence Secretary Jim Mattis said on Sunday North Korea will receive relief only after it takes clear and irreversible steps to end its nuclear program, adding it would be a bumpy road to a summit between U.S. and North Korean leaders. Japan's Defence Minister Itsunori Onodera, U.S. Secretary of Defence Jim Mattis and South Korea's Defence Minister Song Young-moo attend a trilateral meeting on the sidelines of the IISS Shangri-la Dialogue in Singapore June 3, 2018. REUTERS/Edgar Su The comments sought to address concern the United States may be rushing to strike a breakthrough in the unprecedented summit between the two leaders after U.S. President Donald Trump put the meeting back on track for June 12 in Singapore.  We can anticipate, at best, a bumpy road to the (negotiations), Mattis said before the start of a meeting with his South Korean and Japanese counterparts on the sidelines of Shangri-la dialogue in Singapore.  We will continue to implement all U.N Security Council resolutions on North Korea. North Korea will receive relief only when it demonstrates verifiable and irreversible steps to denuclearization, Mattis added. [US NK Negotiations] [Mattis] [Unconditional surrender] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/06/103_250019.html><B> Mattis warns of bumpy road to US, North Korea summit </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-06-03 14:31 Updated : 2018-06-03 15:21 South Korea's Defence Minister Song Young-moo, left, U.S. Secretary of Defence Jim Mattis, center, and Japan's Defence Minister Itsunori Onodera attend a trilateral meeting on the sidelines of the IISS Shangri-la Dialogue in Singapore, Sunday. / Reuters It will be a ''bumpy road'' to the nuclear negotiations with North Korea later this month, Defense Secretary Jim Mattis warned Sunday, telling his South Korean and Japanese counterparts they must maintain a strong defensive stance so the diplomats can negotiate from a position of strength. Mattis was speaking at the start of a meeting with South Korean Defense Minister Song Young-moo and Japanese Defense Minister Itsunori Onodera on the final day of the Shangri-La Dialogue security conference. He said allies must remain vigilant. ''We can anticipate, at best, a bumpy road to the negotiations,'' Mattis said. ''In this moment we are steadfastly committed to strengthening even further our defense cooperation as the best means for preserving the peace.'' Plans are moving forward for a nuclear weapons summit between President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un on June 12 in Singapore. And Mattis repeated the U.S. position that North Korea will only receive relief from U.N. national security sanctions when it demonstrates ''verifiable and irreversible steps'' to denuclearization. Through an interpreter, Song said that this is a great turning point as North Korea takes its first steps toward denuclearization. ''Of course, given North Korea's past, we must be cautious in approaching this,'' he added that some of North Korea's recent measures ''give us reasons to be positive and one can be cautiously optimistic as we move forward.'' (AP) [Kim_Trump_talks`18] [Mattis] [Unconditional surrender] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/06/103_250023.html><B> Moon's role crucial for successful Singapore summit </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-06-03 16:53 Updated : 2018-06-03 16:54 South Korean President Moon Jae-in and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un walk together after their meeting at the northern side of Panmunjeom in North Korea on May 26. / Courtesy of Cheong Wa Dae By Kim Jae-kyoung Hopes for the Singapore summit between the U.S. and North Korea are running high after U.S. President Donald Trump confirmed Friday the historic meeting is back on for June 12. His announcement came after meeting with North Korean General Kim Yong-chul who hand-delivered a letter from Kim Jong-un ahead of the landmark gathering. Analysts said the roles of South Korean President Moon Jae-in and Chinese President Xi Jinping, from this point, will be critical to ensure success for the summit. They believe the U.S. and North Korea have agreed on denuclearization in principle but the two sides have yet to fully trust each other as they have different views of what denuclearization means. James Bindenagel, the Henry Kissinger Professor for Governance and International Security at Rheinische Friedrich-Wilhelms University in Bonn, Germany, said the key task for Moon is to help build trust between Trump and Kim. "President Moon, in his role as mediator, takes on the risk of being led astray by Kim Jong-un, while needing to ensure there is no light between Moon and Trump," Bindenagel told The Korea Times. "The talks at the Kim-Trump summit have not found common ground between hints at denuclearization and threats of annihilation." The career U.S. diplomat called for Moon to help them build trust and move the parties beyond threats. Joseph DeTrani, a former U.S. special envoy for the six-party talks with North Korea, said Moon's role has been and will continue to be critical to ensuring a peaceful resolution to issues with North Korea. "Moon has established a good relationship with Kim, which will help ensure the U.S.-North Korea summit takes place, as planned or at a later date," he said. Regarding the second summit between Moon and Kim, he said, "This is very positive. Moon deserves recognition for his efforts to bring peace to the Korean Peninsula." William Brown, an adjunct professor at Georgetown School of Foreign Service, said Moon is playing his role very well, keeping Kim in touch with what Trump is thinking. [Kim_Trump_talks18] [Intermediary] [Moon Jae-in] [Wishful thinking] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/06/205_250043.html><B> Seoul, Washington likely to downscale joint drills </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-06-03 16:46 Updated : 2018-06-03 16:56 South Korean Defense Minister Song Young-moo, left, shakes hands with U.S. Secretary of Defense James Mattis ahead of their meeting on the sidelines of the Shangri-La Dialogue in Singapore, Saturday. / Yonhap By Choi Ha-young South Korea and the United States' regular joint military exercises are likely to be scaled down, following Saturday's agreement between defense ministers of the two countries to create "positive conditions" for the upcoming summit between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. The downscaling is expected to include the reduction of deployment of U.S. nuclear submarines or strategic bombers around the Korean Peninsula along with the joint exercises. South Korean Defense Minister Song Young-moo and his American counterpart James Mattis agreed to support the diplomatic measures toward denuclearization of North Korea in a joint press statement released after the bilateral meeting on the sidelines of the 17th Asia Security Summit held in Singapore ? known as the Shangri-La Dialogue. [Joint US military] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/06/103_250035.html><B> Chances growing for tripartite summit among Trump, Kim, Moon </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-06-03 16:30 Updated : 2018-06-03 16:35 By Kim Bo-eun Likelihood is growing that President Moon Jae-in will join the leaders of North Korea and the United States following their June 12 summit in Singapore to discuss declaring an end to the 1950-53 Korean War, after U.S. President Donald Trump mentioned the possibility. After his meeting with top North Korean official Kim Yong-chol in Washington, D.C. on Friday (local time), Trump said they "talked about ending the war," and referred to it as "something that could come out of the meeting" with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. Kim Yong-chol visited the U.S. for talks with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and to deliver a letter from the North Korean leader to Trump. Regarding guaranteeing the security of the North Korean regime, Trump said "We're going to make sure it's secure" and that North Korea has "potential to be a great country." [Kim_Trump_talks18] [Sidelined] [Moon Jae-in] [Wishful thinking] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.johnmenadue.com/george-perkovich-what-donald-trump-and-kim-jong-un-dont-know-about-their-own-standoff/><B> What Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un Don t Know About Their Own Standoff </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> George Perkovich 2 June 2018 If the Cuban Missile Crisis is any indication, today s leaders may be dangerously misinformed about the nuclear crisis. When President Donald Trump canceled his June summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, he told him in a letter that the past few days of  tremendous anger and open hostility had made it  inappropriate for the two to meet and discuss denuclearization.  You talk about your nuclear capabilities, Trump wrote,  but ours are so massive and powerful that I pray to God they will never have to be used. The language echoed a January tweet in which the president wrote,  I too have a Nuclear Button, but it is a much bigger & more powerful one than his, and my Button works! The North issued a statement in short order emphasizing a willingness to  sit down with the United States any time, in any format, to resolve the problems. Yet it s getting harder to see how Trump and Kim can make the mutual accommodations necessary for diplomacy to succeed. In fact, beneath the surface, the current situation resembles the prelude to the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962, which historical research continues to show was much more dangerous than anyone knew at the time. If the Trump-Kim summit stays canceled, and saber-rattling returns as the dominant mode of communication, the odds of military crisis will rise dramatically. And, as the Cuba experience shows, once begun, a military crisis involving nuclear weapons will almost inevitably bring lots of surprises ones that could make the shocking twists and turns of the summit buildup look pedestrian by comparison. [US NK Negotiations] [False balance] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.johnmenadue.com/geoff-miller-the-us-north-korea-negotiations-death-to-forecasters/><B> The US-North Korea Negotiations: Death to Forecasters! </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Geoff Miller 31 May 2018 The  pre-negotiation process going on between the US and North Korea is volatile and opaque, but a few points seem to have emerged. James Bond novels used to feature a sinister Soviet organisation called SMERSH short for  Death to Spies in Russian. The twists and reversals in the process that may lead to a Trump-Kim summit have been so extreme that they could be called  Death to Forecasters , or commentators. But a few points can be made. First, it really is an  inside job . No foreign observers are now as well informed about what Kim is thinking and really wants as the three senior figures, President Moon, President Xi and Secretary Pompeo, who have recently each had two talks in Moon s and Xi s cases two rounds of talks with him. So while outsiders can and do speculate we do so in the knowledge that direct talks are going on between the US and North Korea at Panmunjom, in Singapore and, with Kim Yong Chol s visit, now in the United States, and that these have as their background very high-level exchanges about which we know very little. Secondly, from the emphasis placed on this aspect in statements by Trump and Pompeo, it seems that Kim must have given the US reason to believe that he is seriously interested in the economic development of North Korea, and that promises to help in that, or at least to lift the obstacles to others doing so, would be attractive to him. There are grounds for such a US view. Since attaining power Kim has had a two-goal policy of achieving both economic prosperity and nuclear armament. He has had some successes economically, in achieving modest annual GDP growth and a lifestyle for some in Pyongyang that approaches life in other Asian capitals. However the contrast with life in other parts of North Korea is stark, and remedying that in the context of a sanctions regime would seem impossible. So to the extent that Kim wants to achieve his declared national goals that is certainly an inducement to negotiate. [False balance] [Banality] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://vimeo.com/72111902/f35cf8f8f1><B> Memory of Forgotten War </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Streaming  June 4th through June 14th, 2018 Filmmakers - Deann Borshay Liem and Ramsay Liem The documentary film, Memory of Forgotten War (MOFW), explores the lead up to, conduct, and aftermath of the Korean War through the memories of elder Korean American war survivors. It has special resonance today on the cusp of what could be a historic first meeting between a sitting United States president and the leader of North Korea. Following a tumultuous year that threatened nuclear holocaust but also witnessed bold North  South diplomatic initiatives, all eyes are on the hoped-for summit between Kim Jong Un and Donald Trump. For all Koreans and peace advocates throughout the world, a final resolution to seven decades of unrelenting U.S.  North Korean hostility is nearly unimaginable yet also within reach. Family Reunion What many Americans have either forgotten or never known, however, are the origins of this conflict in a Korean War that remains un-ended to this day. Memory of Forgotten War recalls this Cold War collision and the U.S. role in it - from the U.S. recommendation to divide Korea at the 38th parallel at the end of WWII, to its installation of a three year U.S. military government in the south, to unprecedented carpet bombing during the war, to a continuing presence of U.S. combat forces and advanced weaponry in the south in violation of the spirit of the armistice agreement that only halted the fighting temporarily. MOFW interweaves this history with the memories of Korean American war survivors Suntae Chun, Heebok Kim, Min Yong Lee, and Kee Park. Their accounts of life before, during, and after the war animate this history and convey the profound human significance of current prospects for an end to decades of hostility. Brief historical commentary is provided by scholars Bruce Cumings and Ji-Yeon Yuh. [Korean War] [Divided Families] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.msnbc.com/am-joy/watch/trump-summit-with-north-korea-back-on-1246989379799><B> Trump summit with North Korea back on </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Donald Trump met with a representative of North Korea, then resumed plans for a summit with Kim Jong-un. Joy Reid and her panel discuss the president appearing to be manipulated by dictators. [Media] [Christine Ahn] [Kim_Trump_talks18] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/06/01/2018060101409.html><B> U.S. Negotiators Extend Stay in Seoul </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Ahn Jun-yong June 01, 2018 12:02 U.S. negotiators who held two meetings with their North Korean counterparts in the truce village of Panmunjom have extended their stay in South Korea. The move raises speculation that more talks are needed to prepare for a North Korea-U.S. summit slated for June 12 in Singapore. At a higher level, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un's right hand man Kim Yong-chol met in New York on Thursday to hammer out a way forward. [US NK Negotiations] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.latimes.com/nation/la-na-pol-pompeo-norkor-20180530-story.html><B> Pompeo meets North Korean official in push to rescue nuclear summit </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Barbara Demick May 30, 2018 | 3:00 PM | New York Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, left, shown on May 29, 2018, in Washington, and his negotiating partner, Kim Yong Chol, a powerful former intelligence chief, shown in Pyeongchang at the Winter Olympics on Feb. 25, 2018. (AFP/Getty Images) Let s call it microwave diplomacy. In what is likely to be a feverish 24 hours of negotiations, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo is trying to hash out enough of a denuclearization agreement to allow President Trump to meet with North Korea s Kim Jong Un in less than two weeks. The proposed venue and date are clear  June 12 in Singapore. Hotel rooms are tentatively booked. Planes are at the ready. Logistics teams are working out kinks. To the bemusement of late-night comedians, the commemorative coin for the Trump-Kim summit is already minted. All that is missing is the deal: The North Koreans have not agreed to the immediate  or even the staged  dismantlement of their nuclear weapons arsenal and infrastructure that the White House has demanded. [Kim_Trump_talks18] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/05/31/2018053101184.html><B> CIA Report Warns N.Korea Won't Give up Nukes </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Yu Yong-weon May 31, 2018 10:35 The CIA has concluded that North Korea has no intention of giving up its nuclear weapons but may allow a Western burger franchise to open in Pyongyang. "Everybody knows they are not going to denuclearize," an intelligence official who read the report told NBC on Wednesday. The channel said the CIA report, "which is consistent with other expert opinions, casts doubt on the viability of [U.S. President Donald] Trump's stated goal for the negotiations, the elimination of North Korea's nuclear weapons stockpile." "On the nuclear question, the analysis suggests that a more realistic immediate objective would be convincing Kim to walk back recent progress on the country's nuclear weapons program," it added. But the report also included the forecast that North Korean leader Kim Jong-un "may consider offering to open a Western hamburger franchise in Pyongyang as a show of goodwill." [Denuclearisation] [CIA] [Hamburger] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/05/31/2018053101292.html><B> Cheong Wa Dae Officials Dispatched to Singapore </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> May 31, 2018 10:57 Cheong Wa Dae has dispatched officials to Singapore, but the presidential office said this has nothing to do with the planned summit between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un on June 12. "The officials have been sent to Singapore to prepare for a Korea-Singapore summit in July," Cheong Wa Dae spokesman Kwon Hyuk-ki said We [Kim_Trump_talks18] [SK] [Sidelined] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/05/103_249921.html><B> Three places shortlisted for NK-US summit </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-05-31 15:56 Updated : 2018-05-31 16:10 By Kim Rahn Shangri-La Hotel in Singapore, which is one of the candidate venues for the summit between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un slated for June 12. / Yonhap Three places seem to be on the shortlist for the historic summit between United States President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un slated for June 12 in Singapore. Officials from the two nations, including North Korea's Kim Chang-son, chief secretary of the National Defense Commission Secretariat, and Joe Hagin, White House deputy chief of staff for operations, have been visiting several hotels and locations in Singapore since Wednesday in search of places that can provide the best security and convenience for the summit and accommodation for the two leaders. The American advance team led by Hagin visited the Shangri-La Hotel on Wednesday afternoon, according to Singaporean local media. The Shangri-La has always been the top candidate, as the luxury hotel has hosted many international conferences and thus has accumulated knowhow on security and meeting operations. [Singapore] [Venue] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= Letter_NCCCUSA.pdf><B> Letter from the National Council of Churches in Korea </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> To National Council of the Churches of Christ in the USA <BR> May 30, 2018 Dear Mr. Jim Winkler and The Rt. Rev W. Darin Moore, I bring greetings from the member churches and organizations of the National Council of Churches in Korea. First of all, let me express a deep gratitude to you, all the member churches of the NCCCUSA, and all Christians and peace-loving people in the US as you all have prayed and acted for peace-building on the Korean peninsula. [Peace effort] [Religion] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.hrw.org/news/2018/05/30/north-korea-retain-human-rights-sanctions><B> North Korea: Retain Human Rights Sanctions </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> New Q&A Examines Sanctions Regime, Trump-Kim Summit A combination photo shows U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un (R) in Washignton, DC, U.S. May 17, 2018 and in Panmunjom, South Korea, April 27, 2018 respectively. Expand A combination photo shows U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un (R) in Washington, DC, U.S. on May 17, 2018, and in Panmunjom, South Korea on April 27, 2018, respectively. 2018 Reuters/Kevin Lamarque and Korea Summit Press Pool/File Photos (New York)  United Nations and bilateral sanctions against North Korea for grave human rights violations should continue until the government makes substantial progress addressing abuses, Human Rights Watch said today. A new Q&A answers questions about the sanctions regime and outlines the importance of human rights to negotiations that are primarily focused on nuclear proliferation issues. A possible summit between US President Donald Trump and North Korea s leader Kim Jong Un has increased attention on the sanctions regime in place against North Korea. Current sanctions address both North Korea s missile and nuclear weapons proliferation activities and its horrific human rights record. The Q&A examines how the sanctions work, why they were imposed, and how they might be relaxed, lifted, or intensified in the future. [MISCOM] [Sanctions] [HRW] [Humanitarian intervention] [Imperialism] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.reuters.com/article/us-northkorea-usa/trump-plays-down-chances-of-quick-north-korea-breakthrough-talks-conclude-idUSKCN1IV2NS><B> Trump plays down chances of quick North Korea breakthrough, talks conclude </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Yara Bayoumy, Steve Holland President Donald Trump on Thursday played down the chances of a quick breakthrough in talks with North Korea about its nuclear arsenal, as the top U.S. diplomat and a senior official from Pyongyang wrapped up two days of negotiations. Trump, in a brief interview with Reuters aboard Air Force One on the way to Texas, said he was still hoping to hold an unprecedented summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un on June 12 in Singapore.  I d like to see it done in one meeting, he said.  But often times that s not the way deals work. There s a very good chance that it won t be done in one meeting or two meetings or three meetings. But it ll get done at some point. It was not clear if Trump meant he would need a second summit with Kim to reach the U.S. goal of persuading North Korea to abandon its nuclear arms or if he believed more lower-level talks were needed. [Kim_Trump_talks18] </FONT> </UL> <HR> <A NAME="may18"> <A HREF="#top">Return to top of page</A><BR> <font size=5 color =maroon"> MAY 2018</FONT> <UL> <!--point--> <LI><A HREF= http://stream.aljazeera.com/story/201805292038-0025652><B> Nearly 70 years on, what will it take to end the Korean War? </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> The Stream looks at how the legacy of war influences US-Korea relations today. For some Americans, the Korean War is considered a "forgotten" conflict . For North Korea, the three years of fighting that killed more than 2 million between 1950 and 1953 remains a constant reminder for vigilance against what Pyongyang sees as US imperialist aggression. Heavy fighting in the Korean War ended in a 1953 armistice agreement, but not a peace treaty. More than six decades since the armistice, the historic inter-Korean summit held last month at Panmunjom resulted in another pledge between North and South Korean leaders to officially end the Korean War by the close of this year. In this episode, we'll look at the history of the Korean War and the current prospects for ending it. How does the legacy of war shape US-Korea and regional relations today? Join the conversation at 1930GMT. On this episode of The Stream, we speak with: Mintaro Oba @MintaroOba Fmr. State Department Official Christine Hong Professor, University of California Christine Ahn @christineahn Founder, Women Cross DMZ www.womencrossdmz.org </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/05/30/2018053001464.html><B> U.S., N.Korea Hold More Talks at Inter-Korean Border </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Ahn Jun-yong May 30, 2018 12:37 U.S. officials are holding more behind-the-scenes talks with North Korea ahead of a summit between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. The officials left the Four Seasons Hotel in downtown Seoul on Tuesday after trying desperately to avoid the South Korean media. The talks take place Wednesday in the border truce village of Panmunjom. Allison Hooker, a National Security Council official for Korean affairs, left the hotel by car at 9:40 a.m. on Tuesday, followed by U.S. Ambassador to the Philippines Sung Kim, a seasoned nuclear negotiator, and Randall Shriver, assistant secretary of defense for Asia and Pacific security affairs. They used a staff elevator to sneak out through the underground car park to avoid running into reporters. U.S. Ambassador to the Philippines Sung Kim leaves a hotel in Seoul on Tuesday. They last met on Sunday with a group of North Korean officials headed by Vice Foreign Minister Choe Son-hui. More time is needed before the two sides agree on the timing of nuclear dismantlement and level of rewards. CNN reported Monday that Trump is pressuring his staff to hold the summit on June 12 as scheduled despite concerns that an agreement is a long way off. Publicly, the U.S. insists that the success of the summit hinges on the North's attitude, but the purpose of the working-level talks is to narrow differences, paving the way for the basic draft of a joint statement. At a higher level, meanwhile, the North Korean leader's right-hand man Kim Yong-chol flew to New York to meet with U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. [US NK Negotiations] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.spreaker.com/user/radiosputnik/ready-to-make-history-north-and-south-ko_1><B> Ready to Make History: North and South Korea Put Summit Back on Track </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> From: Loud & Clear Interviews News & Information, #kim, #korea, #moon, #negotiations, #trump On today's episode of Loud & Clear, Brian Becker and John Kiriakou are joined by Christine Ahn, International Coordinator of Women Cross DMZ, and author and professor Tim Beal. One of North Korea s top leaders is arriving in the United States today for talks with Trump Administration officials, and possibly with the President himself, on kickstarting the US-DPRK summit originally planned for June 12 in Singapore. General Kim Yong Chol is one of Kim Jong Un s closest advisors and is a former chief of the North Korean Intelligence Service. [Summit18b] [Sovereignty] [Kim_Trump_talks18] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://fpif.org/trumps-korean-shell-game/><B> Trump s Korean Shell Game </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> The U.S. and North Korean leaders are both playing a long con designed to maintain their own short-term political survival. By John Feffer, May 30, 2018. Conmen always keep up a patter. While they re extracting the wallet from your pocket, they maintain a nonstop monologue so that you focus on their mouth and not what they re doing with their hands. Beware the voluble stranger. Donald Trump has always been a talker. Even before he discovered Twitter, Trump was constantly bending people s ears  about himself, his deals, his girlfriends. He even pretended to be other people on the phone in order to more credibly boast of his achievements: a ventriloquist who performed as his own dummy. A few months before the 2016 elections, his former ghost writer Michael D Antonio compared Trump to a card sharp:  His verbal gymnastics are intended to burnish his image, excite his followers, or tear down his competitors and critics. And like the three card monte dealer, Trump is prepared to bolt should he get caught in the game. Unfortunately Trump learned that the most successful conmen don t bolt. When caught, they stand their ground and raise their (con) game. The short con is for losers. [Trump] [US NK negotiations] [Bolton] [False balance] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/05/29/2018052900976.html><B> U.S. Negotiators Seek to Specify Denuclearization in Written Document </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Pak Soo-chan May 29, 2018 10:30 A U.S. negotiation team led by Sung Kim, the U.S. ambassador to the Philippines, wants to lay out three steps toward North Korean denuclearization in talks with North Korea while discussing the agenda for a U.S.-North Korea summit scheduled for June 12 in Singapore. Joseph Yun, a former senior diplomat, told the New York Times on Sunday that the U.S. negotiators want to lay out the process in a document. "The goal... was likely to be developing a set of documents, agreed on by both sides that detail the three steps that North Korea is willing to consider taking toward elimination of its nuclear weapons program," Yun told the daily. He said the first step "is a declaration of how far the North Koreans are willing to go in unwinding their weapons program. The second is deciding how and when the North Koreans would provide an accounting of that process to the United States. And the third is determining how the United States would verify those claims." [US NK Negotiations] [Joseph Yun] [Arrogance] [Solipsism] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.yonhapnews.co.kr/national/2018/05/29/0301000000AEN20180529010100320.html><B> Trump confirms N.K. official's U.S. visit for summit prep </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> 2018/05/29 20:18 SEOUL, May 29 (Yonhap) -- U.S. President Donald Trump confirmed Tuesday that North Korean vice chairman Kim Yong-chol is heading to New York as part of ongoing preparations for his talks with the communist country's leader. "We have put a great team together for our talks with North Korea. Meetings are currently taking place concerning Summit, and more. Kim Young Chol, the Vice Chairman of North Korea, heading now to New York," Trump said in a message posted on Twitter. Calling the official's visit to the U.S. a "solid response to my letter," Trump said "thank you." Kim Yong-chol arrived in Beijing earlier in the day en route to the United States, with sources saying he is expected to meet with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo to get prepared for the high-stakes talks between Trump and Kim Jong-un. On Thursday night (Seoul time), the U.S. president sent an open letter to leader Kim to cancel the summit due to Pyongyang's "tremendous anger and open hostility." But the U.S. president reversed his course, and has been pushing for the talks to take place as scheduled on June 12 in Singapore. [KT_summit_cancellation] [Revival] [Kim Young Chol] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.yonhapnews.co.kr/national/2018/05/28/0301000000AEN20180528006455315.html><B> N. Korean delegation in Beijing en route to Singapore to prepare summit: sources </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> 2018/05/28 18:23 BEIJING/SINGAPORE, May 28 (Yonhap) -- A senior North Korean official arrived in Beijing on Monday, apparently on his way to Singapore for a summit preparatory meeting with the United States, diplomatic sources here said. Kim Chang-son, de facto chief of staff to North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, is leading the country's delegation to discuss the logistics and security issues for his upcoming summit with U.S. President Donald Trump, which is expected to be held in the city-state on June 12, according to the sources. The North Korean officials are expected to take a Singapore-bound flight late in the afternoon. A U.S. delegation led by Joe Hagin, White House deputy chief of staff for operations, departed for Singapore from Yokota Air Base in Tokyo at around 3 p.m. on Monday, Japanese broadcaster NHK reported. The two sides are expected to meet as early as Tuesday, a source said. [Kim_Trump_talks18] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/05/28/2018052800528.html><B> U.S.-N.Korea Summit Back on Track as Officials Meet </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Kim Jin-myung May 28, 2018 09:15 A summit on June 12 between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un seems back on track as officials from the two sides meet in the truce village of Panmunjom from Sunday to Tuesday to discuss the agenda. The U.S. delegation includes Ambassador to the Philippines Sung Kim, a former envoy to South Korea and U.S. nuclear negotiator, and officials from the White House and the departments of state and defense, a diplomatic source in Seoul said. The North Korean delegation includes Vice Foreign Minister Choe Son-hui, who provoked Trump with her belligerent statements into canceling the summit last week, and Choe Kang-il, who is in charge of U.S. affairs. [Revival] [Kim_Trump_talks18] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/05/28/2018052800921.html><B> N.Korean Media Announce Summit with U.S. </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Kim Myong-song May 28, 2018 10:37 The front page of North Korea's official Rodong Sinmun daily on Saturday /Yonhap North Korea's state media gave extensive coverage on Sunday to a surprise second summit between President Moon Jae-in and their leader Kim Jong-un in the truce village of Panmunjom the previous day. The Rodong Sinmun daily carried stories and photos on the summit on the front and second pages, and state TV aired several minutes of footage in the evening. [Summit18b] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://consortiumnews.com/2018/05/26/south-korean-president-moons-bolton/><B> South Korean President Moons Bolton </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> May 26, 2018 The summit may still be alive because it appears advisers around Trump may well be warning him not to follow his national security adviser down the road to disaster, comments Ray McGovern. By Ray McGovern Special to Consortium News Thanks no doubt to his bellicose national security adviser John Bolton, President Donald Trump has now lost control of the movement toward peace between the two Koreas. Trump has put himself in a corner; he must now either reject  or, better, fire  Bolton, or face the prospect of wide war in the Far East, including the Chinese, with whom a mutual defense treaty with North Korea is still on the books. The visuals of the surprise meeting late yesterday (local time) between the top leaders of South Korea and North Bolton: Seeing Moon face to face. Korea pretty much tell the story. South Korea s President Moon Jae-in drove into the North Korean side of the demilitarized zone (DMZ), and Seoul quickly released a one-minute video of what, by all appearances, was an extremely warm encounter with Kim Jung-un. It amounted to a smiling, thumbing of two noses at Bolton and the rest of the  crazies who follow his advice, such as Vice President Mike Pence who echoed Bolton s insane evocation of the  Libya model for North Korea, which caused Pyongyang to go ballistic. Their angry response was the reason Trump cited for cancelling the June 12 summit with Kim. [KT_summit_cancellation] [Bolton] [Summit18b] [Revival] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/05/103_249694.html><B> Crucial NK-US talks taking place all over </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-05-28 08:26 Updated : 2018-05-28 16:53 Sung Kim and Choe Son-hui By Kim Bo-eun The ongoing working-level meeting between North Korea and the U.S. is likely produce a framework on Pyongyang's denuclearization that will serve as the basis for the North Korea-U.S. summit and ultimately determine the fate of the Korean Peninsula. Delegations led by the North's vice foreign minister Choe Son-hui and U.S. Ambassador to the Philippines Sung Kim met at the truce village of Panmunjeom, Monday, for two days of meetings, to finalize the framework. Kim was former Ambassador to South Korea and a U.S. special envoy for the six party talks on the North's nuclear program. A separate meeting is set to take place in Singapore, the summit venue, to discuss protocol and security, while communication continues through the New York channel _ the North Korean mission at the United Nations _ to enable the meeting between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un to be held June 12. The U.S. president last week called off the meeting, citing hostile remarks made by North Korean officials regarding the White House's reference to the Libyan model of denuclearization. Libya's nuclear disarmament was achieved after it shipped its nuclear equipment to the U.S. and White House officials stated North Korea should follow this model. This sparked an angry response from the North because Libya saw its leader being executed by U.S.-supported rebels several years later. The meeting will likely discuss ensuring the North Korean regime's security as a reward for dismantling its nuclear program, and Pyongyang and Washington normalizing relations. [US NK Negotiations] [Kim_Trump_talks18] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/global-opinions/trump-may-be-the-worst-presidential-dealmaker-in-modern-history/2018/05/27/b2686512-5f79-11e8-a4a4-c070ef53f315_story.html?utm_term=.815eae067599&wpisrc=nl_headlines&wpmm=1><B> Trump may be the worst presidential dealmaker in modern history </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Why the North Korea summit was doomed to fail The Post's Adam Taylor explains what led up to President Trump's May 24 letter to North Korea leader Kim Jong Un and what to expect going forward. (Joyce Lee, Adam Taylor/The Washington Post) By Jackson Diehl Deputy Editorial Page Editor May 27 at 7:03 PM Email the author When May began, President Trump was presiding over diplomatic negotiations that could have delivered twin triumphs for his administration. Now, on Memorial Day, he s reaping the wreckage of talks about Iran, and the North Korea process is in limbo. He has badly strained relations with vital U.S. allies and raised the risk of military conflicts in the Middle East and Asia. He has gone from would-be Nobel Prize winner to commander in chief of chaos. [Anti-Trump] [Negotiating] [Incompetence] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://talkingpointsmemo.com/livewire/rift-pompeo-bolton-heart-north-korean-summit-cancel><B> Rift Between Pompeo And Bolton At Heart Of North Korea Summit Failure </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Nicole Lafond | May 25, 2018 7:19 am Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was reportedly blindsided by President Donald Trump s decision to cancel the denuclearization summit with North Korea, and he blames National Security Adviser John Bolton for the summit s failure, NBC News reported Thursday evening. Just an hour before the cancellation was announced in a letter to Kim  which Trump reportedly dictated to Bolton  the State Department blasted out a press release to reporters, highlighting the work the department had done with other Asian counterparts in preparation for the meeting, initially set to take place in Singapore next month. [KT_summit_cancellation] [Bolton] [Pompeo] [Dysfunction] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/05/103_249629.html><B> Trump says summit with Kim Jong-un 'could still take place on June 12' </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-05-26 10:40 Updated : 2018-05-26 12:38 U.S. President Donald Trump said Friday his planned meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un could still take place June 12, after canceling the summit a day earlier. Trump said the two countries are talking and both sides want to have the meeting that was supposed to be held in Singapore. "We'll see what happens. It could even be the 12th," Trump told reporters before departing the White House. "We're talking to them now. They very much want to do it. We'd like to do it. We're going to see what happens." Trump later tweeted that "very productive talks" are currently under way between the United States and North Korea, adding that if held, the meeting will likely take place in Singapore on June 12. [KT_summit_cancellation] [Revival] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.peaceaction.org/2018/05/24/trumps-ego-deals-a-blow-to-korean-peace-process/><B> Trump s Ego Deals a Blow to Korean Peace Process </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Peace Action Posted May 24, 2018 0 0 Washington, D.C.  May 24, 2018  President Trump cancelled the planned June 12 summit meeting with Kim Jong-un today in a letter to the North Korean leader. Kevin Martin, President of Peace Action, slammed the president and his administration for undermining the critical peace process.  I can only channel the immortal Casey Stengel, manager of the notoriously inept 1962 New York Mets, who quipped,  Can t anybody here play this game? Trump and his war cabinet, with no record of achievement in international peace and diplomacy, couldn t resist provoking North Korea with talk of a  Libyan model of denuclearization and muscular military exercises at a time when the U.S. should be doing all it can to build trust ahead of the planned summit. In particular, national security adviser John Bolton, who helped scuttle an earlier deal with North Korea while in the George W. Bush regime, must have known his inflammatory rhetoric would go over badly with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. One needn t be too cynical to ask whether his goal was to imperil the summit. [KT_summit_cancellation] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.reuters.com/article/us-northkorea-missiles-trump-military/trump-says-us-military-ready-if-north-koreas-kim-acts-foolishly-idUSKCN1IP2VR><B> Trump says U.S. military ready if North Korea's Kim acts foolishly </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Reuters Staff WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Donald Trump, speaking on Thursday after canceling a summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, said the U.S. military stood ready if Kim were to take any  foolish action. FILE PHOTO: U.S. President Donald Trump speaks during a roundtable on immigration and the gang MS-13 at the Morrelly Homeland Security Center in Bethpage, New York, U.S., May 23, 2018. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque American forces are  ready if necessary, Trump said at a White House bill signing event. Reporting by Roberta Rampton; Writing by Susan Heavey; Editing by Tim Ahmann [KT_summitcancellation18] [Inversion] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.commondreams.org/news/2018/05/24/john-bolton-must-be-stoked-experts-put-blame-canceled-north-korea-talks-squarely><B> John Bolton Must Be Stoked': Experts Put Blame for Canceled North Korea Talks Squarely on Trump's Top Warmonger </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> "We can't forget that many in Trump's administration, including his national security adviser and secretary of state, are thirsty for war." by Jake Johnson, staff writer "The American public and Congress must prevent the Trump administration from using this self-inflicted setback to justify a catastrophic U.S. war of choice on the Korean peninsula," Win Without War said in a statement on Thursday. (Photo: Evan Vucci/AP)"The American public and Congress must prevent the Trump administration from using this self-inflicted setback to justify a catastrophic U.S. war of choice on the Korean peninsula," Win Without War said in a statement on Thursday. (Photo: Evan Vucci/AP) As the world scrambles to make sense of U.S. President Donald Trump's bizarre and potentially disastrous letter announcing the cancellation of his planned meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un on Thursday, lawmakers and anti-war advocates argued that the Trump White House's repeated regime change threats and national security adviser John Bolton's belligerent rhetoric are to blame for the summit's collapse. "Bolton must have known his rhetoric would go over badly with Kim Jong-un. One needn't be too cynical to ask whether his goal was to imperil the summit."  Kevin Martin, Peace Action "We can't forget that many in Trump's administration, including his national security adviser and secretary of state, are thirsty for war," Win Without War said in a statement on Thursday. "The American public and Congress must prevent the Trump administration from using this self-inflicted setback to justify a catastrophic U.S. war of choice on the Korean peninsula." In a Twitter thread responding to the president's letter, Sen. Brian Schatz (D-Hawaii) wrote simply: "John Bolton must be stoked...This is what happens when amateurs are combined with warmongers." This is a setback. This is an error. This is what happens when amateurs are combined with warmongers. This is NOT secretly smart and clever, and any pundit or politician who even flirts with that idea is deeply, deeply unserious.  Brian Schatz (@brianschatz) May 24, 2018 [KT_summit_cancellation] [Bolton] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/05/25/2018052501693.html><B> Seoul 'Pays More for U.S. Forces Upkeep Than Tokyo' </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Yu Yong-weon May 25, 2018 12:40 Seoul currently pays W3.4 trillion a year for the upkeep of the U.S. Forces Korea directly and indirectly (US$1=W1,079). That is more than what Tokyo pays to support the U.S. Forces Japan, according to analysis by a state-run think tank. Yu Jun-hyung at the Korea Institute for Defense Analyses cited the figure at a forum hosted by Minjoo Party lawmaker Kim Kyung-hyup in the National Assembly on Thursday. "The cost of supporting the USFK's upkeep has been estimated at W3.39 trillion per year as of 2015 -- W2.43 trillion in direct support including defense burden sharing, and W958.9 billion in indirect support like tax breaks and land." "But the overall running cost is estimated at more than W5.4 trillion including support for the USFK's relocation to Pyeongtaek, Gyeonggi Province," he added. It was the first time a state-run think tank has published relevant figures and has led to speculation that the Defense Ministry deliberately spilled the beans in an effort to counter the U.S., which claims that Korea is not pulling his weight. "Tokyo paid the equivalent of W6.78 trillion in 2015 to support the upkeep of the USFJ, but there are 62,108 U.S. troops stationed in Japan, far more than the 28,034 in Korea," Yu added. "All things considered, Seoul is paying much more money than Tokyo." [USFK] [Tribute] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/05/103_249590.html><B> Canceling Singapore meeting may not be as bad as it looks </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-05-25 14:51 Updated : 2018-05-25 14:51 A mural depicting North Korean leader Kim Jong-un looms over a passerby near the Koreatown neighborhood in Los Angeles, Thursday. Earlier in the day, U.S. President Donald Trump canceled a planned summit with Kim Jong-un. / EPA By Oh Young-jin Just hours before U.S. President Donald Trump canceled the summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, I was thinking of writing a column about that very possibility. A colleague told me that only a writer with the "bold mind of yours" would try to write as such. Of course, it did not sound complimentary. I am not trying to boast of my prescience, because much more often than not I have been proven to lack the ability to look ahead and make the right forecast. But I have found a couple of interesting things in the behavior of Trump and Kim Jong-un's North Korea that tell us that we do not need to lose sleep over a recent chain of events and things will work out soon. First and foremost is Trump's letter in which he told the world that the Singapore meeting was off. Trump did not tweet this time, departing from his usual way of letting the world know what he is up to. This means he took extra care to treat the North Korean leader with respect. He also wrote a letter that bears his signature, a gesture of formality. [KT_summit_cancellation] [Conservatives] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=olnPKGQOHxs&app=desktop><B> Cancelled North Korea talks  huge kick in the teeth  activist </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> RT America Published on May 24, 2018 President Donald Trump canceled a scheduled nuclear summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un on Thursday. The decision came after a North Korean minister called Vice President Mike Pence a  political dummy for comparing his country with Libya. For more on this, the president of Peace Action Kevin Martin joins RT America s Ed Schultz. [KT_summit_cancellation] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= Ogle_PBS180524.pdf><B> Comments to the PBS News Hour </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Dorothy Ogle <BR> May 24, 2018 I am Dorothy Ogle, a former Methodist Missionary in postwar South Korea, a member of the American Friends Service Committee 1984 Peace Delegation to North Korea, and the Legislative Affairs Coordinator for the National Conference of Churches USA 1986 Resolution on Peace and the Reunification of Korea. I am currently a member of the Korea Peace Network and the Solidarity Committee for Democracy and Peace in Korea. For the last thirty years I have been closely following US/North Korea policy. I am greatly disturbed by the US media reporting on North Korea. It is so full of omissions and distortions that Americans, including our policy makers, do not have an understanding of the important realities they need to know to resolve our very real concerns about North Korea's nuclear capability. [US NK policy] [Media] [Ignorance] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.reuters.com/article/us-northkorea-missiles/trump-formula-north-korea-says-still-open-to-talks-after-summit-canceled-idUSKCN1IQ02Y><B> 'Trump formula'? North Korea says still open to talks after summit canceled </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Josh Smith, Christine Kim North Korea responded on Friday with measured tones to U.S. President Donald Trump s decision to call off a historic summit with leader Kim Jong Un scheduled for next month, saying Pyongyang hoped for a  Trump formula to resolve the standoff over its nuclear weapons program. On Thursday, Trump wrote a letter to Kim to announce his withdrawal from what would have been the first-ever meeting between a serving U.S. president and a North Korean leader in Singapore on June 12.  Sadly, based on the tremendous anger and open hostility displayed in your most recent statement, I feel it would be inappropriate, at this time, to have this long-planned meeting, Trump wrote. Trump s announcement came after repeated threats by North Korea to pull out of the summit over what it saw as confrontational remarks by U.S. officials. Friday s response by North Korean Vice Foreign Minister Kim Kye Gwan was more conciliatory, specifically praising Trump s efforts. [KimKG180525] [Trump] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.womencrossdmz.org/media-advisory-women-security-experts-urge-a-return-to-korea-us-talks/><B> Women Security Experts urge a Return to Korea  US TALKS </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> May 24, 2018 (Seoul)   An international delegation of 30 women peace and security experts and activists, as well as other civil society leaders  led by Nobel Peace Laureate Mairead Maguire and Korea expert Christine Ahn and a coalition of South Korean women organizations are calling on the United States and North Korea to resume negotiations and return to the peace table, after President s Trump abrupt cancellation of the June 12th peace summit with North Korea. The delegation warns that the failure to proceed with a US-Korea peace agreement reignites dangerous nuclear tensions and puts the region and the entire world at risk. The all-women delegation will hold a press conference on May 25, 2018, at Gwanghwamun Square, in Seoul. [KT_summit_cancellation] [Peace effort] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.commondreams.org/news/2018/05/25/warning-against-return-rhetoric-nuclear-annihilation-koreans-and-anti-war-voices><B> Warning Against 'Return to Rhetoric of Nuclear Annihilation,' Koreans and Anti-War Voices Demand Trump Resume Peace Talks </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> "You can't imagine rooting for peace for so long and then see it being taken away." by Jake Johnson, staff writer "The people of both North and South Korea, and especially women, have worked too long and have come too close to reaching the first steps towards the signing of a Peace treaty to see the talks collapse," Christine Ahn, Korea expert and founder of Women Cross DMZ, said in a statement." (Photo: OhMyNews) Refusing to let a chance to achieve lasting peace on the Korean Peninsula slip away and warning against "return to a rhetoric of nuclear annihilation," a group of peace activists, foreign policy experts, and ordinary Koreans gathered outside the U.S. Embassy in Seoul on Friday to call on President Donald Trump to reverse his cancellation of the June summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and immediately return to the negotiating table. "I do worry that Mr. Trump has made things more dangerous for us in Korea and I just hope that no-one pushes the button."  Anonymous North Korean woman "The people of both North and South Korea, and especially women, have worked too long and have come too close to reaching the first steps towards the signing of a Peace treaty to see the talks collapse," Christine Ahn, Korea expert and founder of Women Cross DMZ, said in a statement on Thursday. "We know that a diplomacy can be difficult. However, peace in the Korean Peninsula cannot have any more setbacks. It's been too long. It has been overdue more than 70 years." Trump's announcement that the scheduled summit will not take place was met with dismay by both North and South Koreans. [KT_summit_cancellation] [Peace effort] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://johnmenadue.com/cavan-hogue-korea-the-hermit-kingdom-rises-again/><B> Korea: the Hermit Kingdom rises again? </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Cavan Hogue 25 May 2018 The peace negotiations on the Korean Peninsula remain fragile and neither the USA or the DPRK trusts the other. Neither side has been specific about what they will accept and the question remains what it has always been. What does Kim want in return for what he is willing to give and what is Trump willing to give for what he wants? Trumps threat to pull out of the meeting and Kim s equally bellicose talk of war don t help matters but neither is likely to be stupid enough to put their nukes where their mouth is. The role of China will be vital both in protecting its own interests and as a possible guarantor of DPRK security. The ROK takes a positive and realistic approach but tends to be overshadowed by the others. Australia has vital interests in this process but is not a serious player. This article looks at the options and factors involved. Both Kim and Trump have said a lot about negotiations but what matters is what they are not saying. The bottom line remains as it has always been. The terms used publicly sound grand but are not defined and tell us very little. We now have the exchange of words begun by Kim s attack on the US/ROK military exercises and Trumps waffling about what might or might not happen. Trump now says he will not go to the meeting and does not rule out military action while Kim has said bring it on. Kim s rhetoric is predictable but we don t know from one day to the next what Trump will say.. Let us examine the possibilities. There are two possible explanations for Kim s outburst. One is that he was genuinely upset by Trump s bellicose statements combined with the ill-timed military exercises and his statement was a reaction which would not otherwise have been made. The second is that he always planned something like this and was just looking for a handle to hang it on. Certainly Trump s insensitivity is enough to upset the calmest of people but on the other hand the DPRK has a long history of playing these sorts of games so either is possible or perhaps some combination of the two could be envisaged. The history of DPRK negotiating tactics makes it clear that we cannot trust anything they say. [US NK Negotiations] [Australia] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.reuters.com/article/us-northkorea-missiles-milius-japan/u-s-reinforces-east-asia-ballistic-missile-defense-as-trump-kim-summit-nears-idUSKCN1IN0O9><B> U.S. bolsters Asia ballistic missile defense as Trump-Kim summit nears </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Tim Kelly YOKOSUKA, Japan (Reuters) - The USS Milius, one of the U.S. Navy s most advanced guided missile destroyers, arrived in Japan on Tuesday to reinforce defenses against any ballistic missile attacks by North Korea, or anyone else in East Asia. The U.S. guided-missile destroyer USS Milius (DDG69) arrives to join Forward Deployed Naval Forces at the U.S. naval base in Yokosuka, Japan May 22, 2018. REUTERS/Issei Kato The warship s arrival at Yokosuka Naval Base comes three weeks before an unprecedented meeting is supposed to take place in Singapore between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un. The show of force is a reminder of the military pressure that can be brought to bear on North Korea as the United States seeks to press it to abandon its nuclear weapons and its ballistic missile program. The deployment of the Milius to Japan was delayed by almost a year so it could undergo upgrades to its Aegis air defense system to enhance its ability to detect and target missiles. [Missile defense] [Kim_Trumptalks18] [China confrontation] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/05/23/2018052300669.html><B> Moon, Trump Pledge to Work Closely on U.S.-N.Korea Summit </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Jeong Woo-sang May 23, 2018 09:15 President Moon Jae-in and his U.S. counterpart Donald Trump at the White House on Tuesday agreed to cooperate closely to ensure that the U.S.-North Korea summit on June 12 is a success. The North has recently become more assertive in the run-up to the summit as the two sides staked out wildly divergent road maps for denuclearization. Moon arrived at the White House at noon and sat down with Trump alone with only their interpreters by their side. He explained to Trump that North Korea's latest fractious behavior is not so much a change of heart but fueled by demands for security guarantees for the regime. Moon reportedly pointed out that North Korean leader Kim Jong-un pledged complete denuclearization at the summit between the two Koreas last month and demonstrated his willingness to ensure the success of the U.S.-North Korea summit by releasing three American detainees and shutting down the nuclear test site in Punggye-ri. He also urged Trump not to let a "rare opportunity" with North Korea slip. [Moon Trump18] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/05/23/2018052300465.html><B> Trump-Kim Summit Coin Rings Hollow for Some </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> VOA News May 23, 2018 08:12 A special White House coin commemorating the planned summit between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un is ringing hollow for some but already is deemed a desirable item for collectors. The colorful coin features images of a hirsute-headed Trump face to face with "Supreme Leader" Kim (with an apparent double chin). At the top of the coin, the planned June 12 summit in Singapore is referenced as "Peace Talks." The other side is more standard, containing the seal of the president and an image of Air Force One flying over the White House. "I urge the White House to take Kim off the coin," said the top Democrat in the U.S. Senate. Conservative pundit Bill Kristol deemed the commemorative coin in the spirit of "dime-store authoritarianism -- at once farcical and creepy." [Kim_Trumptalks18] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/05/103_249453.html><B> Successful summit with Kim Jong-un would make Trump Nobel-worthy: Carter </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-05-23 15:33 Updated : 2018-05-23 15:33 Former U.S. president Jimmy Carter / AFP Former U.S. president Jimmy Carter said Donald Trump should be considered for the Nobel Peace Prize if he manages to forge peace with North Korea. "If President Trump is successful in getting a peace treaty that's acceptable to both sides with North Korea, I think he certainly ought to be considered for the Nobel Peace Prize," Carter said in an interview with Politico published on Tuesday. [Jimmy Carter] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.keia.org/newsstory/press-release-ambassador-kathleen-stephens-appointed-chair-kei-advisory-council><B> Ambassador Kathleen Stephens Appointed Chair of KEI Advisory Council </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> May 2, 2016 | Washington, DC - The Korea Economic Institute of America is pleased to announce that Ambassador Kathleen Stephens will serve as the new chair of the KEI Advisory Council.  We are deeply honored to have Ambassador Stephens as the new chair of our Advisory Council, said KEI President Donald Manzullo.  She has had a distinguished career in helping build bridges between the United States and South Korea, which fits in perfectly with our goals here at KEI. Stephens served in the U.S. Foreign Service for 35 years and was the U.S. Ambassador to the Republic of Korea from 2008-2011. Her other overseas posts included India, China, the former Yugoslavia, and Northern Ireland, where she led the U.S. diplomatic team during the peace process negotiations. She was Acting Under Secretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs in 2012, Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for East Asia and the Pacific (2005-2007), and Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for European Affairs (2003-2005), leading negotiations on post-conflict iss [KEI] [Think Tank] [Front] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://apnews.com/30e5f1b40bf243dcaad0462889ab80bb><B> North Korea slams Pence remark, renews threat to quit summit </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> TOKYO (AP)  North Korea has renewed its threat to pull out of a summit next month with President Donald Trump, saying it is just as ready to meet in a nuclear confrontation as at the negotiating table. Pyongyang s latest salvo follows recent comments by U.S. Vice President Mike Pence suggesting the North may end up like Libya if it doesn t move forward with denuclearization. Choe Son Hui, the vice minister of foreign affairs, was quoted Thursday by the North s state-run news agency slamming as  ignorant comments Pence made in an interview with Fox News that compared North Korea to Libya, saying they showed he does not understand North Korea s situation. [Pence] [Libya] [Ignorance] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.politico.com/story/2018/05/21/trump-north-korea-summit-democrats-601898><B> Dems grit their teeth and cheer for Trump on North Korea </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> A successful meeting with Kim Jong Un would give Trump and the GOP a big morale boost just a few months before the November midterms. By ELANA SCHOR and HEATHER CAYGLE 05/21/2018 07:11 PM EDT Democrats face a political minefield ahead of President Donald Trump s historic meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un: how to root for success for a president they usually want to see flounder. Trump is reportedly reevaluating the prospects for a significant denuclearization commitment from Kim, but if he manages to land a foreign policy coup that has eluded past presidents, it couldn t come at a worse time for Democrats. The party is planning to center its midterm campaign message around the numerous scandals engulfing the administration. A successful meeting with Kim, however, would give Trump and the GOP  already encouraged by record-low unemployment and other positive economic indicators  a big morale boost just a few months before the November midterms. [Kim_Trump_talks18] [Democrats] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.commondreams.org/views/2018/05/21/playing-trump-peace?utm_campaign=shareaholic&utm_medium=facebook&utm_source=socialnetwork><B> Playing Trump for Peace </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> How the Korean peninsula could become a bright spot in a world gone mad. by John Feffer "In gaining Trump s support, the two Koreas have indeed, however paradoxically, neutralized the United States as an actor in the drama of inter-Korean relations."(Photo: Ju Peng/Xinhua via Associated Press) "In gaining Trump s support, the two Koreas have indeed, however paradoxically, neutralized the United States as an actor in the drama of inter-Korean relations."(Photo: Ju Peng/Xinhua via Associated Press) When, in early March, Donald Trump agreed to meet North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, the Washington foreign policy elite nearly suffered a collective heart attack. For one thing, the announcement came as a complete surprise. Trump had telegraphed his other foreign policy bombshells well in advance: leaving the Paris climate accord, ripping up the Iran nuclear deal, reversing dtente with Cuba. North Korea was another matter. Trump had repeatedly insulted Kim Jong-un in his trademark style, calling him  Little Rocket Man on Twitter and threatening at the U.N. in September 2017 to  totally destroy North Korea. Official Washington was braced for war, not peace. You d think, then, that an announcement of jaw-jaw, not war-war, would have met with universal acclaim in the nation s capital. Instead, observers across the ideological spectrum found fault with Trump and his attempt to denuclearize North Korea through negotiations. They criticized his timing, his impulsiveness, even the fact that the announcement came from South Korean representatives visiting Washington and not the president himself. Experts on Korea promptly decried the president s move because he hadn t demanded any North Korean concessions first.  We d expect such a highly symbolic meeting to happen after some concrete deliverables were in hand, not before, tweeted New America Foundation fellow Suzanne DiMaggio. (In fact, the North Koreans had declared a moratorium on further testing of their nukes and missiles, but that apparently didn t count.) Worse yet, the North Koreans were getting the summit of their dreams for nothing.  Kim will accomplish the dream of his father and grandfather by making North Korea a nuclear state, tweeted Abraham Denmark, head of Asia programs at the Wilson Center,  and gain tremendous prestige and legitimacy by meeting with an American president as an equal. All without giving up a single warhead or missile. Although some foreign policy professionals did express cautious optimism that something good could still come from the first summit between an American president and a North Korean leader -- now officially scheduled for June 12th in Singapore -- the overall verdict was one of barely concealed dismay. "The U.S. has been getting played and outmaneuvered the past three months... and it's happening again, right now," tweeted former Pentagon official Van Jackson. Skepticism is, of course, the default position of the foreign policy community. [Kim_Trump_talks18] [MISCOM] [Skepticism] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://peaceinkoreanews.timshorrock.com/2018/05/21/us-activists-denied-travel-to-north-korea/><B> US activists denied travel to North Korea </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted By: Tim Shorrock May 21, 2018 The US State Department has denied special permits for travel to North Korea to two prominent American women who are in Asia mobilizing international support for the Korea peace process. Christine Ahn, the founder and international coordinator of Women Cross DMZ, an international coalition of women peace activists, was denied a permit to travel to North Korea on April 3. Jody Williams, who won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1997 for her work to ban landmines and chairs the Nobel Women s Initiative, was denied her permit on May 18. In 2015, Women Cross DMZ visited North Korea before crossing the border into the South. Under a law passed by Congress last year after a US student, Otto Warmbier, died after being released from a North Korean prison, US travel to the country is banned. The US government, however, can grant a  special validation permit to Americans seeking to visit the North if they meet certain conditions. Both Ahn and Williams had applied under that clause, but were turned down.  The Department has determined that granting your request is not in the national interest of the United States, Ahn and Williams were informed in identical letters obtained by Dispatch Korea. They were signed by Jonathan Rolbin, the director of State s Office of Legal Affairs and Law Enforcement Liaison. [Sanctions] [Fraternisation] [Traverl ban] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/05/21/2018052101058.html><B> U.S. Pacific Commander Named Ambassador to Seoul </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Cho Yi-jun May 21, 2018 12:26 Harry Harris /AP-Yonhap U.S. President Donald Trump has nominated U.S. Pacific Command chief Adm. Harry Harris as ambassador to South Korea, the White House said Friday. Harris was originally nominated as ambassador to Australia in Feburary, but Secretary of State Mike Pompeo reportedly asked Trump to give Harris, a hardliner on North Korea, the post in Seoul. Harris will be the highest-ranking military officer to hold the post. The post has been vacant since former Ambassador Mark Lippert left in January last year. Harris is expected to take office around July after a Senate confirmation hearing. Harris is also a hardliner on China and particularly upset by Beijing's forays into the South China Sea. [Harry Harris] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/05/21/2018052101087.html><B> S.Korea 'Asked U.S. to Scrap B-52 Bomber Drill' </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Yu Yong-weon May 21, 2018 12:53 The U.S. military has staged a flight drill of B-52 strategic bombers independently of joint aerial exercises with South Korea. <BR> The bombers were supposed to have taken part in the joint drill dubbed "Max Thunder," but were left out "after the South Korean government expressed concerns that it could generate tensions" ahead of a U.S.-North Korea summit, the Wall Street Journal reported Friday. The joint aerial drills have been going on since May 11. The B-52s flew near the southernmost tip of the Korean Peninsula last Thursday but did not enter South Korea's air defense identification zone. According to the daily, the B-52s were to have buzzed the edge of South Korea's ADIZ, but Seoul told Washington that it did not want the bombers to take part in the joint drill. Defense Minister Song Young-moo and Gen. Vincent Brooks, the commander of the U.S. Forces Korea, met on May 16, when the North canceled high-level cross-border talks citing the Max Thunder drill. After their meeting, the B-52s were given a new mission to fly only within Japan's ADIZ. This is copyrighted material owned by Digital Chosun Inc. No part of it may be reproduced or transmitted in any form or by any means without prior written permission. [Joint US military] [B-52] [US dominance] [Posturing] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/05/356_249311.html><B> Moon to leave for Washington today to discuss Trump-Kim talks </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-05-21 10:12 Updated : 2018-05-21 15:52 South Korean President Moon Jae-in was set to leave for Washington on Monday on an apparent mission to help broker a nuclear deal between the United States and North Korea ahead of their first-ever summit next month. Moon's trip follows his historic summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un at the border village of Panmunjom on April 27. He will hold talks with U.S. President Donald Trump on Tuesday (Washington time). The trip, however, also comes after a series of old rhetoric from Pyongyang that accuses Seoul and Washington of trying to topple its communist regime. North Korea abruptly suspended high-level talks with the South scheduled for last week, citing an ongoing joint military exercise of the two allies. It has also threatened to reconsider the Trump-Kim summit, set to be held in Singapore on June 12. "We expect the upcoming South Korea-U.S. summit to play a role as a bridge (between the U.S. and North Korea) that will lead to the success of the North Korea-U.S. summit as it comes three weeks before the North Korea-U.S. summit," Nam Gwan-pyo, a deputy director of the presidential National Security Office, said earlier. Moon and Trump will likely discuss "ways to guarantee a bright future for the North when North Korea achieves complete denuclearization," he added.[Moon Trump] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.aol.com/article/news/2018/05/21/trumps-lauded-north-korea-summit-increasingly-looks-set-to-blow-up-in-his-face/23440078/><B> Trump's lauded North Korea summit increasingly looks set to blow up in his face </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Business Insider Alex Lockie May 21st 2018 1:46PM President Donald Trump's North Korea summit with Kim Jong Un increasingly looks doomed. Trump has often talked up his work on North Korea, crediting himself with creating the conditions for talks through a hardline policy, but those self-congratulatory tweets could come back to haunt him. But he's reportedly ill-prepared for the summit and worries it could blow up in his face as an embarrassment. South Korea may have misled Trump a bit before the talks, and North Korea is almost certainly misleading him. North Korea experts fear that failed talks could lead the US to an even more militaristic path, possibly even to war against Kim. President Donald Trump stands less than one month away from making history as the first sitting US president to meet a sitting North Korean leader  but it's increasingly looking like he's ill-prepared and sailing towards embarrassment. Trump has of late talked up his work on North Korea, crediting himself with creating the conditions for talks through a hardline policy. But that self-congratulation could come back to haunt him. [Kim_Trump_talks18] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.counterpunch.org/2018/05/18/whos-to-blame-if-the-us-north-korea-summit-isnt-held/><B> Who s to Blame If the US-North Korea Summit Isn t Held? </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> by Mel Gurtov May 18, 2018 Virtually everyone in the US faults North Korea for threatening to cancel the Trump-Kim summit scheduled for June 12 in Singapore. No one, including the liberal media, bothers to address North Korea s conditions for a successful summit or the reasons for its warning about a cancellation. Let s review the matter with some objectivity. First, we should keep in mind that from the outset many specialists, myself included, identified interpretations of  denuclearization as a likely source of contention. The Americans should have known from long experience that North Korea is not going to give up its principal bargaining chip and strategic deterrent in advance of receiving incentives. After all, Kim Jong-un probably believes that North Korea s advances in strategic weapons are precisely what got Trump to accept an invitation to a summit meeting. Second, the incentives the North Koreans have always demanded are security assurances and an end to  hostile US policies. They want to know the US will not attack their country, will not seek regime change, and will, with China and South Korea, sign a peace treaty guaranteeing the DPRK s security. [US NK Negotiations] [Kim_Trump_talks18] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/05/120_249250.html><B> Trump names Harry Harris US ambassador to South Korea </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-05-19 11:06 Updated : 2018-05-19 11:06 U.S. President Donald Trump on Friday named Harry Harris, current commander of the U.S. Pacific Command, his first ambassador to South Korea at a critical diplomatic juncture on the Korean Peninsula. The White House made the announcement just weeks ahead of a nuclear summit between Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and days ahead of a meeting in Washington between Trump and South Korean President Moon Jae-in. Harris was reported to be Trump's pick last month after initially being tapped as the U.S. ambassador to Australia. It is the first time Trump has formally named an ambassador to Seoul since he took office last year. The White House said Harris is a "highly decorated, combat proven Naval officer with extensive knowledge, leadership, and geopolitical expertise in the Indo-Pacific region." [Harry Harris] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/05/103_249205.html><B> Kim-Trump summit to be 'huge success or complete failure,' says behavior analyst </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-05-18 14:59 Updated : 2018-05-19 11:01 North Korean leader Kim Jong-un grabs Chinese leader Xi Jinping's right hand with two hands ? one in the palm and the other at the wrist ? while shaking hands in this photo taken in Beijing on March 28. Such a handshake reflects Kim's personality trait of being macho, active, goal-oriented and ambitious, says behavior analyst Lim Moon-su. / Yonhap By Park Si-soo All eyes are on the June 12 summit between North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and U.S. President Donald Trump in Singapore. What will be on the agenda? How will the talks unfold? What will be the outcome and how will it change the world? These are questions political pundits and analysts around the globe are tantalizingly storming their brains to find the answers. North Korea recently added a complexity to the conundrum by threatening to call off the meeting. And the unexpected threat has spawned another set of queries: What is the North's true intention behind the threat? Is this a tactic to ramp up negotiation leverage in the lead-up to the meeting? Has Kim determined to turn everything back to square one? As the summit day nears, the situation appears to be heading toward rough water, with questions and uncertainties, rather than clarity and predictability. Against this blurry backdrop, Lim Moon-su, a seasoned behavior analyst, may be able to provide some answers. Lim, who leads Seoul-based behavior analysis institute I Can Read You (ICRU), has analyzed the North Korean leader's personality traits based on his behavior, gestures and facial expressions in dozens of video clips, including ones captured during the April 27 inter-Korean summit. He also has explored Trump's personality in the same manner to estimate the depth of Kim-Trump chemistry, which could determine the fate of the June meeting. [Kim_Trump_talks18] [Psychology] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/05/356_249221.html><B> US has no plans to downsize drills over NK threat </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-05-18 16:25 Updated : 2018-05-18 18:14 By Lee Min-hyung The United States has no plans to downsize joint military exercises with South Korea over the ongoing verbal provocations from the North, the U.S. defense department said Thursday. The response came two days after Pyongyang denounced Seoul and Washington for carrying out the joint Max Thunder air drills. Citing the exercises, the regime also threatened Wednesday to cancel the upcoming summit between its leader Kim Jong-un and U.S. President Donald Trump. "The scope of our exercises has not changed," Pentagon spokeswoman Dana White said. "There are alliance decisions, and this is something that we do to ensure the readiness of both our forces as well as the South Korean forces." For the joint exercise, Seoul and Washington deployed F-22 Raptor stealth jets, F-15Ks and F-16s on the Korean Peninsula. The joint exercise started its two-week run on May 11. South Korea's Ministry of National Defense also said its position is in line with the Pentagon, saying it does not have any plans to scale down or cancel the drills and will carry them out as planned. White also made it clear there has been no talk of changing its scope or reducing its scale, underlining that the annual exercise is "defensive in nature." Pyongyang canceled a planned inter-Korean high-level dialogue on Wednesday, claiming Max Thunder goes against the peace momentum. In response, South Korea expressed regret over the North's abrupt cancellation, urging the regime to return to the dialogue table. [Joint US Military] [Belligerence] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/05/356_249211.html><B> Moon, Trump to meet in Washington on Tuesday </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-05-18 15:29 Updated : 2018-05-18 15:59 South Korean President Moon Jae-in will try to use his summit with U.S. President Donald Trump to broker a nuclear deal between the United States and North Korea, a presidential aide said Friday. The meeting is scheduled for Tuesday in Washington, three weeks before the U.S. president and North Korean leader Kim Jong-il hold their first summit in Singapore. "We expect the upcoming summit to play a role as a bridge (between the U.S. and North Korea) that will lead to the success of the North Korea-U.S. summit as it comes three weeks before the North Korea-U.S. summit," Nam Gwan-pyo, a deputy director of the presidential National Security Office, told reporters. The two are "expected to discuss ways to guarantee a bright future for the North when North Korea achieves complete denuclearization," the Cheong Wa Dae official added. Moon is set to head for Washington late Monday (Seoul time). He will return home early Thursday after his two-day trip. Moon's trip follows his historic summit with the North Korean leader at the border village of Panmunjom on April 27, in which the leaders of the divided Koreas agreed to pursue complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula and also halt their countries' hostile acts against each other. The Trump-Kim summit, set to be held June 12, is expected to set the terms for the North's denuclearization process. Pyongyang has already offered to publicly dismantle its only known nuclear test site in northeastern Punggye-ri between May 23-25, inviting journalists from five countries -- South Korea, China, Russia, Britain and the U.S. -- to witness the event. However, the communist state also sought to up the ante for its giving up its nuclear program, saying it may have to reconsider the summit should the U.S. insist on its unconditional and unilateral denuclearization. Trump said in Washington that he never had the so-called Libya model for the North's denuclearization process in mind, saying Kim will be very happy with what he plans to propose at their upcoming summit if they do reach a deal there. (Yonhap) [Trump_MoonMay18] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/05/103_249232.html><B> Trump seeks 'South Korean model' to tackle North Korean nuke crisis </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-05-18 17:13 Updated : 2018-05-18 17:32 US president reaffirms security guarantee for N. Korea By Yi Whan-woo U.S. President Donald Trump said he pursues a "South Korean model," not a "Libyan model," for the denuclearization of North Korea. Speaking at the White House, Thursday, Trump also said North Korea will be "tremendously industrious" under the "South Korean model" and that Kim Jong-un will receive "very adequate protection" in return for his nation's possible denuclearization. His remark is seen as a bid to reassure the Kim regime's survival, ahead of their planned June 12 summit in Singapore. It also came as both the U.S. and North Korea are playing hardball with each other in a possible attempt to take the initiative before the summit. Pyongyang was apparently infuriated early this week over White House National Security Adviser John Bolton's suggestion of the "Libyan model" for U.S. policy on North Korea. Calling the suggestion an "awfully sinister move," North Korea said it would even "reconsider" the summit with the U.S. Trump downplayed the "Libyan model," under which Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi _ later killed after his regime was toppled _ conceded to Western demands to give up his weapons of mass destruction in 2003 in return for sanctions relief. Still, the unpredictable American president warned a "Libyan model" is likely, should he and Kim fail to make a deal. "The Libyan model isn't the model we have in mind at all while we are thinking of North Korea," Trump said during a meeting with NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg. Calling Kim Jong-un by his initials, Trump said things will be different for the North Korean despot. "The Libyan model that was mentioned was a much different deal. This would be with KJU, something where he would be there, be in his country, running his country, his country will be very rich, his people are tremendously industrious," he said. "If you look at South Korea, this would be really a South Korean model in terms of their industry, in terms of what they do, hardworking incredible people." [Trump] [Libya] [Regime change] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.zoominkorea.org/clashing-visions-of-denuclearization-pose-risk-to-u-s-north-korea-summit/><B> Clashing Visions of Denuclearization Pose Risk to U.S.-North Korea Summit </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> May 17, 2018 By Gregory Elich The soaring hopes generated by the recent Inter-Korean Summit are now supplanted by uncertainty, due to North Korea s suspension of a planned meeting with the South. In the weeks following the summit s Panmunjom Declaration, North Korea took actions to demonstrate its goodwill and desire for peaceful resolution of differences. The Democratic People s Republic of Korea (DPRK  the formal name for North Korea) announced that it would dismantle its underground nuclear test site, culminating in explosions to collapse tunnels, the blocking of entries, and removal of above-ground facilities. Substantial progress has already been made on disabling the site. The DPRK could have waited and made this a negotiable issue in talks with the United States. Instead, it offered the step to the United States ahead of the summit as a confidence-building measure. Before that, North Korea also committed to a suspension of nuclear and missile testing. As an additional gesture of good intentions, North Korea released all three American prisoners. [US NK Negotiations] [KimGK180516] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Njh66Fm4U1c&feature=youtu.be><B> CrossTalk on North Korea: Summit or no summit? </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> RT Published on May 18, 2018 Summit or no summit - that is the question. North Korea s threat of a no-show in Singapore on June 12 is a reminder to Washington that North Korea will not merely cave to American demands  or should I say John Bolton s demands. If there is going to be an agreement, it will take time and patience. Do the Americans and the North Koreans have enough of either? CrossTalking with Myung-Koo Kang, Jenny Town, and Kevin Martin. [US NK Negotiations] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/05/17/2018051700845.html><B> N.Korea Threatens to Pull out of Summit with U.S. Over Air Drills </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Jun Hyun-suk May 17, 2018 10:03 North Korea on Wednesday threatened to cancel a planned summit with the U.S. in June amid a massive aerial drill by South Korean and American forces. Kim Kye-gwan, a veteran nuclear negotiator and North Korea's vice foreign minister, in a statement warned Pyongyang "could reconsider a summit with the U.S. if the U.S. is trying to drive us into a corner to force our unilateral nuclear abandonment." The North is also furious that the U.S. is ratcheting up demands for denuclearization before the summit has even taken place. [Joint US Military] [Suspension] [KimKG180516] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/05/17/2018051701362.html><B> N.Korea Snaps Back at Increasing Demands from U.S. </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Cho Yi-jun, Kim Jin-myung May 17, 2018 12:49 The U.S. government refrained from an immediate response after North Korea on Wednesday warned it could pull out of a summit with U.S. President Donald Trump next month. Trump was asked several times on Wednesday whether the summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un is still on, but only said, "We haven't been notified at all. We haven't seen anything. We haven't heard anything. We'll see what happens." White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said on Fox News, "We're ready to meet and if it happens, that's great. And if it doesn't, we'll see what happens." Kim Kye-gwan, North Korea's first vice minister of Foreign Affairs, in a statement Wednesday said North Korea will have to "reconsider" the summit if Washington tries "to push us unilaterally into a corner and force us to give up nukes." He mentioned national security adviser John Bolton by name three times. [KimKG180516] [Bolton] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/05/103_249175.html><B> Ban says US pullout of Iran deal bad example for NK </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-05-17 16:49 Updated : 2018-05-17 17:05 By Kim Bo-eun Ban Ki-moon Former United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said Wednesday the U.S. withdrawing from the Iranian nuclear deal does not serve as a good precedent for negotiating an agreement with North Korea. The U.S. announced earlier this month it would withdraw from the Iran nuclear deal, also known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA), signed with China, France, Russia, the U.K. and Germany in 2015. U.S. President Donald Trump had taken issue with the agreement signed under the Barack Obama administration, stating it left room for Iran to violate terms. This comes when Trump is set to have a summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in June to discuss denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula. "Now they're on the verge of making a very grand and big agreement between the U.S. and North Korean leaders," Ban said in an interview with CNBC. "I personally believe it has been given a very problematic message in terms of credibility, trust and confidence in the U.S. What kind of message will North Korea get from this?" he asked. "Can I trust the U.S. president? This may be the first question by North Korea's leader." [Ban Ki-moon] [Iran deal] [Renege] [Example] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TTNpbb73dC4><B> Sudden Jeopardy: North Korea summit in question </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Hyun Lee <BR> RT America Published on May 16, 2018 Sudden Jeopardy: North Korea summit in question On the Korean peninsula hopes for a summit and a path towards peace are in serious doubt. Tuesday North Korea cut off talks with South Korea citing military exercises between the south and the United States. RT America s Ed Schultz is joined by Hyun Lee, Managing Editor at Zoom In Korea. [Suspension] [Joint US military] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.facebook.com/lawyersfordemilitarizationandpeaceinkorea/?hc_ref=ARS-KGIgGkgqxrw_YXk1iyyk-cIcT5CnDZ277WS-jxFhlDujACVIIRdWQMxwtC5Hj1s&fref=nf><B> Lawyers for Demilitarization and Peace in Korea </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Statement of the 2018 United States Legal Delegation to Korea Following the meeting of the leaders of Korea which captured the imagination of the world and created hope for a real and lasting peace in the Korean peninsula, we as members of the legal community in the United States express our desire and support for the realization of peace in Korea and the self-determination of the Korean people. [Peace effort] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://fpif.org/the-korean-massacre-the-u-s-needs-to-apologize-for/?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=5-16-18><B> The Korean Massacre the U.S. Needs to Apologize For </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> To help make peace in Korea, the U.S. should follow South Korea's lead and apologize for its role in the devastating Jeju massacre. By Geoffrey Fattig, May 14, 2018. Singapore has been chosen to host the unlikely summit between U.S. president Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in early June. The choice for the summit venue went against Trump s preference for the meeting to take place at the Peace House in Panmunjeom, where the world had been captivated just weeks before by the amicable scenes of Kim walking hand-in-hand across the Military Demarcation line with South Korean President Moon Jae-in. Given that Panmunejom embodies of the division of the Korean Peninsula, it is regrettable that U.S. and North Korean negotiators opted for the southeast Asian city-state instead. This is because the root of the nuclear issue stems largely from the decision by American military officers to divide the Peninsula at the 38th Parallel in the aftermath of World War II. The arbitrary divide led to a devastating war, decades of hostility between a previously unified people, and heartbreak for families forever separated from loved ones. One of the most tragic results of the division was the 1948 Jeju Uprising, which began on April 3 of that year and resulted in the deaths of over 10,000 of the island s inhabitants  many of whom were civilians, including an estimated 770 children under the age of five. [Jeju] [Massacre] [US complicity] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.youtube.com/watch?time_continue=15&v=-vfPSd0Dmno><B> Trump splits with John Bolton on "Libya model" for North Korea </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> CBS News Published on May 17, 2018 President Trump seemed to contradict earlier comments made by his national security adviser, John Bolton, after Bolton claimed the U.S. is considering the "Libyan model" as an approach to North Korea. Mr. Trump said the "Libyan model isn't a model that we have at all" for North Korea, adding that the U.S. "decimated" Libya. [Trump] [Bolton] [Libya] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.abolition2000.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/03/Open-Letter-to-Trump-Moon-and-Kim.final_.docx.pdf><B> Peace with North Korea </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> March 28, 2018 President Donald J. Trump of the United States of America (US) President Moon Jae - in of the Republic of Korea (ROK) Chairman Kim J o ng - u n of the Democratic People s Republic of Korea (DPRK) Dear President Trump, President Moon and Chairman Kim, As US civil society groups and individuals deeply concerned about dangerous military tension s between our nation and the DPRK , and the rising global risks of nuclear catastrophe, we wish to convey our deepest gratitude for the groundbreaking steps you have taken to begin the essential dialogue and diplomacy that must be undertaken if we are to prevent a war that would likely result in an unthinkable disaster for the Korean P eninsula, the United States and the world . We fully support the upcoming inter - Korean summit in April and the U.S. - DPRK summit in May , and we urge you to patiently and diligently seek common ground [Peace effort] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.commondreams.org/views/2018/05/16/us-war-footing-korea-remains-major-roadblock-peace><B> U.S. War Footing in Korea Remains Major Roadblock to Peace </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Many have rightly voiced fears that the Trump administration s plan may be to come to the table with North Korea with unrealistic, maximalist demands so that it can claim that it tried diplomacy and diplomacy failed, making it easier to build a case for war. by Gabe Murphy South Koreans watch on a screen reporting the U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo visit to North Korea at the Seoul Railway Station on May 9, 2018 in Seoul, South Korea. (Photo: Chung Sung-Jun/Getty Images) North Korea s cancellation of talks planned between North and South Korea is cause for concern, as is its suggestion that the U.S.-North Korea summit scheduled for June 12 could meet the same fate. But the greater causes for concern are the U.S.-South Korea war drills and a U.S. negotiating posture that assumes immediate and unconditional denuclearization of North Korea, both of which North Korea has cited as reasons it might cancel the Trump-Kim summit. North Korea has long maintained, understandably so, that the joint military exercises between the U.S. and South Korea are offensive in nature and amount to practice for an invasion. The so-called  Max Thunder military exercises, a name that invokes anything but a defensive posture, began on May 11 and are expected to last for two weeks. [Joint US Military] [Kim_Trump_talks18] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://peaceinkoreanews.timshorrock.com/2018/05/16/another-media-freakout-on-north-korea/><B> Another media freakout on North Korea (Updated) </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted By: Tim Shorrock May 16, 2018 Five days ago, after reading stories in the Korean press about the latest US-South Korean military exercises called  Max Thunder, I tweeted out a warning that the strategic weapons being deployed might set off red flags in Pyongyang. I'm a little surprised about the scale of these exercises, which include F-22s and B-52s from Guam. And I've even more surprised by North Korea's silence about them. https://t.co/0Gu3B5McEv  Tim Shorrock (@TimothyS) May 11, 2018 Why was I surprised? Because Kim Jong Un, in his preliminary meetings leading up to his April 27 summit with Moon Jae-in, had said that North Korea would not object to  normal US-South Korean military exercises. That was widely understood in South Korea to mean that he would accept the drills as long as they didn t include  strategic weapons such as B-1B and B-52 bombers, aircraft carriers and nuclear submarines, all of which had taken part in earlier exercises and were viewed by the Kim government as both provocative and threatening. So when I saw reports in the Korean media that the  Max Thunder air exercises were to include both B-52s from Guam and advanced F-22s stationed in Japan, I wondered why we hadn t heard anything critical from Pyongyang about them. Well, yesterday we did. [Joint US military] [Suspension] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://gregoryelich.org/2018/05/16/dprk-suspends-south-korea-meeting-after-us-drills/><B> DPRK Suspends South Korea Meeting After US Drills </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> May 16, 2018 Gregory Elich interviewed by Eugene Puryear and Sean Blackmon <BR> North Korea suspends its meeting with South Korea following provocations from U.S./South Korean military drills, Washington s inability to compromise with Pyongyang and the effect this may have on the Korean unification process [Suspension] [Joint US military] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.theamericanconservative.com/larison/trump-isnt-bothering-to-prepare-for-the-north-korea-summit/><B> Trump Isn t Bothering to Prepare for the North Korea Summit </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Daniel Larison " May 16, 2018, 5:46 PM The summit with North Korea is still scheduled to take place next month, but the president isn t bothering to do much work to prepare for it: [Kim_Trump_talks18] [Incompetence] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.spreaker.com/user/radiosputnik/libya-model-dprk-says-no-thanks-to-bolto_1><B>  Libya Model?!  DPRK Says  No Thanks to Bolton s Regime Change Plans </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> On today's episode of Loud & Clear, Brian Becker and John Kiriakou are joined by Hyun Lee, a member of the Solidarity Committee for Democracy and Peace in Korea and writer for Zoominkorea.org, and Dr. Christine Hong, Associate Professor of Critical Race and Ethnic Studies at UC Santa Cruz and a member of the Korea Policy Institute. Following large-scale military exercises and threatening statements from National Security Advisor John Bolton, North Korea has announced the cancellation of an Inter-Korean meeting between officials from the North and South. Will the peace process still move forward? [Suspension] [Joint US military] [Libya] [Bolton] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/05/15/2018051501101.html><B> N.Korea Won't Give up Nukes, Says Prominent Defector </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Kim Myong-song May 15, 2018 11:28 A senior North Korean defector on Monday said North Korean leader Kim Jong-un's ultimate goal remains to become a nuclear-armed state. Thae Yong-ho, the former No. 2 man in the North Korean Embassy in London and now a vocal critic of the regime, was speaking at a book launch in the National Assembly. He said North Korea's idea of denuclearization is "quite different from the abandonment of nuclear weapons." Thae told Newsis that the current flurry of international diplomacy will not end with "a sincere and complete disarmament" but with "a reduced North Korean nuclear threat." "In the end, North Korea will remain a nuclear power packaged as a non-nuclear state," he added. [US NK Negotiations] [Deterrence] [Face] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_northkorea/844513.html><B> North Korean embassy in Singapore an unseen presence </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted on : May.14,2018 16:06 KST Modified on : May.14,2018 16:06 KST Survey finds around 70 percent of locals support hosting the summit The lobby of the Marina Bay Sands hotel in Singapore. On the morning of May 13, it was quiet at the building in the middle of downtown Singapore, where the North Korean embassy is located. It was a Sunday, and most of the shops were closed. Across the street from the building is the Parliament of Singapore, and on the other side of that is Raffles Place, the old downtown area. The famous skyline of Singapore could be seen in the direction of the old downtown. There were no indications on the building that it was the location of the North Korean embassy. The North Korean flag was not flying outside the building, and the name of the North Korean embassy did not appear on the list of tenant organizations behind the information desk on the first floor.  Not all the tenants are listed there, said a security guard sitting at the information desk as he pulled out a notebook and showed it to me. [Singapore] [Kim_Trump_talks18] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://forward.com/fast-forward/400870/will-a-sheldon-adelson-hotel-host-the-trump-kim-summit/><B> Will A Sheldon Adelson Hotel Host The Trump-Kim Summit? </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> May 10, 2018 By Ari Feldman The Trump administration announced Thursday that the summit between Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un will happen in Singapore. That has opened up the possibility that the summit could happen at a hotel owned by Republican mega-donor Sheldon Adelson. Adelson s international Sands corporation unveiled the Marina Bay Sands in Singapore in 2010. At the time, it was considered the single most expensive stand-alone casino in the world, valued at $8 billion. Adelson is one of the largest donors to the Republican party. On Thursday, POLITICO reported that Adelson had given $30 million to the GOP s Congressional Leadership Fund  money that will be spent on the 2018 midterm elections. Adelson was one of the major voices pushing the Trump administration to move the U.S. embassy in Israel to Jerusalem  something Trump agreed to do last year. [Kim_Trump_talks18] [Sheldon Adelson] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.msnbc.com/am-joy/watch/north-korea-and-united-states-prepare-for-june-summit-1231931971664><B> Donald Trump welcomed back three Americans who had been detained in North Korea </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Donald Trump welcomed back three Americans who had been detained in North Korea and praised the dictator Kim Jong-un who had held them captive, before the announcement of the coming meeting between the leaders in June. Joy Reid and her panel discuss South Korea s Presid [Detainees] [Media] [Joe Cicerone] [Christine Ahn] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_business/844357.html><B> US hedge fund sues South Korean government for its involvement in corporate merger </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted on : May.13,2018 13:25 KST Modified on : May.13,2018 13:25 KST Elliott Management demands over 700 billion won for alleged losses in merger between Samsung C&T and Cheil Industries Paul Singer, CEO of hedge fund Elliott Management The US hedge fund Elliott Management is demanding over 700 billion won ($US656.6 million) in compensation from the South Korean government for losses it claims resulted from the administration s improper involvement in the 2015 merger of Samsung C&T and Cheil Industries. [Corporate power] [Friction] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/05/103_248919.html><B> North Korea, US in talks over denuke roadmap </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-05-13 16:58 Updated : 2018-05-13 17:20 A TV screen at Seoul Railway Station shows a satellite image of the Punggye-ri nuclear test site in North Korea during a news program, Sunday. North Korea said Saturday that it will dismantle the test site in less than two weeks, in a dramatic event that would set up leader Kim Jong Un's summit with President Donald Trump next month. / AP-Yonhap All eyes on dismantling of Punggye-ri test site By Yi Whan-woo North Korea will dismantle its nuclear test site in Punggye-ri between May 23 and 25, the first step toward its "complete denuclearization" in line with an agreement reached between the leaders of the two Koreas, April 27. The North will also invite journalists from South Korea, the U.S., China, Russia and the United Kingdom to witness the dismantlement. Announced by its foreign ministry, Saturday, Pyongyang's plan to close its nuclear test facility is also seen as a bid to build trust with Washington prior to a planned summit between leader Kim Jong-un and U.S. President Donald Trump in Singapore, June 12. "A ceremony for dismantling the nuclear test ground is now scheduled between May 23 and 25," depending on the weather, the ministry said in a statement. It said observation and research facilities and ground-based guard units will also be removed. Trump welcomed North Korea's decision, calling it a "gracious gesture." [Denuclearisation] [Punggye-ri-r] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/05/103_248900.html><B> 40% of North Koreans suffer from malnutrition, says WFP </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-05-13 15:37 Updated : 2018-05-13 17:17 By Kang Aa-young North Korea still needs continued humanitarian assistance because many mothers and young children there still relied on aid to meet their nutritional needs, UN World Food Program (WFP) chief David Beasley said Friday. He said after a four-day visit to the North that, he did not see starvation as there was in the 1990s, but there was obvious hunger and under-nutrition. "There is a real need for continued humanitarian assistance, especially when it comes to meeting the nutritional needs of mothers and young children," he said. According to the Washington Post, the WFP estimates that more than 10 million of North Korea's 24.8 million people (40 percent) are undernourished, with one in three young mothers and children under aged five or under 5 suffering from anemia. The WFP feeds about 500,000 women and children every month with food such as porridge and high-energy biscuits. But the organization says its food aid program is "severely underfunded." Accompanied by government minders, Beasley spent four days in North Korea, two in the capital Pyongyang and two in the countryside. [Malnutrition] [Sanctions effect] [Maximum pressure] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://kpolicy.org/the-kpi-reader-2018-useful-new-resource-on-korea/><B> The KPI Reader 2018 A Critical Resource on Korea </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> May 12, 2018 PYEONGCHANG-GUN, SOUTH KOREA  FEBRUARY 09: The North Korea and South Korea Olympic teams enter together under the Korean Unification Flag during the Parade of Athletesduring the Opening Ceremony of the PyeongChang 2018 Winter Olympic Games at PyeongChang Olympic Stadium on February 9, 2018 in Pyeongchang-gun, South Korea. (Photo by Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images) The Korea Policy Institute is pleased to present the 2018 Korea Policy Institute reader, a valuable resource for classrooms, study groups, and individuals seeking critical context to the unfolding situation on the Korean peninsula. This must-read compilation features articles from leading analysts, journalists, and scholars in the United States, Asia, and the Pacific, and is divided into five sections: The Unending Korean War U.S. Foreign Policy Towards North Korea South Korea: The Democratic Struggle Voices for Peace A Hopeful Start to an Era of Peace [US NK policy] [[History] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/05/11/2018051100949.html><B> U.S. Troop Presence Not on Agenda of N.Korea-U.S. Summit </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Yu Yong-weon May 11, 2018 10:13 U.S. Defense Secretary James Mattis on Wednesday said the presence of U.S. troops in South Korea will not be on the agenda of a U.S.-North Korea summit in June. The U.S. Forces Korea are a "stabilizing presence" in the region, Mattis told a Senate hearing. "That's not something that would be on the table in the initial negotiation." "If during the negotiation this issue was to come up between our allies and us, that would be one thing -- between two allies, not a matter of the negotiation" with North Korea, he added. His remarks seem aimed at quelling controversy in South Korea and the U.S. over whether the U.S. Forces Korea could be used as a bargaining chip. But that he only ruled it out for "the initial negotiation" set alarm bells ringing. Reuters glossed the comments as meaning that Mattis "did not rule out that the United States could eventually examine troop levels in South Korea as part of a bilateral discussion between Washington and Seoul, potentially concurrent with talks with Pyongyang." Still, they show Mattis backpedaling from remarks on April 27, when he told reporters the USFK is "part of the issues that we'll be discussing in negotiations with our allies first, and of course with North Korea." [USFK] [Military presence] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/opinion/2018/05/723_248833.html><B> From the prison cells of Guantanamo Bay to Embassy in Seoul </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-05-12 10:17 Updated : 2018-05-12 10:17 Admiral Harry Harris / AP Harry Harris, the rise of an American warlord By Emanuel Pastreich Admiral Harry Harris, commander of the US Pacific Command in Hawaii, was slated to startwork as ambassador to Australia this month. Suddenly, out of the blue, the Trump White House announced on April 24 that Harris would be assigned to South Korea. The assignment was unprecedented at multiple levels. Assigning a military officer as ambassador to Korea when Seoul is trying to develop peaceful ties with North Korea, and the rest of East Asia, is extraordinary. Assigning a military officer who has close ties with the far-right in Japan is also extraordinary granted the sensitivity about Japan's colonial domination of Korea. The fact that Harris was born in Japan to a Japanese mother is not a reason to oppose his appointment. Yet his being awarded the "Order of the Rising Sun" at exactly the same moment he was assigned at ambassador to Korea was extremely odd. And then there is that matter of his role at the Guantanamo Prison camp at the time that torture and abuse were carried out within a carefully constructed legal limbo. In normal times, Harris' role in that blatantly illegal operation would be enough to end a career, at the very least. But these are not normal times. [Harry Harris] [Guantanamo Bay] [Torture] [Australia] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/05/103_248871.html><B> Pyongyang's denuclearization may proceed speedily: official </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-05-12 16:08 Updated : 2018-05-12 16:08 The U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, right, escorts South Korean Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha to a joint press conference at the State Department in Washington, DC, May 11. / EPA-Yonhap Moves to denuclearize North Korea are expected to proceed speedily this time, due to a determination by the leaders of the two Koreas and the United States to achieve that goal, a ranking South Korean government official said Friday. The official told Korean reporters here that the dismantling of North Korea's nuclear weapons program will likely proceed at a speed far faster than under any other similar nuclear accords of the past. "Implementation of a (denuclearization) agreement is expected to proceed swiftly if the leaders are committed to the deal," the official said. [Denuclearisation] [Wishful thinking] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/05/11/2018051101272.html><B> Korean American Played Key Role in U.S.-N.Korea Summit </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Ahn Jun-yong May 11, 2018 12:08 A silver-haired Asian man seen sitting next to U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo during a meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in Pyongyang on Wednesday is Andrew Kim, the head of the Korea Mission Center at the CIA. Andrew Kim was the only other U.S. official present at the meeting. A former head of the CIA's Seoul office, Kim has been traveling back and forth between Washington and Pyongyang since early this year, playing a key role in dialogue between the two sides. He is credited with a huge contribution to the rapid progress in efforts to make a summit between the U.S. and North Korea happen. Andrew Kim (in a red circle) talks with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un and U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in Pyongyang on Wednesday, in this screen grab from [North] Korean Central Television on Thursday. Pompeo, his former boss at the CIA, orchestrated contact with the North, while Kim took on the role of handling working-level meetings. Kim was in South Korea during the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang and met with Maeng Kyong-il, deputy director of the North's United Front Department. Kim and Cheong Wa Dae National Security Council chief Chung Eui-yong are relatives by marriage and apparently discussed inter-Korean and U.S. diplomatic issues. Kim was born in South Korea and emigrated to the U.S. when he was in high school. A few hours after U.S. President Donald Trump personally welcomed home the three Americans freed by North Korea, he announced that his summit with Kim will take place in Singapore on June 12. [Andrew Kim] [Pompeo] [CIA] [US NK negotiations] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/05/103_248831.html><B> Singaporeans excited about hosting Trump-Kim summit </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-05-11 17:17 Updated : 2018-05-11 17:50 By Kim Jae-kyoung SINGAPORE ? Most Singaporeans are excited about their country hosting the upcoming historic summit between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. They believe that the summit, slated for June 12, will put Singapore in the global spotlight again and help solidify its status as a reliable international state. The responses came after President Trump said Thursday he would meet Kim Jong-un on June 12 in the Southeast Asian country to discuss the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula. "I'm very excited because it shows that Singapore has the international standing to host such important event," Chua Boon Ping, chief executive officer of SPH (Singapore Press Holdings) Media Fund, told The Korea Times. [Kim_Trump_talks18] [Singapore] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/05/103_248785.html><B> Trump welcomes back Americans freed by North Korea </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-05-10 16:08 Updated : 2018-05-10 17:06 US President Donald Trump applauds as U.S. detainee Kim Dong-chul, second from right, gestures upon his return with Kim Hak-song (behind) and Tony Kim, center, after they were freed by North Korea, at Joint Base Andrews in Maryland, Thursday (local time). / AFP U.S. President Donald Trump shakes hands with Tony Kim as fellow detainee Kim Dong-chul and U.S. Vice President Mike Pence look on. / AFP Three Korean-Americans who were detained in North Korea for more than a year were greeted by President Donald Trump beneath a giant American flag after they returned to the mainland U.S. early Thursday. Despite a middle-of-the-night landing, first lady Melania Trump, Vice President Mike Pence and a host of senior administration officials joined Trump to celebrate the occasion. The men, Kim Dong-chul, Kim Hak-song and Tony Kim, had been released Wednesday amid a warming of relations between the longtime adversaries. The president and first lady boarded the medical plane on which the men traveled to take a private moment with them, then appeared at the top of the airplane stairway with the three and applauded as the men held up their arms in what appeared to be gestures of triumph. ''This is a special night for these three really great people,'' Trump told reporters as he stood on the tarmac with the former detainees. On the U.S. relationship with North Korea, Trump said, ''We're starting off on a new footing.'' In thanking North Korea's Kim Jong-un for releasing the three Americans, Trump said he believes Kim wants to reach an agreement on denuclearizing the Korean peninsula. ''I really think he wants to do something,'' the president said. After Trump's remarks, the three men boarded a bus for Walter Reed National Military Medical Center. The White House said earlier they would be evaluated and receive medical treatment at the Washington-area facility. Their families were not on hand for the ceremony. [US NK Negotiations] [Detainees] [Trump] [PR] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/05/103_248545.html?utm_source=dable><B> North Korea's complete denuclearization unlikely' </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-05-06 18:11 Updated : 2018-05-06 18:15 Robert Gallucci, Georgetown University professor and former chief U.S. negotiator during North Korea's 1994 nuclear standoff, talks during an interview with The Korea Times at the Shilla Hotel in central Seoul, Thursday. / Korea Times photo by Hong In-ki By Lee Suh-yoon, Lee Min-hyung A U.S. expert on North Korea's nuclear issue said it might be unrealistic to continue pushing for "a complete, verifiable and irreversible" denuclearization (CVID) of North Korea's nuclear programs, despite the North's commitment to denuclearization. Robert Gallucci, the former chief U.S. negotiator during the 1994 North Korean nuclear crisis, said the standards for denuclearization set by the popular notion of CVID would be physically impossible. "We cannot verify the declaration of the North," Gallucci said during an exclusive interview with The Korea Times, Thursday, during his participation in the Korea Forum 2018 co-hosted by the English daily and its sister paper the Hankook Ilbo. [Gallucci] [Denuclearisation] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.afsc.org/blogs/media-uncovered/there%E2%80%99s-more-to-north-korea-meets-eye-here%E2%80%99s-five-ways-to-learn-more><B> There s more to North Korea than meets the eye: Here s five ways to learn more </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Media Uncovered | By Beth Hallowell, May 8, 2018 With North Korea in the news lately, we are seeing media coverage focus on high-level officials and diplomacy. But there is a whole side to the country that we often don t see, even now: Ordinary people leading their lives. Learning about North Korea and how to talk about its history, its people, and its place in the world is a critical step in building peace and undoing the fear that many in the U.S. feel about this unknown and not well-understood country--and a way that anyone can help drive our countries toward dialogue. Not sure where to begin? Here are five ways to learn about North Korea that show you the people who live there, what life is like, and how our countries got to where we are today, along with tips about what to do with the information you learn. [Quakers] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/05/09/2018050901357.html><B> Pompeo Revisits Pyongyang as N.Korea Fails to Release U.S. Citizens </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Jun Hyun-suk May 09, 2018 13:01 U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo arrived in Pyongyang on Wednesday to prepare for President Donald Trump's upcoming summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. The flying visit comes after North Korea scrapped the release of three U.S. citizens via the border truce village of Panmunjom last weekend, apparently amid wrangling over the summit agenda. It remains to be seen whether Pompeo can take them with him on his flight home. At the weekend, UN Command soldiers were told of their impending handover because any activities in the demilitarized zone require notification, but the three never arrived, according to Voice of America. U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo (left) shakes hands with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in Pyongyang in early April. /Courtesy of the White House A military source said, "There was an alert to the UNC instructing them to stand by over the weekend, but it is unclear whether it had to do with the handover of hostages." A government source said the handover is being delayed because North Korea vehemently opposes certain areas of the agenda of the U.S.-North Korea summit. The U.S. has recently stepped up its demands for North Korea to dismantle its nuclear and ballistic missile programs. Earlier, there were reports that the three detainees, who are ethnic Koreans, were moved from their prison camps to a hotel in Pyongyang and their release was imminent. Last Wednesday U.S. President Donald Trump tweeted, "As everybody is aware, the past administration has long been asking for three hostages to be released from a North Korean labor camp, but to no avail. Stay tuned!" When their release was not forthcoming, U.S. media accused Trump of playing fast and loose with the feelings of the detainees' families. [Pompeo] [Detainees] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/biz/2018/05/488_248708.html><B> US exit from Iran deal threatens South Korean economy </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-05-09 16:23 Updated : 2018-05-09 17:01 By Yoon Ja-young The United States' withdrawal from the Iran nuclear deal and decision to levy fresh sanctions is expected to deal a blow to the Korean economy, which depends heavily on oil imports. A further rise in oil prices will be inevitable, leading to contractions of both consumption and investment. Industries sensitive to oil prices such as airlines and petrochemicals will be hit hardest, according to analysts, Wednesday. U.S. President Donald Trump announced Tuesday the U.S. would pull out of the nuclear deal since the "defective" agreement would not stop Iran from developing nuclear weapons. Analysts expect increasing fluctuations in global oil prices, with the geopolitical risk coupled to surging demand adding upward pressure. Prices of Western Texas Intermediate (WTI) reached $70.73 Monday, surpassing the $70 mark for the first time in three-and-a-half years. "Global oil prices are likely to reach $80 per barrel if Trump's sanctions on Iran become a reality," said Hwang Sung-hyun, an analyst at Eugene Investment and Securities. He pointed to decreasing production by OPEC as well as hampered output in Venezuela, Angola and Libya that is negating increasing output in the United States. [Renege] [Iran deal] [US SK] [Friction] [Oil price] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/05/356_248662.html><B> Seoul's new envoy to Vietnam gets warning for anti-US remarks </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-05-08 19:02 Updated : 2018-05-09 10:17 President Moon Jae-in, right, shakes hands with newly appointed Ambassador to Vietnam Kim Do-hyun at Cheong Wa Dae last week. By Oh Young-jin The Foreign Ministry Tuesday admonished the new ambassador to Vietnam, Kim Do-hyun, for his critical remarks about the United States during an interview with a vernacular Korean paper. The remarks in question are as follows: "The reason why the inter-Korean summit was successful is because pro-United States diplomats were not put in charge. ... a majority of Korean diplomats have thought they could get promoted if they were close to Americans and if not, they would have no future." New Korean Ambassador to Vietnam Kim Do-hyun A ministry spokesman said, "Ambassador Kim went to his post several days ago. Since he will have many chances to have interviews with media, we have internally taken necessary steps." [Pro-Americanism] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/05/103_248586.html><B> Singapore likely venue for Trump-Kim summit: sources </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-05-07 16:16 Updated : 2018-05-08 15:51 By Yi Whan-woo Singapore has emerged as the most likely venue for the planned summit between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, according to multiple diplomatic sources, Monday. The sources said the historic summit will likely take place between June 9 and 15, after Trump attends the G-7 Summit slated for June 8 to 9 in Quebec, Canada. [Kim_Trump_talks18] [Venue] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_northkorea/843588.html><B> Analysts search for clues as Trump delays revealing details of North Korea-US summit </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted on : May.7,2018 17:01 KST Modified on : May.7,2018 17:01 KST Date and location still not finalized, but Trump says  It will be soon US President Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un While US President Donald Trump said for two days in a row that the location and date had been decided for his summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un  which would be the first North Korea-US summit in history  he has not released any of the specifics. As more time passes without Trump elaborating, a variety of analysts have offered their take on the reason. During a rally about tax reform in Cleveland, Ohio, on May 5, Trump said that a decision had been made about the time and location of the North Korea-US summit. He said much the same thing the day before, on May 4. When he was asked by reporters about the date of the summit inside Air Force One en route to an event organized by the National Rifle Association in Dallas, Texas, Trump said that the summit  will be very soon. I have the date. I have the location. It s all agreed to. But when asked about the timing of the announcement, Trump would only say,  It will be soon.  I think a lot of good things are going to be happening over the next short period of time. But I ll see you over there. It s going to be very exciting, Trump said. On May 1, Trump also created a buzz by saying that the time and location would be decided within a few days, but he has continued to push back the announcement. According to multiple sources in Washington, DC, Trump appears to be telling the truth when he says that North Korea and the US have agreed on the time and location of their first ever summit. If this decision had not been reached, it would have been impossible to finalize the date of the North Korea-US {SK-US] summit that will be held on May 22. Early June appears to be the likely timing of the North Korea-US summit. [Kim_Trump_talks18] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_national/843589.html><B> Trump and Bolton deny NY Times report concerning reduction in US Forces Korea </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted on : May.7,2018 17:04 KST Modified on : May.7,2018 17:04 KST US President Donald Trump and White House National Security Advisor John Bolton both denied a New York Times report claiming Trump ordered the review of a possible reduction in US Forces Korea numbers. Prior to leaving for a National Rifle Association (NRA) event in Dallas, Trump fielded questions from reporters at the White House on May 4 on whether the USFK troop reduction issue would be on the table at the upcoming North Korea-US summit and whether the US has plans to withdraw USFK.  No. No. And we haven t been asked to [withdraw], Trump replied.  Troops are not the table, Trump reiterated. His remarks were a direct denial of speculation in some quarters that the USFK troop reduction issue would be addressed in some manner at the North Korea-US summit. But Trump s real attitude was evident in his subsequent comments.  I would like to save the money. You know, we have 32,000 troops there [in South Korea], he said. His remarks were interpreted as indicating that while he does not intend to make a USFK withdrawal of reduction part of the agenda for the first-ever North Korea-US summit  which is expected to take place in early June  he also hopes to win major concessions in current USFK defense cost sharing talks with Seoul. South Korea and the US have begun their tenth negotiations on the defense cost sharing arrangement to go into effect as of Mar. 2019. The ninth round, which was concluded in Jan. 2014, resulted in a 5.8% increase in South Korea s share from 869.5 billion won (US$809.5 million) in 2013. Pressure from the US government to obtain a larger share from Seoul is expected to intensify. Bolton also actively disputed the New York Times report. Bolton calls NY Times story  utter nonsense  The New York Times story is utter nonsense. The President has not asked the Pentagon to provide options for reducing American forces stationed in South Korea, Bolton said that day through the White House. [USFK] [Tribute] Cost] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/05/04/2018050401384.html><B> N.Korea Demands Lifting of Sanctions, Pullout of THAAD Battery </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Lee Kil-seong, Lee Yong-soo May 04, 2018 12:36 North Korea on Thursday urged South Korea and the U.S. to lift sanctions, withdraw the Terminal High-Altitude Area Defense battery in southwestern Korea, and stop mentioning human rights abuses in the North. The demands came after the recent inter-Korean summit and ahead of a summit with the U.S. "The American plot against human rights practices is a provocative racket that poses an obstacle to the trend towards dialogue and peace," the official Rodong Sinmun daily said. "We're doubtful of America's sincerity whether it really has the intention to have dialogue." The Uriminzokkiri propaganda website complained about remarks by U.S. officials in favor of keeping up maximum pressure on the North, calling them "an affront and insult to our sincere efforts towards peace." State media also said there is "no longer is any justification or excuse" for the presence of the THAAD battery. Propaganda outlet Meari said, "The THAAD battery is an ill-intentioned act running counter to the inter-Korean relations. The battery should be withdrawn immediately." Meanwhile, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi, who is on a visit to Pyongyang, met North Korean leader Kim Jong-un on Thursday. Wang expressed support of the regime's efforts to remove "justifiable worries" about security in the process of denuclearization. The North's "firm stance is to realize denuclearization on the Korean Peninsula," Kim reportedly said. He added Pyongyang is trying to "find ways to restore dialogue and build mutual trust to remove sources that threaten peace on the peninsula." A diplomatic source said the phrase "justifiable worries" refers to massive joint South Korea-U.S. military exercises. [THAAD] [China NK] [Human rights] [Softwar] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/05/04/2018050401071.html><B> Kenneth Bae Recalls Release from N.Korean Labor Camp </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Kim Myong-song May 04, 2018 10:50 Kenneth Bae, a one-time prisoner in North Korea, on Thursday recalled his own release in 2014 amid reports that the North is freeing three American citizens of Korean descent. "If a senior American official visits, the regime relocates American hostages to a hotel or hospital for treatment in advance," Bae told the Chosun Ilbo on Thursday. "They're trying to make it look as if the prisoners are well treated even though they are under detention on some criminal charge." Bae, an evangelical pastor who was arrested in North Korea for proselytizing, said he too "was relocated to hospital for treatment and rehabilitation six weeks ahead of my release." "Though his efforts failed in the end, I was able to take a good rest for three weeks at hospital ahead of a visit by Robert King, the then U.S. State Department's special envoy for North Korea human rights, in August 2013, he added. Bae was arrested because he had a storage device with a documentary film on the North when he visited in November 2012. He was finally freed when then National Intelligence Director James Clapper visited Pyongyang in November 2014. "When I was in prison there, I was forced to do hard labor from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. every day, working in a field of beans or carrying coals," he recalled. "I lost 24 kg in just three months because I was given a paltry amount of food but had to work hard." He said the regime deliberately holds Americans hostage "to use them as a bargaining chip in negotiations with the U.S." "North Korean investigators made me write letters to my family in the U.S. to persuade them to ask the U.S. government to 'save' me and they also released footage of me asking for help." "The regime didn't conceal its ulterior motives," he added. "During the trial, North Korean prosecutors openly said, 'Everything depends on what attitude the U.S. takes,'" he said. [Bae] [Detainee] [Hype] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.counterpunch.org/2018/05/04/korea-an-alternative-history/><B> Korea, an Alternative History </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> by Ron Jacobs Photograph Source Shih Tung Ngiam | CC BY 2.0 For decades, consumers of the US media have been fed a series of repeated lies concerning the status of northern Korea. Tales of mass starvation and brutal torture are told over and over, occasionally updated but essentially the same as those told when Washington first realized it could not defeat the national forces headquartered in Pyongyang. Naturally, these stories become more frequent and considerably more dramatic during those times the US military heightens tensions in the region. While some of these  reports are probably based in fact, the more revealing aspect of their being told is the lack of context involved in their telling. In other words, most US residents have very little knowledge of Korean history and culture and, if asked, would most likely be unable to identify where Seoul or Pyongyang are on the map. This serves the interests of the powers that be in DC quite nicely. If the citizens of an aggressor nation (which the United States certainly has been in Korea) are ignorant of the land and people their rulers wish to attack, then those citizens are likely to believe most anything they are told by those in power intent on making war. This seems especially the case when it comes to Korea now Washington s longest surviving enemy. Indeed, most all US political figures liberal and conservative, military members and media folks buy into the commonly held portrayal of northern Korea as a land ruled by a brutal dictatorship imposed originally from the outside that starves many of its people and enslaves the rest. Even many of those who have expressed doubts about similar claims made by war hawks in regards to other nations (Iraq, Iran) believe such stories when it comes to Korea. <BR> This situation exists because it strengthens the US argument for the continued occupation of the Korean peninsula and its maintenance of the state of not-quite-war. As author Stephen Gowans makes clear in his recent book Patriots, Traitors and Empires: The Story of Korea s Struggle for Freedom, the history of Korea is quite different than that most US residents have been told. [US NK policy] [History] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_international/843416.html><B> NY Times reports that Trump orders reduction of US Forces Korea </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted on : May.5,2018 14:53 KST Modified on : May.5,2018 14:53 KST Blue House and White House claim report is  not true at all On May 3, the New York Times reported that US President Donald Trump had ordered the Pentagon to prepare measures to reduce American troops in South Korea, citing multiple sources. Considering that South Korea and the US are currently negotiating the cost sharing agreement for those troops deployment and that a North Korea-US summit is approaching, this report, if true, is expected to have major ramifications. The Blue House immediately denied the report, saying that it was  not true at all. While American officials declined to comment on whether the options that Trump is seeking represent a partial or full reduction, the New York Times reported that a full reduction was not likely. The officials emphasized that a review of the scale and deployment of US Forces Korea was needed already, regardless of the diplomatic situation with North Korea, suggesting that a consensus has formed inside the administration about reducing the troop presence to some extent. Trump said that withdrawing U.S. forces from South Korea is  not on the table. the AP reported.  Now I have to tell you, at some point into the future, I would like to save the money, Trump said later as he prepared to board Air Force One.  You know we have 32,000 troops there but I think a lot of great things will happen but troops are not on the table. Absolutely. In the newspaper s analysis, Trump s orders to prepare drawdown measures are primarily related to the negotiations about defense cost sharing. [Trump] [Strategic incoherence] [Cost] [Tribute] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_northkorea/843413.html><B> Trump and President Moon to meet on May 22 in Washington, DC </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted on : May.5,2018 14:46 KST Modified on : May.5,2018 14:46 KST Two leaders to discuss details of North Korea-US summit, White House announces President Moon Jae-in and US President Donald Trump hold a joint press conference following their summit, at the White House Rose Garden in Washington DC, June 30, 2017. The White House announced on May 4 that South Korean President Moon Jae-in is set to meet with US President Donald Trump at the White House, Washington, DC, on May 22. The press secretary of the White House released a statement on May 4 saying that "President Donald J. Trump will welcome President Moon Jae-in of the Republic of Korea to the White House on May 22, 2018," adding that the " third summit between the two leaders affirms the enduring strength of the United States-Republic of Korea alliance and the deep friendship between our two countries." The upcoming South Korea-US summit is a follow-up to President Moon's visit to the US on June 30, 2017, and South Korea's receipt of Trump's state visit to South Korea on November 7. Considering President Moon and Trump met at the UN General Assembly on Sept. 22, 2017, the upcoming South Korea-US summit will be the two leaders' fourth meeting. By Yi Yong-in, Washington correspondent [Moon Jae-in] [US SK alliance] [Kim_Trump_talks18] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_northkorea/843360.html><B> Pompeo says US has  unprecedented opportunity to change historical course of Korean Peninsula </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted on : May.4,2018 18:50 KST Modified on : May.4,2018 18:50 KST Says US is committed to  permanent, verifiable, irreversible dismantling of North Korea s weapons US President Trump shakes hands with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and gives him a thumbs-up at Pompeo s swearing-in ceremony on May 2 in Washington, DC. (EPA, Yonhap News) US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, who is directing the US s preparations for an upcoming summit between President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, described the situation on May 2 as an  unprecedented opportunity to change the course of history on the Korean Peninsula. The same day, North Korea was reportedly observed beginning steps toward the closure of its nuclear test site.  I underscore the word  opportunity ; we are in the beginning stages of the work and the outcome is certainly yet unknown, Pompeo said at a swearing-in ceremony that day at the State Department in Washington, DC.  One thing is certain: this administration will not repeat the mistakes of the past. Our eyes are wide open, he continued. Pompeo went on to declare,  It s time to solve this [North Korean nuclear issue] once and for all. A bad deal is not an option. [Pompeo] [NK deal] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://sputniknews.com/analysis/201805011064047322-south-north-korea-progress-diminish-usa/><B> South Korea-DPRK Diplomatic Progress May Diminish US Pull in Northeast Asia </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> WASHINGTON (Sputnik) - North Korean leader Kim Jong-un is seeking peace and stability with South Korea and the effect of the new confidence-building measures he has negotiated with Seoul will reduce US influence in northeast Asia, analysts told Sputnik. On Friday, Kim and South Korean President Moon Jae-in held a historic summit in Panmunjom and signed a Declaration for Peace, Prosperity and Unification on the Korean Peninsula. The document commits the two countries to take measures to support efforts aimed at denuclearizing the Korean peninsula as well as end the Korean War and reunite separated Korean families, among other issues. [Summit18] [Decline] [Dtente] [Wedge] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/05/04/2018050400768.html><B> N.Korea to Free American Citizens </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Kim Jin-myung More May 04, 2018 09:31 North Korea has apparently agreed to release three American citizens ahead of a U.S.-North Korea summit this month. U.S. President Donald Trump tweeted on Wednesday, "As everybody is aware, the past administration has long been asking for three hostages to be released from a North Korean labor camp, but to no avail. Stay tuned!" Former New York Mayor Rudolph Giuliani, who joined the White House legal team recently, told Fox News on Wednesday, "We've got Kim Jong-un impressed enough to be releasing three prisoners today." A group of American negotiators who went to the North recently will take them home. The three men have already been moved from a prison camp to a hotel outside Pyongyang, according to sources quoted by Choi Sung-ryong, an activist for South Koreans with family members abducted by the North. All are of South Korean descent. Kim Dong-chul, a pastor, was arrested for proselytizing in the Rajin-Sonbong special economic zone in October 2015. Kim Sang-duk, as known as Tony Kim, worked as a visiting accounting professor at Pyongyang University of Science and Technology when he was arrested for "hostile activities" against the regime during at Pyongyang Sunan International Airport in April last year. Kim Hak-song who taught agricultural technology in Pyongyang was also arrested for "hostile activities" at the railway station while waiting for a train bound for his home in Dandong, China in May last year. Six South Koreans also remain detained in the North, but their release was not on the agenda of the latest inter-Korean summit. [Detainees] [Overture] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://uslaboragainstwar.org/Article/79630/uslaw-solidarity-delegation-visits-imprisoned-korean-labor-leader><B> USLAW Solidarity Delegation Visits Imprisoned Korean Labor Leader </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Today four of us from the US Labor Against War delegation visited one of the most impressive people I have ever met. Han Sang-gyun is the former president of the Korean Confederation of Trade Unions. When Han was 17, in 1980, he joined the militia in a abortive uprising against the right-wing government of South Korea. A major massacre occurred, but Han escaped and later got a job in the auto industry. There he helped lead a strike in which the workers occupied the auto plant for 77 days. For this Han served three years in prison. In 2014 Han was elected president of the Korean Confederation of Trade Unions on a platform calling for a general strike. After leading rallies that eventually led to the candlelight revolution and the impeachment of the President of Korea, Han was sentenced to a second 3-year term, which will end in December. When we met with him today he was full of good spirit and determined to help lead the struggle for democracy, labor rights, and reunification. [Human rights] [Labour] [Moon Jae-in] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.atimes.com/article/denuclearization-premiums-and-discounts/><B> Denuclearization premiums and discounts </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> It is not a done deal yet, but if North Korea comes in from the cold, who are the winners and who are the losers, region-wide? By William Pesek April 30, 2018 South Korean President Moon Jae-in and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un attend a banquet on the Peace House at the truce village of Panmunjom. Photo: Press Pool/via Reuters Does whiplash make a sound? One can almost hear the collective neck strain pervading Northeast Asia following South Korean President Moon Jae-in s meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. The only thing that might be more pervasive is the air of cynicism surrounding the leaders of South and North Korea making nice, holding hands and pledging peace. Echoes of 2007 cloud the Northeast Asian skies. North Korea, many claim, can t be trusted, so let s get serious. And who d trust Donald Trump? The US president is, after all, reneging on an Iran nuclear deal that might be a model for Korean denuclearization. Then again  what if this is for real? [Kim_Trump_talks18] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/05/03/2018050301132.html><B> Gov't Dismisses Withdrawal of USFK </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Yu Yong-weon, Jun Hyun-suk May 03, 2018 10:27 Cheong Wa Dae on Wednesday tried to quell controversy over suggestions that the presence of U.S. troops in South Korea will no longer be necessary once a peace treaty with North Korea has been signed. But what are the issues at stake, and why are particularly conservatives so alarmed at the prospect of the withdrawal of the U.S. Forces Korea? From a legal standpoint, the U.S. troop presence in South Korea is based on a mutual defense treaty signed in July 1953, three months after the armistice that halted the Korean War. [USFK] [Military presence] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_northkorea/843001.html><B> Possible locations for North Korea-US summit narrowed down to two sites </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted on : May.2,2018 17:26 KST Modified on : May.2,2018 17:26 KST US President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un have reportedly entered the final phase of negotiations over the location of the first ever North Korea-US summit to be held this month, with Panmunjeom and Pyongyang as the final candidates.  The US is currently pushing for Panmunjeom and North Korea for Pyongyang as the site of the summit, a source in Washington who is familiar with developments concerning the summit said on Apr. 30.  A few days ago, President Trump said that the candidates for the North Korea-US summit had been narrowed down to two, but North Korea and the US were already talking about Panmunjeom and Pyongyang two weeks before he made those remarks, the source said. This means that, though the American press has been mentioning countries such as Singapore and Mongolia as likely sites for the summit, no  third country other than Panmunjeom had been on the list for quite some time. [Kim_Trump_talks18] [Venue] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://keia.org/event/security-issues-korean-peninsula-challenges-rok-us-alliance-2018><B> Security Issues on the Korean Peninsula: Challenges for the ROK-US Alliance in 2018 </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Date & Time: Thu, 05/17/2018 - 8:45am - 6:00pm Location: KEI Conference Facility 1800 K Street, NW, Suite 300 Washington, DC 20006 Description: THE ANNUAL CONFERENCE OF THE INTERNATIONAL COUNCIL ON KOREAN STUDIES jointly with KOREA ECONOMIC INSTITUTE OF AMERICA AND COMMITTEE FOR HUMAN RIGHTS IN NORTH KOREA present: SECURITY ISSUES ON THE KOREAN PENINSULA: Challenges for the ROK-US Alliance in 2018 Thursday, May 17, 2018 8:45 AM - 6:00 PM Korea Economic Institute of America 1800 K Street, NW Suite 300, Washington, DC 20006 To RSVP for this event, please click here. Conference Schedule: 08:00 AM | Registration 08:45 - 09:00 AM | Opening Remarks Bruce E. Bechtol, Jr., President, International Council of Korean Studies and Angelo State University Donald Manzullo President, Korea Economic Institute of America Greg Scarlatoiu Executive Director, Committee for Human Rights in North Korea 09:00 - 09:10 AM | Welcoming Remarks Jai P. Ryu Professor Emeritus, Loyola University Maryland and President, One Korea Foundation 09:10 - 11:45 AM | Panel I: Human Rights in North Korea Moderator: Doug Streusand Marine Corps Command and Staff College Papers: "Prison Camps in North Korea" Briana Martinez, Angelo State University "South Korea s Role in Fighting for Human Rights in the DPRK" George Hutchinson, George Mason University  Human Rights in North Korea and the new Presidency in Seoul Greg Scarlatoiu, Executive Director, HRNK Discussants: Gordon Chang, Daily Beast Chuck Downs, Retired Department of Defense 12:00 - 1:45 PM | Luncheon and Luncheon Speech Sponsored by the Korea Economic Institute of America  Korean Peninsula Issues Lieutenant General Raymond Ayres, USMC (RET) Council on U.S.-Korean Security Studies 2:00 - 3:45 PM | Panel II: Prospects for Korea s Economy Moderator: Donald Manzullo President, Korea Economic Institute of America Papers:  The Economic Value of the U.S.-Korea Alliance Kyle Ferrier, Korea Economic Institute of America  Economic Tensions in U.S.-South Korea Relations Troy Stangarone, Korea Economic Institute of America "Chances for North-South Economic Initiatives? William Brown, Non-Resident Fellow at the Korea Economic Institute of America Discussants Eui-Gak Hwang, Professor Emeritus, Korea University David Maxwell, Institute of World Politics 3:45 - 4:00 PM | Coffee Break 4:00  5:45 PM | Panel III: Anniversary of Korea s Troop Deployment to Vietnam War Moderator: Lt. General Raymond Ayres, USMC (RET) Council on U.S.-Korean Security Studies Papers:  Casualties of War: The Legacy of South Korean Participation in the Vietnam Conflict Christos Frentzos, Professor, Austin Peay State University "Operational Overview of the Koreans in Vietnam" James Durand, International Council on Korean Studies "Recollections of the Blue Dragons" Thomas Petri, 1st Air Naval Gunfire Liaison Company, Vietnam, 1967-68 Discussants: Larry Hufford, Saint Mary s University Bruce Bechtol, Angelo State University William Newcomb, C4ADS 5:45  6:00 PM | Closing Remarks Bruce E. Bechtol, Jr. President, International Council of Korean Studies and Angelo State University Donald Manzullo President, Korea Economic Institute of America Greg Scarlatoiu Executive Director, Committee for Human Rights in North Korea [US SK] [US NK policy] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/05/02/2018050200636.html><B> U.S. Stealth Fighter Jets Arrive in S.Korea </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Jun Hyun-suk May 02, 2018 09:09 Eight F-22 Raptor fighter jets have arrived in South Korea from the U.S., according to a government source here on Tuesday. The world's most advanced fighter jets arrived Sunday from their base in the U.S. mainland to take part in a joint exercise. It is the first time they have been mobilized on this scale for the "Max Thunder" drill that will last two weeks from May 11. The idea seems to be to keep up maximum pressure on North Korea until it agrees to denuclearize in a summit with the U.S. in May. The jets are parked at an air base in Gwangju. Their arrival became public when a civilian took a picture of them and posted it online, suggesting they flew deliberately low to be seen. An F-22 Raptor is parked in an unidentified location in Korea in December 2017 (file photo). South Korea and the U.S. have completed this year's main joint exercises but kept a relatively low profile ahead of the historic inter-Korean summit last week. The F-22 is one of the U.S. strategic weapons Pyongyang fears most since it can avoid radar detection and bombard targets with pinpoint accuracy, though it is not capable of conducting nuclear strikes. It could be mobilized for a "decapitation operation" that would target key military facilities in North Korea, or in a "bloody nose" attack that has been mooted in Washington recently. The U.S. has about 180 of the jets. [F-22] [Joint US military] [Posturing] [Maximum pressure] [Escalation\ </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/05/02/2018050201320.html><B> USFK Withdrawal Could Be Used as Bargaining Chip </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Cho Yi-jun, Jun Hyun-suk May 02, 2018 12:31 The withdrawal of U.S. troops from South Korea could eventually be on the agenda in negotiations with North Korea about a peace treaty formally ending the Korean War. NBC reported on April 30 that U.S. President Donald Trump, who believes South Korea does not pay enough for the USFK upkeep, entertained the idea of pulling out but aides persuaded him to change his mind. Moon Jung-in, President Moon Jae-in's security advisor, wrote in a column published Monday in Foreign Affairs magazine, "What will happen to U.S. forces in South Korea if a peace treaty is signed? It will be difficult to justify their continuing presence." U.S. Secretary of Defense James Mattis said on April 27 the idea could be discussed between the U.S. and its allies and North Korea. Moon Jung-in said once an agreement formally ending the Korean War and a peace treaty are signed, it will be natural for the USFK to leave because there will be no more raison d'tre for it, which is also North Korea's position. But President Moon said on April 19 that the North did not set USFK withdrawal as a precondition for denuclearization. "There will inevitably some change in the nature and size of the USFK if a peace treaty looms large," said Park Byung-kwang of the Institute for National Security Strategy. But he added, "The presence of the USFK is essential here for the stability of Northeast Asia as well as the Korean Peninsula." Prof. Park Won-gon of Handong Global University said, "Even if military tensions ease on the Korean Peninsula, the role of the U.S. and the USFK will be all the more important as a balancer to hold the military ambitions of China and Japan in check." A researcher with a government-funded think tank added, "China and the North will share strategic interests in Northeast Asia once a peace treaty is in place, and they will shake up Seoul-Washington relations together and South Korea will face serious security challenges." Cheong Wa Dae was quick to try and contain the fallout from Moon Jung-in's article. "U.S. troops stationed in South Korea are an issue regarding the alliance between South Korea and the United States. It has nothing to do with signing peace treaties," Cheong Wa Dae spokesman Kim Eui-kyeom quoted President Moon Jae-in as saying Wednesday. "Cheong Wa Dae Chief of Staff Im Jong-seok also telephoned to Moon Jong-in to ask him not to create a confusion with his views that might not be in line with the president's stance," Kim added. [USFK] [Withdrawal] [Military presence] [Peace treaty] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/05/02/2018050201038.html><B> Verifying N.Korea's Denuclearization Could Be a Bumpy Road </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Kim Jin-myung May 02, 2018 10:50 U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and other officials have warned against undue optimism about the North Korea-U.S. summit, saying the aim remains the "complete, verifiable, and irreversible dismantlement" of North Korea's nuclear weapons. They insist the North must grant "unlimited" access to international inspectors. That means North Korea must scrap not only its nuclear test site in Punggye-ri, but also its Yongbyon nuclear plant as well as any uranium-enrichment facilities. A crucial part of the process is verification, which means Pyongyang must disclose all its nuclear weapons, fissile materials, facilities, technology and researchers. Inspectors also need to visit other facilities that are suspected of involvement in the North's nuclear weapons program. [Pompeo] [Denuclearization] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_northkorea/842846.html><B> Panmunjeom strong candidate as venue for North Korea-US summit </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted on : May.1,2018 17:16 KST Modified on : May.1,2018 17:16 KST Trump mentions House of Peace and House of Freedom as possible sites in Tweet after 75-minute phone call with President Moon President Moon Jae-in holds a phone call with US President Donald Trump. Panmunjeom, which was the site of the inter-Korean summit on Apr. 27, is also becoming a strong contender for the site of the North Korea-US summit in May. That would make it very likely that the inter-Korean summit, the North Korea-US summit and a trilateral summit involving all those parties would be held successively at Panmunjeom, meaning that all the symbolic work for declaring the end of the Korean War and establishing a peace regime on the Korean Peninsula would take place on the peninsula itself. [Kim_Trump_talks18] [Venue] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_northkorea/842854.html><B> Pompeo and Bolton offer different stances regarding North Korea s denuclearization </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted on : May.1,2018 17:29 KST Modified on : May.1,2018 17:29 KST Key Trump advisors make first TV appearances regarding inter-Korean summit During his first trip to the Middle East, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo (left) shakes hands with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu before a joint press conference on Apr. 29 in Tel Aviv. (AFP) On Apr. 29, US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo and National Security Advisor John Bolton  US President Donald Trump s key advisors on foreign relations and security  both made TV appearances for the first time since the inter-Korean summit and offered a glimpse of US strategy leading up to the North Korea-US summit. The two figures did not appear to be on the same page, however: Pompeo, who met Kim at the beginning of April, adopted a more flexible stance and offered more optimistic predictions, while Bolton, a hardliner on North Korea, remained on his guard. To begin with, Pompeo and Bolton disagreed about the timing when sanctions could be relaxed. During an interview with ABC News, Pompeo dodged a question about whether there might be any easing of sanctions before the  complete irreversible dismantlement of North Korea s nuclear program and said,  We re going to do it in a fundamentally different way than the previous efforts to persuade the North Koreans to get rid of their nuclear weapons program. We have [. . .] our eyes wide open. When the same question was repeated, Pompeo repeated his answer about having  our eyes wide open. This can be seen as implying that the US would consider easing sanctions to some extent in line with North Korea s actions according to the principle of quid pro quo if the North agrees to the goal of denuclearization and a timeframe for achieving that. [Pompeo] [Bolton] [Kim_Trump_talks18] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/05/205_248284.html><B> 'US Forces Korea will stay even after peace treaty' </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-05-02 09:35 Updated : 2018-05-02 14:21 A presidential aide said Wednesday that U.S. troops will continue to be stationed in South Korea even if a peace treaty is signed to formally end the 1950-53 Korean War. The ranking official flatly dismissed the possibility of a withdrawal floated by a special security adviser to President Moon Jae-in. "The government's position is that the U.S. Forces Korea (USFK) is playing the role of a mediator between major powers surrounding the country, such as China and Japan. It is the government's stance that the USFK is needed," the Cheong Wa Dae official told reporters, while speaking on condition of anonymity. The remarks came shortly after Moon Chung-in, a special adviser to the president for unification, foreign affairs and national security, insisted the presence of U.S. troops in South Korea would no longer be justified should the Koreas formally end the Korean War. [USFK] [Military presence] [Peace treaty] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/opinion/2018/05/197_248298.html><B> Inter-Korean summit a good start for Trump-Kim meeting </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Doug Bandow Posted : 2018-05-02 13:51 Updated : 2018-05-02 13:52 The meeting between South Korean President Moon Jae-in and North Korean Supreme Leader Kim Jong-un was picture perfect. The symbolism of the summit could not have been better. But what the two leaders decided matters little until they act on their promises. And that won't happen unless President Donald Trump and Kim reach not only symbolic but also practical agreement. While possible, it won't be easy. [Summit18] [Libertarian] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://fpif.org/two-faced-trump-peace-in-korea-world-war-in-the-middle-east/><B> Two-Faced Trump: Peace in Korea, World War in the Middle East </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Trump believes he can simultaneously capture a Nobel Peace Prize for North Korea while leaping toward war with Iran. <BR> By John Feffer, May 2, 2018. The president giveth and he taketh away. Donald Trump is a stern and wrathful leader. He thinks nothing of raining down fire and fury upon the enemies of his  chosen people. Indeed, he even flirts with ending the world if he doesn t receive due respect and the requisite number of burnt offerings. But he can also reward his followers, and those who curry his favor, with positions of power and untold riches. This month, Trump will appear as both of these avatars. By meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, Trump promises to wave his hand and create peace where before there was nothing but strife and dissension. At the same time, Trump the Destroyer has pledged to take the United States out of the Iran nuclear deal and bring the world that much closer to apocalypse. It s a peculiarly hypocritical position to take, but strangely consistent for a two-faced leader. The deal with Iran closed off all possibility of the country going nuclear for a decade or more. A rich country, Iran could create quite a nuclear arsenal if it so wanted. Iran has abided by the terms of the current Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) and yet Trump has called the deal  horrible. Indeed, the president believes that he can  fix the JCPOA. That s quite a delusion. Meanwhile, nuclear North Korea has indicated that it would get rid of its weapons only in exchange for a peace treaty to formally end the Korean War and a pledge from the United States not to attack. A pledge from the United States? From the Trump administration? In light of Trump s attitude toward previous U.S. pledges to Iran and the presence of John Bolton as the new national security advisor, any promises from Washington are worth less than the 140 characters they re tweeted in. It s hard to imagine North Korea falling for such a canard. [Trump] [Iran confrontation] [US NK Negotiations] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.counterpunch.org/2018/04/30/de-escalation-with-north-korea-escalation-with-iran/><B> De-escalation With North Korea, Escalation With Iran </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> by Patrick Cockburn As a journalist, I have always dreaded reporting on meetings between world leaders billed as  historic or  momentous or just plain  significant . Such pretensions are usually phoney or, even if something of interest really does happen, its importance is exaggerated or oversimplified. But plus ca change is not always a safe slogan for the cautious reporter, because real change does occasionally take place and professional cynics are caught on the hop. Watching the  historic meeting between the leaders of North and South Korea at the Panmunjom border crossing this weekend  and listening to reporters bubbling over with excitement  it was difficult not to be captured by the enthusiastic mood [Trump] [Iran confrontation] [US NK Negotiations] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.counterpunch.org/2018/04/30/what-does-denuclearization-mean-in-the-negotiations-for-an-end-to-the-korean-war/><B> What Does  Denuclearization Mean in the Negotiations for an End to the Korean War? </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> by Dave Lindorff April 30, 2018 Media news reports and commentary as well as political statements coming out of Washington on the surprising blossoming of peace talks between North and South Korea tend to focus on the question of whether North Korean leader Kim Jong-un is really  serious about eliminating his recently developed nuclear weapons arsenal, or whether he will just try to keep what he has while decrying US military threats to his regime. Missing in all the verbiage has been any reporting on the long US history of nuclear weapons in South Korea, where the US still, 65 years after the end of fighting on the peninsula, maintains at least three military bases and 28,000 combat-ready troops. That history includes the US keeping as many as 950 nuclear bombs and a variety of delivery systems  rockets, planes and even howitzers that fire nuclear shells  within miles of the North Korean border. An excellent 2017 report by the Bulletin of Atomic Scientists, based upon publicly available Defense Department documents, gives detailed history of the basing of nuclear weapons  strategic and tactical  in South Korea during at least 33 years of the 65 years that the US and North Korea have been officially in a state of war. That report makes it clear that North Korea continues to have a bull s eye on it for US Trident submarines patrolling the north Pacific, and for nuclear-capable aircraft based on Guam, Okinawa and possibly or potentially in Japan, where the US has a major naval base. The report states that US nuclear weapons were finally fully removed from South Korea in 1991, on orders from then President George H. W. Bush, but discussions to return them took place on several occasions when tensions rose on the peninsula, including as recently as 2011 during the Obama administration. In US reporting on the peace negotiations between North and South Korea, and in speculation about whether Kim Jong-un is  serious about  giving up his country s nukes, there is typically a mention that while  denuclearization for the US means Kim giving up his nukes, the term for Kim and North Korea might mean a demand that the US pull its troops from South Korea and shut its bases there. [US NK Negotiations] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.korea.net/Government/Current-Affairs/National-Affairs/view?affairId=656&subId=640&articleId=158281><B> Seoul, Washington to work closely on US-NK summit, denuclearization </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Apr 29, 2018 By Yoon Sojung President Moon Jae-in and U.S. President Donald Trump discussed the outcomes of the 2018 Inter-Korean Summit on the evening of April 28. The two leaders also agreed to work together so that the U.S.-North Korea summit can be also successful. Cheong Wa Dae spokesperson Kim Eui-kyeom said in a written press briefing on April 29 that President Moon and U.S. President Donald Trump held a 75-minute telephone conversation starting at 9:15 p.m. Korea-time. "President Trump praised the remarkable developments achieved in the latest Inter-Korean Summit, said the presidential spokesperson. President Trump appreciated the fact that the Panmunjeom Declaration brought very welcome news, not only for the two Koreas but also for the broader world as a whole, as the two Koreas confirmed the common goal of realizing a nuclear-free Korean Peninsula through complete denuclearization, according to Cheong Wa Dae spokesperson Kim. The U.S. leader also expressed his empathy for the agreement between the two Koreas on the declaration of a formal end to war. President Moon told the U.S. leader that,  President Trump s bold and big decision greatly contributed to realizing the 2018 Inter-Korean Summit and the Washington-Pyeongyang summit. The success of the 2018 Inter-Korean Summit will lay the foundation for the success of the U.S.-North Korean summit. The Korean and U.S. leaders agreed to closely consult with each other so as to ensure the success of the U.S.-North Korea summit. President Trump expressed his expectations for the upcoming summit, saying that he is  looking forward to the summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un with a very good outcome. The U.S. president also said that he will always receive President Moon s phone call as a first priority, emphasizing the importance of the Seoul-Washington alliance. In regard to the time and place of the U.S.-North Korea summit, the two leaders agreed that the summit would be better if held as soon as possible in order to continue the momentum of success seen at the 2018 Inter-Korean Summit. They also narrowed the possible summit venues to two or three places and discussed the pros and cons of the each area, said the presidential spokesperson. [Summit18] [US dominance] [Ingratiation] [Kim_Trump_talks18] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/04/30/2018043000777.html><B> N.Korea to Invite Experts to Shutdown of Nuclear Test Site </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Jeong Woo-sang April 30, 2018 10:02 North Korean leader Kim Jong-un promised President Moon Jae-in on Friday to shut down a nuclear test site in Punggye-ri next month and invite international inspectors to watch, Cheong Wa Dae spokesman Yoon Young-chan said Sunday. Kim said during the inter-Korean summit that he will "carry out the closure of the northern nuclear test site in May" and invite South Korean and U.S. experts and journalists to make the closure transparent, Yoon told reporters. [Moratorium18] [Punggye-ri] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://thehill.com/policy/international/asia-pacific/385386-pompeo-administration-has-eyes-wide-open-on-north-korea><B> Pompeo: Trump administration has  eyes wide open on North Korea </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Mallory Shelbourne - 04/29/18 09:00 AM EDT Pompeo: Trump administration has  eyes wide open on North Korea Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said in an interview broadcast Sunday that the Trump administration has its  eyes wide open when it comes to North Korea.  This administration has its eyes wide open. We know the history. We know the risks. We re going to be very different. We re going to negotiate in a different way than has been done before, Pompeo told ABC s  This Week.  We use the word irreversible with great intention. We re going to require those steps that demonstrate that denuclearization is going to be achieved. We re not going to make promises. We re not going to take words. We re going to look for actions and deeds. The remarks follow Pompeo s meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, who last week crossed into South Korea for a historic gathering with President Moon Jae-in. President Trump has pushed back against criticism, saying he won t be  played by Pyongyang.  We're not going to be played, OK? We re going to hopefully make a deal, if not that s fine, Trump said Friday. Moon and Kim have pledged to work toward denuclearization. Trump is preparing for his own meeting with Kim, which is expected to take place in the coming weeks. [Pompeo] [Kim_Trump_talks18] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.womencrossdmz.org/wp-content/uploads/2018/04/WCDMZ-Statement-on-Summit-and-Panmunjeom-Declaration-1.pdf><B> Women Cross DMZ congratulates President Moon Jae - in , Chairman Kim Jong - un , and the people of both South Korea and North Korea on the historic Inter - Korean Summ it and the Panmunjeom Declaration signed by both leaders on April 27, 2018. </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> We celebrate the Declaration s breakthrough announcement to the world that  there will be no more war on the Korean Peninsula and thus a new era of peace has begun . We applaud the courage and wisdom of the Korean leaders in committing to establish a permanent peace regime and a nuclear - free Korean Peninsula, which recognizes the aspirations of movements in Korea and worldwide who have long worked for peace. Three years ago, we jo ined 10,000 Korean women, North and South, as we walked on the streets of Pyongyang, Kaesong and Paju calling for an end to the Korean War with a Peace Treaty, for the reuniting of families, and for women s leadership in the peace process. Today, the two K orean leaders have brought us closer to this vision and set forth an unprecedented peace process. [Summit18] [Panmunjom Declaration] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://gabbard.house.gov/sites/gabbard.house.gov/files/NK%20Resolution.pdf><B> Tulsi Gabbard: Supporting the President's diplomatic efforts on the Korean Peninsula. </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Tulsi Gabbard s HoR resolution [Kim_Trump_talks18] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://davidswanson.org/peace-comes-to-korea-lets-understand-why/><B> Peace Comes to Korea: Let s Understand Why </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By David Swanson When peace shows its face, and weapons companies stocks plummet, we have to do more than just cheer. We have to avoid misunderstanding where peace comes from. We have to recognize the forces that want to destroy it. We have to work to make it last and expand. There s something very twisted about the belief that the primary cause of tension between the United States and North Korea is what has reduced tension there. On a personal scale I think we could grasp this. If you yell insults and threats across the street at someone and they return the favor, and this carries on until a third party intervenes and proposes resolving the conflict, you can t then proclaim that the person you were yelling at finally gave in and shut up because you yelled loudly enough. In fact, proclaiming that runs the risk of starting the yelling back up again. Applying the same understanding to Korea is hindered by a couple of truly insane but widespread habits of thought. First, there s the belief that because I m a U.S. citizen and not an aggressive bully and not interested in any way with North Korea and none of my friends are either, why then the same must be true of the U.S. government. This mistake is compounded by the notion that history doesn t matter and the crazy concept of a  national interest understood as something everyone in a nation and its government all share in common. If you own stock in Lockheed Martin and want peace, your interests don t even line up with your own interests, never mind those of John Bolton and Bill Gates. [Kim_Trump_talks18] </FONT> </UL> <HR> <A NAME="april18"> <A HREF="#top">Return to top of page</A><BR> <font size=5 color =maroon"> APRIL 2018</FONT> <UL> <!--point--> <LI><A HREF= https://www.reuters.com/article/us-northkorea-southkorea/north-koreas-kim-to-invite-u-s-experts-for-nuclear-site-shutdown-as-trump-presses-for-full-denuclearization-idUSKBN1HZ04K><B> North Korea's Kim to invite U.S. experts for nuclear site shutdown as Trump presses for full denuclearization </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Hyonhee Shin SEOUL (Reuters) - North Korean leader Kim Jong Un plans to invite experts and journalists from the United States and South Korea when the country shuts its nuclear test site in May, Seoul officials said, as U.S. President Trump pressed for total denuclearization ahead of his own unprecedented meeting with Kim. On Friday, Kim and South Korean President Moon Jae-in vowed  complete denuclearization of the Korean peninsula in the first inter-Korean summit in more than a decade, but the declaration did not include concrete steps to reach that goal. North Korea s state media had said before the summit that Pyongyang would immediately suspend nuclear and missile tests, scrap its nuclear test site and instead pursue economic growth and peace. Kim told Moon that he would soon invite the experts and journalists to  open to the international community the dismantling of the facilities, the Blue House said on Sunday.  The United States, though inherently hostile to North Korea, will get to know once our talk begins that I am not the kind of person who will use nuclear weapons against the South or the United States across the Pacific, Moon s press secretary Yoon Young-chan quoted Kim as saying.  There is no reason for us to possess nuclear weapons while suffering difficulties if mutual trust with the United States is built through frequent meetings from now on, and an end to the war and non-aggression are promised. [Moratorium18] [Punggye-ri] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://stalinsmoustache.org/2018/04/28/spin-in-overdrive-trying-to-credit-trump-with-kim-jong-uns-initiative/><B> Spin in overdrive: trying to credit Trump with Kim Jong Un s initiative </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Let us get the facts straight: the meeting just held between Kim Jong Un and Moon Jae-in  with each leader setting foot on the ground of the other s country  was the result of Kim Jong Un s new year address, on which I commented earlier. Moon Jae-in, from South Korea, responded. After a series of interactions, the two have met, shaken hands and expressed a sincere desire to resolve the Korean issue once and for all  between the two of them. But what do you expect? A concerted effort to credit  of all people  Donald Trump with developments. The man who is a symbol of US decline somehow  and desperately  seems to claim credit for a development in which he is a mere bystander. Hardly. Instead, Kim Jong Un is the real  statesman . [Summit18] [Trump] [Agency] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.armscontrol.org/act/2018-05/focus/freezing-reversing-north-korea%E2%80%99s-nuclear-advances><B> Freezing and Reversing North Korea s Nuclear Advances </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Daryl G. Kimball, Executive Director May 2018 For most of the past year, North Korea s provocative long-range missile launches and a high-yield nuclear test, combined with the reckless threats of  fire and fury and  preventive war from the White House, have raised tensions and increased the threat of a catastrophic conflict in the region. Some of us warned that nuclear war was closer than at any point since the Cold War. [US NK Negotiations] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://nymag.com/daily/intelligencer/2018/04/the-campaign-for-donald-trumps-nobel-peace-prize-has-begun.html><B> The Campaign for Donald Trump s Nobel Peace Prize Has Begun </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Adam K. Raymond Donald Trump smiles. Photo: Win McNamee/Bloomberg via Getty Images On Friday, North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un and South Korean president Moon Jae-in came together for a historic meeting that resulted in a once-unimaginable pledge: The two nations will work to officially end the Korean War and denuclearize the peninsula. Who deserves credit for this momentous meeting and the push toward peace? Donald Trump, says South Korean foreign minister Kang Kyung-wha.  He s been determined to come to grips with this from day one, she recently told CNN. And he may soon have a Nobel Peace Prize to show for it. Trump and Kim are currently the favorites to win the prize, according to one British oddsmaker, and some of Trump s aides are telling reporters that a lasting thaw between North and South Korea should win Trump the award. Senator Lindsey Graham, not one of Trump s biggest fans in the upper chamber, agrees.  It s the biggest change since the end of the hostilities, Graham said on Fox News Friday.  What happened? Donald Trump convinced North Korea and China he was serious about bringing about change.  We re not there yet, but if this happens, President Trump deserves the Nobel Peace Prize, he said. Some of Trump s biggest boosters have removed the caveat. They re ready to give him the Nobel now.  Unlike Obama, he actually deserves the Nobel Peace Prize, Fox News host Laura Ingraham tweeted. Carl Higbie, a former Trump administration official who lost his job after he was outed as a bigot, is ready for the Nobel committee to act now. And Bill Mitchell is eager to find out if the heads of liberals will  explode when Trump gets the award. Donald Trump Jr. is not so sure about the enthusiasm, though. Of course, he thinks his dad deserves the Nobel, but he doesn t think he ll get it.  Remember who decides this stuff, he tweeted.  Noting [sic] to do with merit as we have all seen. The globalist elite would never give him that win. Don Jr. might be wrong though. Even today, with a lasting peace in Korea still a question mark, some Trump skeptics have boosted his candidacy. Eurasia Group head Ian Bremmer, who admits that he s been  critical of Trump foreign policy missteps, is giving credit where credit is due.  Trump, Xi, Moon and Kim together get my vote for the Nobel Peace Prize, he tweeted, including Chinese president Xi Jinping among those deserving recognition, but leaving out one man who belongs in that group too: Dennis Rodman. [Bizarre] [March18 Initiative] [Nobel] [Trump] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/04/120_247977.html><B> Korea not considering replacement think tank after USKI's closure </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-04-26 16:07 Updated : 2018-04-26 16:07 South Korea is not considering establishing a replacement think tank after its decision to end funding to a Washington-based think tank led to its closure, a state council overseeing research institutes said Thursday. The National Research Council for Economics, Humanities and Social Sciences (NRC), which is under the Prime Minister's Office, decided last month to end annual funding to the U.S.-Korea Institute (USKI) of Johns Hopkins University's School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS). The council cited the USKI's failure to comply with a demand to provide a proper financial report on where the funding was used as a reason for the decision. The think tank accused the South Korean government of attempting to hurt its academic freedom. A local newspaper reported earlier this week that the NRC, which oversees 26 state-run research institutes, is considering setting up a think tank in the U.S. specializing in Korean affairs to replace the USKI. But the council denied the report. "We will continue to move forward cooperation between the Korea Institute for International Economic Policy (KIEP) and Johns Hopkins University's School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS) with a focus on education and research projects," the NRC said in a statement. Funds to the USKI were provided through KIEP. "A media report about setting up a think tank replacing the USKI is not true," the NRC said. The NRC recently formed a task force to review international cooperation programs that the 26 state research institutes under its oversight have been carrying out so as to come up with measures to improve the programs. (Yonhap) [USKI] [Front] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.nytimes.com/2018/04/24/magazine/jimmy-carter-knows-what-north-korea-wants.html?hp&action=click&pgtype=Homepage&clickSource=story-heading&module=mini-moth&region=top-stories-below&WT.nav=top-stories-below><B> Jimmy Carter Knows What North Korea Wants </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Dan Amira April 24, 2018 In your new book,  Faith: A Journey for All, you write that despite believing you had only weeks to live following a cancer diagnosis in 2015, you had no fear of dying. Do you believe in an afterlife? Yes. I m perfectly willing to leave it up to God. I didn t have anything to do with when I was born or who my parents were, and I trust God also with the question about afterlife. What do you think it might be like? I have no idea, but the Bible compares our rebirth to an acorn becoming a tree and a seed becoming a flower. So, a transformation of some kind. One ultimate test of faith in the Bible is when God tells Abraham to sacrifice Isaac. Have you ever thought about what you d do if God told you to sacrifice your own son? I don t know if my faith is that strong or not. I know I am much more fallible than Abraham. You write that American drone strikes in Syria, Afghanistan, Iraq and Yemen often result in high civilian casualties, which  contradicts our claim to be a peaceful nation devoted to human rights. Do you think America is committing war crimes? I think sometimes we have bordered on committing war crimes. I don t think that we adhere to a just approach to war, where we are supposed to make armed conflict a last resort and limit our damage to other people to a minimum. I think our country is known around the world as perhaps the most warlike major country there is. China hasn t been at war with anybody since 1979. [Jimmy Carter] [NK Deal] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://fpif.org/korea-and-the-geopolitics-of-the-impossible/><B> Korea and the Geopolitics of the Impossible </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Careful Korean diplomacy, coupled Trump's desire to do what Obama couldn't, could mean a rapprochement on the Korean peninsula no one thought possible. By John Feffer, April 25, 2018. In geopolitics, everything is impossible  until, suddenly, it isn t. Wars that no one ever believed could happen flare into existence, and stable societies descend into chaos. On the other side of spectrum, peace agreements that only Pollyannas thought possible are suddenly on the table after months of secret talks, as wicked problems untangle themselves and bitter enemies clasp hands. If politics is the art of the possible, geopolitics is the tectonics of the impossible. Huge plates of rock shift, with little if any warning. Leaders topple, borders move, and trade flows in different directions, sending journalists scrambling for seismic metaphors (earthquake, aftershock). Take the case of Korea, which has been locked in a cold war for 75 years. Few observers expected anything to change with the elevation of Kim Jong Un in Pyongyang or the election of Donald Trump in the United States. Or, if there was going to be a change, it would be for the worse: a raining down of fire and fury on both sides. [Summit18] [Trump] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.opednews.com/articles/Three-Suicides-in-One-Nigh-by-Ann-Wright-Ambassador_Guantanamo-Prison_Harry-Harris_Prison-Violence-180426-523.html><B> Three Suicides in One Night -- Guantanamo Prison Commander Nominated as US Ambassador to South Korea </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Ann Why nominate to be the US Ambassador to South Korea a military general officer who was in charge of notorious Guantanamo prison when on June 9, 2006 at a secret facility on the prison grounds, three prisoners ended up dead? And how did three prisoners -- Mani Shaman Turki al-Habardi Al-Utaybi, Salah Ali Abdullah Ahmed al-Salami and Yasser Talal Al Zahrani -- end up dead? US military said the three prisoners committed suicide -- all in the same way -- by hanging themselves while handcuffed after stuffing socks in their mouths. In Scott Horton's extensive article in Harpers' magazine "The Guantanamo 'Suicides' A Camp Delta Sergeant Blows the Whistle," that every member of the Senate Foreign Relations committee should read and ask Admiral Harris about, Horton writes... "According to Naval Crime Investigative Service (NCIS) documents, each prisoner had fashioned a noose from torn sheets and T-shirts and tied it to the top of his cell's eight-foot-high steel-mesh wall. Each prisoner was able somehow to bind his own hands, and, in at least one case, his own feet, then stuff more rags deep down into his own throat. We are then asked to believe that each prisoner, even as he was choking on those rags, climbed up on his washbasin, slipped his head through the noose, tightened it, and leapt from the washbasin to hang until he asphyxiated. The NCIS report also proposes that the three prisoners, who were held in non-adjoining cells, carried out each of these actions almost simultaneously." The cover-up of what happened to the three prisoners began within hours after the bodies of the three were delivered to the Guantanamo prison medical facility. The bodies of the three men who died at Guantanamo showed signs of torture, including hemorrhages, needle marks, and significant bruising. The removal of their throats made it difficult to determine whether they were already dead when their bodies were suspended by a noose. Using sworn statements from Admiral Harris and from Carol Kisthardt, the special agent in charge of the NCIS investigation at Guantanamo, that there had been a conspiracy among prisoners to commit suicide, every piece of paper possessed by every prisoner in Camp America, NCIS seized over 1,065 pounds of material, much of it privileged attorney-client correspondence was seized by NCIS. Oh yes, when Senators are questioning Admiral Harris, I hope they ask him how he intends to smooth over the concerns of South Koreans about his ethnicity. Even though he is a US citizen, he is half-Japanese (his American father was in the Navy in Japan where he met and married Harris' Japanese mother) which may not go over well with the South Koreans who remember the brutal Japanese occupation of the Korean peninsula for decades and the cruelty of the Japanese military to Korean women who were used as sex slaves or "comfort women." [Harry Harris] [Guantanamo] [Coverup] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://davidswanson.org/worst-possible-pick-for-u-s-ambassador-to-south-korea/><B> Worst Possible Pick for U.S. Ambassador to South Korea </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> In Joseph Hickman s book Murder at Camp Delta, he describes a hideous death camp in which guards were trained to view the prisoners as sub-human and much greater care was taken to protect the well-being of iguanas than homo sapiens. Chaos was the norm, and physical abuse of the prisoners was standard. Col. Mike Bumgarner made it a top priority that everyone stand in formation when he entered his office in the morning to the sounds of Beethoven s Fifth or  Bad Boys. Hickman relates that certain vans were permitted to drive in and out of the camp uninspected, making a mockery of elaborate attempts at security. He didn t know the reasoning behind this until he happened to discover a secret camp not included on any maps, a place he called Camp No but the CIA called Penny Lane. To make things worse at Guantanamo would require a particular sort of idiocy that apparently Admiral Harry Harris possessed. Harris, now set to become U.S. Ambassador to South Korea, began blasting the Star Spangled Banner into the prisoners cages, which predictably resulted in the guards abusing prisoners who did not stand and pretend to worship the U.S. flag. Tensions and violence rose. [Harry Harris] [Guantanamo] [POW] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-southkorea-harris/trump-administration-plans-to-nominate-harry-harris-as-south-korea-envoy-idUSKBN1HV2OI><B> Trump administration plans to nominate Harry Harris as South Korea envoy </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> David Brunnstrom, John Walcott The Trump administration plans to nominate Admiral Harry Harris, the head of the U.S. Pacific Command already nominated to be the next U.S. ambassador to Australia, to fill the long-vacant post of ambassador to South Korea instead, U.S. officials said on Tuesday. FILE PHOTO: U.S. Navy Admiral Harry Harris Jr, head of the Pacific Command, attends at a Fullerton Lecture on "Challenges, Opportunities and Innovation in the Indo-Asia-Pacific", in Singapore October 17, 2017. REUTERS/Edgar Su President Donald Trump s nominee to be secretary of state, Mike Pompeo, had asked Harris to take the key post in Seoul, which has been vacant since Trump took office in January last year, a source with knowledge of the situation said. Three U.S. officials confirmed the plan to nominate Harris, who was in Washington on Tuesday for a Senate committee hearing on his Australia nomination. That hearing was postponed indefinitely.  The national security situation on the Korean Peninsula is of the highest priority, one of the officials said when asked to confirm the switch in nominations.  Our relationship with Australia is and remains steadfast. [Harry Harris] [US SK alliance] [Australia] [US dominance] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/04/176_247851.html><B> Trump administration plans to nominate Harry Harris as South Korea envoy </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-04-25 09:42 Updated : 2018-04-25 16:41 The Trump administration plans to nominate Admiral Harry Harris, the head of the U.S. Pacific Command already nominated to be the next U.S. ambassador to Australia, to fill the long-vacant post of ambassador to South Korea instead, U.S. officials said on Tuesday. President Donald Trump's nominee to be secretary of state, Mike Pompeo, had asked Harris to take the key post in Seoul, which has been vacant since Trump took office in January last year, a source with knowledge of the situation said. Three U.S. officials confirmed the plan to nominate Harris, who was in Washington on Tuesday for a Senate committee hearing on his Australia nomination. That hearing was postponed indefinitely. "The national security situation on the Korean Peninsula is of the highest priority," one of the officials said when asked to confirm the switch in nominations. "Our relationship with Australia is and remains steadfast." [Harry Harris] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/04/731_247846.html><B> Peace treaty not possible without US: Moon </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-04-24 19:41 Updated : 2018-04-25 14:33 By Kim Rahn President Moon Jae-in has reaffirmed that signing a treaty to formally end the Korean War will require a tripartite agreement among North and South Korea and the United States, and is not possible just between the two Koreas. He made the remarks during a 40-minute phone conversation with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, Tuesday, three days before his summit with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un. It has recently become known that the two Koreas and the U.S. could discuss the possibility of changing the current armistice agreement into a peace treaty in the inter-Korean and following Washington-Pyongyang summits. "Declaring the end of the war cannot be achieved through inter-Korean talks; it can only be done when at least the two Koreas and the U.S. agree on it," Moon was quoted as saying by presidential spokesman Kim Eui-kyeom. "To meet these conditions, I'll closely cooperate with the U.S. and Prime Minister Abe." He said the success of the inter-Korean summit would not only lead to the success of the Washington-Pyongyang meeting but also help normalize relations between Japan and the North. After Moon asked Abe about the need for Tokyo-Pyongyang talks later, the prime minister said Japan and North Korea have had many problems such as the North's nuclear and missile tests and its kidnapping of Japanese citizens, but the two countries could begin talks smoothly if the inter-Korean and Washington-Pyongyang summits are successful, according to Cheong Wa Dae. [Moon Jae-in] [Peace Treaty] [US dominance] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.upi.com/Top_News/World-News/2018/04/25/Moon-Trump-to-hold-summit-before-US-North-Korea-talks/7331524642188/><B> Moon, Trump to hold summit before U.S.-North Korea talks </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Jennie Oh | April 25, 2018 File photo of President Donald Trump (R) and South Korean President Moon Jae-in walking into the Rose Garden tat the White House in Washington, D.C. on June 30, 2017. File photo by Kevin Dietsch/UPI | License Photo SEOUL, April 25 (UPI) -- South Korean President Moon Jae-in will meet President Donald Trump in mid-May, before the U.S. leader holds a historic summit with North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un. Seoul's presidential office said Wednesday that National Security Adviser Chung Eui-yong and his U.S. counterpart John Bolton agreed the summit would take place, during their hour-long meeting in Washington, the Hankyoreh reported. [Moon_TrumpMay18] [Kim_Trump_talks18] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/04/24/2018042401447.html><B> Kim Jong-un 'Sees a Kindred Soul in Pompeo' </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Kim Soo-hye April 24, 2018 12:48 North Korean leader Kim Jong-un gave a warm welcome to CIA Director Mike Pompeo when he visited Pyongyang early this month. According to the Asahi Shimbun daily, Kim reportedly told Pompeo this was the first time he has met "someone with the same kind of guts." The daily said Pompeo met South Korean National Intelligence Service officers in Seoul before he flew to Pyongyang, where he negotiated in secret for three days. He was accompanied by five other CIA officials. Kim met Pompeo three to four times including dinner. Separately, Pompeo also met Kim Yong-chol, the chief of the United Front Department, and another senior official. Kim "expressed his intention to give up his nuclear weapons program while not asking for the withdrawal of U.S. forces" from South Korea, according to the paper. Instead, the North demanded that the U.S. agree to establish diplomatic relations and ease economic sanctions, but declined at this stage to detail what measures it will take and in what timeframe, according to the daily. [Pompeo] [Kim_Trump_talks18] [NK deal] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/04/24/2018042400856.html><B> U.S. to Put Human Rights on Table at N.Korea Summit </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Kim Myong-song April 24, 2018 09:48 The U.S. State Department has told representatives of North Korean defectors' groups that Washington will put human rights on the agenda of a summit with Pyongyang, according to a defector on Monday. Park Sang-hak of Fighters for Free North Korea told the Chosun Ilbo three defector activists visited the State Department on April 13, where they met officials including an assistant secretary. He quoted the officials as saying both denuclearization and human rights will be on the agenda. The officials accepted the defectors' suggestion to bring up the closure of political prison camps and a halt to forced repatriation of defectors from overseas. The officials said the U.S. takes North Korea's human rights abuses as seriously as the nuclear issue, according to another defector who was there. The officials were aware that North Korea cheated the U.S. eight times in previous nuclear negotiations, and they vowed not to repeat the same mistake or accept a proposal for step-by-step dismantlement, according to Park. They added the U.S. is not ruling out the possibility that Kim is launching a fake charm offensive to buy time. [Kim_Trump_talks18] [Human rights] [Pretext] [Derail] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.reuters.com/article/us-northkorea-missiles-usa-nukes/u-s-wants-north-korea-to-dismantle-nuclear-arms-for-sanctions-relief-report-idUSKBN1HT11F><B> U.S. wants North Korea to dismantle nuclear arms for sanctions relief: report </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Reuters Staff U.S. President Donald Trump will not be willing to offer North Korea substantial sanctions relief before Pyongyang has substantially dismantled its nuclear programs, the Wall Street Journal reported on Sunday, citing administration officials. FILE PHOTO - A North Korean flag flutters next to concertina wire at the North Korean embassy in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia March 9, 2017. REUTERS/Edgar Su  When the president says that he will not make the mistakes of the past, that means the U.S. will not be making substantial concessions, such as lifting sanctions, until North Korea has substantially dismantled its nuclear programs, it quoted a senior Trump administration official as saying. Reporting by Phil Stewart; Editing by Peter Cooney [Kim_Trump_talks18] [Unconditional surrender] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/04/23/2018042301129.html><B> How Significant Is N.Korea's Surprise Nuclear Freeze? </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Lim Min-hyuk, Kim Jin-myung April 23, 2018 11:01 North Korea on Friday announced it is halting all nuclear and missile tests and shutting down its nuclear test site, but that does not guarantee the regime will eventually give up its nuclear program altogether. U.S. President Donald Trump welcomed the announcement, calling it "very good news for North Korea and the World -- big progress!" He added, "Look forward to our summit." It is surprising for North Korea to make the announcement before planned summits with South Korea and the U.S. have even got underway. [Moratorium18] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/04/23/2018042301320.html><B> U.S.-N.Korea Summit Could Take Place in Europe or Singapore </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Cho Yi-jun April 23, 2018 12:13 A planned summit between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un could be delayed until mid-June and held in Europe or Singapore, the Wall Street Journal reported last Friday. "Trump and Kim are moving toward a mid-June rendezvous somewhere outside northeast Asia," the paper said. Both China, which is the North's sole ally, and Japan, which is a key U.S. ally in the region, have been ruled out, it quoted a U.S. official as saying. The is why a location in a more neutral region like Switzerland and Singapore would be better suited to their meeting. Meanwhile, Trump has proposed holding the summit in mid-June, after the G7 summit in Canada on June 8-9. It seems that he wants to coordinate his approach with his allies before he sits down with Kim. Previously, Trump accepted Kim's proposal for a summit in May. [Kim_Trump_talk18] [Venue] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/04/23/2018042301372.html><B> U.S. Tariffs Halve Korean Exports of Washing Machines </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Ryu Jung April 23, 2018 13:17 Punitive tariffs have nearly halved Korea's exports of washing machines to the U.S. According to the Korea International Trade Association on Sunday, Korea's exports of washing machines to the U.S. were worth US$29.84 million in the first quarter of this year, down 45.4 percent from $54.63 million (US$1=W1,070). The U.S. implemented safeguards on Feb.7 last year, claiming that American manufacturers are being threatened by Korean firms' dumping of washing machines and solar modules. LG produces washing machines for export to the U.S. in Korea. Since January, Samsung has been making them at a plant in Newberry, South Carolina in the U.S. LG plans to open a plant in Tennessee in the second half of this year, which will further reduce export figures to the U.S.. [Tariffs] [Dumping] [Trump] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/opinion/north-korea-denuclearisation-180423070327499.html><B> Did North Korea really commit to denuclearisation? </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Many celebrated a recent resolution issued by Pyongyang as a sign that it will denuclearise. Here is why they are wrong. Chang-Hoon Shin Since the Korean Peninsula was divided into North and South, immediately after liberation from Japan in 1945, a tragic saying has become common among South Koreans: "Everybody is irrational whenever encountering any North Korea problem." The saying reflects the history of love and hate towards North Korea by South Koreans, which has worked like a powerful magic spell. Never has any South Korean expected that the spell would work on foreigners as well, but astonishingly, the unexpected has happened. On April 21, Ri Chun-hee, a news presenter at the North Korea's media KCTV, read out a resolution titled "On proclaiming great victory of the line of simultaneous development of economic construction and building of nuclear force", which had been adopted unanimously at the plenary meeting of the ruling party's central committee a day earlier. Quite irrationally, media outlets around the world put up breaking news headlines that North Korea has decided to suspend nuclear and intercontinental ballistic missile tests. Some heads of state rushed to release welcoming remarks on North Korea's decision, deeming it evidence that the country has committed to denuclearisation. [Moratorium18] [Denuclearisation] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/senate-bill/2016><B> S.2016 - No Unconstitutional Strike Against North Korea Act of 2017 </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> 115th Congress (2017-2018) Sponsor: Sen. Markey, Edward J. [D-MA] (Introduced 10/26/2017) [US NK policy] [Attack] [Governance] [Legality] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.congress.gov/bill/115th-congress/house-bill/4837><B> H.R.4837 - No Unconstitutional Strike against North Korea Act </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> 115th Congress (2017-2018) Sponsor: Rep. Khanna, Ro [D-CA-17] (Introduced 01/18/2018) [US NK policy] [Attack] [Governance] [Legality] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.reuters.com/article/us-northkorea-missiles/trump-says-long-way-to-go-on-north-korea-crisis-idUSKBN1HT073><B> Trump says 'long way' to go on North Korea crisis </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Doina Chiacu, Heekyong Yang U.S. President Donald Trump said the North Korean nuclear crisis is a long way from being resolved on Sunday, striking a cautious note a day after the North s pledge to end its nuclear tests raised hopes before planned summits with South Korea and the United States. FILE PHOTO: U.S. President Donald Trump speaks during his meeting with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at his Mar-a-Lago estate in Palm Beach, Florida U.S. April 17, 2018. REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque/File Photo  We are a long way from conclusion on North Korea, maybe things will work out, and maybe they won t - only time will tell, Trump said on Twitter. North Korea said on Saturday it was suspending nuclear and missile tests and scrapping its nuclear test site, and instead pursuing economic growth and peace. World leaders welcomed the announcement, but some expressed doubts about Kim s intentions and South Korean President Moon Jae-in will be under intense international scrutiny when he meets him on Friday at the first North Korea-South Korea summit in more than a decade. [Moratorium18] [Outmanoeuvre] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/04/20/2018042001393.html><B> USFK Seeks Compromise with THAAD Protesters </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Jun Hyun-suk April 20, 2018 12:18 The U.S. Forces Korea has proposed opening part of the site of a Terminal High-Altitude Area Defense battery in Seongju, North Gyeongsang Province to protesters in an effort to start the construction of facilities there. To break the impasse, the USFK decided to accept the protesters' demand to let them check that no military facilities are being built. Last week, the Defense Ministry and police were apparently helpless in the face of a few hundred protesters blocking the access road as the government tried to bring in construction materials. [THAAD] [Protest] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_northkorea/841281.html><B> Speculation grows over venue of US-North Korea summit </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted on : Apr.19,2018 17:06 KST Modified on : Apr.19,2018 17:06 KST Pyongyang, Panmunjeom, Switzerland and Mongolia have been mentioned as possibilities South Korean soldiers stand guard in the Panmunjeom Joint Security Area. From left are the buildings of the Neutral Nations Supervisory Commission (T1), the Military Armistice Commission conference room (T2), and the Military Armistice Commission planning room (T3). The letter  T written on the side of the buildings stands for  temporary. (by Noh Ji-won, staff reporter) After US President Donald Trump announced on Apr. 17 that he is considering five locations for the historic North Korea-US summit, attention is focusing once again on where the meeting will be held. When reporters asked Trump whether the US was included in the potential sites of the meeting, he said that it was not, while declining to elaborate. But reports in the domestic and foreign press are generally mentioning sites on the Korean Peninsula that are symbolic of conflict, such as Pyongyang and Panmunjeom, as well as more neutral regions, such as Northern Europe, Switzerland and Mongolia. [Kim_Trump_talks18] [Venue] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_northkorea/841109.html><B> Secretary of State nominee Pompeo met with Kim Jong-un to discuss US-North Korea summit </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted on : Apr.18,2018 16:49 KST Modified on : Apr.18,2018 16:49 KST  People don t realize that the Korean War has not ended, President Trump tells reporters Secretary of State nominee Mike Pompeo and North Korean leader Kim Jong-un CIA Director and Secretary of State nominee Mike Pompeo spoke directly with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in Pyongyang earlier this month regarding the possibility of an upcoming North Korea-US summit, major US news outlets reported on Apr. 17. The reports stated that Pompeo met with Kim to negotiating the conditions for the summit between the two leaders. The official said the discussions were still under way, but did not provide any specifics on when the dialogue began. In his remarks prior to a summit with Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe at his Mar-a-Lago residence in Florida, Trump said the US has  started talking to North Korea directly. [Kim_Trump_talks18] [Venue] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www2/index.asp><B> North Korea decides to suspend nuclear, missile tests, shut down atomic test site </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-04-21 08:01 Updated : 2018-04-21 17:52 A photo released by the North Korean Central News Agency (KCNA), the state news agency of North Korea, shows a meeting of the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the Workers' Party of Korea held on under the guidance of Kim Jong-un, chairman of the WPK and chairman of the State Affairs Commission of the DPRK, in Pyongyang, North Korea, April 9. / EPA-Yonhap North Korea said Saturday that it has decided to suspend nuclear and missile tests and shut down its atomic test site, in a surprise announcement that could give momentum to its upcoming summits with South Korea and the United States. The announcement came amid a diplomatic push to denuclearize North Korea, the main agenda for North Korean leader Kim Jong-un's planned meeting with his counterparts from the South and the U.S. "We will discontinue nuclear test and inter-continental ballistic rocket test-fire from April 21," the Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) said, citing the outcome of a key meeting of the ruling party held Friday. [Moratorium18] </FONT> <UL> <LI><A HREF= https://kcnawatch.co/newstream/1524268891-973786350/third-plenary-meeting-of-seventh-c-c-wpk-held-in-presence-of-kim-jong-un/><B> Third Plenary Meeting of Seventh C.C., WPK Held in Presence of Kim Jong Un </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Date: 21/04/2018 | Source: KCNA.kp (En) | Read original version at source Share Button Tweet Pyongyang, April 21 (KCNA) -- The Third Plenary Meeting of the Seventh Central Committee of the Workers' Party of Korea took place in Pyongyang on April 20. Kim Jong Un, chairman of the WPK, guided the plenary meeting. Attending the meeting were Presidium members, members and alternate members of the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the WPK and members and alternate members of the C.C., WPK and members of the Central Auditing Commission of the WPK. Present as observers were members of the WPK Central Committee and party and administrative officials of ministries, national institutions, provinces, cities and counties, major industrial establishments and institutions and co-operative farms and members of the armed forces organs. The plenary meeting dealt with the following agenda items: 1. On tasks of our revolution to further accelerate socialist construction as required by a fresh high stage of the developing revolution 2. On bringing about a revolutionary turn in the scientific and educational work 3. Organizational matter The first agenda was discussed at the meeting. [Moratorium18] </FONT> </UL> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/04/19/2018041901155.html><B> CIA Chief's N.Korea Visit Brings Summit in Reach </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Kim Jin-myung, Cho Yi-jun April 19, 2018 10:50 CIA director Mike Pompeo met secretly with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in early April, U.S. officials said Tuesday. That may explain why Kim was shilly-shallying about whether to attend a concert by South Korean musicians in Pyongyang on April 1, when Pompeo was in town. Pompeo was in North Korea on March 31 and April 1, arriving aboard his official plane via Osan air base in South Korea. He brought only CIA agents with him, unaccompanied by White House nor State Department officials. It was the first high-level meeting between the U.S. and North Korea in 18 years. The last time was when then-Secretary of State Madeleine Albright visited Pyongyang in 2000. On March 8, Trump accepted a North Korean proposal to hold a summit, and five days later he fired Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and nominated Pompeo in his place. Soon Pompeo was on his way to North Korea. [Pompeo] [Kim_Trump_talks18] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.kawankorea.com/news.php?id=221><B> Again Korea, One Korea </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> In the past few months I have been reading extensively about Korean history and Korea in general, as part of my research for a documentary film project in the DPRK. The working title of the film is Again Korea, which is also the title of a book about North Korea written by my father, Australian journalist Wilfred Burchett, in 1969. The first chapter of the book opens with this paragraph: "Come and visit us again," said my host. "Bring your wife and have a good holiday here. But I advise you to come soon if you want to see our country as it is now." He waved his hand toward the window which looked out on a broad, tree-lined boulevard of shining new apartment houses and shops. "It is possible that all this will be destroyed if war breaks out. I say to my comrades that they should not think they can keep our nice theaters and things as they are now; they must realize that as long as imperialism exists, war may break out again. Especially as long as the unification of our country has not been achieved, things may be destroyed again." My host was Premier Kim II Sung of North Korea, the place Pyongyang, the date May 20, 1967. That was 51 one years ago. And yet it could also be today. As the DPRK is forging ahead, building a developed socialist society, it is also threatened with "fire and fury", or nuclear annihilation, by the same power that reduced most of the country to rubble during the Korean War. When Wilfred Burchett wrote Again Korea, in 1967, the United States were carpet bombing Vietnam and threatening to bomb the North "back into the stone age". And that is the true nature and language of imperialism. I no longer call it U.S. imperialism for it has morphed into global imperialism, supported by the entire global capitalist system, that profits from perpetual wars. That includes all the NATO countries and other US allies, in all continents. [Imperialism] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://nationalinterest.org/blog/the-skeptics/offer-withdraw-americas-troops-south-korea-seal-nuclear-deal-25351><B> Offer to Withdraw America's Troops from South Korea to Seal a Nuclear Deal with the North </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Doug Bandow <BR> April 14, 2018 The prospect of a summit between President Donald Trump and North Korean supreme leader Kim Jong-un offers a unique opportunity to move Northeast Asia away from more than seven decades of confrontation and conflict. But the meeting might be stillborn or end badly, even if it does occur. An important challenge is the difference between the two leaders official expectations. The Trump administration presumably believes it has a commitment by Pyongyang to denuclearize. However, Kim, to the extent that he genuinely contemplates abandoning weapons so expensively acquired and so tightly connected to his own legitimacy, is likely willing to do so only over time, and in return for concessions that enhance his regime s survivability. When I visited the North last year, officials well remembered the fate of Libya s Muammar el-Qaddafi, who negotiated away his missile and nuclear programs, only to be later ousted by the United States and its European allies. [NK deal] [Military presence] [Libertarian] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/04/17/2018041700952.html><B> Ex-N.Korean Diplomat Says Pyongyang Will Drag Talks out </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Kim Myong-song April 17, 2018 10:03 The former No. 2 man in the North Korean Embassy in London and now a vocal critic of the regime, has predicted Pyongyang will drag out talks about its nuclear program as long as possible while extracting concessions. Thae Yong-ho was quoted on Monday as saying that North Korean leader Kim Jong-un "will drag on for two to three years" without dismantling his nuclear weapons "while waiting for the U.S. president to be replaced." [US NK Negotiations] [Thae Yong Ho] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-04-17/goodbye-dmz-what-an-end-to-the-korean-war-would-mean-quicktake><B> Goodbye DMZ? What an End to the Korean War Would Mean </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By David Tweed April 17, 2018, 9:10 PM GMT+12 As neighborly disputes go, this one really has dragged on. Some 65 years since open hostilities ended, North and South Korea are still technically at war. But after a sudden warming of relations this year, the two sides are set to meet at the end of this month for talks. According to the South Korean publication, Munhwa Ilbo, they re planning to announce the end of military hostilities. Negotiations may focus in part on one of the most enduring symbols of the conflict, the 4-kilometer-wide (2.5-mile) stretch of land separating the countries known as the demilitarized zone. Peace lovers and bird lovers alike are watching with interest. [SK NK Negotiations] [Peace] [DMZ] [Agency] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MMp1HQEZd8E&feature=youtu.be><B> Negotiations, not War on DPRK </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Symposium with Ann Wright, Hyun Lee and others; 8 April 2018 </FONT> <LI><A HREF= https://www.21cir.com/2018-04/struggle-for-peace-on-korean-peninsula-perspective-on-upcoming-inter-korean-and-u-s-dprk-summits.html><B> Hard Struggles for Peace on Korean Peninsula: Perspective on Upcoming Inter-Korean and US-DPRK Summits </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Philip Fernandez on 2018-04-09 A very lively meeting was held during the afternoon of March 31 in downtown Toronto with Professor Kiyul Chung of the 21st Century Institute based in Washington DC. Prof. Chung is also an Visiting Professor at Kim Il Sung University in Pyongyang and at universities in China and Japan. Prof. Chung shared his thoughts about the upcoming third Inter-Korean Summit between Kim Jong Un, leader of the Democratic People s Republic of Korea (DPRK) and Moon Jae-in, President of the Republic of Korea (ROK) scheduled April 27 on south Korean territory in Panmunjom at the Demilitarized Zone that divides the Korean nation. He also gave his views on the planned DPRK-U.S. Summit set for May where Kim Jong Un will meet U.S. President Trump. </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/04/18/2018041801397.html><B> N.Korea Rattled by U.S. Strikes on Syria </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> By Lee Yong-soo April 18, 2018 13:26 North Korea has got the jitters about U.S.-led airstrikes on Syria and its wider interference in the Middle East. Both the airstrikes and U.S. President Donald Trump's attempts to scrap the nuclear deal with Iran are alarming signs for the regime as it prepares for a summit with Washington, not least because it has closely cooperated with them in the field of weapons of mass destruction. Iran "keeps carrying out its missile program despite pressure from hostile forces, including the U.S.," the official Rodong Sinmun daily wrote Monday. "Iran argues that its missile program has nothing to do with the nuclear deal." U.S. President Donald Trump complained that Iran's continued missile launches and human rights violations run counter to the spirit of the deal. "Either fix the deal's disastrous flaws, or the United States will withdraw," he said in January. Jang Ji-hyang of the Asan Institute for Policy Studies said, "The North will feel heavy pressure ahead of a summit with the U.S., whether the U.S. abrogates the nuclear deal or Iran agrees to renegotiations." The Rodong daily said the more the U.S. is bent on military intervention and pressure, the more resolved the Syrian people are to defend their fatherland. "Our people are providing full support and solidarity to the Syrian government and people in their struggle for justice," it added. [Attack180414] [Media] [Hype] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.eastasiaforum.org/2018/04/11/time-to-tread-carefully-on-the-peninsula/?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=newsletter2018-04-15><B> Time to tread carefully on the Peninsula </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> 11 April 2018 Author: Liang Tuang Nah, RSIS During the 23rd Winter Olympic Games held in South Korea, North Korea tried to rehabilitate its dismal international image by improving relations with the South. In addition to arranging a summit with South Korean President Moon Jae-in, North Korean Leader Kim Jong-un expressed interest in meeting US President Donald Trump and signalled that he would be willing to denuclearise if the national security of North Korea could be assured. South Korean delegation led by Unification Minister Cho Myoung-gyon cross the concrete border as they leave after their meeting at the truce village of Panmunjom, North Korea, 29 March 2018 (Photo: Reuters/Yonhap). The apparent olive branches extended from Kim to both Moon and Trump have led to popular speculation of an end to tensions on the Korean Peninsula and even expectations of negotiated progress towards North Korean denuclearisation. But without significant and irreversible demonstrations of sincerity on Pyongyang s part, such optimism might end in disappointment. [Kim_Trump_talks18] [Functionary] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.hani.co.kr/arti/english_edition/e_northkorea/840589.html><B> Chung Eui-yong returns from visit to Washington, D.C. </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted on : Apr.15,2018 08:21 KST Modified on : Apr.15,2018 08:21 KST South Korea and US agree to make efforts for the successful staging of the spring summits with North Korea Blue House National Security Office director Chung Eui-yong heads to a waiting car outside Incheon Airport on Apr. 13 following his visit to Washington, D.C. to meet with new US National Security Advisor John Bolton. (Yonhap News) Returning on Apr. 13 from a meeting with newly appointed White House National Security Advisor John Bolton in the US, Blue House National Security Office director Chung Eui-yong said the two had  agreed on both sides making efforts for the successful staging of the inter-Korean and North Korea-US summit. Chung added that they had  agreed to have close cooperation between the two sides National Security Councils. Meeting with reporters at Incheon International Airport that afternoon, Chung said his visit had  confirmed that there are no differences between the two sides on the basic course we need to pursue to achieve the basic goal of establishing peace on the Korean Peninsula through denuclearization. When asked whether they had discussed holding a South Korea-US summit after the inter-Korean summit on Apr. 27, Chung said he had  planned for all kinds of possibilities. [Intermediary] [US NK Negotiations] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://fpif.org/the-case-for-america-first-on-the-korean-peninsula/?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=4-12-18><B> The Case for  America First on the Korean Peninsula </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> "America First" used to mean keeping the military out of countries that don't threaten us. Trump's upended that, but now's the time to bring it back. By Geoffrey Fattig, April 11, 2018. Of all the political maxims that Donald Trump has upended since he launched his presidential campaign with a ride down a gilded escalator, perhaps none is more symbolic than the slogan that has come to define his presidency: America First. For Trump, these words are nothing so much as an expression of aggressive machismo, providing the ideological underpinning to a range of retrograde policy approaches from trade to immigration. With the recent appointment of the uber-hawkish John Bolton as National Security Advisor, this list has seemingly expanded to include foreign policy as well. Bolton s career has been a steady stream of incendiary rhetoric and calls for American military intervention around the globe, most notably as a leading proponent for the disastrous invasion of Iraq in 2003. Ironically, this view is completely at odds with what America First has traditionally implied. Until Trump hijacked the slogan, it had long been associated with an isolationist foreign policy stance. It was first popularized by President Woodrow Wilson during his 1916 re-election campaign, whose slogan boasted of Wilson that  he kept us out of war. [US NK policy] [Military presence] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/04/13/2018041300481.html><B> Pompeo: No Reward for N.Korea Without Irreversible Denuclearization </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> VOA News April 13, 2018 08:11 North Korea should not expect rewards from talks with the United States until it takes irreversible steps to give up its nuclear weapons, Mike Pompeo, U.S. President Donald Trump's nominee for secretary of state, said Thursday. Pompeo, who is the current CIA director, said the historical analysis was "not optimistic," when asked at his Senate confirmation hearing whether he believed North Korea would agree to dismantle its nuclear program. But he said that in past negotiations, the United States and the world had relaxed sanctions too quickly. "It is the intention of the president and the administration not to do that this time, to make sure that... before we provide rewards, we get the outcome permanently, irreversibly, that it is that we hope to achieve." "It is a tall order, but I am hopeful that President Trump can achieve that through sound diplomacy." ? Meeting with Kim Jong-un Trump has said he plans to meet North Korean leader Kim Jong-un in May or early June and hopes the discussions will lead to an end of North Korea's nuclear weapons program. On Thursday, Trump said meetings were being set up between him and Kim, and that the United States would go into those with "a lot of respect." He thanked China for its help in trying to resolve the crisis over North Korea's development of nuclear weapons capable of hitting the United States, saying, "they've been really terrific at helping us get to some kind of settlement." "Meetings are being set up right now between myself and Kim Jong-un. I think it will be terrific. I think we'll go in with a lot of respect and we'll see what happens," he said. Trump also said trade "negotiations" between Washington and Beijing were going well, conflicting with China's statements since the president's announcements of plans to impose tariffs on billions of dollars' worth of Chinese goods, which have fed fears of an all-out trade war. "We are getting along very well, think we're going to do some great things," Trump said, adding that getting rid of nuclear weapons was "very good for them, good for everybody." [Pompeo] [US NK Negotiations] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://www.koreatimes.co.kr/www/nation/2018/04/120_247217.html><B> Seoul's handling of US think tank 'appalling' </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> Posted : 2018-04-13 17:26 Updated : 2018-04-13 17:26 By Kim Jae-kyoung In response to recent government comments, the US-Korea Institute (USKI) has strongly criticized the administration for its underhanded attempt to gain control over the Washington-based private think tank. In a statement sent to The Korea Times, Friday, Jae H. Ku, director of the USKI at the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies (SAIS), said that the government's approach in handling the think tank was "appalling." He said that the administration continued to make "unacceptable" demands in personnel changes and operational rules. The USKI is a private think tank at the SAIS partially funded by the Korean government through the state-run Korea Institute for International Economic Policy (KIEP). "Of course, it is KIEP's right to stop funding USKI if they are dissatisfied with our performance," said Ku. "But the manner in which this happened was appalling. The continued demands for personnel changes and the operational rules they sought to impose were simply unacceptable both to USKI and to SAIS, and would be to any think tank or academic institution in Washington." The 12-year-old think tank, well known for the website 38 North that specializes in Korean Peninsula issues, will be forced to close in May, after KIEP recently decided to cut off funding. Ku, who has led USKI for the last 11 years, said that the government's attempt to compare the USKI to the Korea Economic Institute (KEI) in budget reporting is not valid. The KEI is another Washington D.C.-based institute that receives funding from KIEP. "This is a faulty comparison, as the KEI is a registered foreign agent under KIEP's control while the USKI is not," he said. "But this lies at the heart of the matter at hand _ the recent attempt to make the USKI structurally like the KEI, with KIEP having rights over personnel and operational decisions." The USKI has claimed that the government, through the KIEP, pressured the SAIS to fire Ku and Assistant Director Jenny Town, and to agree to a set of operational rules that would give them control over management of the USKI. "The USKI has addressed KIEP's growing demands for greater detail in our budget reporting," Ku said. Despite contract terms between the SAIS and the KIEP, he added, "We were not legally obligated to provide beyond what the SAIS officially reports at the end of the grant cycle." The SAIS contract term with the KIEP is negotiated and signed by the KIEP and the SAIS each year. He stressed that in the past few years, additional details have been included as the KIEP has requested, and all follow-up questions have been answered accordingly. "In fact, the budget template that we are currently using was provided to the USKI by the KIEP," he said. [USKI] </FONT> <LI><A HREF= http://english.chosun.com/site/data/html_dir/2018/04/12/2018041201149.html><B> How Will Kim Jong-un Get to Summit with Trump? </B></A><BR><FONT SIZE=2 COLOR=MAROON> April 12, 2018 10:30 No North Korean