The Singapore-based summit between President Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un was a historic and completely unique event. The meeting overwhelmed a lot of the public simply because it happened.
A lot of information about what took place — crucial information that will affect the future of our country — was swept under the rug and covered by a carpet of smiling, handshaking, and compliments between the two leaders. Amid all the fanfare, this unnerving thing went unnoticed (see page 6).
1. Singapore made money off the summit
- Trump offered thanks to Singapore for hosting the summit
- The country and its people profited off the meeting
“Let me begin by thanking our incredible hosts in Singapore … This is a country of profound grace and beauty, and we send our warmest wishes to every citizen of Singapore who really made this visit so important and so pleasant,” Trump said in a post-summit news conference speech.
What does that thanks really entail? According to a Washington Post reporter, a significant bump in Singapore’s tourist market. An analyst estimated the 4,000 people who flew in for the summit would spend around $9 million USD during their average seven-day stay. “… it places Singapore on the map … and showcases Singapore as an ideal destination, especially for business and meetings,” the executive director of communications and marketing capability told Reuters.
Next: The monikers changed drastically
2. Trump reevaluated how he refers to Kim Jong Un
- Trump used to call Kim unflattering names like “Rocket Man” and “maniac”
- He referred to him as “Chairman” in conversation and speeches
Trump replaced his nicknames like “bad dude” and “sick puppy” for Kim with praise like “very talented,” “very smart,” and most notably, “Chairman.” While the public didn’t anticipate Kim to be introduced as “Rocket Man Kim Jong Un,” many questioned how Trump would refer to Kim since he holds various titles in North Korea.
“By calling him Chairman Kim, the U.S. is recognizing that Kim Jong Un is the head of the ruling party in North Korea,” the BBC explained. “… but it’s not without controversy, too. calling Kim Jong Un chairman and his excellency basically gives him something he badly wants … legitimacy and recognition.”
Next: The favor Trump did for Kim
3. Trump gave Kim Jong Un a ‘big win’ by attending
- The summit itself was a victory for Kim, regardless of what happened
- A goal of his nuclear program was to make North Korea more powerful on a global stage
“Do you understand those people who you say gave him the ultimate present, a legitimacy to a regime who oppresses people…,” a reporter questioned. Trump later replied “Oh, I understand it much better than you do. Okay.”
Washington Post reporter Callum Borchers argued in an annotation of Trump’s speech that the president hates the idea he gave Kim a win merely by meeting with him. Kim, an international pariah, appears to garner enough respect to earn a meeting with the president of the U.S., a win for him as a leader.
Next: This propaganda video took everyone by surprise
4. The video most people thought was North Korea propaganda came from the White House
- The Trump administration aired a controversial video for the press at the summit
- He’d shown it to Kim and believed Kim “loved it”
Trump posted a video to his Twitter account following the summit for the world to see — one that some U.S. reporters questioned as “U.S.-sanctioned propaganda” — but the initial reaction at the press meeting was one of confusion. The video mirrored North Korean propaganda and pictured the two world leaders standing together “like running mates in a campaign video.”
Trump appeared on stage and confirmed the video was made in America by his White House. Worse, it was made for the benefit of Kim. Trump called the video, titled “A Story of Opportunity,” a pitch of sorts to show Kim what the future could hold for his nation.
Next: The true losers of the summit
5. North Korea’s citizens were losers of the summit
- They neglected discussing serious human rights issues
- Trump claimed Kim “wants to do the right thing”
When asked what he as president expects Kim to do about his human rights record regarding North Korean citizens, Trump claimed it was “discussed relatively briefly compared to denuclearization.” As a result, many have deemed North Korea’s people as the true loser of the summit.
Trump’s State of the Union address acknowledged that “no regime has oppressed its own citizens more totally or brutally,” than Kim’s dictatorship. Yet, at the summit, Trump called Kim “very talented.” His reasoning? “Anybody that takes over a situation like he did, at 26 … and is able to run it … I don’t say it was nice — he ran it,” effectively neglecting the citizens of North Korea from the conversation.
Next: The 1 unnerving fact most people haven’t heard about the summit
6. Trump invited Kim to the White House
- Trump told reporters he invited Kim to the White House at a future time
- According to Trump, Kim accepted the invitation
A reporter questioned Trump’s intentions to travel to Pyongyang in the near future. Trump responded he looked forward to it at an appropriate time. He said he will be inviting Kim “at the appropriate time” to the White House, and Kim has already accepted the invitation.
“I think it’s really going to be something that will be very important … We want to go a little bit further down the road,” Trump said. Still, the sheer uncertainty of the dictator’s intentions made it nearly impossible to know if the two leaders are on the same page. Take, for example, this The Office reference made out of a moment of miscommunication between Trump and Kim.
Next: The one clear truth about the meeting
7. Regardless of any progress, denuclearization is far off
- Trump admitted it will take a long time to “pull off complete denuclearization”
- Experts anticipate the process could take up to 15 years
The Trump administration is calling the process “rapid denuclearization,” yet a top federal government adviser warned the public the disarmament process could be 15 years in the making.
Siegfried S. Hecker, former director of the Los Alamos weapons lab in New Mexico, said the best he believes the U.S. can hope for is a “phased denuclearization” that targets the North Korean program’s most dangerous parts. Trump told reporters he believes the process will start “very soon” and that “we will do it as fast as it can mechanically and physically be done.”
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