In the short space of five days, June 8-12, President Trump took three steps that upended the old post WWII global order and moved us a few steps toward a more peaceful world. Two of those steps are undeniable; the third is perhaps not so obvious.
The Singapore Summit.
The Singapore Summit comes first, because it rocked the world.
In this bold and unprecedented meeting President Donald Trump and Chairman Kim Jong-un, of the Democratic Peoples’ Republic of Korea (DPRK), started down a path to Détente, aiming toward denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula, an intractable problem or so the pundits informed us. But as Melania warned us with a bemused smile sometime back, “Donald always shakes things up.”
The historic meeting produced more than words; concrete steps were taken: The DPRK went first, terminating the testing of nuclear warheads, IRBMs and ICBMs and even closing its nuclear test site – all done before the summit. Leading up to the summit, Trump cut back on the extent of annual joint South Korea-US military exercises. These have been roiling the East Pacific since the 1970s, frightening the North Koreans since these “war games” could abruptly turn into a real invasion as in the Korean War. At summit’s conclusion Trump went further and terminated those exercises planned for late summer, labeling them “provocative,” as the North Koreans have long described them, and “expensive,” cost always being a big item in the Trumpian mind. These exercises are also costly for the DPRK since they come at a time of year when agricultural labor is needed and hundreds of thousands of men must be diverted from the fields to join the armed forces in case the war games turn into a real invasion. This hurts the agricultural…