So, how does the president of the United States change the subject from an alleged affair with a porn queen and Republican rage over trade tariffs?
Donald Trump agrees to meet with the leader of a nation deemed in some circles to present an existential threat to the United States of America.
That’s correct. Trump now plans to meet face to face with North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un.
The man Trump derided with the Rocket Man epithet, declared North Korea faced “total destruction” if it attacked South Korea and threatened to unleash “fire and fury” on North Korea if it continued to threaten the United States now wants to meet with the source of all this white-hot rhetoric.
Details are to come. The president said he would meet Kim no later than May. The place will be determined later. So, too, will the agenda, or so many of us should presume.
This does beg an important question: Has the tough talk about “fire and fury” and “total destruction” actually persuaded Kim to meet with Trump and begin the arduous task of negotiating a peace treaty with the South?
Trump’s critics — and I include myself in that crowd — have derided the president’s rhetoric as gratuitously provocative. He didn’t need to remind Kim that his “button is bigger” than the North Korean’s nuclear button.
I also have said I’d be willing to eat my words if Trump’s clownish behavior actually produced tangible, constructive results.
An intended meeting between Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un isn’t enough by itself for me to dine on my own criticism. There’s too much groundwork to be laid. Too many details to work out. Too much can go wrong between now and when the two leaders actually meet.
What’s more, I am not entirely sure who between these two men is less trustworthy than the other.
Kim keeps provoking Trump, who responds with provocations of his own. Kim has nukes. The United States arsenal is infinitely larger.
However, if this meeting leads to more discussion, well … that’s a major start.
First, we need to learn that there will be a meeting. I am holding my applause.