Tag Archives: North Korea

Say it ain’t so, Kim Jong Un

This can’t be happening. Can it?

North Korea reportedly is reassembling a missile launch site that it supposedly took down after its tyrant Kim Jong Un met with Donald Trump at their first summit in 2018 in Singapore.

Their second summit, held this past week in Hanoi, didn’t go well. They broke it off. Trump jetted back to Washington, while Kim ventured back to Pyongyang. They failed to strike a deal on nuclear disarmament in North Korea.

How could that be? Donald Trump said North Korea was no longer a nuclear threat. He said so after their first meeting. I mean, he got a “love letter” from Kim. The two men became BFFs. Trump says nice things these days about the overfed despot he once denigrated as “Little Rocket Man.”

Oh, but U.S. intelligence experts said North Korea remains a nuclear threat to South Korea, to Japan and perhaps eventually to the United States.

Trump isn’t having any of it. What’s more, he decided upon returning home that the United States will cease its regular military exercise with South Korea, seemingly thinking he could get North Korea to reciprocate by ending its missile launch program.

Now comes word that North Korea is restoring its missile site.

Who would of thought that would happen?

Your opinion most certainly matters, Mr. Bolton

Uh, John Bolton? Hello?

I have taken in recent months to addressing the president directly with my blog posts. I’ll direct these remarks to you.

You say your opinion “doesn’t matter.” Hey, you’re the friggin’ national security adviser. It most certainly does matter.

Donald Trump gave North Korean dictator/tyrant Kim Jong Un a pass on what he knew about Otto Warmbier’s imprisonment and then his death. His statement that he takes Kim “at his word” that he knew nothing about it is absurd on its face.

I would hope that you know better as the national security adviser.

You’re known as a hardliner. You’re a tough guy. Tough on Iran. Tough on the United Nations. Tough on the Islamic State and al-Qaida.

You’re also the third national security adviser to work for this president. He burned through Michael Flynn and H.R. McMaster quickly. Then he brought you aboard, albeit over the objection of many of us out here. I admit to being one of those skeptics.

But you’re in the hot seat now. You have been given the responsibility of providing the commander in chief with the best national security advice he can get. If only he’d listen.

I happen to believe that your word is as valuable as any that Donald Trump is going to receive as he considers what to do about this and that threat to our national security.

Kim Jong Un is a bizarre tyrant whose hand is in every aspect of government in the country he rules with untold cruelty.

I get that you don’t want to “contradict” the president. You surely want to keep your job. It’s a big job, indeed, Mr. Bolton.

I’m just going to ask you to give Donald Trump the candid advice he needs to hear. One thing you ought to tell him is this:

“Uh, Mr. President. Don’t take Kim Jong Un’s word on anything. And for crying out loud, stop saying out loud that you ‘like’ this murderous tyrant. You cannot possibly ‘like’ an overfed tyrant who is allowing the people he rules to starve to death.”

How in the world can POTUS ‘like’ a murderous tyrant?

Donald Trump’s best friends among the ranks of world leaders seem to have something in common. They’re tyrants, strongmen, autocrats, dictators . . . any and/or all of the above.

His latest demonstration of such were his statements about how much he likes North Korean tyrant Kim Jong Un. It begs the critical question: How is it that the president of the United States of America “like” someone such as Kim Jong Un.

For the record, Kim Jong Un is starving his people while he lives in relative opulence; Kim has murdered members of his own family because they disagree with his policies; he terrorizes his subjects mercilessly; he threatens South Korea with nuclear annihilation.

Then he lied about not knowing about the imprisonment of an American college student, Otto Warmbier, who then was relegated to a vegetative state and released; Warmbier died as a result of his captivity.

Trump said he believes Kim’s denial that he was aware of Warmbier’s mistreatment.

He groveled at Russian strongman Vladimir Putin, who denied attacking our electoral system in 2016. Trump swallowed Putin’s denial over the assessment of the nation’s intelligence community that determined the Russians did attack us in 2016.

When a U.S. resident journalist was killed in Turkey by Saudi agents, Trump accepted the denial that Saudi prince Mohammad bin Salman ordered the killing of Jamal Khashoggi.

Trump’s latest display of infatuation with a tyrant — Kim Jong Un — reveals a dangerous trend. The president of the United States — who occupies the most powerful office on Earth — acts with astonishing weakness when he takes the word of a killer.

Strongman/tyrant knew nothing? C’mon!

Kim Jong Un’s role as a tyrant by definition means he almost certainly knows what every arm of the government he runs is doing.

So, when the North Korean government takes an American college student — Otto Warmbier — into custody, hold him in bondage for more than a year and then releases him in a vegetative state to the United States, we are now expected to believe Kim Jong Un knew nothing about it.

Donald Trump, the president of the United States, said he believes Kim. He takes him “at his word.” The two men met in Hanoi this week and Kim gave Trump some assurance that he didn’t know about Warmbier’s condition upon his release.

North Korea comprises about 25 million residents. Its economy is in desperate straits. The tyrant who runs the country has built up a military force that reportedly is among the strongest in Asia. And, oh yes, has those nuclear bombs and missiles he says can deliver them to targets far away.

A tyrant who runs a country such as this knows everything his government is doing. Everything!

Who in the world does Donald Trump think he’s kidding when he says Kim doesn’t know about Otto Warmbier’s imprisonment and the conditions that produced his death shortly after returning home?

Otto’s parents, Cindy and Fred Warmbier, do not believe Kim’s denial. They hold the dictator and the government runs fully responsible for their son’s death.

The parents are in shock.

For this couple’s president, one Donald John Trump, to say he believes the word of a killer disrespects these grieving parents in an unfathomable fashion.

Disgraceful.

The summit that crashed and burned

So much for high expectations.

Donald Trump flew all the way from Washington to Hanoi to meet with his new BFF, Kim Jong Un, the tyrant who rules North Korea.

Then the leaders met, shook hands, exchanged pleasantries — and then called the whole thing off! No deal was done.

Kim went back to Pyongyang; Trump flew back to Washington.

Oh, and then we have the episode in which Kim told Trump he didn’t know anything about the incarceration of Otto Warmbier, the young American who was released from North Korean custody, only to die shortly after returning to the United States.

Just as Trump took the word of Vladimir Putin, who denied interfering in our election in 2016 — despite the analysis of our intelligence community that he did interfere — the president believed Kim Jong Un’s denial that he knew anything about Warmbier’s incarceration.

The president said he takes Kim “at his word.” As if that’s worth anything? Get real, shall we?

Why in the world does Donald Trump accept the word of these tyrants? Inquiring minds want to know.

Donald Trump, of course, isn’t the first U.S. president to get rolled at high level summits. President Kennedy got his head handed to him by Nikita Khrushchev in 1961, emboldening the Soviet strongman to put missiles in Cuba; we remember how that turned out.

I cannot get past the feeling, though, that in Trump’s case this failed summit is a product of a lack of pre-meeting preparation by the White House.

The president, it must be said, took a long plane ride for nothing.

Now he gets to deal with some serious problems back home.

Human rights, Mr. POTUS . . . don’t forget to mention it

When Jimmy Carter was president of the United States, he spoke a lot about human rights and the need to ensure that all human beings were guaranteed basic rights of citizenship.

We don’t hear that kind of talk these days from Donald J. Trump. So, as he prepares to meet for the second time in a year with North Korean dictator/despot/megalomaniac Kim Jong Un, I am wondering if he’s going to mention human rights. At all! In any form!

Reports suggest that North Korea’s human rights record ought to be a deal breaker between Trump and Kim. Yes, it should, given North Korea’s abysmal human rights record and Kim’s demonstrated cruelty toward his own people, not to mention members of his own family. Trump, though, has an affinity for despots — or so it appears. He’s chummy with Kim, with Vladimir Putin and any assortment of tinhorn dictators from Turkey to the Philippines.

It’s instructive, too, that the two men are meeting in Hanoi, Vietnam — the country that introduced the world to “re-education camps” after the communists won the Vietnam War by overrunning South Vietnam in April 1975. Re-education camp was a euphemism for concentration camps, where the communists sent sympathizers of the defeated South Vietnamese government. They were “re-educated,” all right.

So, will this be the moment for Donald Trump, the president of the world’s strongest nation, to hold Kim Jong Un accountable for the atrocities he commits against his own people?

I am not holding my breath.

Trump to meet ‘Little Rocket Man’ one more time

If the North Korean dictator/killer Kim Jong Un is the “smart cookie” that Donald Trump has called him, then he must be scratching his noggin about this “bromance” that is developing between him and the president of the United States.

The two men are meeting Feb. 27-28 in Hanoi, Vietnam for their second summit. The irony of the summit location surely isn’t lost on Trump critics who are fond of bringing up the alleged “bone spurs” that purportedly kept the future president out of the military during the Vietnam War. But . . . I digress.

The point here is that Trump keeps tossing love at a dictator who has allowed mass starvation of his people, had members of his family killed because of policy disputes, has threatened to invade South Korea, has detonated nuclear bombs, has threatened to launch missiles at the United States.

Trump used to refer to Kim as “Little Rocket Man” and once threatened him with “fire and fury” if he keeps threatening the United States.

Good grief! Talk about running hot and cold!

Trump disparages intelligence chiefs

The summit is going to take place just as the president is disputing the assessment of his high-level intelligence chiefs who say that North Korea is still pursuing development of nuclear weapons, despite Kim’s reported pledge to dismantle his nuclear program. CIA operatives report that the North Koreans continue to work toward adding to their small, but relatively potent nuclear arsenal.

What in the world is the president going to tell Kim when the two men get together in Vietnam? Is he going to scold him? Will he challenge him to demonstrate his stated commitment to end the nuclear development effort? Or will the two men come out of their meeting and pledge their “love” for each other?

The most troubling aspect of this meeting the continual deference Trump displays toward strongmen around the world. The iron-fisted rulers of Russia, The Philippines, Turkey and, oh yes, North Korea keep getting weird compliments from a U.S. president who praises them for their, um, “strong leadership.”

If only we Americans could make that same boast.

Don’t believe what you see and hear!

Donald Trump thinks he governs a nation of rubes, boobs and goofs.

Why in the world would he tell the nation that the video it saw and the audio it heard of intelligence chiefs disputing the president’s assertions about national security threats were doctored, made up, taken out of context?

Their U.S. Senate committee testimony was “totally misquoted” he said by the media that are in the business of conveying “fake news.”

According to The Huffington Post: “Now the president contends that was not their testimony. “They said that they were totally misquoted . . . it was taken out of context. . . . They said it was fake news,” he said Thursday. He encouraged reporters to “call them.”

Huh? What the . . . ?

What in the world is this individual thinking, smoking or ingesting?

CIA Director Gina Haspel, FBI Director Christopher Wray and DNI Dan Coats all said the same thing: Donald Trump is wrong by saying ISIS is defeated, that North Korea is no longer a nuke threat and that Russia isn’t involved in attacking our electoral system.

I heard ’em say it, Mr. President. I heard ’em with my own ears and saw ’em with own eyes.

I believe our intelligence chiefs. Not you!

Trump didn’t read what he’s criticizing?

This is amazing, even for Donald John “Liar in Chief” Trump.

The president has acknowledged that he didn’t read the intelligence report that challenges his assertions about ISIS, North Korea, Russian election interference and Iranian nukes.

And then he criticizes the reporting on it, saying that the media reportedly mischaracterized the intelligence chiefs’ analysis of what they have concluded. He called the reporting “fake news” and then declined to support the work of the people he appointed to lead our nation’s intelligence apparatus.

So, he didn’t read the report. He doesn’t know what it contains. He is jumping to conclusions about the most sensitive of national security matters.

Oh, wait! He went to the best schools, hired the best people, he knows the best words.

Donald Trump doesn’t need to read these reports. He gets his national security advice from “the TV shows.”

Yep. That’s how you make America great again.

I am scared.

Trump tosses needless insults at intelligence brass

Try for a moment to wrap your arms around this bit of idiocy.

Donald J. Trump, the guy admits to not wanting to read policy briefings, has declared that the nation’s top-level intelligence command is “na├»ve.”

He wrote this on Twitter:

The Intelligence people seem to be extremely passive and naive when it comes to the dangers of Iran. They are wrong! When I became President Iran was making trouble all over the Middle East, and beyond. Since ending the terrible Iran Nuclear Deal, they are MUCH different, but….

….a source of potential danger and conflict. They are testing Rockets (last week) and more, and are coming very close to the edge. There economy is now crashing, which is the only thing holding them back. Be careful of Iran. Perhaps Intelligence should go back to school!

These individuals, all seasoned political figures and national intelligence experts, have contradicted the president’s assertions about Iran, North Korea and the Islamic State.

CIA Director Gina Haspel, a career spook who has spent her entire career with the spy agency, says Iran is complying with previous restrictions enacted designed to keep the Islamic Republic from obtaining nuclear weapons. Trump calls Iran an existential threat to the Middle East.

Director of National Intelligence Dan Coats, a veteran U.S. senator from Indiana with serious foreign policy chops, said the Islamic State poses a dramatic threat to the civilized world. Trump says the United States and our allies have “defeated” ISIS in Syria.

FBI Director Christopher Wray, who’s forged a career in law enforcement and counter-terrorism, joined his colleagues in suggesting that North Korea is still looking to develop nuclear weapons. Trump has said that North Korea is no longer a threat.

Who do you believe? The seasoned, experienced and serious intelligence professionals? Or do you believe a political novice with zero experience in anything even remotely connected with intelligence, counter-intelligence or counter-terrorism? The serious public servants or the man who spent his entire public life devoted to self-promotion, self-aggrandizement and self-enrichment?

I am going to go with the intelligence and law enforcement pros.

Now I must ask: How much of this denigration of their skill, knowledge and experience are they going to take from the carnival barker who managed to get elected president of the United States?