There’s been a lot of eye-popping lately. Why? Because of the foreign leaders Trump plans to visit.
Trump first raised eyebrows about meeting with North Korea’s very unpredictable third-generation dictator, Kim Jong-un, who’s been stretching his nuclear muscle lately. Trump said of Jong-un, “Obviously, he’s a pretty smart cookie,” leaving many aghast. Even more aghast was Trump’s next statement: “If it would be appropriate for me to meet with him, I would absolutely, and I would be honored to do it.”
Wow, what would THAT meeting be like? Comparisons are a Roosevelt-Hitler meeting, or a Bush-Saddam Hussein meeting, which of course never happened, but a Kennedy-Krushchev and a Nixon-Mao meeting did, so maybe it’s not that much of a stretch.
Where would this meeting be? Kim Jong-un doesn’t travel much (to say the least) so a Korean meeting would likely be in the demilitarized zone. Would Jong-un travel to neutral Switzerland, and would Switzerland be OK with that? What if they met at (gasp!) the White House? Maybe Trump would want Jong-un to visit Mar-a-Lago, like Trump did with Chinese President Xi Jinping. Now THAT would be cool!
Trump has already created quite an uproar by hosting the president of Egypt, but it’s unlikely little Kim could even get a visa!
What would they talk about—golf? Likely not. They’d obviously discuss the nuclear armaments and North and South Korean relations. As South Korea’s military protector, the US would certainly mention our interest in continuing and even heightening that protection.
China doesn’t really want American interference, and things with Trump are already a little testy after he called the President of Taiwan, much to China’s dismay. Certainly, any talk with Kim would have to involve China because they’re the ones that can exert the most pressure on North Korea.
Trump ruffled more feathers recently when he announced the itinerary of his first foreign trip: Saudi Arabia, Israel and Italy.
Obama always addressed the people of the country to build public support. Trump is different: he will deal privately with the leaders of a country, an approach much preferred by foreign leaders. The White House has already gone on the record to say that foreign leaders are much more willing to help the United States if their discussions, which often involve human rights issues and other problems, can be discussed in private. Trump’s team already began working with the Saudis in March on the visit, and a senior White House official stated his pleasant surprise at how willing the Saudis were to work with the United States. When there, Trump will meet with Saudi Arabia’s current monarch King Salman, and will have another meeting attended by several representatives of Arab and Muslim countries.