The Deal of the Century? Get real!
It would be lovely to think that the world has been saved, but what was really achieved by the 45-minute ‘summit’ between the US and North Korea?
We saw a well-stage-managed reality show for TV and social media: an exotic tropical island; an impressive, flag-decorated set: lots of forced smiles and hand-shakes for the cameras; effusive mutual praise (which rang a little hollow after a year or two of twittering insults); and the flamboyant signing of a document so vague that either party at any time can interpret it however it wants.
So who got what out of it?
For Trump: it was a chance to stroke his gigantic ego by posing as the Great Peacemaker (and hopefully, as he and his entourage hinted, help North Korea’s failed economy by developing a couple of luxury golf clubs and perhaps a Trump Tower or two).
For Kim: it gave a kind of international legitimacy to his dictatorial dynasty – a tacit acceptance of his imprisonment, murder, and other human rights atrocities against 100,000+ political prisoners, many of whom are no more than relatives of people whose crimes include falling asleep during a political speech.
Some 80 years ago political leaders met in another place with another tin-pot dictator and came way waving a document for the cameras which guaranteed ‘Peace in our Time’.
That worked out well, too, didn’t it?