While the western media has written off last weekend’s summit in Hanoi as a failure, the talks did help to burnish Kim Jong-un’s reputation as a sincere statesman committed to peacefully resolving the nuclear issue.

The lifting of sanctions is not nearly as important as Kim’s broader goal of ending Washington’s military occupation of the Korean peninsula and reunifying the country.

In order to achieve those objectives, Kim will need the support of his allies in Moscow and Beijing as well as that of the Korean people. 

From the very beginning, Kim appeared to be fully committed to working with his American counterparts to hammer out a deal that was mutually acceptable.

He basically showed the world that he was willing to offer up the bulk of the DPRK nuclear weapons-ballistic missile programs on a silver platter in exchange for a partial lifting of sanctions.

It was an extraordinarily generous offer which should have led to a real breakthrough, but it did not. Instead, the offer was breezily rejected without debate or counter-offer.

Why would Trump shrug off an offer to permanently halt all long-range rocket and nuclear tests and to “completely dismantle all the nuclear production facilities” at Yongbyon, the DPRK’s primary nuclear enrichment facility?

The most probable reason for lack of progress was that the United States made new demands at Hanoi.

Although North Korea’s proposal for limited if robust sanctions relief had been discussed weeks prior to the meeting.

But American negotiators in Hanoi suddenly asked for destruction of a second nuclear enrichment facility that Pyongyang had not previously acknowledged in order to derail the evolving peace talks?

The sanctions would continue to be enforced until the DPRK government collapsed or until hell froze over, which ever came first. The media would like readers to believe that the credulous Trump narrowly escaped a lethal trap set by the evil despot, Kim Jong un.

But, neither Putin nor Xi Jinping want to see North Korea brought to its knees creating another failed state that becomes a hotbed of terrorism and anarchy. That’s not what they want at all.

They want a North Korea that is ready to participate in their massive economic integration plans (One Belt, One Road, Eurasian Economic Union etc).

They want a North Korea that enjoys the benefits of modernization, state of the art technology and infrastructure, high-speed rail, gas pipelines and ever-improving standards of living.

Mr. Kim wants North Korea to become a normal East Asian economy, catch up with and integrate into the region, and it’s in everyone’s interest to help him do so.

Russia Insider / ABC Flash Point News 2019.

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