- The Washington Times - Tuesday, June 12, 2018

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

After making history with “Rocket Man” in Singapore, President Donald Trump granted an interview to ABC NewsGeorge Stephanopoulos Tuesday morning. 

The former Clinton staffer and Clinton Foundation donor grilled the president on the summit and why we should trust the authoritarian North Korean regime: 

STEPHANOPOULOS: “Kim is a brutal dictator. He runs a police state. Forced starvation, labor camps, he’s assassinated members of his own family. How do you trust a killer like that?”

TRUMP: “George, I’m given what I’m given. Okay? I mean, this is what we have, this is where we are, and I can only tell you from my experience, and I’ve met him, I’ve spoken with him. I’ve met him. And this is, this has started very early and it’s been very intense. I think that he really wants to do a great job for North Korea. I think he wants to de-nuke… without that, there’s nothing to discuss. It was on the table from the beginning, and you see a total denuclearization of North Korea — so important. And, he wants to do the right thing. Now, what it is I can’t talk about — it doesn’t matter. We’re starting from scratch. We’re starting right now, and we have to get rid of those nuclear weapons.”

 

The ABC News anchor kept pressing the trust question. 

“Well, over my lifetime I’ve done a lot of deals with a lot of people and sometimes, the people you most distrust turn out to be the most honorable ones,” Trump continued. “And the people that you do trust turn out to be not the honorable ones.”

Eventually,Stephanopoulos pressed Trump enough on the trust theme to elicit a definitive response. 

“I do trust him, yeah,” Trump said. “Maybe in a year you’ll be interviewing and I’ll say I made a mistake. It’s possible. We’re dealing at a high level, a lot of things can change a lot of things are possible.”

“We have the framework for getting ready to denuclearize,” Trump said. “He’s de-nuking the whole place. I think he’s going to start now.”


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