The Koreas’ Spectacular Rendezvous

From the De-militarized Zone (DMZ) of the world’s most reclusive and dangerous region:

“Great Expectation” To reiterate the amazing writing skills of one of England’s brilliant writers, Charles Dickens. And William Shakespeare’s “To be or not to be…that is the question” from Hamlet, one of the Bard’s most famous plays. I raise the latter because there is some relativity here about history’s dramas and the meeting, in just days, of the two Korean leaders. I have lived in Korea and nearby Japan since 2008, covering the news for the world’s media including the 2011 earthquake and the student’s occupation of HK to name just some. But never something as colossal as the summit between Kim Jong Un and Moon Jae-In.

The two Koreas have been in a state of war since the 1950’s. An armistice was agreed on but the war actually never ended until days ago when, amazing as it might seem and sound, Kim Jong Un and North Korea implied that the Korean war is finally over. Of course that is only rhetoric at this stage, as nothing has been finalized or signed between the two Koreas and the US.

What is astounding is the sudden change of temperament and policy, in fact, North Korea’s appearing to do a 180-degree turn about from threatening to annihilate America and its own regional neighbors
to earnestly seeking peaceful, diplomatic remedies. This coming from Kim Jong Un, who has diligently and desperately pursued a nuclear missile arsenal for years together with frequent tests and defiance towards the US, South Korea, Japan and the world. Now, suddenly, he’s a statesman. No wonder the skepticism from Trump and the media.

But the very thought and hope of a peaceful Korean Peninsula and normality in the region at last predicts a new prosperity, too. South Korea has a highly advanced, technically proficient society with highly successful manufacturing base–like Samsung and Hyundai–while its impoverished northern neighbor has untapped natural resources. If, by some miracle, the two Koreas followed
the example of Germany after the Berlin wall came down and actually united as one nation…Imagine the prosperity.

Trump will meet Kim shortly and has stated his delight at North Korea’s apparent new attitude.

Paul Martin will be reporting exclusively to the Valley Voice from the DMZ.

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