The Trump Administration’s negotiations with North Korea appear to be deteriorating, with officials from the Hermit Kingdom reportedly slamming Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s efforts as “gangster-like and cancerous.”
You’d never know that to listen to Pompeo, who described the talks as “productive.”
An MSNBC panel tried to get to the bottom of the situation on Saturday afternoon.
Analyst Victor Cha, a former member of the National Security Council who has himself negotiated with North Korea under George W. Bush, said there’s no question Pompeo had a rough go.
“What we saw was the secretary trying to put lipstick on a pig,” he said. “He has two days of what sounds like not very good discussions, where they tried to make progress on some of the issues laid out in the June 12th Summit… The North Koreans are playing from the same play book 10 years ago. Calling demands unreasonable, aggressive, signs of aggression. To think that we sent the American president to Singapore, and the North Koreans are coming back with the same play book from 10 years ago. It’s not encouraging at all.”
Former senior FBI official Frank Figliuzzi said that he’s concerned by what’s going on
“What concerns me is the spin we will get coming out of the White House. It’s going to harm the president publicly from a repetitional standpoint, if it becomes clear that North Koreans are enhancing their nuclear program, and never intended to denuclearize. We are not going to get the truth, there will be a political spin on this—everybody is OK, we are making progress, nothing to see here, move along.”