(TNS)Â Without question, President Donald Trump has made more diplomatic headway with North Korea than any president since the Korean War.
But his progress has been limited primarily to meet-and-greet photo ops with leader Kim Jong-un. Thatâ€™s not a criticism of the president, just an acknowledgement of the reality of the situation.
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Yes, North Korea has made some gestures toward denuclearization, which is the Trump administrationâ€™s objective, but must of that, too, has been posturing.
In recent weeks as a self-imposed end-of-the-year deadline to restart substantive talks approaches, North Korea has been ramping up nuclear and missile testing sites once again, likely in anticipation that the Trump administration isnâ€™t going to cave on sanctions, which is what Kim wants.
So there has been some talk of a â€œChristmas surpriseâ€ from North Korea even as rhetoric from the regime once again turns bellicose.