News Release

Why Did Hanoi Summit Really Fail? 


Speaking from Hanoi, Christine Ahn, a co-founder and a current associate of the Korea Policy Institute, appeared this morning on “Democracy Now” and cautioned against accepting President Trump’s depiction as to why the Hanoi summit was cut short.

Kevin Gray, a specialist in international relations at the University of Sussex, England tweeted that “Former SK unification minister Chong Se-hyun suggests that summit was derailed by last minute attendance of Bolton, who added demands for NK to also report chemical/biological weapons, in response to which NKs increased their demand for sanctions relief.” National Security Adviser John Bolton is widely seen as responsible for the recent U.S. government announcement of withdrawing from the INF Treaty with Russia.

Ahn also stated that continued military exercises by the U.S. government push North Korea into being more of a garrison state. She also stressed the humanitarian toll of continued sanctions on North Korea; see report from last year from Reuters: “60,000 North Korean children may starve, sanctions slow aid: UNICEF.” Ahn also highlighted the strong support for a peace agreement in South Korea and for South Korean President Moon Jae-in — and the need for people in the U.S. to be engaged in such issues. Rep. Ro Khanna (D-Ca.) just introduced a House resolution to end the Korean War on Tuesday after 69 years of conflict.

HYUN LEE, hyunlee70 at
Lee is with Zoom in KoreaHong is an associate professor at the University of California, Santa Cruz. Her pieces include “The Long, Dirty History of U.S. Warmongering against North Korea.” Both are board members of the Korea Policy Institute.

Background: Siegfried Hecker, emeritus research professor at Stanford University and a leading specialist on the North Korean nuclear program noted before the Hanoi Summit: “We maintain that a risk-based, phased approach for elimination of the nuclear weapons program will stretch over a decade or so because of the enormity of the nuclear weapons enterprise and the huge trust deficits that remain.”