The idea came to me after Donald Trump was inaugurated a year ago January and became the man now receiving these terrorizing threats from North Korea. North Korea would lob unstoppable guided missiles soon to blow up San Francisco, and by next year, Chicago and Washington would follow.
Trump’s early approach to Kim was to send ships and planes to the Korean coast, armed to the teeth, to sail and fly around offshore. They would prepare to attack, steam toward the coast, then back off. Then they’d gather up and do it again. Kim’s vivid descriptions of what he would do continued to scare us to death.
In the issue of Dan’s Papers in September 2017, I suggested that Trump take a different approach. Here’s what I wrote:
I fail to see why we should start World War III to get nuclear weapons out of North Korea. North Korea having nuclear weapons isn’t any worse than China or Russia having nuclear weapons. Those other two countries can easily blow up Los Angeles or any other American city.
Well, you might say, those countries are not threatening to attack the United States every day.
That’s true. But Kim, so far, hasn’t actually blown anything up yet. He’s been capable of destroying both Tokyo and Seoul at the push of a button for ten years. And he—or his father—hasn’t done it.
Yet Kim continues to frighten us.
Why not tell Kim, “Kim, if you drop even one nuclear weapon out there, your palace and capital city are toast. Trust us. Not one more peep out of you.”
We have a president who is an expert at this. He should go at it, in my view.
Kim Jung-Il will get the message.
So that is what I wrote.
Dan’s Papers gets distributed not only on the East End, but also in Manhattan. There are street boxes with our paper in it within two blocks of Trump Tower on Fifth Avenue.
A week went by. Then another. A few navy ships bumped into other ships. Then, in early September, it began. Trump’s attacks were vicious and personal. They were a thing of beauty, the sort of thing only he can do. For a while, so were the replies.
“Kim is on a suicide mission.”
“Trump is a mentally deranged U.S. dotard.”
“Kim is a madman.”
“We are ready to defend ourselves if the United States shows any sign of conducting a decapitating operation on our headquarters.”
“Poor Little Rocket Man.”
“I have the button to launch a nuclear attack on America right on my desk.”
“I have a much bigger button on my desk. And mine actually works.”
These attacks by Trump scared the daylights out of many American journalists. Was Trump really that crazy? Was he as crazy as Kim now?
But Trump’s attacks affected Kim. His button was indeed not as big as Trump’s button. Then came the winter Olympics in South Korea, a visit from Kim’s sister to the Olympic stadium, a meeting between North and South at the border, an invitation by Kim to President Moon of South Korea, who announced that North Korea was willing to give up its nuclear weapons and then a planned meeting between Donald Trump and Kim Jung-Un later this month.
I am just so proud of myself.