Kim Jong Un letters with Trump: A window into the leaders’ ‘special friendship’

Trump has described them as “love letters,” and Woodward writes they present a “diplomatic courtship” that moved Trump from taunting Kim as “Little Rocket Man” and threatening “fire and fury” to changing into the first sitting US president to satisfy with a North Korean chief. Woodward writes the uncommon letters are stuffed with “declarations of personal fealty that might be uttered by the Knights of the Round Table, or perhaps suitors.”

In his letters to Trump, Kim addresses him as “Your Excellency” and punctuates them with flowery prose.

“Even now I cannot forget that moment of history when I firmly held Your Excellency’s hand at the beautiful and sacred location as the whole world watched with great interest and hope to relive the honor of that day,” Kim wrote to Trump on December 25, 2018, following their first assembly in Singapore.

Another assembly “between myself and Your Excellency,” Kim added, could be “reminiscent of a scene from a fantasy film.”

Trump’s responses are extra easy however nonetheless stuffed with flattery.

Trump wrote again to Kim on December 28, “Like you, I have no doubt that a great result will be accomplished between our two countries, and that the only two leaders who can do it are you and me.”

Trump has tweeted out two of the 27 letters, however the different 25 haven’t been seen earlier than. Woodward was capable of evaluate all of the letters however was not given copies, so he recorded transcripts of their contents into his audio recorder for “Rage.”
Trump’s determination to satisfy with Kim thrice — in Singapore, Vietnam and the Demilitarized Zone dividing North and South Korea — will definitely be amongst the most notable international coverage legacies of his presidency. Their conferences and letters exchanged between them adopted a interval of serious tensions in 2017 when Pyongyang launched a collection of provocative missile checks and Trump responded by taunting Kim on Twitter.

‘A second of glory’

Following the leaders’ second assembly, Kim wrote in June 2019 that “every minute we shared 103 days ago in Hanoi was also a moment of glory that remains a precious memory.”

“I also believe that the deep and special friendship between us will work as a magical force,” Kim added.

In a June 2019 letter to Kim, simply earlier than Trump proposed on Twitter that the leaders meet at the DMZ, Trump wrote that “you and I have a unique style and a special friendship.”

“Only you and I, working together, can resolve the issues between our two counties and end nearly 70 years of hostility, bringing an era of prosperity to the Korean Peninsula that will exceed all our greatest expectations — and you will be the one to lead,” Trump wrote. “It will be historic!”

‘I’m actually, very offended’

Following the DMZ assembly, Trump wrote to Kim on June 30, “Being with you today was truly amazing,” attaching a replica of The New York Times entrance web page from that day. Two days later, Trump wrote once more, sending 22 images of their assembly.

“These images are great memories for me and capture the unique friendship that you and I have developed,” Trump wrote.

Kim responded a month later, however this time with a brand new tone, which Woodward describes as like “a disappointed friend or lover.” Kim was upset that US-South Korea army workouts had not totally stopped.

“I am clearly offended and I do not want to hide this feeling from you. I am really, very offended,” Kim wrote. “Your Excellency, I am immensely proud and honored that we have a relationship where I can send and receive such candid thoughts with you.”

‘He was completely ready to go’

Trump and Kim grew to become pen buddies after a interval of great tensions in 2017, when North Korea escalated its provocations with missile checks and Trump responded with tweets taunting him as “Little Rocket Man” and threatening to reply with “with fire and fury like the world has never seen.” The state of affairs alarmed Trump’s national security team, which feared the US is perhaps near nuclear battle, Woodward experiences. Then-Defense Secretary James Mattis believed the ridicule and taunting was “unproductive, childish and dangerous.”

“I got over enjoying public humiliation by second grade,” Mattis as soon as instructed Trump, in response to Woodward.

In his interviews with Woodward, Trump argues that his determination to satisfy with Kim has averted battle.

“He was totally prepared to go,” Trump instructed Woodward on December 13, 2019. “And he expected to go. But we met.”

In a subsequent interview on December 30, Trump instructed Woodward: “If I weren’t president, we would have — perhaps it would be over by now, and perhaps it wouldn’t — we would’ve been in a major war.”

Trump argued he “gave up nothing” by assembly with Kim, though North Korea hasn’t adopted by with the denuclearization steps that the US was looking for. Trump’s critics say the conferences offered Kim the legitimacy on the world stage he desperately sought with out curbing Pyongyang’s nuclear program.

‘Let’s go to a film collectively’

Woodward’s ebook consists of notable coloration from Trump’s conferences with Kim. In the second summit in February 2019, Trump says he knew Kim was not able to make a deal, and the two leaders argued over which nuclear websites Pyongyang would dismantle.

“I know every one of the sites. I know all of them, better than any of my people I know them. You understand that,” Trump says, in response to Woodward. But when Kim wouldn’t budge, Trump tried one other method.

“Do you ever do anything other than send rockets up to the air?” Trump requested Kim. “Let’s go to a movie together. Let’s go play a round of golf.”

After Woodward obtained Kim’s letters, Trump warned him in a January 2020 telephone name: “You can’t mock Kim. I don’t want to get in a f—ing nuclear war because you mocked him.”

The CIA by no means decided who wrote and crafted Kim’s letters to Trump, however Woodward writes the company thought of them “masterpieces.”

“The analysts marveled at the skill someone brought to finding the exact mixture of flattery while appealing to Trump’s sense of grandiosity and being center stage in history.”

CNN’s Elizabeth Stuart contributed to this report.

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