Quoted: Vox on Secret Meeting Between Pence and North Koreans

“Pence’s main goal was to underscore for the North Koreans how much the United States is committed to continuing maximum pressure, regardless of what happens between the two Koreas,” Mintaro Oba, a former Obama State Department official who worked on North Korean affairs, told me.
Pyongyang “would probably have emphasized that North Korea’s nuclear program is a done deal and the United States should accept that,” Oba continued.
“The North Koreans may have fully expected from the start to cancel and blame it on Pence’s behavior,” Oba told me, “perhaps hoping that would upset [South Korean] President Moon and widen the gap between the United States and South Korea.”
Vox, February 21


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