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"Don't cancel your reservations for Singapore just yet," former U.S. deputy secretary of state Anthony Blinken told VOA's Korean Service. "This is unlikely to be the final word. President Trump and Kim Jong Un are engaged in a high-stakes game of chicken based on the shared assumption that the other wants and needs the summit more."
According to Massachusetts Institute of Technology associate professor of political science Vipin Narang, "This is an inflection point in the administration policy toward North Korea."
Narang, an author of two books on nuclear strategy, told VOA News that "one camp may prefer to see if working-level diplomacy can get things back on track, and maybe eventually get to a summit. Another camp may try to use this as evidence that diplomacy is doomed to fail, and that denuclearizing North Korea by force � attacking a nuclear weapons power � is the only remaining option."
The hardline camp would be emboldened and empowered by any future North Korean nuclear or long-range missile test, predicts Narang. "So, if Kim is truly interested in some deal � well short of disarmament, obviously � his smartest move now is to exercise restraint."
Trump has responded to North Korea in "a particularly ham-handed way," according to John Feffer, the director of the Foreign Policy in Focus project at the Institute for Policy Studies. "Trump didn't just cancel the summit. He sent a veiled threat of using nuclear weapons. I hope this won't be his only opportunity to help resolve the conflict with North Korea."
Source: Voice of America