Speaking to reporters on Thursday, President Trump expressed hope for the future toward North Korea. He says that he believes Kim Jong-un “sees a different future for the North Koreans.” He did not elaborate in these comments.
In the past, however, Trump has presented Kim with the idea that he can choose to take North Korea away from its status as a pariah state and denuclearize. Trump has even suggested that North Korea could become “very rich” in doing so.
This does indeed fir with what some other officials have said of Kim’s priorities, including North Korean state media. They’ve said Kim is keen to transition North Korea’s priority away from a constant focus on defending against potential attacks, and toward general economic growth and improvement.
Kim has committed to denuclearization as a way to prevent a US attack. Whether this policy actually works depends heavily on the US honoring the deal, but once again suggests North Korea envisions a different future from the endless military buildup of the past.