Tags: wesley clark | singapore summit | china

Gen. Wesley Clark: China the Big Winner of Singapore Summit

Image: Gen. Wesley Clark: China the Big Winner of Singapore Summit
Retired Army Gen. Wesley Clark (Cliff Owen/AP)

By    |   Thursday, 14 June 2018 01:24 PM

This week's nuclear summit with President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un had a result beneficial to China, Retired Army Gen. Wesley Clark writes.

In an op-ed for CNBC, Clark — who unsuccessfully ran for president as a Democrat in 2004 — argued that the Singapore summit was largely full of photo ops and little substance.

"The photos from the Singapore summit were meant to impress, but the substance was thin indeed — for a vague pledge to work towards complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula our president gave up U.S.-South Korean joint military exercises in a surprise move that whacked both South Korea and Japan," Clark wrote.

The big winner, he argued, was China. Trump announced after sitting down with Kim and their respective aides for hours that he would put an end — albeit temporarily — to the joint U.S.-South Korea military services that occur twice a year.

That, Clark wrote, was a gift to China — and Russia too.

"It is no secret that both China and Russia want U.S. forces out of South Korea, and thereafter out of Japan, Okinawa, and the western Pacific," he wrote. "And it is no secret that Russia wants NATO and the EU hobbled and weakened, and the U.S. out of Europe. And both have wished to push the U.S. back into a more isolated and less significant world role.

"The first tentative results of the summit match China's game plan."

Kim met with Chinese President Xi Jinping at least twice ahead of the summit, and it's not entirely clear what they discussed. But what is clear is that both China and Russia have defied sanctions against North Korea to figure out ways to do business with the rogue nation — even transferring oil to North Korean tankers in the middle of the ocean.

This week's summit was set up to start a dialogue between Trump and Kim as the White House tries to pressure North Korea to abandon its nuclear weapons program. Trump said Kim is committed to doing just that.

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This week's nuclear summit with President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un had a result beneficial to China, Retired Army Gen. Wesley Clark writes.
wesley clark, singapore summit, china
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2018-24-14
Thursday, 14 June 2018 01:24 PM
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