Problems, conflicts, differences in culture, perception, and sensibility are expected on the road to achieve the Panmunjom Declaration. All of the potential stumbling blocks stem from distrust and paranoia of North Korea and the confused world view/international policy of the U.S.A.
North wants peace and prosperity with their pride/sovereignty intact. In a way, they’ve been starving their people for 70 years to keep their pride/ sovereignty. Yes, along the way, they’ve committed horrendous crimes against humanity. Because of their paranoia(general population and ruling class, both) and insecurity of the regime, previous attempts at peace in Korea had been failures. At the same time, the U.S.A. never had clear grasp of the Korean situation. The reason for this is ignorance and arrogance plus outdated world view. Both sides were not wise or bold enough to have an agreement. Of course, the historical baggages and PTSD on both side needed time to heal.
Look around the world, now. It is clearly confused and fumbling. It desperately needs healing. You may say it is the nature of the beast. But nothing is nature alone, there is nurture. Yes, nurture is much more difficult and requires a lot of patience. Nature lurks around at every corner, constantly. At the present moment, nature is clearly in ascendancy. Look at Trump, Putin, etc., etc., etc. The question is “Is this all we can do?” No wonder, Jesus Christ claimed love is the only solution. Then, a lot of people said that, also. It seems love is very hard to come by. It is an obvious observation gleaned from history.
Again, understanding the issues clearly and having a vision is the foundation of nurture. In Korean situation, the issue and vision is clear. It is peace, prosperity, and mutual respect with dignity. Moon Jae-in is clearly ready. Kim Jong-un is almost there. The question is the U.S.A, and Trump. They are clueless. They are not dumb like a fox. They are dumb fox. At least a few are, for sure.
Ideally, all three should be in the driver’s seat. Kim’s confidence is not quite there, yet. Trump is all guts and no brain. It is clear Moon has to be the driver. He has to earn the trust of Kim. It is the crucial first step. They have to be on the same page. There is great possibility that it can happen: all the elements are there. Is Moon up to the task? It is time to prove he is a real leader with vision and courage. Moon should be more forceful with Trump telling him clearly he is the one who needs successful negotiation more than anybody, politically. Domestically and internationally, he is in trouble. Actually, he is having problems from all quarters. He is almost in Park Geun-hye mode of “My becoming a president is a big mistake.” 이러려고 대통령을 했나? The tragedy is that he may not be capable of admitting the obvious.
When the issue and vision is clear—what I mean by this is that there is majority consensus as to where to go/ there is the majority support for the policy—- the solution can be found no matter what the stumbling block is. I have faith in the creativity of Korean people. Moon has the South Korean people’s majority support. Kim is in agreement with him in “The Big Pictures.” It is time for him to be more assertive and forceful with Kim and Trump, both. Especially with Trump. It is just getting interesting. It definitely has a hint of happy ending. The world is watching. The world is in desperate need of a happy ending. Royal wedding, anybody?