Written by Nasser Kandil,
The Summit which brought together the US President Donald Trump and the North Korean leader Kim Jong-un is a historic international event that is almost similar to the normalization of the US-Chinese relationships four decades ago during the visit of the former US President Richard Nixon to Beijing. The document signed by the two presidents has a special value as it has interpretations and meanings due to the surrounding contexts. The title of the joint document is similar to the framework which surrounded the Iranian nuclear agreement and paved the way for its birth after months through Iran's commitment not to possess a nuclear weapons in exchange for America's commitment to lift the sanctions, while in Korea there are US security and economic guarantees in exchange for a Korean Peninsula free of nuclear weapons.
The first title resulted from the meeting is as much as it is a confirmation of a mutual desire to reach to a peaceful solution to the crisis, it asserts that if North Korea did not have a nuclear arsenal that would threaten America it would not get the interest of the US President who belittles his allies and treats them arrogantly as France and Britain which are superpowers. This interest, this friendly language, and this message may be of Iran's interest which committed not to possess nuclear weapons and implemented its commitments with the testimony of the International Atomic Energy Agency but it got only renunciation, as the US treatment of Iran which will be of Korea's interest regarding the fate of pledges after the end of the threat of the Korean nuclear weapons.
The second title which will turn into a practical question is will Washington within the concept of nuclear disarmament from the Korean Peninsula remove its arsenal from it, including the Thad strategic missiles which worry China? Will Korea dismantle and destroy its weapons or will it send it to out of Korea to China or Russia? Respectively, will Korea demand a Russian-Chinese guarantee to protect its weapons from any aggression in exchange for keeping its nuclear weapons? Or will it accept the risk of just having US guarantees that it knows already that they may turn into words that can be denied? How can China or Russia be partners in guarantees without being partners in the feeling of security with the US commitment to remove the worrying missiles from South Korea?
The third title is economy; Korea is not as Iran the oil, industrial, agricultural country which does not need but to lift the sanctions to be interested economically. What it needs to develop its economy is more than opening markets and lifting sanctions. It is a country that needs at least one billion dollars to launch a comprehensive development project after years of suffering and austerity to the extent of famine. It spent what it has on its nuclear project to bargain it someday with these billions, so how can it obtain them without South Korea, Japan, China and maybe Europe? Can this be achieved without their partnership in making the integrated solution? Knowing that the US President is treating everyone including his Japanese and Korean partners in a way that does not make them feel as partners.
Maybe the US President finds it easy to distinguish the Korean state from the Iranian one in terms of its non- interfering with the confused files which of America's interest as Israel's security, domination on oil and gas markets, the wars of Syria and Yemen, and the future of Iraq. However the Koreans and the Americans know that the internationalizing of the negotiations and the understandings is a mutual undeniable needas it is a way to link the other international files.
Translated by Lina Shehadeh,