A new book has revealed details about the “deep and special” diplomatic relationship between Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un.
The US president is said to have been impressed by the North Korean leader, who he described as “far beyond smart”, when the two first met in June 2018, according to Rage, by journalist Bob Woodward.
After their first meeting in Singapore, Mr Kim wrote to Mr Trump: “Even now I cannot forget that moment of history when I firmly held Your Excellency’s hand at the beautiful and sacred location as the whole world watched with great interest and hope to relive the honour of that day.”
Image: President Donald Trump was criticised for holding three meetings with the North Korean leader
Mr Trump also said Mr Kim “tells me everything”, and reportedly shared a graphic account of how he had arranged to have his own uncle killed in 2013.
He also told Mr Woodward that Mr Kim “never smiled before” and that “I’m the only one he smiles with”.
Mr Kim described their meetings as a “precious memory” that outlined how the “deep and special friendship between us will work as a magical force”.
The writer disclosed extracts in his book from letters the pair had exchanged with one another.
Excerpts from the book were reported by The Washington Post, where Mr Woodward is an editor, and CNN.
When discussing nuclear arms with Mr Kim, the US president is said to have dismissed assessments made by intelligence officials which suggested that North Korea wouldn’t give up its weapons.
He went on to tell Mr Woodward the CIA had “no idea” how to handle the situation.
Mr Trump was heavily criticised for holding three meetings with Mr Kim, but he dismissed this, stating the summits were no big deal.
“It takes me two days. I met. I gave up nothing,” said the president, while suggesting Pyongyang’s attachment to its nuclear weapons is like someone who is in love with a house and “they just can’t sell it”.
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The two leaders exchanged 27 letters, according to Mr Woodward, and his book also claims Mr Trump understood the threat of coronavirus while telling the nation it was no worse than flu.
He is quoted as referring to COVID-19 as “deadly stuff”, saying: “I wanted to always play it down. I still like playing it down because I don’t want to create a panic.”
Featuring interviews Mr Woodward had with the US president between December 2019 and July 2020, the book also contains the president’s comments on racial unrest.
When the two spoke about race relations in June, Mr Woodward asked Mr Trump whether he thought there was systemic racism in America.
“Well, I think there is everywhere,” the president said. “I think probably less here than most places. Or less here than many places.”
Asked whether racism “is here” in the United States in a way that affects people’s lives, Mr Trump replied: “I think it is. And it’s unfortunate. But I think it is.”
Source : Sky News