WASHINGTON, DC – U.S. Senator Jack Reed (D-RI), the Ranking Member of the Senate
Armed Services Committee, issued the following statement in reaction to
President Trump’s decision to pull out of the planned June 12th nuclear summit
with North Korea:
“I am not surprised that the Trump-Kim summit
“Kim Jung Un’s rhetoric had become more brazen
and aggressive, in part because China has been pulling strings behind the
scenes to bolster North Korea’s position.
“The Trump Administration’s rhetoric has also
been unproductive, such as the Vice President’s references to “to the Libya
“And today, even President Trump’s boastful
letter and statements left much to be desired. Extolling the massive and
powerful nature of our nuclear weapons to the leader of a weak and dangerous
country was ill considered.
“Even more troubling is the fact that,
according to news reports, South Korea, our most important ally on this issue,
was left in the dark about the cancellation. In the end, the strength of
our alliance with South Korea will be one of the most important factors for
success to the resolution of this crisis.
“It seems as if President Trump had gotten
carried away with the idea of an historic photo-op. If he had taken a
more considered approach to Mr. Kim’s initial offer for a summit, we would not
find ourselves in this position. Before hastily agreeing to meet, this
Administration should have spent months setting the stage in pre-negotiations
to determine the sincerity of the North Koreans, and how likely it would be
that we could get to a negotiated agreement.
“I hope eventually, after a more thoughtful
and strategic approach, these talks can get back on track. It will
require consistent messaging from the White House about our expectations with regard
to denuclearization without the bellicose threats of military action. I
am concerned that this President and his team are not quite up to the task.”