To the Editor:
Re “North Korea Asks for Direct Talks, and Trump Agrees” (front page, March 9):
The United States and South Korea, if things go well, are to be congratulated for taking the first steps toward denuclearizing the Korean Peninsula. Of course, naysayers will cry that Presidents Moon Jae-in and Trump are naïve, are taking a big risk and should never trust a North Korean leader. But the alternative is far worse — military force and a war of unintended, devastating consequences.
Besides, we don’t need to trust the North. We need to verify, every step of the way, and I’m sure any deal will include strong verification provisions. What is needed in East Asia is the rule of law.
To make this a permanent structure, the next step is a peace treaty — an end to almost 70 years of belligerence and tensions. It could also be a victory for Korea economically, and an economically healthy North and South Korea would be the biggest guarantor of peace in the region.
EDWARD A. AGUILAR
The writer is Pennsylvania director of the Coalition for Peace Action.
To the Editor:
Meeting with President Kim Jong-un is incredibly weak and offers no real progress in denuclearizing North Korea. Secretary of State Madeline Albright visited North Korea in 2000, only to learn in 2002 that the United States was being duped on the Agreed Framework from the get-go. Who actually thinks a meeting will slow the North’s continued nuclear proliferation, which in turn supplies Bashar al-Assad’s pariah regime in Syria with weapons?
President Trump’s visit only legitimizes Mr. Kim’s criminal syndicate masquerading as a government and lessens the chance for a United States pre-emptive strike — the only way North Korea will ever be denuclearized. Is this really what we want?