Or it couldn’t.
“If Chairman Kim of North Korea sees this, I would meet him at the Border/DMZ just to shake his hand and say Hello(?)!” Trump wrote.
The prospect of a casual handshake between the US president and the North Korean leader along the world’s most heavily fortified border would once be unthinkable. Now, the idea seems entirely in keeping with Trump’s deeply personal style of diplomacy and his flair for orchestrating drama around those efforts.
But Trump says he’s in no rush and claims to have already seen results — both enough, in his view, for another meeting.
“I just thought of it this morning,” Trump said of his tweet. “We’ll be there, and I just put out a feeler.”
Instead, Trump made the announcement himself, telling reporters later in the day he’d considered the optics of proposing the meeting and having Kim not show up but went ahead anyway.
“Of course I thought of that,” he said when a reporter asked if it would be interpreted as a bad sign should Kim fail to materialize at the border.
He seemed upbeat by the reception from North Korea, which called the proposal “interesting” but stopped short of accepting it, saying it didn’t reflect a formal invitation.
And he clarified he wouldn’t call what might transpire a “summit.”
“We’re not talking about extended — just a quick hello,” Trump said.
Other presidents have made the same journey — all peering into the hermit kingdom through binoculars — but none have actually met the despotic leaders who rule it.
Nor has any sitting US president stepped across into the North, something Trump would not rule out on Saturday.
“Sure I would,” Trump said. “I feel very comfortable doing that. I would have no problem.”