The much-anticipated letter from North Korea’s Kim Jung-un was delivered Friday to President Trump at the White House. Kim’s top aide (and former intelligence chief) Kim Yong Chol presented Trump with a gigantic white envelope and the exchange was captured on camera.
.@POTUS @realDonaldTrump is presented with a letter from North Korean Leader Kim Jong Un, Friday, June 1, 2018, by North Korean envoy Kim Yong Chol in the Oval Office at the @WhiteHouse in Washington, D.C., followed by a meeting. (Official @WhiteHouse Photos by Shealah Craighead) pic.twitter.com/6a1PgFXS3v
— Dan Scavino Jr. (@Scavino45) June 1, 2018
Talk about over-compensation! That must be quite a letter. Naturally, the tweets and photoshopping began and continued into Friday evening fun.
The letter was presented as Trump revived plans for a June 12 summit with Kim in Singapore that Trump had abruptly cancelled last week.
Social media users, however, were quick to point out the large envelope.
This guy even worked LeBron into his tweet.
— Jesse McLaren (@McJesse) June 2, 2018
Washington Post’s Tokyo bureau chief, Anna Fifield, pondered if this was a play on Trump’s past claim that he has a “much bigger” nuclear button than Kim.
When it comes to nuclear buttons and now to envelopes, size apparently matters pic.twitter.com/0T6qdzU9MI
— Anna Fifield (@annafifield) June 1, 2018
Speaking of size, does that envelope make Trump’s hands look smaller?
Anyway, Trump was briefed on the contents of the letter but hadn’t actually read it when he addressed the press after walking his North Korean guest out of their meeting. He referred to it as a “very nice” letter, though. It appears the charm offensive is back on track to make this June 12 summit thing happen.
“I haven’t seen the letter yet,” Trump told reporters outside the White House. “I purposely didn’t open the letter. I haven’t opened it. I didn’t open it in front of the director. I said, ‘Would you want me to open it?’ He said, ‘You can read it later.’ I may be in for a big surprise.”
Rest assured, though, that the Secret Service examined the yuge envelope for anything dangerous before it was given to the president. No one really wanted any big surprises. As far as Trump is concerned, the June 12 summit is happening. At least that is the latest message.
Meanwhile, at an international security conference in Singapore (the location of the summit) Defense Secretary Jim Mattis said that America’s troop presence in South Korea is not on the table for discussion. He added, “Nor should it be.”
He says the “hopes of the world are on these talks.” And he acknowledges that if diplomacy with North Korea works, then troop levels and similar issues can come up, but only in discussions between the U.S. and South Korea.
He says the troop issue is “separate and distinct” and will not be brought up at the June 12 summit.
Trump called Friday’s meeting “a great start” and declared, “We’re going to deal.” Secretary of State Mike Pompeo was a bit more polished in his statement Thursday after his meeting with Kim Yong Chol.
“Our two countries face a pivotal moment in our relationship, and it would be nothing short of tragic to let this opportunity go to waste,” Pompeo said in New York after meeting with Kim.
Whether the summit happens on June 12 or not, it will be a long process and involve many meetings. It’s foolish to think otherwise.