With the second summit between U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un coming up, I was invited to speak last Wednesday at a conference at the International Christian University in Tokyo on North Korea. It was an excellent event, focusing explicitly on cutting through the grandiose rhetoric from the United States and South Korean presidents about North Korea's denuclearization to determine what the North has actually done since detente started in January 2018.
The short answer is very little, and that is also likely to be the case after the Trump-Kim meeting in Hanoi next week. This is unfortunate, and there is much blame to go around. South Korean President Moon Jae-in has wildly over-hyped his outreach to the North as a "new era of peace" in Korean affairs.
Meanwhile Trump has shown his customary lack of focus and discipline in dealing with a complex issue. He announced the Hanoi meeting less than a month before it is to occur, all but ensuring that nothing substantive comes from it because there is simply not enough time to work out the many complicated issues of the U.S.-North Korean relationship.