The North Korean summit was a disaster. Trump and his team are now claiming it was actually a success.
Trump's failure at the recent summit with North Korea has led him and his top foreign policy team to be caught in embarrassing lies and deceptions as they try to spin good news out of a massive failure.
Trump hyped the Hanoi summit at his (delayed) State of the Union speech in February, describing it as a part of "bold new diplomacy." He lied and said that without him, America would "be in a major war with North Korea with potentially millions of people killed."
Less than a month later, Trump was skulking home by plane after walking away from the summit with nothing to show except for his having helped elevate a rogue regime again.
But now Trump and his team are feverishly working to contain the damage from the failed meeting, using political spin to cover for their glaring diplomatic inadequacies.
The detachment from reality isn't just with Trump. His underlings have also gone to war with reality to try to make the summit sound like things worked out better than they did.
North Korean Foreign Minister Ri Yong Ho said in a statement, "our proposal will never be changed," indicating that the nation had made its final offer on denuclearization to the U.S. in Hanoi.
"That's not what the North Koreans said," Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said when asked about the comment by USA Today. "Don't say things that aren't true. ... Show me the quote from the North Koreans that said this was their one and only offer. Where'd you get that?"
But then the paper read him the direct quote.
"Pompeo fell silent for about six seconds," USA Today reported.
Instead of acknowledging his lie and how it had been quickly disproven, Pompeo simply moved on, replying, "What they said is they're prepared to continue conversations with us and that’s what we intend to do."
But a senior official at the State Department where Pompeo is in charge told ABC News that the two countries can't even agree on what denuclearization means, which would be a considerable obstacle to future summits.
National Security Advisor John Bolton has also been in the press, defending Trump's ineptitude and also denying reality.
Meeting North Korea one-on-one in international diplomatic venues is a major concession to the regime, who was treated like an international pariah under the previous two presidencies. But Bolton claimed, "The President's view is he gave nothing away."
For years North Korea has demanded that joint U.S.-South Korean military exercises be discontinued. Without any deal in hand from the regime, Trump went ahead and canceled the event anyway. But Bolton denied reality, much like Pompeo had.
Asked if it was a concession, Bolton told Fox News, "I don't think the president sees it that way at all."
Trump can "see" anything he wants to, but the reality on full display to America, and the entire world, is a massive diplomatic failure and the corresponding flailing attempts to cover up that mistake.
Published with permission of The American Independent Foundation.