The US ignores history's lessons at its peril

From Afghanistan to N. Korea, present policy difficulties stem from dismissing signposts from the past

WASHINGTON • In the giddy days of June 2018, as American President Donald Trump and North Korea's Chairman Kim Jong Un met in Singapore, it seemed for a tantalising moment that the sceptical Korea experts at the think-tanks here were wrong, and an unconventional, norms-breaking president was on the brink of an outstanding breakthrough.

In the run-up to the Singapore summit, Mr Raj Shah, then White House deputy spokesman, was asked by a reporter if the administration had consulted with well-known Korea experts such as former CIA North Korea analyst Sue Mi Terry (now with the Centre for Strategic and International Studies and former ambassador, congressman and governor Bill Richardson).

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on January 08, 2020, with the headline 'The US ignores history's lessons at its peril'. Subscribe