Bill Poulos: Trump, Rodman, and Jong-un Take Center Court
Bill Poulos has written multiple books and investment training programs. He is the President of Profits Run, Inc. He and his son, Greg, co-founded Profits Run in 2001. Bill Poulos helps educate people how investment strategies that utilize proper risk management. He earned his MBA with a degree in finance from the University of Michigan. Bill recently launched fightforhope.com. Bill is a regular contributor on Seeking Alpha and Medium. Below he gives insight into foreign relations between the US and North Korea.
As everyone knows, President Trump is meeting with Kim Jong-un in Singapore regarding a potential reconciliation with North Korea, for the first time since the Korean War. The Korean war was fought back in the early ‘50s.
This time, the hopes are very high that there would actually be a tangible, verifiable agreement to denuclearize North Korea once and for all. This would be in exchange for welcoming North Korea into the world economy, lifting sanctions, and providing other support, as well as eventually setting the groundwork to unify the Korean peninsula (which is of course several years down the road, by all accounts).
Many folks wonder, how did this all come about after several administrations prior to President Trump having tried and failed time and time again? What’s new? What’s different?
While you can certainly point to what’s new and what’s different as being President Trump and his approach with North Korea being quite demanding, threatening, and appeasing at the same time should North Korea indeed agree to denuclearize. That’s new and you should give much credit to Donald Trump up to this point. It is still to be determined whether this will all be successful but at least credit President Trump for making it this far in the process.
However, there may be a secret that’s just now coming to light in that all these years, going back to 2013 at least, Dennis Rodman has been traveling back and forth to and from North Korea. Rodman has been meeting with Kim Jong-un and other Korean officials, to which most of the media and politicians either ignored or belittled. Even Dennis Rodman himself kept saying things to the effect of, “hey, I’m just a guy. I’m just a basketball guy who’s interested in talking basketball with North Korea. And I’m not a diplomat, so don’t make me a diplomat. Forget about it.” Kim Jong-un was a big fan of Dennis Rodman, in particular when he was playing for Chicago Bulls.
The whole thing was kind of a caricature, Dennis Rodman going to North Korea. No one expected anything out of that and they made fun of him. Please thought, “What’s he trying to do?” And of course, the career diplomats in particular snickered at the whole thing.
But it could be that the secret here to Trump’s success is Rodman actually laying the groundwork that enabled Trump to come in and move the ball forward in ways that the career diplomats just can’t imagine or bring themselves to acknowledge.
Maybe not. You could argue that none of that had to do with anything and, Dennis Rodman or not, Trump would have been able to meet with Kim Jong-un on his terms in Singapore, anyway.
But it is an interesting occurrence and activity to ponder as to what extent did Dennis Rodman enable these talks. I guess we’ll never know the answer to that.
One thing we do know for sure is that Rodman’s trips over there didn’t hurt anything. They certainly didn’t get in the way of Trump’s success.
You could argue, they did indeed hasten the release from North Korea of political captives — Americans (or other nationalists) who allegedly committed some innocuous crime in North Korea and were detained and sentenced to hard labor for 15 years, et cetera.
Rodman did manage, it appears, to get one or two (at least) of those people released. If that’s all Rodman did, at least he did something good.
The whole thing is kind of amusing and it could be that Dennis Rodman has played a key role in history.
Time will tell.