When North and South Korean athletes marched together under one flag during the opening ceremony of the 2018 Winter Olympics, that rare gesture of unity set the tone for what could be a historic year for the Korean peninsula. A series of diplomatic moves since then have cleared a path for negotiations that could finally wrap up the 7-decades-old Korean war and normalize relations between Pyongyang, Seoul and Washington D.C. This is a remarkable reversal from last year when skyrocketing tensions led to name-calling and threats of nuclear war. Now, all of that seems like yesteryear.
North Koreaʼs Kim Jong Un and South Koreaʼs Moon Jae-in are set to meet face-to-face at a leadership summit on April 29, where they will discuss de-nuclearization and a peace treaty to officially end their state of war. If all goes well, that will be followed by a separate summit between North Koreaʼs leader and US President, Donald Trump, sometime in May or June. The dismantling of North Koreaʼs nuclear arsenal – if that is indeed what Kim Jong Un means by de-nuclearization – would be in return for establishing diplomatic ties with the U.S., securing aid to help rebuild its economy, and getting America to approve the Northʼs peace treaty with South Korea . . .