January 26, 2023 08:20
Former U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo has claimed that North Korean leader Kim Jong-un believes American troops are needed in South Korea to protect him from China.
The claim is among many bizarre moments in the Trump-era diplomat's incontinent memoirs titled "Never Give an Inch" and published Tuesday.
Pompeo claims he told Kim that Chinese officials said American forces leaving South Korea would make Kim happy. But Kim replied that "the Chinese were liars," adding that he needed Americans for his own safety and to prevent China from treating the Korean Peninsula like Tibet and Xinjiang, which it annexed.
Pompeo adds, "Expanding U.S. missile and ground capabilities on the Korean Peninsula won’t bother the North Koreans at all."
He visited North Korea in 2018 during a period that saw three historic summits between Kim and President Donald Trump, but they ultimately led to nothing.
"The biggest challenge was the one we knew we would have to confront: South Korean president Moon Jae-in was going to demand to be part of this historic event... President Moon called me directly multiple times, and my answer to him was well-rehearsed: [Kim] prefers to meet just with [Trump]. Moon wasn't a happy camper, but we made the right call, as [Kim] had neither time nor respect for [Moon]," Pompeo writes.
Much of the book is given over to score-settling with rivals in Pompeo's own party, but he also takes time out to denounce "faux outrage" over the 2018 murder by Saudi agents of the journalist Jamal Khashoggi and other colorful broadsides.
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