• 폰트크기작게
  • 폰트크기크게
  • TTS
  • 단어장
  • 기사스크립
  • SNS
2017-11-06 16:41
By Kurt Achin

Like my country itself, I am divided about Donald Trump.

Domestically, it's hard not to see him as a grave threat to democracy.  He has unceasingly signaled his disdain for democratic institutions, engaged in guerrilla warfare on civil discourse, and kindled the hopes of those who would elevate him to America's authoritarian CEO. And that's before we start talking about Russia.

It's with self-consciousness, then, that I cop to finding a certain appeal in Mr. Trump's hard line on North Korea. He has said point blank the United States will not simply sit patiently while Pyongyang bootstraps the ability to vaporize entire American cities. In shelving yesterday's playbook of scold, sanction and talks about talks, he is refusing to fall for a con in that particular manner only an accused conman may be qualified to do.

My sliver of pro-Trump catharsis comes with a psychological cost. All the rhetoric, combined with massive military reinforcements in the region, has bumped the needle on the unthinkability of renewed conflict. To be clear: there is no panic, and there are no evacuations. But somewhere, at the back of many minds, there is a maybe.

Are we to be marched into a devastating conflict by a leader whose most notable achievements include firing La Toya Jackson? The very absurdity of the situation is paralyzing.

I attempt to resolve my inner duality about Trump by remembering we must confront North Korea not with the president we want, but with the president we have. What we have, above all else, is a man who can read a balance sheet. That simple skill alone should deter a war on the Korean Peninsula.

What we also have is the first candidate in history to leverage a reality show into a presidency. The Trump campaign's low-budget, low-staff defeat of a formidable Democrat party machine, by hook or by crook, left a nation slack-jawed and will be studied for decades to come.

Mr. Trump should unleash his willingness to take unconventional approaches on North Korea. He should seize upon and exploit the fact that what North Korea's leadership fears more than anything else is a critical mass of its population seeing through the scam that governs their lives. 

The real war to be won in North Korea is one of information and influence, and Trump should be asking some new questions. What if Washington spent real money ― Pentagon-level money ― on flooding North Korea with broadband connectivity, by balloon, by satellite, by any means necessary? 

What if this war were fought not with Marines and SEALs, but by enlisting the counsel of the most innovative technologists and content producers Hollywood, New York, and Silicon Valley can serve up? 

How might ordinary North Koreans change if the country were suddenly flooded with every season of “The Apprentice,” on SD cards more plentiful than cigarettes?  Maybe they would start considering who they would like to “fire.”

North Korea desperately needs a reality show. Let's show them reality. Mr. Trump, care to executive produce?


Kurt Achin is a former producer for CNN, international correspondent for Voice of America, and currently hosts the radio program “Koreascape” in Seoul for TBS.


  • 폰트크기작게
  • 폰트크기크게
  • TTS
  • 단어장
  • 기사스크립
  • SNS