Ex-CIA Officer: Pompeo Faces 'Extraordinary Challenge' on NoKo Denuclearization Timeline
Former CIA Chief of Station Daniel Hoffman said Friday that Secretary of State Mike Pompeo faces an "extraordinary challenge" in getting North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un to commit to a timeline for denuclearization.
Pompeo is in North Korea for negotiations following President Trump's historic Singapore Summit with Kim, as the administration looks for a substantive commitment from the North Koreans to end their nuclear weapons program.
Hoffman said expectations should be managed given how complicated the diplomatic challenge is, since Kim has always been wary of giving up his nuclear capability.
He said Pompeo will be looking to get Kim to agree to a timeline for dismantling nuclear sites, with mechanisms in place to ensure they are not "double dealing."
"Let's not forget their chemical and biological weapons as well. They are armed to the teeth and it presents great challenges for our negotiators," said Hoffman on "America's Newsroom."
Hoffman emphasized that a South Korean lawmaker said yesterday that, according to satellite intelligence, North Korea is eyeing a nuclear-armed ballistic missile submarine. He said the Trump administration cannot give in to demands from Russia and China to loosen sanctions before denuclearization is achieved.
Hoffman ended by saying negotiations with the Soviet Union under President Reagan took years to play out and the situation with North Korea is still in its early days.
Meantime, a South Korean newspaper reported that Pompeo brought a CD with the Elton John song “Rocket Man” to give to Kim.
Last year, amid escalating rhetoric between the two countries, Trump repeatedly referred to Kim as "Rocket Man" and "Little Rocket Man" and brought up the nicknames at the recent summit.
Watch the full analysis above.