So, the day started with Trump cancelling the summit with North Korea because his bad cop/good cop/bad cop routine (John Bolton threatened the "Libya" sanction, Trump took it back, Mike Pence repeated the Libya threat, and NK said "That's enough!") either didn't work or did exactly what he wanted it to (no, I don't think Trump is that Machiavellian). It started, in other words, with a letter so witless and poorly drafted it leaves one with the picture of Trump waiting for the phone to ring or the mail to arrive, hoping to hear from Kim. The day went on to include:
During his formal announcement on withdrawing from a planned summit with North Korea, Trump said that both South Korea and Japan “are willing to shoulder much of the cost of any financial burden, any of the costs associated by the United States in operations” if the United States is “forced” to attack North Korea.
A statement during a formal announcement which, as far as I can tell, nobody is paying attention to today. Hey, it's just Trump, amirite? A day that left South Korea (at least) saying: "Hey, man! WTF?"
South Korea's presidential Blue House seems blind-sided by Trump's cancelation of the summit: "We are attempting to make sense of what, precisely, President Trump means," says spokesman Kim Eui-kyeom.— Anna Fifield (@annafifield) May 24, 2018
What Sarah Sanders said when Emmet Flood joined: “...will be joining the White House staff to represent the president and the administration against the Russia witch hunt.” https://t.co/NiVtsOG3ei— Kaitlan Collins (@kaitlancollins) May 24, 2018
Everyone in the Washington and media elite knew this but set aside all the evidence to believe that Trump is someone else and might actually take negotiations seriously and usher in a major diplomatic breakthrough with North Korea. The ultimate collapse of the summit is a valuable opportunity to try to make sure we do a better job next time, and not only take note of Trump’s lies and nonsense when his statements are proven to be dishonest nonsense but to be preemptively skeptical of new claims he makes.
I'll retire to Bedlam....