Dennis Rodman Cries from Joy over Donald Trump, North Korea Summit
13 June, 2018, 12:32
"We're spending a fortune, every couple of months we're doing war games with South Korea", he added.
Trump's remarks contradicted decades of assertions by US administrations that military exercises in South Korea are defensive and essential to ensuring that allied forces are ready at a moment's notice to fight the North.
The eccentric former athlete and reality TV star was referring to his trips to North Korea in 2013 and 2017.
But Trump said the US would not reduce the presence of some 32,000 USA soldiers in South Korea.
Drills called Team Spirit, one of the largest annual military maneuvers in the world at the time, were held from 1976 until 1993, when, after North Korea agreed to dismantle its existing nuclear facilities, the exercises were canceled and have not been held since.
"I was not entirely optimistic about the summit because it nearly got canceled once", said Yoon Yong-jin, 20, a university student.
But Daniel Davis, a retired army lieutenant colonel and fellow at the Defense Priorities military think tank, said suspending the drills would have no short-term impact on US and South Korean military readiness. Last year, that exercise, called Ulchi-Freedom Guardian, involved about 17,500 USA troops and focused heavily on computer-simulated exercises.
US President Donald Trump (L) with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un (R).
While President Moon Jae-in hailed the summit, conservative pundits in South Korea were unimpressed. "So it came as a bit of a surprise", he said.
Rodman did not return to North Korea until 2017, when PotCoin, the cryptocurrency, sponsored a trip to Pyongyang that coincided with the release of Otto Warmbier, a college student who had been imprisoned in 2016 on charges of stealing a propaganda banner. "We don't have high expectations, although we have high hopes", she said.
"If we end the "named exercises" and shift to a routine training regimen of a winter and summer training cycle - just as the North Korean People's Army conducts - in which we can conduct sufficient training, that will ensure readiness of the combined forces then we will be OK", he said.
"War games are very expensive", he said, raising the issue of their cost.
But Trump calling them "provocative" could be an issue in the future, considering that North Korea and China have traditionally done so, Denmark said.
Mr Rodman was in Singapore for Tuesday's summit, but the White House had said he would play no official role.
China's Foreign Minister Wang Yi met Pompeo during his visit to Washington in late May when both men discussed the Singapore summit and ways to alleviate trade tensions between the two countries. "President Trump committed to provide security guarantees to the DPRK, and Chairman Kim Jong Un reaffirmed his firm and unwavering commitment to complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula". "In the meantime, it is essential to maintain economic sanctions and diplomatic pressure, and above all to continue strengthening our military capability to defend ourselves and our allies". But between 1996 and 2005, joint U.S.