A lot has already been said about the Hanoi meeting flop. My Spectator piece last year pretty much foretold what the future held. Trump, staffed by Bolton (his “polarizing new national security advisor”) and Secretary of State Pompeo, pushed for the same “all or nothing” deal as G.W. Bush, with the same predictable result.
This time around, Trump was obviously fixated on Michael Cohen’s testimony, staying up all night watching the House Government Oversight hearing, and he probably wanted to get out of Hanoi as soon as possible. He said as much by blaming the hearing as a big factor in the failed summit.
The big difference from the past is that Trump removed regime change from the table and deflated the nuclear brinksmanship threat, which overall are positive developments. The big questions are: will Bolton walk Trump back, ending further summits? And will Trump’s love affair with Kim end badly?