Road From Hanoi to Pyongyang Goes Via Beijing

Road From Hanoi to Pyongyang Goes Via Beijing
Li Xueren/Xinhua via AP

Trump's best hope of a lasting nuclear deal with North Korea depends on China.

The most telling photos from the Hanoi summit were the shots of the sumptuous banquet table set for the concluding lunch -- which of course never happened, as talks cratered over Kim's unreasonable offer of closing the Yongbyon nuclear enrichment facility in return for a lifting of all sanctions.

The empty places at the table set for U.S. President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un epitomized the difficulty of landing this agreement while it remains stuck in a U.S. -- North Korea channel. In the end, all roads to Pyongyang lead through Beijing, and the most salient take-away from the Hanoi summit is that there will not be a deal until Beijing signs off on it.

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