The Atlantic

The One Time Trump Didn’t Blink

Trump has often folded during talks, but he chose to walk away from his summit with Kim Jong Un rather than take a deal he didn’t like.
Source: Leah Millis / Reuters

No U.S. president has trained his audience to expect the unexpected as effectively as Donald Trump, so a strange conclusion to his summit with North Korea’s Kim Jong Un in Vietnam was always the most likely outcome.

What was surprising was the type of outcome: Trump abruptly left the summit and canceled a signing ceremony on the premise that no deal was better than a bad deal. And he did so, , after raising the stakes sky-high for the summit, and at a time when domestic political considerations meant that he could desperately use a win. Trump ran for president heralding himself as

You're reading a preview, sign up to read more.

More from The Atlantic

The Atlantic4 min read
The Remarkable Badness of What/If
Sometimes bad television happens to good actors. There’s no other way to rationalize what’s happening in What/If, a show in which Renée Zellweger is biting off chunks of scenery, shredding them with her dainty white teeth, and digesting them on camer
The Atlantic6 min read
A Priestless Church Simply Isn’t Catholic
James Carroll, the author of this month’s Atlantic’s cover story, “Abolish the Priesthood,” is famous in certain Catholic circles for his bitter denunciations of the Church. To the well-documented renunciation of his own priesthood years ago, Carroll
The Atlantic5 min readPsychology
Why Celebrities Are So Susceptible to Grifters
Human history is riddled with people whose limited credentials have not stopped them from successfully hawking miracle cures and religious salvation, but Grigori Rasputin stands out as a talented wellness grifter even now. After arriving in St. Peter