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History has been created and the ice broken – true, but some 27 years  past the end of the Cold War that set nations apart in an ideological fight between the Communists and the Capitalists. When US president Donald Trump and North Korea’s new-age ruler Kim Jong Un met at a
historic summit in Singapore Tuesday, the word that spread from the two horses’ own mouths was that they have set aside the grim past marked by intense hostility. They also promised to work for a new future to promote amity and peace. This, truly, is the calling of the times and both the leaders have shown commendable maturity to rise to the occasion.

The joint declaration that Trump and Kim signed after their meet at the historic Sentosa resort island was just a start; but this is a start with high potential and higher hopes for peace and
reconciliation. This is also a guarantee to better times ahead for the world where several walls have collapsed by way of initiatives from leaders of high calibre. Note in specific the visit of Richard Nixon to China in 1972, the fall of the German Wall in 1989, the reconciliation between the US and Russia three years later, and the restoration of US-Cuba diplomatic relations in 2015. Donald Trump, as a businessman-turned US President proved that his open- minded approach helped in breaking the ice.

Trump’s words that the two nations would in future have a “terrific relationship” underpinned the optimism that enveloped the summit. Kim’s response was equally gratifying; that the two sides have overcome the past that had placed many obstacles in the way of a reconciliation between the two hostile nations.

The choosing of Signapore as a meeting point for the two nations that were set poles apart was most appropriate. The island nation with a modern outlook is a close ally of the US and the West, even as its leadership consisted mainly of Chinese settlers. China certainly played the midwife, and President Xi Jinping can be trusted to have played a role meaningfully from behind the curtains. Serious issues need be sorted out, discussed and solutions found in the months and
years ahead. Denuclearisation, as is promised by Kim, could likely happen, but over a period of time. Confidence-building is of prime importance as of now, and the two sides have succeeded in this. Hats off to Trump and Kim!


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