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What an embassy in Pyongyang could mean for the U.S.

A television news screen showing President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong at a train station in Seoul.
A television news screen showing President Donald Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong at a train station in Seoul. Photo: Jung Yeon-je/AFP/Getty Images

Following Jonathan Swan's scoop that President Trump is open to establishing official relations with North Korea, including potentially building a U.S. embassy in Pyongyang, Bloomberg View's Eli Lake writes that the U.S. “has historically viewed a diplomatic presence in Pyongyang not as a concession, but a benefit in and of itself."

The backdrop: The establishment of an unofficial embassy in North Korea was first presented to Kim's father, Kim Jong-Il, two decades ago by former President Bill Clinton’s defense secretary, William Perry. The idea, writes Lake, was connected to a broader proposal aimed at denuclearizing North Korea, but the deal was later rejected.