From History News Network by Bruce W. Dearstyne author of The Spirit of New York: Defining Events in the Empire State’s History:
President Donald Trump has accepted an invitation from North Korean leader Kim Jong-un to discuss discontinuing its nuclear program and missile tests. Sixty-five years ago, in 1953, president Dwight Eisenhower ended the Korean War.
Trump can learn five lessons from Eisenhower’s success.
1. Breakout solutions may solve intractable problems.
Sometimes, bold, unanticipated initiatives help break through impasses.
The Korean War began in 1950 when Communist North Korean leader Kim Il-sung, Kim Jong-un’s grandfather, suddenly invaded South Korea in a bid to take it over. American forces, acting under a United Nations resolution condemning the aggression, along with small numbers of troops from other nations, drove the North Koreans out and invaded that country. But North Korea’s ally China, which shared a border with North Korea, then intervened, pushing the U.S. forces back.
By late 1952, the two sides faced each other in a stalemate at the 38th parallel not far from the original North-South Korean border before the war began.
The war was at an impasse. President Harry Truman’s administration had no good military options.
But the Republican presidential nominee in 1952, former general Dwight D. Eisenhower, in an October 24 campaign speech, dramatically declared “I shall go to Korea” and end the war. That electrifying promise helped get him overwhelmingly elected the next month.