CNN’s Jim Acosta, who famously was at the receiving end of President Trump’s “You are fake news” declaration, gained the international spotlight again with his behavior at the historic summit between Trump and North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un.
After the two leaders exited their initial meeting, Acosta peppered both of them with shouted questions. He yelled at least five times, according to Fox News.
“Mr. President, how is the meeting going so far, sir? Any progress, Mr. President? Mr. President, how’s it going so far, sir?” he said to Trump.
To the totalitarian dictator, he yelled, “Chairman Kim, will you denuclearize? Will you give up your nuclear weapons, sir?”
Trump did address him one of the times, assuring him that the summit was going well so far. The meetings took place early Tuesday in Singapore.
During an official press conference later, the president took a question from Acosta but first warned him, “Be nice. Be respectful.”
The two have had an antagonistic relationship, with Trump often calling out Acosta’s rudeness, interruptions, and badgering during U.S. press appearances.
“I’ll be respectful, sir,” Acosta assured the president before asking, “What did Kim Jong Un say to you to give you the confidence that, for once in the history of North Korea, they are not cheating the system and gaming the world and gaming the people who will have to go in and make sure they’re actually giving up their nuclear arsenal?”
As part of the summit, Trump and Kim signed a joint statement that included the goal of working “toward complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.” Another goal emphasized working toward “peace and prosperity” for the hermit kingdom.
Trump answered Acosta’s doubt-ridden question by saying, “Very fair question. He actually mentioned the fact that they proceeded down a path in the past, and ultimately, nothing got done. In one case, they took billions of dollars during the Clinton regime, and nothing happened.”
During President Bill Clinton’s time in office, he approved $4 billion of aid for North Korea to help them improve their energy structure, according to Fox News. In turn, the North Koreans were supposed to end their nuclear weapons program. That didn’t happen.
“That was a terrible thing, and [Kim] actually brought it up to me,” Trump explained. “And he said, we have never gone this far. I don’t think they’ve ever had the confidence, frankly, in a president that they have right now, getting things done....”
“[Kim] was very firm in the fact that he wants to do this,” Trump added. “I think he wants to do this as much, if not more, than me, because they see a very bright future for North Korea.”