South Korea politician slams John Bolton for divulging secrets

Former White House national security adviser John Bolton is coming under criticism from South Korea's ruling party politicians for the publication of his memoir. File Photo by Kevin Dietsch/UPI

June 23 (UPI) — A junior South Korean politician condemned former White House national security adviser John Bolton on Tuesday, saying his new memoir has made negotiation with North Korea even more difficult.

Kim Hong-gul, a lawmaker with the ruling Democratic Party who is the son of former President Kim Dae-jung, said Tuesday in a Facebook post Bolton was putting the precarious situation on the Korean Peninsula at greater risk for profit.

North Korea will not “easily reveal secret details during negotiations” now that “core secrets” have been divulged by Bolton “for money-making purposes” less than a year after his departure from the White House, Kim Hong-gul said.

“Negotiations with North Korea will become more challenging,” the South Korean politician said on social media. “The third-rate politicians emerging in the United States, once considered a first-rate nation, are about to cause grave damage to peace on the Korean Peninsula.”

Kim also said U.S. President Donald Trump appointed “hard-liner” Bolton to intimidate North Korea.

“After deciding on a summit with North Korea, President Trump sought to frighten North Korea with the appointment of Bolton as national security adviser,” Kim said, likening the move to keeping a “savage beast” or predator close by. Bolton has supported regime change in the North.

“After the [U.S.-North Korea] summit in Hanoi, Bolton, who played the role of villain, was discarded.”

The South Korean politician’s statement comes at a time when he is locked in a dispute over inheritance from the late President Kim Dae-jung and first lady Lee Hee-ho.

On Tuesday, Kim Hong-gul denied a dispute over the family estate and said he and his half-brother Kim Hong-eop had a difference of opinion, the JoongAng Daily reported.

“I am heartbroken to see some media reports that portrayed the dispute as a fight over money,” Kim Hong-gul said, according to his lawyer.

The fate of the Kim Dae-jung residence and his Nobel Peace Prize money are in dispute, according to local press reports.

Kim Hong-gul has said some of the Nobel Prize money, about $660,000, was used to pay inheritance taxes, according to Donga Ilbo.


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