Less than a week before the summit, Trump dismissed questions about his readiness, saying, "I don't think I have to prepare very much". And Trump himself has played down hopes that the summit can solve all bilateral problems in one go: "It will be a beginning..."
Secretary of State Mike Pompeo held a press briefing early Monday morning (Eastern time) from Singapore, addressing the summit between President Donald Trump and North Korea's Kim Jong-un that is now only hours away. In March, Mr Trump shocked the world by accepting an invitation from Mr Kim to meet in person.
Pompeo also said that Trump had called Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe and South Korean president Moon Jae-in.
He said after that, a more "tactical" result could come in regards to North Korea's potential denuclearization. "But there's a risk because if the meeting is perceived to be very good and there's a lot of progress made, that could ultimately lift the ETF".
It was a striking about-face from less than a year ago, when Trump was threatening "fire and fury" against Kim, who in turn scorned the American president as a "mentally deranged USA dotard".
Even as he drew a tough line on lifting sanctions, Pompeo sought to ease North Korea's wariness about giving up a nuclear arsenal that provides a deterrent against foreign adversaries while also serving as a key point of national pride.
Since his election as president in November 2018, several media houses have been vehement critics of the United States president and his policies-unswayed by his constant "FAKE NEWS" attacks-and they made no exception with their comments on the Trump-Kim meeting.
Victor Cha, who was director for Asian affairs at the National Security Council under President George W. Bush, said the "likely reality is that the summit will produce something in between these two extremes". I've never said it happens in one meeting. "I'll tell you what the Marshall wants more than anything".
Trump immediately accepted Kim's offer of a meeting when it was made in March ― possibly failing to understand that Kim, his father the previous dictator and his grandfather before that had all sought an audience with the USA president for the objective of enhancing their own status both domestically and around the world.
Trump spoke only briefly in public on Monday, forecasting a "nice" outcome.
Singapore, the host country of the upcoming U.S.
The leader of North Korea has arrived to Singapore in what has been a meticulously coordinated scheme shrouded in mystery.
"The irony ... is that what was initially presented as a cliff-hanger dramatic summit, upon which war or peace on the Korean peninsula hung is now looking more like conventional diplomacy for the unconventional Trump White House", Cha told a Senate Foreign Relations subcommittee last week.
Trump's supporters have floated the idea that forging such a treaty, which would need a signoff from China and South Korea, would deserve the Nobel Peace Prize. Both leaders are set to meet at Capella, which is on Sentosa, Singapore's resort island. Soon after, Mr Kim declared that his country had achieved its mission of becoming a nuclear state, with missiles that could reach the US.
While advisers insist Trump has been reviewing briefing materials, he insists his gut instincts will matter most when he gets in the room with Kim.