Less than a year ago, President Trump dropped his first MOAB in the war of words with 35-year-old North Korean leader Kim Jong Un - warning him "best not make any more threats to the United States," or North Korea "will be met with fire and fury like the world has never seen."
Two days later, Kim threatened a "simultaneous strike" which would rain down "historic enveloping fire at Guam" within weeks.
Weeks later, Trump told the U.N. that America would "totally destroy" North Korea and it's leader, "Rocket Man" Kim Jong Un - a nickname he would continue to use over the ensuing weeks and months.
I spoke with President Moon of South Korea last night. Asked him how Rocket Man is doing. Long gas lines forming in North Korea. Too bad!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 17, 2017
Hitting back a few days after Trump's speech, Kim threatened to "tame the mentally deranged U.S. dotard with fire" :
"I am now thinking hard about what response he could have expected when he allowed such eccentric words to trip off his tongue. Whatever Trump might have expected, he will face results beyond his expectation. I will surely and definitely tame the mentally deranged U. S. dotard with fire."
Now, President Trump credits his tough-talk with Kim as a major factor in yesterday's successful summit - telling Fox News "without the rhetoric we wouldn't have been here."
“So I think the rhetoric, I hated to do it, sometimes I felt foolish doing it, but we had no choice,” he said.
.@POTUS: “Without the rhetoric we wouldn’t have been here.”— Fox News (@FoxNews) June 12, 2018
President @realDonaldTrump talks to @seanhannity about the historic summit with Kim Jong Un. Watch the full interview tonight 9p ET on 'Hannity.' https://t.co/IreU0TZJI4 pic.twitter.com/9vZ0OpXvUC
In other words, Trump's war of words with Kim was all part of the Art of the Deal.
So instead of this:
We now have this: