Former President Jimmy Carter offered a damning indictment of U.S. foreign policy and domestic affairs Tuesday, saying money in politics makes the nation more like an “oligarchy than a democracy” and casting President Donald Trump as a disappointment on the world stage.
Carter’s criticisms, offered at his annual presentation to backers of his post-presidency Carter Center in Atlanta, went beyond Trump, but he was particularly critical of the nation’s direction under the Republican president’s leadership.
The 39th president, a Democrat, offered this advice to the 45th: “Keep the peace, promote human rights and tell the truth.”
Carter, 92, did not mention explicitly Trump’s threatening exchanges this summer with North Korean dictator Kim Jong-un, but the former president said the U.S. should engage directly with the insular leader and discuss a peace treaty to replace the cease fire that ended the Korean War in 1953.
“I would send my top person to Pyongyang immediately, if I didn’t go myself,” Carter said, noting that he’s been three times to the country, even as successive U.S. administrations have refused to deal with the regime.
The North Koreans, Carter said, want a treaty that guarantees the U.S. will not attack unless North Korea attacks the U.S. or an ally, particularly South Korea. “Until we talk to them and treat them with respect — as human beings, which they are — I don’t think we’re going to make any progress,” Carter said.
He also dismissed Trump’s optimism that he can engineer Middle East peace.with handling the issue that has vexed U.S. administrations for…
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