Kim Jong Un Described Trump Friendship as Out of a 'Fantasy Film': New Book

Legendary journalist Bob Woodward's new book will include details of 25 "personal letters" exchanged between President Donald Trump and North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un. That's according to Simon & Schuster, which will publish the book next month.

The publisher said that the letters—to be included in Rage, Woodward's second book on the Trump administration—shed light on the unusual and deeply personal relationship between the two men, whose surprise detente was one of the most unexpected foreign policy developments of the Trump presidency to date.

In the 25 letters, "Kim describes the bond between the two leaders as out of a 'fantasy film,' as the two leaders engage in an extraordinary diplomatic minuet," according to a description of the book posted on Amazon.

The personal letters exchanged between the two men have been a constant feature of Trump's effort—so far a failure—to secure North Korean denuclearization in exchange for sanctions relief.

The president has repeatedly touted letters from Kim as evidence of their friendship, much to the discomfort of observers and lawmakers concerned with Trump's apparent predilection for authoritarian leaders.

Trump has described the letters as "nice" and "very beautiful," and suggested the letters were part of how the two men "fell in love." Pyongyang has also celebrated the letter exchanges, with Kim's sister and trusted aide Kim Yo Jong citing them as proof of the "excellent" relationship between the two men. "

"We try to hope for the day when the relations between the two countries would be as good as the ones between the two top leaders," she said in a March statement after Trump sent one of his letters.

Trump himself has published details of the exchanges before. In July 2018 shortly after the historic bilateral summit in Singapore, the president tweeted out an English translation of a "very nice note" from Kim, which Trump said showed the "great progress being made."

In the letter, Kim addressed Trump as "Your Excellency" and praised the president's "energetic and extraordinary efforts" to improve ties between Washington, D.C. and Pyongyang.

But for all the warm words, the two men have achieved little in the way of denuclearization and sanctions relief. Bilateral talks collapsed and Pyongyang has returned to regular weapons tests accompanied by its traditional belligerent rhetoric.

Kim has so far refrained from any new nuclear or intercontinental ballistic missile tests, though experts believe research is continuing in both areas.

Woodward's new book will be released on September 15, seven weeks before Americans go to the polls. Simon & Schuster's description of Rage, reads: "At key decision points, Rage shows how Trump's responses to the crises of 2020 were rooted in the instincts, habits and style he developed during his first three years as president."

Trump is currently trailing presumptive Democratic nominee Joe Biden, and the election is set to be the most bitterly-fought in recent memory. The president is already laying the groundwork for contesting the result of the election, and has even mooted postponing the vote over the coronavirus pandemic.

Donald Trump, Kim Jong Un, North Korea,letters
TPresident Donald Trump and North Korea's leader Kim Jong Un talk during a meeting at the Demilitarized Zone (DMZ) border village of Panmunjom, Korea, on June 30, 2019. BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP via Getty Images/Getty