James B. Steinberg
Former Brookings Expert
North Korea has no apparent interest in reconciliation with the new [South Korean] government, or in showing any diplomatic flexibility at all.
I think it's unusual for the chief of staff to go on a trip, particularly on a trip this long. The chief of staff is usually more of a chief operating officer in the White House itself, and normally when your principal—whether it's the president himself or the head of Cabinet agency—goes abroad, you have his deputy and those folks staying behind to help manage operations in his absence.
Both the Israelis and Palestinians know that the current situation is not good for anyone. It's bad for Israelis and awful for those in Gaza. That's where I'd start if I was Trump.