President Trump is addressing the latest tensions after plans for a historic summit between Trump and North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un hit a setback this week.
The president suggests there might be a hidden hand behind Kim's threats to scrap the June 12 summit – Kim's closest ally and economic supporter, China.
Trump is also offering North Korea's Kim Jong Un promises of economic assistance if he gives up his nuclear weapons. And he's promising to protect the dictator from regime change.
"You have to want to do it," Trump said. "With deals... you have to have two parties that want to do it."
But he's also warning that failure to make a deal could have grave consequences for Kim. Trump referred Thursday to what happened in Libya with the downfall of dictator Muammar Gaddafi saying, "That model would take place if we don't make a deal."
He's also making it clear to Kim – either no nukes or no meeting.
Despite word from one North Korean leader saying the summit is jeopardy, the White House is planning like the summit's still a go.
US National Security Advisor John Bolton told Mike Huckabee, "The North Koreans have an infinitely rich propaganda playbook. They deployed it over the years in many different ways. I think the president has made it clear he's prepared to meet them in Singapore on June the 12th. But if they don't want to come he's prepared to accept that too."
So what led to Kim's sudden change in direction?
President Trump said during a press briefing, it might be due to one-on-one meetings with Kim and China's President Xi Jinping.
"I have a feeling that for various reasons maybe including trade because they've never had this problem before. China has never had this problem with us. He could be influencing Kim Jong Un, we will see what happens," Trump said.
In an interview with CBN's David Brody and Jenna Browder, former President Jimmy Carter said President Trump needs to stand strong on North Korea.
"I think they are willing to give up their nuclear program completely if we are willing to reach out to them halfway," President Carter said.
"Treat them with respect. Don't have any prerequisite on what they should agree to do and be willing to accommodate their basic requests," he said.
Analysts tell CBN News, they see China as a puppet master that could be telling Kim to not give up so much.
Anthony Ruggiero with the Foundation for Defense of Democracies said, "I'm worried that the Chinese are going to start undermine those sanctions, which will really release leverage before we even have these discussions."
President Trump says either way he is ready to negotiate a deal.