North Korea is back in the news….not from a Tweet or whatever it is Li’l Kim does but because a soldier from the North made a dramatic escape South…..and of course this was almost as important as all the “slap and tickle” stories and speculation.
But the real stories that should foremost in the media’s sights are the little things going on in the background…like Li’l Kim’s response……
What does North Korea think of the US’ Monday decision to relist it as a state sponsor of terror? Now we know: In the country’s first public statement on the subject, a rep for the Foreign Ministry tells state-run KCNA that while North Korea doesn’t care “whether the US puts a cap of ‘terrorism’ on us or not,” the move is a “serious provocation and violent infringement” that only serves to strengthen its “deterrent force,” as Yonhap puts it. Reuters and the AP have 4 more fiery quotes:
NK remains a thorn in the butt of Fearless Leader….what is to be done?
The growing lethality of North Korea’s military threat increasingly undercuts America’s ability to use diplomatic pressure, economic sanctions or military force to counter its dangerously provocative behavior. As Kim Jong Un accelerates the buildup of his nuclear-tipped missile arsenal, there is a distinct possibility that no matter what actions the United States and its allies take, the Korean peninsula is headed for war.
What is to be done? It is important to keep demonstrating U.S. resolve—shooting down a missile perhaps—to reinforce the credibility of American deterrence. Yet it is vital that the U.S. also take steps to drive events toward a more acceptable outcome. Diplomacy could have consequences almost as bad as a conflict. Should Kim Jong Un’s challenge of American resolve be rewarded with a diplomatic settlement, the U.S. will be seen as having been forced to accept the North’s terms—something that would irreparably damage the credibility of America’s extended deterrence worldwide.
Of all the ideas about NK Trump’s is the worse…..putting them on the Terror List was not his best thought…..that is assuming he has them from time to time…..
Trump’s North Korea policy keeps getting worse:
The United States is imposing further sanctions and penalties against North Korea by designating it a state sponsor of terrorism, U.S. President Donald Trump said on Monday.
Putting North Korea back on the list of state sponsors of terrorism is a bad decision on the merits, and it will also make it more difficult to de-escalate the situation with North Korea. North Korea hasn’t been a state sponsor of terrorism for decades, and it was removed from the list of state sponsors in recognition of that fact. Designating them as a state sponsor was a lousy idea when Ted Cruz proposed it a few weeks ago, and it is still a lousy idea today. As I said last month:
It is dangerous to add states to the list just because we see it as a way to lean on their governments, because that makes the designation meaningless and arbitrary.
Before the List we decided to impose further sanctions….you know thinking about it what could possibly left to sanction the US has been imposing these things for 20+ years there cannot be much left to play keep away with…..all that aside we have added further sanctions to the load….
Secretary of State Tillerson explained the administration’s thinking, such as it is, for imposing additional sanctions on North Korea:
Tillerson cited other recent sanctions from the United States and the United Nations on the North and added that the redesignation “continues to tighten the pressure on the Kim regime, all with an intention to have him to understand, ‘This is just going to get worse until you’re ready to come and talk.’”
No one would accuse the Trump administration of understanding the first thing about diplomacy, but even for them this is a bizarre position to take. Administration officials fail to imagine how the North Korean leadership will perceive and react to these moves. If they gave this much thought, they would realize that Kim is much more likely to view these punitive measures as a challenge, and that would make him even less likely to agree to talks of any kind. The U.S. and its allies have been trying punitive measures for more than a decade without success, and yet they keep clinging to the idea that one of the world’s most isolated regimes can somehow be caused enough economic pain to make it give up on the things that it considers essential to its survival. The U.S. remains wedded to pursuing an unachievable goal (denuclearization) through ineffective means (more and more sanctions), and in so doing it is closing off the one path that might lead to a workable, negotiated compromise.
After all these years just how is our North Korean policy doing? The truth is….it sucks!
The situation with North Korea was getting critical. The lights, to use the worn-out phrase, were blinking red.
The State Department, the Defense Department and the White House were increasingly concerned either that the North Korean regime was hiding components of its plutonium program from the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA), or that it would exploit any negotiating track to stall the international community while improving its nuclear capacity. The motives of the Chinese, Pyongyang’s biggest trading partner and bankroller by far, were unclear—adding more complication to a problem that was already far too complicated.
Let’s be honest….our policies have had little effect on North Korea and now we have a Fearless Leader that thinks he knows best….personally without diplomacy then this is not going to end well for the US and South Korea.