Covid has pretty much sucked the air out of the international stories that we should be concerned with…….and North Korea is one of those countries that will use the pandemic as cover for their ambitions (kinda like Trump)……
Kim and “chukjibeop”……
North Korea’s official newspaper is reporting that Kim Jong Un can’t actually bend space and time. As the regime’s Rodong Sinmun newspaper revealed this week: “In realistic terms, a person cannot suddenly disappear and reappear by folding space.” A South Korean official told Yonhap News the development was “noteworthy” and said “it appears to stress patriotism and love for the people rather than mystification of the leaders.” Indeed, the Telegraph portrays this as an attempt to de-mythologize North Korea’s leaders and dispel a decades-old belief in “chukjibeop”—the notion that certain people can travel long distances in a short time by folding space.
It also jibes with a Kim quote after he and President Trump failed in 2019 to hammer out a denuclearization agreement for a second time. “Mystifying a leader’s revolutionary activity and appearance would result in covering the truth,” Kim said last March. “Absolute loyalty would spring up when (they) are mesmerised by the leader humanly and comradely.” For the curious, “chukjibeop” apparently derives from East Asian mythology and translates as “distance-shrinking magic,” per the International Business Times. There was a hit North Korean song called “General Uses Chukjibeop” about Kim’s dad, Kim Jong Il, using the supernatural power.
Those talks with NK have been stalled and now Kim decides that nukes would be the place to put his energies…..
North Korea’s peace talks have been stalled for many months, and with no signs of that changing soon, Kim Jong Un has announced that he will be working on enhancing North Korea’s nuclear deterrence and putting strategic forces on high alert.
Kim made this announcement in his later infrequent public appearance, the first in three weeks. During coronavirus, Kim has been se4en less and less, leading to international speculation at times about his status.
Though a peace process would clearly be preferable for all sides, the lack of any such options has North Korea’s state media emphasizing their ability to “reliably contain the persis6tent big or small military threats from hostile forces.“
At one point, North Korea was to disarm its nuclear program as part of a peace and normalization deal with the US. The US refused to give North Korea any relief, and North Korea backed away from the process until the US was willing to give them something. The two nations have returned to not talking, and occasional US threats.
Let’s take a look at the negotiations over 3 presidents through the eyes of National Interest……
George W. Bush vs Kim Jong-il ended zero to eight. Having entered office insisting that Kim Jong-il would never be allowed to develop nuclear weapons, as Bush left office, the intelligence community estimated that Kim had an arsenal of eight.
-Barack Obama vs Kim Jong-un requires two scores: Kim’s arsenal grew from eight balls to some twenty to sixty. But more consequentially, Kim ate his Wheaties and worked on extending the distance to which he can throw a ball from five feet to twenty-five feet (far enough to reach American military bases in Guam); and Kim was also practicing a maneuver that would allow him to throw shots eighty feet to hit the American homeland.
-Under Trump, Kim increased and improved his arsenal of shots, including material for making the balls, but on the second metric—“throw distance”—while Kim perfected his technique to reliably throw balls to twenty-five feet, Kim stopped practicing the maneuver that would otherwise have proven beyond doubt he could throw shots all the way to Washington, DC.
Why should we as Americans care about the negotiations with North Korea?
Despite the COVID-19 crisis, Washington policymakers fixated on the status of Kim Jong-un, the 36-year-old leader of an isolated, impoverished state half a world away. Then came reports of North Korean construction of ICBMs and a new missile support facility.
The Pentagon previously cited Pyongyang as a reason the U.S. required a credible nuclear deterrent. President Donald Trump even threatened “fire and fury” against the Kim government, before switching course and organizing a summit with the communist monarch. At that time six of every ten Americans believed the North to be the nation posing the greatest threat to America.
Why do Americans pay attention to the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK)?
There always seems to be something happening on the Korean Peninsula……and we miss a lot of the stuff.
I Read, I Write, You Know
“lego ergo scribo”