North Korea…Missiles Everywhere

Two summits with Kim and a little has changed….Kim got to be on the international stage just like he always wanted and Trump get a photo op that solves NOTHING.

But Kim is now a global figure……thanx to Trump

There’s no question that North Korean leader Kim Jong Un is in full control of his nation. But a recent change to how he’s being formally described in the North Korean Constitution may allow him even more diplomatic leverage as he steps with increasing confidence onto the world stage for negotiations over his powerful weapons program.

Despite a flurry of unprecedented summits between Kim and the world powers that surround him, the outcome of that crucial diplomacy is very much in question amid currently deadlocked nuclear disarmament talks and an outburst of North Korean weapons tests in recent weeks.

https://www.realcleardefense.com/articles/2019/08/12/north_korea_boosts_kims_rising_status_as_global_statesman_114660.html

Missiles have been flying out of North Korea for the last two weeks……

US President Donald Trump said on Saturday (Aug 10) that Kim Jong Un told him North Korea was ready to resume talks on its nuclear and missile programme as soon as US-South Korea military exercises ended.

North Korea fired what appeared to be two short-range missiles on Saturday, South Korea said, in a “show of force” against the military exercises.

More missile launches are highly probable, as the North Korean military is conducting its own summer drills, South Korea’s Joint Chiefs of Staff said in a statement.

https://www.straitstimes.com/asia/east-asia/north-korea-fires-two-projectiles-into-sea-off-eastern-coast-yonhap

A point of agreement between Kim and Trump are those military drills conducted with South Korea……

In comments to reporters on Friday, President Trump said he agrees with North Korea’s Kim Jong Un in his opposition to the major US-South Korea war games, saying he’s also “never been a fan” of the war games, because “I don’t like paying for it.”

This makes some sense in that President Trump was quick to agree to halt such joint exercises in Korea during peace talks when the process began. However, there is no indication such talks have been planned.

That was apparently part of the subject of Kim Jong Un’s letter to Trump, objecting to the exercises, which North Korea sees as simulated invasions. In acknowledging Kim’s position, Trump did not indicate if he was going to make any changes to policy.

(antiwar.com)

Looks like His Majesty has recieved another “beautiful letter” from his bromance,,,,,

President Trump has reported on Friday that he received a “very beautiful letter” from North Korea’s Kim Jong Un, saying he believes it is possible that the two of them could meet again, but not saying when such a meeting might happen.

Trump did not provide details on the letter, or the possibility of talks. The two last met on June 30 and agreed to further meetings. There has since then been no indication any such talks have bee planned.

Recently, North Korea has badly criticized the US over planned wargames, and has fired short-range missiles several times. Trump emphasized that he does not consider those missile firings to be a violation of any of North Korea’s pledges.

(antiwar.com)

This is what passes for foreign policy under the Trump White House…..any other time it would be mocked and dismissed….but these days it is front page news.

All the summits and all the “beautiful letters” will accomplish one thing…..North Korea will remain a nuclear state.

The president’s willingness to talk with North Korea’s Supreme Leader Kim Jong-un deserves praise, despite complaints from the warmongering Right and partisan Left. However, his demand for instant and complete denuclearization was never realistic.

Alas, negotiations in which the president placed so much hope have ground to a halt. Most recently, North Korean diplomats skipped the ASEAN summit, where Secretary of State Mike Pompeo had expected to meet with North Korean foreign minister Ri Yong-ho. Said Pompeo: “We stand ready to continue our diplomatic conversation with the North Koreans,” but, he added, “I regret that it looks like I’m not going to have an opportunity to do that while I’m here in Bangkok.”

https://nationalinterest.org/feature/accept-reality-north-korea-will-remain-nuclear-state-72296

All this “news” around North Korea will do two things…..keep Trump in the news and provide the media with some dandy photo ops.

“Lego Ergo Scribo”

Nukes For China

We have heard all the spurious arguments for the nuke policies for Iran and North Korea……but what about a strategy for a nuclear power and one of our biggest opponents? China.

A diverse range of external stimuli, including technological trends and geopolitical shifts, is leading the strategic community of the People’s Republic of China (PRC) to reconsider existing nuclear policy, strategy, and operations. According to Chinese open sources, U.S. global conventional precision strike systems, U.S. missile defenses, and India’s nuclear weapons modernization, among other threats, could shake the PRC’s faith in longstanding nuclear doctrine and posture. The 2013 Science of Military Strategy confirms that “the nuclear security circumstances facing China in overall terms are trending toward complexity.”   In response to such challenges, some Chinese analysts have proposed loosening the no-first-use policy and undertaking quantitative and qualitative improvements to China’s nuclear forces.

A departure from enduring nuclear policy and strategy may also reflect China’s growing power and sense of purpose as it seeks to reshape its surroundings and accelerate the erosion of the U.S. position in the Western Pacific. Indeed, Chinese analysts are exploring Cold War history in Europe, from which they may be drawing lessons about the vulnerabilities of U.S. extended deterrence in Asia. While it remains unclear how and to what extent Chinese nuclear strategy will advance Beijing’s expanding ambitions, the internal debates suggest that China may be increasingly inclined to adopt a more coercive nuclear strategy.

https://www.realcleardefense.com/articles/2019/07/17/chinese_nuclear_weapons_strategyleaning_towards_a_more_proactive_posture_part_ii_external_drivers_of_potential_changetechnical-military_developments_and_perceptions_of_credibility.html

China continues to confront the US and its Asian allies on many fronts and yet the president is concerned over a country that is not yet a nuclear power…..where is the sanity there?

I believe you ignore China’s nukes at your own peril.

June 25, 1950

Closing Thought–25Jun19

That is the date when the North Koreans rushed South of the border….the day the Korean War began.

The Korean War? Some say that it was the first battle against communism (I disagree)…….a quick simple look at the war……

Though the Korean War started on this day 65 years ago—June 25, 1950—when North Korean tanks crossed the 38th parallel, the boundary with South Korea, TIME’s reporting from the following week reveals it took several days for the United States to realize the scope of what had happened.

It was early Sunday morning in Korea, the middle of Saturday afternoon in Independence, Mo. In the former, TIME reported, “North Korean radio broadcast war whoops” as “past terraced hills, green with newly transplanted rice, rumbled tanks.” In the latter, U.S. President Harry Truman was visiting with friends and supporters in his home state when he received a telephone call from Secretary of State Dean Acheson.

http://time.com/3915803/korean-war-1950-history/

https://www.history.com/topics/korea/korean-war

If reading is too difficult then this short video can help……

My look into the past and the Korean War was made possible by something that I read (I am always finding something for I read a lot)……

North Korea already has China watching their back but it may be that North Korea will once again embrace Russia as it did in the early days of the Korean War……

Both Moscow and Pyongyang have common grievances with Washington and may work together to evade sanctions

It seems almost inevitable that North Korean leader Kim Jong-un will meet with Russian president Vladimir Putin at some point in the near future, possibly in the port city of Vladivostok in Russia’s Far East.

The United States should be concerned.

Since this would be the first meeting between the two leaders since Kim came to power in 2011, the summit provides an important opportunity for both Russia and North Korea to advance their interests.

https://nationalinterest.org/blog/korea-watch/will-cold-war-allies-russia-and-north-korea-be-reunited-50747

This is something I hope those “experts” on the Asia situations will keep this in their reports and intel…..but with this president I would not bet on anything at all.

That “Beautiful” Letter

Love Letters In The Sushi….or More News From the Korean BBQ

As a person who worked as an analyst in the government I find the statements by this president as simplistic and probably bullshit.

I do not understand Trump’s warm feelings for Kim of the DPRK (North Korea)……my years working in DC I never heard anyone refer to a letter sent by a leader as “beautiful”……and yet it seems that most of Kim’s letters are just that…..

John Bolton told the Wall Street Journal that North Korea had not complied with the deal reached with the US during last year’s Singapore summit. President Trump spoke hours later, however, defending Kim Jong Un, and insisting that he had “kept his word.”

“He kept his word. There’s no nuclear testing. There’s no large, there’s no long-range missiles going up,” Trump insisted. He added that all North Korea had done was very short-term, short-range tests, and that he considers those a “whole different deal.”

Trump also reported that he had received a “beautiful” letter from Kim, calling it “very warm” and expressing confidence that the two sides would eventually be able to reach an agreement.

Trump and Kim had a very positive meeting in Singapore last year, but the February Hanoi Summit ended in failure. Since then, there has been no visible progress on talks, and North Korean state media has expressed growing impatience, calling on the US to try a new approach.

The big obstacle has been that North Korea’s commitment to eliminate its nuclear arsenal is expected to take quite some time, but the US has so far ruled out any easing of sanctions or international hostility toward the North Koreans until the entire process is completed. Since the US has continued to increase sanctions in this time, many in North Korea are doubting if the US is approaching this with honorable intentions.

(antiwar.com)

Then he made another silly statement….he said that he would not use a family member as a CIA asset….seriously?  There is NO better source of accurate intel than from a family member…but not to Trump…..

President Trump has responded to reports earlier this week that North Korea’s Kim Jong Un’s slain half-brother Kim Jong Nam had worked as a CIA informant before his 2017 murder, saying he would never allow that to happen while he is in office.

Trump told reports on the South Lawn that when he speaks to Kim “I would tell him that would not happen under my auspices, that’s for sure. I wouldn’t let that happen under my auspices.”

Technically, it already did. Kim Jong Nam was killed in Malaysia in February 2017, after Trump took office, and it is believed he flew to Malaysia to meet with his CIA contact. While the CIA’s use of him started before Trump took over, it clearly didn’t end with his election.

In reality, Trump likely believes that disavowing this tactic against Kim would be a way to try to gain his favor in future talks. Diplomatic progress with North Korea in 2018 was significant, but has all but halted in 2019. Trump has remained confident he will make more progress with Kim, with whom he seems to have quite the rapport.

(antiwar.com)

This is amazing…..I have talked with friends that handled Asia in the past and they cannot comment any further than to shake their heads in disbelief.

Does Trump have any idea what the CIA does for a living? 

What is in it for Trump to treat Kim like a ally?  Who will make the cash off this relationship?

This is all too damn silly for words…or it would be if it were not so damn pathetic.

Not to worry….this docu-drama is not over yet.

The Purge

This is not a belated movie review….no this time it is the news that Kim of North Korea is purging his people that have failed him…..again!

North Korea executed its nuclear envoy to the United States as part of a purge of officials who steered negotiations for a failed summit between leader Kim Jong Un and U.S. President Donald Trump, a South Korean newspaper said on Friday.

Kim Hyok Chol was executed in March at Mirim Airport in Pyongyang, along with four foreign ministry officials after they were charged with spying for the United States, the Chosun Ilbo reported, citing an unidentified source with knowledge of the situation.

https://www.reuters.com/article/us-northkorea-usa-purge/north-koreas-kim-jong-un-carrying-out-purge-after-hanoi-summit-collapse-chosun-ilbo-idUSKCN1T02PD

This is a typical move for the North Korean leader, right?

How many times have we heard about such a move from the Supreme Leader of North Korea?

Is this good solid reporting or just another hit piece?

A South Korean newspaper reported Friday that North Korea executed a senior envoy involved in nuclear negotiations with the U.S. as well as four other high-level officials. But as ever with North Korea, a country that closely guards its secrets, there are reasons to be cautious about the purported purge.

While North Korea hasn’t used its propaganda services to comment, the report in the conservative Chosun Ilbo daily could be true. North Korea has previously executed scapegoats to atone for high-profile political flops, and the most recent summit between leader Kim Jong Un and President Donald Trump ended in failure, leaving Kim embarrassed on the world stage.

https://www.marketwatch.com/story/amid-reports-of-north-korean-envoy-purge-south-koreas-spotty-scoop-record-raises-caution-2019-05-31

I have often said that some of the claims about North Korea were not completely accurate…at least in my mind.

I am not siding with North Korea…just saying that not all that is reported is as good as it should be…..after years of doing analysis of international situations I have learned that all that is reported is not necessarily as accurate as it should be.

Here is why I say this……

A senior North Korean official who had been reported as purged over the failed nuclear summit with Washington was shown in state media on Monday enjoying a concert alongside leader Kim Jong Un. North Korean publications on Monday showed Kim Yong Chol sitting near a clapping Kim Jong Un and other top officials during a musical performance by the wives of Korean People’s Army officers, the AP reports.

Is this true or is it wishful thinking?

Why report a report that cannot be verified if not to be used as a propaganda tool?

You Have Your Orders!

Recently PDRK has tested a few short range missiles that have all the earmarks of being of Russian design…..

“The three new missiles North Korean leader Kim Jong Un has tested over the past week are eerily familiar to military experts: They look just like a controversial and widely copied missile the Russian military has deployed to Syria and has been actively trying to sell abroad for years.”

Could be after all Kim just met with Putin just recently and now he has “new” missiles to play with…..

Shortly after the missiles were fired the US comfiscated a NK ship on “sanctions” violations…..

Well Kim has just ordered the US to return his ship and return it NOW……..

North Korea has expressed its displeasure with the US seizure of one of its cargo ships in standard North Korean fashion, denouncing the “flagrant act of robbery” and threatening unspecified consequences. “The United States committed an unlawful and outrageous act of dispossessing our cargo ship,” a North Korean foreign ministry spokesman said in a statement carried by the official KCNA news agency. The statement said the seizure had violated the “underlying spirit” of the agreement President Trump and Kim Jong Un signed after last year’s summit, the New York Times reports. The official warned that it would be the “biggest miscalculation” for the US to think it could control North Korea by force.

The ship, the Wise Honest, was violating sanctions by exporting coal, according to the Justice Department. It was detained in Indonesia in April last year and is now in American Samoa after being confiscated by US authorities. “The United States must mull over what repercussions its gangster-like act will entail, and must return our vessel without delay,” North Korea’s statement said. Kim called for North Korea to be on “full combat posture” after the seizure of the ship was announced, reports Reuters. Analysts tell the Times that recent North Korean short-range missile launches may have been Pyongyang’s way telling the US it needs to compromise on sanctions—and the country may be using the seizure of the Wise Honest to ratchet up tensions.

We now await the Tweet that should follow this event…..will his, Kim, demand be met?

What will it say?

North Korea On The Mind

The recent news is that Kim is making nice with Putin….probably looking for some help relieving some of the crippling sanctions that the US keeps imposing on top of sanctions.

But there is more….the Hanoi “Summit” ended in a embarrassing walkout by our Dear Beloved Supreme Leader….and North Korea has re- started some of the programs that have been idle since the Singapore “Summit”…….and now Kim is back to doing what he does best…issuing ultimatums….

Elaborating on previous calls from Kim Jong Un to show more flexibility, Vice Foreign Minister Choe Son Hui said the US was risking “unintended consequences” if they don’t change their position on denuclearization to one more palatable to both sides.

Choe mentioned Mike Pompeo’s threat to “change paths” if North Korea doesn’t give the US everything they want, saying that changing paths isn’t an option that only the United States has, and that North Korea could also make that decision.

She further said that the North Koreans remain determined to get rid of their nuclear arsenal, but US comments and positions are forcing them to hesitate. After the Hanoi Summit, the US indicated that denuclearization meant to them that North Korea would give the US its nuclear arms.

North Korea is keen for a deal where dismantling the arms and the infrastructure is enough, and in return the US both allows a peace treaty with South Korea and starts letting UN sanctions get lifted. US officials are ruling out either until North Korea gives them everything they want, which officials say could take several years.

(antiwar.com)

Will this news start the Twitter war from the past?

Or will there be nothing to Tweet about because he, Trump, has the AG and Biden to occupy his mind and time?

All I can think is….Here we go again!

At what point does this become just silliness on the world stage?