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?

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North Korea In The News!

I realize that our Beloved Supreme Leader has said that he trust Kim and that Kim would not break his word to Trump….and yet Kim has done just that…..

North Korea fired at least one unidentified projectile from the country’s western area on Thursday, South Korea’s military says. It was the second such launch in the last five days and a possible warning that nuclear disarmament talks could be in danger, the AP reports. The South’s Joint Chiefs of Staff had no other immediate details, and it wasn’t clear what the North had fired. But some analysts have said that if the North returns to the kind of longer-range banned weapons that it tested in 2017, when many feared a Washington-Pyongyang standoff could end in war, it will be a strong sign that a frustrated North Korea is turning away from diplomacy.

A summit earlier this year between President Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un ended in failure. North Korea wants widespread sanctions relief in return for disarmament steps that the United States has apparently seen as insufficient. Longer-range ballistic missile tests, banned by the United Nations and seen as threatening by surrounding countries, would likely result in more sanctions. The launch came hours after the North, through its state media, described its firing of rocket artillery and an apparent short-range ballistic missile on Saturday as a regular and defensive military exercise and ridiculed South Korea for criticizing the launches.

Apparently North Korea has done what it does the best….Lie to American presidents…..and Trump is no different and may be the most gullible of the bunch…..

North Korea on Saturday tested a new short-range missile system and a multiple-rocket launch system, marking the regime’s first missile launches since November 2017. The tests reflect Kim Jong Un’s continued adherence to the regime’s longtime strategy of blackmail diplomacy, which seeks to secure sanctions relief without making meaningful concessions of its own.

The projectiles “landed in the water east of North Korea and didn’t present a threat to the United States or South Korea or Japan,” said Secretary of State Mike Pompeo on Sunday. At the same time, he said, the United States remained committed to reaching a deal with Pyongyang to achieve its “final and fully verified denuclearization.”

The tested short-range missile is a new system (based on the Russian Iskander) for North Korea’s military. Both the missile system and the rocket system can now target major U.S. military bases in South Korea, namely the newly built Camp Humphreys and Osan Air Base and beyond.

https://www.fdd.org/analysis/policy_briefs/2019/05/07/north-korea-short-range-missile-test-reveal-kims-true-intent/

On another side of this situation…the US has walked out of the negotiations on the Korean War remains……

In a new sign of troubled relations with North Korea, the Pentagon said Wednesday it has suspended its efforts to arrange negotiations on recovering additional remains of US service members killed in the North during the Korean War. In a statement Wednesday, the Pentagon’s Defense POW-MIA Accounting Agency said it has had no communication with North Korean authorities since the Hanoi summit between President Trump and Kim Jong Un in February. That meeting focused on the North’s nuclear weapons and followed a June 2018 summit at which Kim committed to permitting a resumption of US remains recovery, which had been suspended by the US in 2005.

“As a result, our effort to communicate with the Korean People’s Army regarding the possible resumption of joint recovery operation for 2019 has been suspended,” the agency said. “We have reached the point where we can no longer effectively plan, coordinate, and conduct field operations in the DPRK during this fiscal year, which ends on Sept. 30, 2019.” The agency had hoped to arrange for recovery operations this spring, but the North never agreed to face-to-face negotiations to work out details such as payments required for the provision of support services by the North Korean army, reports the AP. Last summer the North turned over 55 boxes of what it said were the remains of an undetermined number of US service members. Thus far, three American service members have been identified from those remains.

After writing this draft news broke that the US had confiscated NK’s 2nd largest cargo ship for sanctions violations…..

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-48221507

I recall something that was used in the military and has now become mainstream……..the North Korea situation is…..SNAFU!  (the “F” does not stand for “Fouled”)

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?

Closing Thought–29Apr19

Last week the big story was that Joe Biden was entering the 2020 process……but everybody knew he was going to do what he did….big story.

The true big story was the one that hit while the country was focused like a laser on the Biden announcement…….when Otto Warmbier was a bigger story.

We all have watched the antics of Don the Orange and Li’l Kim……but think back to their first “summit” one aftermath was the release of Otto Warmbier from a North Korean prison…..

North Korea insisted the U.S. agree to pay $2 million in medical costs in 2017 before it released detained American college student Otto Warmbier while he was in a coma, a former US official said Thursday. An envoy sent to North Korea to retrieve the 21-year-old student signed an agreement to pay the $2 million on instructions passed down from President Trump, the former official told the AP, speaking on condition of anonymity. The bill went to the Treasury Department, where it remained—unpaid—throughout 2017, per the Washington Post. CNN reported the bill has not been paid since then.

White House press secretary Sarah Sanders said the administration does not comment on hostage negotiations. US policy is to refuse to pay ransom for the release of Americans detained abroad. While the majority of Americans detained by North Korea have been released in relatively good condition, Warmbier, a University of Virginia student, died last June after he was flown home comatose after 17 months in captivity. Warmbier was seized from a tour group while visiting North Korea in January 2016, convicted of trying to steal a propaganda poster, and sentenced to 15 years of hard labor. Joseph Yun, the US envoy, told CNN he could not confirm the payment report, saying, “These are diplomatic exchanges and negotiations.” Fred Warmbier, Otto’s father, said he was never told about the hospital bill, per the Post. He said it sounded like a “ransom” for his son.

Seriously?

Was this the big decision that was made at the first “summit”?

If so, it is pathetic!

Further reading on this news story…….

https://www.cnn.com/2019/04/25/politics/otto-warmbier-north-korea-comatose-bill/index.html

And Bolton says it is true…..

National security adviser John Bolton confirmed on “Fox News Sunday” that a Trump administration official signed a document pledging to pay North Korea a $2 million hospital bill to release Otto Warmbier, though he said no money was ultimately transferred.

WALLACE: Did North Korea demand money for the release of Otto Warmbier?
BOLTON: It appears that they did. This occurred before I came into the administration, but that’s my understanding.
WALLACE: Did the U.S. official who was there to get him out of the country, Joseph Yun, did he sign a document pledging the money in order to get him out.
BOLTON: That is what I am told, yes.
WALLACE: I guess the bottom line question is, did the U.S. pay any money to North Korea, however it was disguised, after Warmbier was released?
BOLTON: Absolutely not. And that’s the key point.

The backdrop: President Trump called the Washington Post story that first reported the hospital bill “fake news,” though the report notably said it was “unclear” whether the administration actually ended up paying the bill. Nothing in the story has been proven inaccurate.

Is not this negotiating with “terrorists” and I thought the US does not do this.

Some stories are more important than others.

Vlad Meets Li’l Kim

We have seen the two “summits” between Li’l Kim and Don the Orange and the results that have been no where to be seen.

Not to be left on the sidelines Putin (Vlad) is set to have his “summit” with Li’l Kim….for security reasons the exact date has not been released…..but according to Russian speculation it will be soon…..

When North Korean leader Kim Jong Un meets with Russian President Vladimir Putin for their first one-on-one meeting, he’ll have a long wish list and a strong desire to notch a win after the failure of his second summit with President Trump. But it’s not entirely clear how much Putin can or will oblige, the AP notes. Kim has two urgent concerns as he heads to the summit, the date of which hasn’t yet been announced. More than 10,000 North Korean laborers still employed in Russia, many working in the logging industry in the Russian Far East, are being kicked out by the end of this year as a 2017 UN sanctions resolution takes effect. The laborers, who previously numbered as many as 50,000, have provided a revenue stream estimated by US officials in the hundreds of millions of dollars that the Kim regime would like to keep flowing.


Kim is also looking at the possibility of a food shortage this summer. Russia has shown a willingness to provide humanitarian aid and just last month announced it had shipped more than 2,000 tons of wheat to the North Korean port of Chongjin. But his decision to more actively court Putin undoubtedly goes deeper than that. Despite all the talk in Washington about denuclearization, Kim’s primary concern is improving his country’s economy. Per internal documents obtained by a South Korean researcher and published this week in a Japanese newspaper, Kim wants to boost trade with Russia tenfold—to $1 billion—by 2020.
That would obviously require some significant easing of sanctions, which seems unlikely. But it would also require a change in Russian behavior. The AP has more on what the Kim-Putin summit could mean, and what could emerge as a result

Want more information?

https://uk.reuters.com/article/uk-northkorea-russia/north-korea-confirms-leader-kim-jong-un-to-visit-russia-for-summit-with-putin-idUKKCN1RY1KF

Since the US has massive sanctions in place any deal Kim makes with Putin would make things worse?  This will be interesting to watch the reaction from our Supreme Leader.

NK: Message Sent

With all the hub-bub going on about the report that the country is waiting to be revealed another situation was developing……

North Korea tests another weapon…..

North Korea announced that it has test-fired a new type of tactical guided weapon, the AP reports. The Korean Central News Agency says Chairman Kim Jong Un observed the firing of the weapon Wednesday by the Academy of Defense Science. The agency reports that Kim said “the development of the weapon system serves as an event of very weighty significance in increasing the combat power of the People’s Army.” The agency says Kim mounted an observation post to learn about the test-fire of the new-type tactical guided weapon and guide the test-fire.

The announcement came after reports of new activity at a North Korean missile research center and long-range rocket site where the North is believed to build long-range missiles targeting the US mainland. The White House says it was aware of the report and had no comment. The AP could not immediately and independently verify North Korea’s claim.

The last meeting between the two Supreme Leaders ended badly…at least according to some……and some have asked just what will it take, if anything, to bring about a settlement on this situation?

HERE’S SOMETHING you don’t expect to hear at a conference: “Send Lady Gaga to North Korea.” That was the most audacious idea emerging from a recent North Korea academic conference this past March at the University of Virginia. The presenter, in discussing his own research, explained that due to the failure of the recent U.S.-North Korea summit in Hanoi, new ideas and connections—such as increasing cultural and people connections—could help offer fresh ways to build trust in a relationship that clearly has next to none.

If only selling records to little monsters was as easy as reconciling old enemies. In fact, such an idea, while certainly clever, makes one thing all the more obvious: Korea watchers the world over are out of ideas when it comes to crafting creative approaches to solving the conundrum that is the U.S.-North Korea relationship.

https://nationalinterest.org/feature/how-donald-trump-can-reach-peace-deal-north-korea-52587

There have been rumblings that yet another meeting of the two leaders may be coming later this year…..but will that bring about the solution the world has been wanting for 60 years?

My advice is….DON’T HOLD YOUR BREATH!

 

What Happened In Hanoi?

I have been waiting to see what will be said about the massive failure of the Trump/Kim “summit”……so far it has pretty much taken a backseat to the Congressional hearing with Cohen a Trump fixer from the past……

So let me help out……the talks collapsed….epic failure on Trump’s push for some sort of positive foreign policy legacy…..!

“Sometimes you have to walk, and this was just one of those times,” President Trump said Thursday after his second summit with Kim Jong Un abruptly collapsed. A working lunch and the signing of a joint agreement were scrapped after talks fell apart on the summit’s second day, causing confusion among the press corps, the New York Times reports. “It was about the sanctions basically,” Trump said at a press conference. “They wanted the sanctions lifted in their entirety and we couldn’t do that.” Trump said Kim had been willing to dismantle some of the country’s nuclear infrastructure in return for sanctions being lifted, but wanted to leave other parts of the program intact, the Guardian reports.


Trump said a third summit with Kim might not happen for “a long time,” but defended him as “quite a guy and quite a character.” Trump said Kim had promised him he would continue the suspension of nuclear and long-range missile testing. He said the US would continue not taking part in joint military exercises with South Korea, which he was already opposed to because of the “unfair” cost to the US military. Trump, who departed Vietnam on Air Force One soon after the talks collapsed, said he still has a “great relationship” with South Korea’s President Moon Jae-in, the BBC reports. Earlier Thursday, Kim surprised observers by answering a reporter’s question, Time reports. The North Korean leader, asked if he felt confident about the talks, said he had a “feeling that good results will come out.”

Talk about putting “lipstick on a pig”…….but then Trump will lie as often as he has to to massage those 35% supporters……

According to NK’s foreign minister the talks did not end the way that Trump tried to pass off…….


When President Trump explained to reporters why his summit with Kim Jong Un ended prematurely, he cited one big reason: North Korea wanted the US to lift all sanctions in exchange for the dismantling of its main nuclear facility. Not so, says North Korea’s foreign minister. The North asked for only a partial lifting of sanctions, Ri Yong Ho said at a hastily arranged news conference, reports the BBC. “We offered a realistic proposal in this meeting,” he said. Specifically, the North agreed to decommission its nuclear facility at Yongbyon under the supervision of US experts, reports the Washington Post.


In exchange, the North wanted the US to end only those sanctions that affected civilians, though he did not provide details of exactly what that means. “Given the current level of trust between North Korea and the United States, this was the maximum step for denuclearization we can offer,” Ri told reporters, per the New York Times. However, the AP reports that Ri also said the North had been prepared to offer a written pledge to halt nuclear and intercontinental ballistic missile tests and that Washington wasted an opportunity that “may not come again.”

Let’s break it down to make it simple to understand……

 

US Version:
According to President Trump, the split came entirely on the basis of North Korea’s demand for “full” sanctions relief. Though he dodged some reporters’ questions seeking specifics, he gave the impression that the North Korean proposal was to close the Yongbyon nuclear reactor, but only for full lifting of all international sanctions. Trump walked away at this point.

Trump said that there was basic agreement to have more talks in the future, and that the US and North Korea would continue to talk until a future meeting.

North Korea’s Version:
Foreign Minister Ri Yong Ho said Trump’s claim was inaccurate. He says North Korea offered to dismantle all its nuclear material production, including everything around Yongbyon, and was only asking for “partial” sanction relief. It was at this point Trump walked away.

Ri was much less hopeful of future talks, saying that North Korea’s position isn’t going to change, and that right now North Kora believes that the US is not ready to make a deal. Subsequent reports from North Korea’s state media, however, did anticipate future talks would happen.

Who to believe? After all Trump trust Kim at his word…..so should we just go about this whitewash?

But South Korea (we seem to forget about them in this kabuki play) has a version as well…….

South Korea Says:
Former South Korean Unification Minister Chong se-hyun, however, suggests that neither of these was the real problem. Instead, John Bolton showed up at the last minute, and started demanding that North Korea not only provide a full accounting of its nuclear program’s past, but also full accounts of North Korea’s chemical and biological weapons to.

Interestingly, this didn’t immediately derail the talks, but led North Korea to ask for more sanctions relief in return. It was at that point, apparently, that the US walked away.

So can we blame the war hawk for the failure? I am talking about the slug Bolton.

This opportunity will not come again under the Trump heavy fist…..it will take years for the opportunity to return…..maybe now we will return to diplomacy and stop the theatrics.

So to answer the question…..it failed because there was NO prep work done by diplomats….all there was was a president trying desperately to look like a statesman…..and he FAILED miserably!