Meanwhile Back In North Korea

About 6 months ago Our Dear Supreme Leader (people you do realize that I am being sarcastic when I type that title, right?) stood before the world and told us that NK would be an ex-nuke developer soon…..that we have a handshake agreement.

And while we are being lied to the North Korean leader keeps building his missiles to carry those weapons that he has promised to give up……

A Washington think tank released a report Monday identifying more than a dozen hidden missile bases North Korea has kept up and running even as President Trump touts his work on denuclearization with Kim Jong Un. The Center for Strategic and International Studies says it suspects North Korea has 20 missile operating bases that are undeclared by the government, and it has located 13 of them. The New York Times says the revelation “suggests a great deception,” with Pyongyang quietly continuing its ballistic missile program and even making improvements at these secret sites while publicly declaring its intention to dismantle its main missile launch site. Fox News notes that the report comes as denuclearization talks between the US and North Korea have stalled—Secretary of State Mike Pompeo’s planned meeting with his North Korean counterpart last week was delayed indefinitely.

“What everybody is worried about is that Trump is going to accept a bad deal—they give us a single test site and dismantle a few other things, and in return they get a peace agreement” that formally ends the Korean War, says the North Korea expert who leads the CSIS’ Beyond Parallel program, which released the report. Another expert on nuclear nonproliferation called the program’s analysis “excellent” but disagreed with the Times‘ assessment of the situation, noting on Twitter: “To call this a ‘deception’ is deeply misleading. Kim Jong Un publicly stated that North Korea would shift to the mass producing nuclear weapons in 2018. These bases and their missiles are well-known, long-standing and have never been offered for dismantlement by the DPRK.” Per CNBC, the largest ballistic missiles possibly housed in the bases identified in the report are believed to be able to reach the US. (Read more North Korea stories.)

But Dear Trump just cannot admit that he was played like a cheap drum by Kim……..

A story emerged Monday suggesting that North Korea was violating the spirit of promises to reduce its nuclear arsenal. Not so, says President Trump. “The story in the New York Times concerning North Korea developing missile bases is inaccurate,” he tweeted. “We fully know about the sites being discussed, nothing new – and nothing happening out of the normal. Just more Fake News. I will be the first to let you know if things go bad!” The Times story he’s referring to was based on a new study by Center for Strategic and International Studies, whose researchers say they have found more than a dozen secret ballistic missile bases in North Korea. The newspaper acknowledges, however, that US intelligence agencies have long known about this network.

Here is how the Times frames the issue: “The satellite images suggest that the North has been engaged in a great deception: It has offered to dismantle a major launching site—a step it began, then halted—while continuing to make improvements at more than a dozen others that would bolster launches of conventional and nuclear warheads.” South Korea objected to this characterization even before Trump did, also using the phrase “nothing new.” A spokesman for President Moon Jae-in adds: “North Korea has never promised to dismantle its missile bases, nor has it ever joined any treaty that obligates it to dismantle them. So calling this a ‘deception’ is not appropriate.” That didn’t stop Democratic Sen. Ed Markey, who sits on the Foreign Relations panel, from asserting that Trump was “getting played by Kim Jong Un,” per Bloomberg.

Yet another pile of bovine fecal matter fed to the American public.

Enjoy your meal!

Advertisements

North Korea, Along The Way

North Korea is once again in the news….NO we do not have a peace treaty and we have not got a deal to dump all nukes on the Peninsula……basically something nice was said by Kim about Trump and that warranted a couple days of news reports.

Some have said that the US is going about the situation with North Korea all wrong……

U.S. President Donald Trump came to office clearly determined to reverse his predecessor’s policy toward North Korea, one that he saw as stagnant and ineffective. “The era of strategic patience is over,” Trump declared in 2017. Other Republican voices echoed this promise to chart a new path. When Trump’s first approach, rooted in threats and bellicosity, offered little reason for optimism, the president shifted to diplomatic engagement.

What harm, many asked, could come from negotiations? “I don’t believe this is a situation where the president has anything to lose,” explained former homeland security adviser Tom Bossert. In most cases, such confidence would be justified. What harm could possibly come from diplomatic engagement? North Korea, however, is not most cases, and the harm to American interests that appears to be emerging as a direct result of the Singapore talks may prove to be quite significant indeed.

https://thediplomat.com/2018/09/where-the-us-went-wrong-on-north-korea/

The news now is in a parade to celebrate 70 years of a Kim at the wheel….there were the usual suspects marching in review but what was not usual was the lack of missiles in the parade make-up….

North Korea rolled out some of its latest tanks and its best-trained goose-stepping units through Kim Il Sung Square in a major military parade Sunday to mark its 70th anniversary, but held back its most advanced missiles and devoted nearly half the event to underscoring Kim Jong Un’s new strategy of putting economic development front and center. Tens of thousands of North Koreans waving brightly colored plastic bouquets filled Pyongyang’s Kim Il Sung Square as the parade began, reports the AP. Pyongyang residents have been training for months for the anniversary and held up the bouquets to spell words and slogans that can be seen from the VIP viewing area. Those unable to attend at the square lined the streets around town to cheer convoys carrying the troops after they complete parade duties.

Although North Korea stages military parades almost every year, and held one just before the Olympics in South Korea in February, Sunday’s parade came at a particularly sensitive time. Kim’s effort to ease tensions with President Trump has stalled since their June summit in Singapore. With tensions again on the rise, a parade featuring the very missiles that so unnerved Trump last year, and led to a dangerous volley of insults from both leaders, could have been seen as a deliberate provocation. The “new line” of economic development has been Kim’s top priority this year. He claims to have perfected his nuclear arsenal enough to deter US aggression and devote his resources to raising the standard of living. This year’s celebrations also mark the revival of North Korea’s iconic mass games, which involve tens of thousands holding up placards or dancing in precise unison in a display of national unity

This should send the analysts into a frenzy trying to explain what Kim is doing.

Is this something positive or negative?

Well Trump has received another letter and a request……

President Donald Trump has received a request from North Korean leader Kim Jong Un for a follow-up to their historic June summit, and planning is in motion to make it happen. White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders said Monday that no details had been finalized, the AP reports. Trump had told reporters last week that he was expecting a letter from Kim. Sanders said Trump has received the letter, which she described as “very warm, very positive.” The White House will not release the full letter unless Kim agrees it should be made public, she said. “The primary purpose of the letter was to request and look to schedule another meeting with the president, which we are open to and are already in the process of coordinating that,” Sanders said at her first press briefing in nearly three weeks. She cited the letter as “further evidence of progress” in relations between the leaders.

On Sunday, Trump offered praise for Kim following a North Korean military parade that, unlike past parades, downplayed the missiles and nuclear weapons that brought North Korea to the brink of military conflict with the United States just a year ago. “This is a big and very positive statement from North Korea,” Trump tweeted Sunday about the parade. “Thank you To Chairman Kim. We will both prove everyone wrong! There is nothing like good dialogue from two people that like each other! Much better than before I took office.” Sanders also cited the parade in her comments Monday. “The recent parade in North Korea, for once, was not about their nuclear arsenal,” she said, characterizing the event as “a sign of good faith.” Trump, she said, had achieved “tremendous success” with his policies so far toward North Korea “and this letter was further evidence of progress in that relationship.”

I think a second meeting would benefit only Kim…..the US would get little out of it and in turn would look like we were graveling to Kim.

And the beat goes on!

Did You Know North Korea Was Still There?

As usual the situation with North Korea is not very newsworthy these days….we have a SCOTUS duel, a op-ed that has the Dear Leader batcrap pissed and then there is the probes this and the probes that….and in all the drama the situation with North Korea soldiers on……

Since the MSM wants to sweep most of it under the rug (would that be a Persian rug?  Persia?  Ain’t that Iran?)…….

It seems that Kim wants a declaration of peace for the Korean Peninsula and Trump’s boyz are waffling……

White House and State Department officials are reiterating that they have no current interest in making a deal with North Korea that would involve a peace declaration ending the Korean War.

The State Department said on Wednesday that the US position is that “denuclearization has to take place before we get to other parts.” The administration has repeatedly said they believe Korean denuclearization will take years, and that they want “progress” before the 2020 election.

The Korean War began in 1950, and 68 years later, there has never been a formal peace treaty ending the conflict. North Korea has been seeking a peace treaty for decades, with the US always resisting such a deal.

(antiwar.com)

Another summit is coming to a screen near you……mind you what Barry Goldwater said about a “summit”…..”only summit meeting that can succeed is the one that never takes place”…..could that be accurate in this case?

South Korean officials announced on Thursday that a deal has been reached to hold a summit in Pyongyang from September 18-20. The summit is to focus on “practical measures” which could be taken for denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.

South Korean national security adviser Chung Eui-yong told reporters that North Korea’s Kim Jong Un has “reconfirmed his determination to completely denuclearize,” and that he continues to have faith in President Trump.

The commitment to denuclearize is a major announcement, as US officials have been increasingly dubious about that, and complaining about the lack of quick progress. North Korean officials say Kim is frustrated by the doubts expressed in the international community about his will to preemptively denuclearize. He told Chung that he feels the good faith moves made by North Korea should be reciprocated.

(antiwar.com)

The trade war that Our Dear Leader has started with China has consequences……many have said the China has been a big help getting NK to the negotiating table….but for how much longer?

While the US has been pushing for diplomatic progress with North Korea to be met with even more restrict sanctions and restrictions, other countries have called for the UN to ease them. The US has blocked that, so far, but it isn’t stopping nations like China unilaterally easing limits on trade.

China has long been North Korea’s main trading partner, and while that trade ground to a halt earlier this year, a lot of it shows signs of picking up. Reports have China reopening coal trade, restarting frozen construction projects, and again allowing tourists into Pyongyang.

Analysts are suggesting that this “undercuts” US calls to keep escalating sanctions on North Korea, though there is also a case to be made that China is trying to ensure that it retains a major seat at the table if North Korea suddenly becomes an opened market with a lot of trade business.

(antiwar.com)

How much longer will China assist the process with this trade war looming large?

As one can see here is more going on on the Korean Peninsula than we are being told…..

A closing thought–President Trump tweeted to thank North Korea’s Kim Jong Un for his “unwavering faith,” promising that the two leaders would “get it done together.” This came after Wednesday’s reports that Kim, despite frustration at the diplomatic process, remains confident in Trump’s ability to progress things personally.

 

Closing Thought–29Aug18

A couple months ago Trump and Kim held their much anticipated “summit”….finally the guys at Bad Lip Reading has released their version of the press conference the two leaders held after their meting….

I cannot resist these guys they are just damn funny…..

Just to end my day with a little humor…I know his made you smile….

Yes, There Is A North Korea Update

There has been much said about the d”deal” struck with the Kim/Trump “summit” back in June…..and there has been reports that there may be a deal on the nukes but they, North Korea, are still building long range missiles….then the question is if we are being “nice” to each other why does the North need long range missiles (of course we could ask that of the US also)

I thought I might help my readers an update on the situation with North Korea…….

Our Dear Leader received a letter from BFF Kim…….

President Trump teased an upcoming meeting with Kim Jong Un on Thursday as the White House confirmed the North Korean leader sent him a letter “aimed at following up on their meeting in Singapore.” In a tweet, Trump thanked Kim for the “nice letter” and for keeping his promise of returning what’s believed to be the remains of US soldiers who fought in the Korean War, which arrived in Hawaii on Wednesday, per the AP. “I look forward to seeing you soon!” he added. White House spokeswoman Sarah Sanders didn’t comment on when the two leaders might meet again, but she said Kim’s letter spoke of “advancing the commitments made” at their June summit, spoofed in a K-pop artist’s latest music video, per CNN.

But how is this whole de-nukeing going?  SecState Pompeo can answwer that…..

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo says North Korea is far from living up to its pledge to denuclearize and remains in violation of numerous UN Security Council resolutions. Speaking Friday before he attends an Asian security forum with North Korea’s foreign minister, Pompeo told reporters in Singapore there was “still a ways to go” before achieving the goal of ridding the North of its nuclear weapons. Pompeo’s comments came after the White House announced Thursday that President Trump received a new letter from North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and responded quickly with a letter of his own.

The correspondence came amid fresh concerns over Pyongyang’s commitment to denuclearization despite a rosy picture of progress painted by Trump, the AP reports. “Chairman Kim made a commitment to denuclearize,” Pompeo told reporters accompanying him to Singapore. “The world demanded that (he) do so in the UN Security Council resolutions. To the extent they are behaving in a manner inconsistent with that, they are in violation of one or both the UN Security Council resolutions, we can see we still have a ways to go to achieve the ultimate outcome we’re looking for.” (Intelligence officials reportedly suspect that North Korea is continuing to build new missiles.)

The US has been criticized at the ASEAN meeting……

US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo says North Korea is far from living up to its pledge to denuclearize and remains in violation of numerous UN Security Council resolutions. Speaking Friday before he attends an Asian security forum with North Korea’s foreign minister, Pompeo told reporters in Singapore there was “still a ways to go” before achieving the goal of ridding the North of its nuclear weapons. Pompeo’s comments came after the White House announced Thursday that President Trump received a new letter from North Korean leader Kim Jong Un and responded quickly with a letter of his own.

The correspondence came amid fresh concerns over Pyongyang’s commitment to denuclearization despite a rosy picture of progress painted by Trump, the AP reports. “Chairman Kim made a commitment to denuclearize,” Pompeo told reporters accompanying him to Singapore. “The world demanded that (he) do so in the UN Security Council resolutions. To the extent they are behaving in a manner inconsistent with that, they are in violation of one or both the UN Security Council resolutions, we can see we still have a ways to go to achieve the ultimate outcome we’re looking for.” (Intelligence officials reportedly suspect that North Korea is continuing to build new missiles.)

That is as up to date as I can get without being in the loop with Pompeo and that shall not happen because I think he is a slug…..was so when in Congress and has not changed since becoming SecState.

 

Soldiers Returned

One of the perks of the “summit” in Singapore with Kim/Trump has bore fruit…….the return of the remains of fallen soldiers during the Korean War.

An American military plane flew into North Korea on Friday and left with the remains of US troops who were killed during the Korean War, the White House says. It’s not clear how many, but South Korea’s Yonhap news agency estimates that 50 sets of remains were transferred. The plane brought the remains to the Osan Air Base in South Korea, where forensic tests will be conducted over the next few days, reports the Washington Post. After that, the remains will be sent to Hawaii ahead of a formal repatriation ceremony scheduled for Aug. 1.

“Today’s actions represent a significant first step to recommence the repatriation of remains from North Korea and to resume field operations in North Korea to search for the estimated 5,300 Americans who have not yet returned home,” said White House press secretary Sarah Huckabee Sanders in a statement. The development comes out of the June summit between President Trump and North Korea’s Kim Jong Un. Friday is the 65th anniversary of the signing of the armistice that ended hostilities.

One of the great parts of this “summit” is the return of the remains of soldiers killed.

Now the rigorous detail to ID the remains so that they can get a proper funeral.

We welcome them home finally.

News From The Democratic People’s Republic Of Korea

There is not much in the news these days about North Korea…..the news has been too toxic even for news about Kim.

And that is why I am here to give my reader that which the MSM refuses to report…..

According to Dear Leader after Singapore NK will work to rid the nukes from the Korean Peninsula……but what about all those missile that he was firing off last Summer?

Just days after the Korean Peninsula’s top US military commander warned that North Korea’s nuclear production capability remains intact, some slightly more encouraging news: The country appears to be dismantling its main satellite launch site, the BBC reports. US-based monitoring group 38 North reported Monday that satellite images of the country’s Sohae station, believed by the US to be a test site for launching intercontinental ballistic missiles, appear to show that North Korea has started dismantling “key facilities” at the site. And an official from South Korea’s presidential office said Tuesday that Seoul has also been detecting dismantlement activities at the site, the AP reports. 38 North calls it “an important first step towards fulfilling a commitment made by Kim Jong Un at the June 12 Singapore Summit” with US President Trump, during which Kim reportedly agreed to denuclearize.

But analysts say that unless the entire Sohae site is dismantled, North Korea’s military capabilities won’t be diminshed. And sources tell CNN that North Korea expects the US to reciprocate in the form of agreeing to a permanent peace treaty with Pyongyang, that ensures the survival of Kim’s regime, if negotiations are to continue. Multiple sources recently told the Washington Post Trump, who has publicly been urging patience with the denuclearization process, has privately been expressing frustration with the perceived slow pace. But Trump hit back at that report Monday, tweeting, “A Rocket has not been launched by North Korea in 9 months. Likewise, no Nuclear Tests. Japan is happy, all of Asia is happy. But the Fake News is saying, without ever asking me (always anonymous sources), that I am angry because it is not going fast enough. Wrong, very happy!”

That is good news indeed…….we will keep an eye on the progress.

Do you, my reader, recall the saga of Otto Warmbier…he was that American that was held by North Korea and tortured until he was in a coma and then sent back to the US…….this was news amplified….it took up most of the day or so that it was milked…..but has there been any further details coming out?

Doug Bock Clark begins a lengthy piece for GQ on the fate of Otto Warmbier with a bold assertion: That what happened to the 21-year-old American college student “is even more shocking than anyone knew” and that he had the “untold story.” So does he? The piece, the result of six months of reporting, is indeed incredibly detailed and filled with one major previously unreported nugget. He gives a timeline of the intense efforts made to free Warmbier, from meetings with the “New York Channel” (North Korea’s reps at United Nations headquarters) to a proposal to have then-president-elect Trump pick Warmbier up in his plane. After learning in June 2017 Warmbier was unconscious, North Korea was “unilaterally informed” that a US plane would arrive to collect him.

“Intense negotiations” followed on the ground, and Michael Flueckiger, the medical director for Phoenix Air, whose Gulfstream G-III jet was being used in the mission, was finally allowed to see Warmbier. He knew immediately that “the Otto of old was already gone,” though he noted the hospital care had been of quality (Warmbier had no bedsores, for instance, which is difficult in the case of a comatose patient). Flueckiger tells Clark that the hospital staff told him Warmbier had been admitted unresponsive the morning after he was sentenced to 15 years, a timeline detail that hadn’t been made public. But only two weeks prior, Warmbier appeared on TV and seemed healthy. The narrow window between the two suggests to Clark that the theory that Warmbier was continually beaten doesn’t hold up, and he provides other evidence in support of that. So what happened? Clark presents one theory: that it was a suicide attempt gone wrong. Read his full piece here.

That is where we are today with the Otto saga……is it the rest of the story….hard to say but we will keep watching for further details.