Sunday, November 21, 2010

Time to Ignore North Korea: Talks with North Korea Will Be Fruitless

We have seen the North Koreans play this game before. If and when they want to acquire more aid, they prove successful they have been at skirting its commitments to open themselves up to UN inspections with the hope that we would then start a new round of negotiations that would prove beneficial to them. We clamor for sanctions which are then whittled down by the Chinese and Russian negotiators who are all to keen to do everything that would keep the North Korean government from collapsing. They had proven themselves to be a reliably untrustworthy negotiating partner at nuclear inspection talks The deals made by President Barack Obama's predecessors, George W. Bush and William Jefferson Clinton, did not work. Hoping that new talks would lead to cooperation on nuclear weapons inspections and dismantlement would be delusional. We cannot expect them to give up the one bargaining chip which they have - the weapons we are bargaining to have removed.

I see no point in holding more talks with the North Koreans. The North Koreans really pose no immediate threat to the United States because the MAD (mutually assured destruction) threat which caused the American and Soviet governments to act responsibly does not hold in this case. We can withstand several nuclear attacks (albeit at a great loss of life and damage to the American economy) but the North Koreans could not, so any first attempt made by them would be mad.

North Korea's neighbors have far more to fear from its leaders' antics but we can always reiterate our promise to protect them from a North Korean attack and threaten Pyongyang with its annihilation should it launch a first strike on South Korea or Japan. In the mean time I see no reason why we should make the extra effort to negotiate and lower tensions on the peninsula when the governments in the region have shown no inclination to impose stricter, government-crippling sanctions on North Korea. Our government doesn't have to react every time Pyongyang decides to hold a military parade or conduct a missile test. Lower-level spokes persons at the State Department could condemn the North Koreans for their intransigence and then move on.

We can always strike the North Koreans if and when they choose to sell their weapons on the black market. Until they do so, we can tighten our own sanctions and withhold more aid from them.

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