Thoughts on Events in North Korea

So Bill Clinton Went to North Korea to help secure the release of two American journalists being held captive there. Good; in the short term. Some times you have to sacrifice overall security goals in return for resolving other situations. I believe this was one of those times where this had to be done. In light of that reality, I hope that this is a one time deal and that this doesn’t signal an effort to normalize diplomatic relations with the North. for those of you who wonder why I would be opposed to more diplomacy let me tell you why. All the north does is take. And take. And take some more.

What is needed is a consistent Korea policy and a tough one. We, the United States, need to arm the Japanese and the South to counter balance the North and need to push the international community to cut even more ties with N.K. As nasty as this sounds the best thing for the region in the long run would be to cut all aid of any kind to North Korea. it must be admitted that this would cause in the short term at the very least a humanitarian crisis, but lets be honest there already is one unfolding more slowly in the North. Also there is the short term threat of conflict; if the regime in the north feels power slipping away it may invade the south or use its nukes. Again if we are honest with ourselves we must admit that this is the daily reality anyway, the North Koreans are not rational actors and these threats are just as real today as they would be if we cut the aid. Simply put it may best to destabilize the region in the short term to secure long term stability in the area.

What does this look like in terms of U.S. involvement? It looks like these; first, the U.S must take a consistently hard line with ALL parties involved in the six party talks. Second, the U.S. must lead the international community in cutting off the north, this would include trying to get the Chinese to go along with it. with out any outside add the regime could only last 2 years tops. It is my belief that it would fall much sooner. Lastly, The U.S. needs to be willing to back its allies in the region if and when the North acts militarily or collapses. We have 30,000 troops there to roll north either to take control of the nuclear sites or to help in a humanitarian mission. in either case Lose of Life must be expected and accepted. We must be willing to bare our resonablity in the short term so that we will not have to come back and clean up later.

Thoughts.

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  1. Perhaps North Korea is a rogue communist state seeking revenge for the historic outcome of the US-Korean War, and perhaps China no longer has control over the actions of North Korea. Check this out. One certainty, I believe, is that our troops being stationed in and protecting South Korea from further incidents for so long is indeed a driving factor to their militaristic state as well and that North Korea therefore has a delusional sense of entitlement to making the US and South Korea pay. Good point about getting China to help put a stop to North Korean agression, hopefully for the sake of all countries involved this doesn’t end up in another war. However, I’m surprised that Clinton could get those reporters back and believe there must have been some compromise on the part of the USA.

  2. Q.F.
    Thanks for the comments and the link. you’ve hit the nail on the head that having the U.S. troops in the south for as long as they have been there has been a factor. I think that we need to work hard to get local solutions for security in that and other regions. I believe it is best to allow local actors to counter balance each other and to only intervene when we have to, using over the horizon technologies like the B-2 Spirit and our sub force with all of those Cruise missiles. along with this we need to get more live Intel in the form of people on the ground. by being better informed and less invested we will be able to decide where and how we involve ourselves in the world. to read more on this I recommend the writings of Christopher Layne. for more follow the link below on him:
    http://bush.tamu.edu/faculty/clayne/

    also here is one of his works, the one that turned me to him on American Grand Strategy:

    http://drworley.org/NSPcommon/National%20Security%20Strategy/NSS%20journal%20articles/WPJ-1998,Summer-Layne-grand-strategy.pdf

    • Binu Jacob
    • August 12th, 2009

    Kim Jong is a dictator. Half his nation is starving and i don’t think he cares a bit and probably he lives in a stately mansion, though he claims to be a communist.. Cutting off the north complteley would mean a complete trade embargo which would only worsen the conndition of people in that country. A person like Kim Jong is not going to care till half his nation falls dead of starvation. why do we have to punish an entire nation because of an evil leader? The only people Kim Jong feed is his miliatary. Believe it or not, there are 1 million solidiers there, so it is not going to be a cake walk for 30,000 troops to walk over there unless US wants to bomb the crap out of everyone and kills thousands of inncocent people also. It is easy for us who live in the comfort of main land USA to say there would be lives lost on both sides.
    Another point: the reason why North Korea is still going on with its bully attitude is because it is getting backdoor support from China. If you think straight, Chinese goverment is a worse offender of human rights than North Korea. So why are we not adopting the same stand against China? we seem to be only interested in Fostering our business relationship with them. So is our righteous anger directed only against weaker nations?

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