ZenPundit
Sunday, October 15, 2006
 
BRIEF REMARKS AND ROBUST ROUND-UP ON NORTH KOREA

This post was prompted by a pleasant debate I am having with Cheryl "CKR" Rofer over at Whirledview, who unlike most bloggers, actually has professional experience with nuclear weapons issues. A fairly methodical and seemingly nonpartisan history of North Korean nuclear activities up until 2002, can be found at NITI: Country Overview: North Korea Profile.

First my remarks:

The DPRK has just been sanctioned by the UNSC for its renegade nuclear test. The sanctions are trivial and mild but still noteworthy for securing, for the first time, the assent of China and Russia in punishing Pyongyang. The ire in Beijing over Kim Jong-Il's latest gesture of defiance must have been quite significant, as the Chinese government also permitted unflattering horror stories from the North Korean border to reach the Western press, something the Chinese government normally would suppress. North Korea, the most isolated and hellish regime on earth, has managed to discover a whole new lower level of global detestation.

But to my mind, not yet low enough.

The answer to the North Korean threat, other than a a blockade, is a new security structure for the Far East, modelled on Euro-Atlantic institutions, ultimately morphing into an Asian NATO that includes the United States. This solution, aside from create a concert ofnations to deal with Pyongyang, has the utility of killing multiple birds with one stone including incipient Sino-Japanese, Korean-Japanese, Sino-American and the existing Indo-Pakistani arms races. The more erratic and destabilizing the nuclear activities of North Korea, the more attractive a formal regional security relationship will seem in Tokyo, Beijing, Seoul and New Delhi.

Like the crazy loner on a neighborhood block who has been threatening his community for years with a gun only to have it be inconveniently be discovered by neighbors that the gun is unloaded, North Korea's failed nuclear test has confirmed to the world that the regime is both malevolently intentioned and incompetent. In another era, the phrase would have been " paper tiger".

The Bush administration should press the issue while North Korea has offended its last patron, alarmed adjacent countries and is enduring a serious loss of face. China and South Korea fear to be left " holding the bag" in the advent of a regime collapse in the DPRK and a subsequent humanitarian catastrophe as North Koreans attempt to flee en masse. We should make clear that managing the North Korean problem is not confined to nuclear weapons but is designed for sharing the burden resulting from any implosion. We might find more willing partners that way.

BLOGGERS AND PAPERS ON NORTH KOREA:

American Future, Glittering Eye, Thomas P.M. Barnett, Josh Manchester, Armchair Generalist,
William Arkin, Beacon, Rebecca MacKinnon, The Useless Tree, Sun Bin, The Asia Pages, Washington Post, New York Times, Don Surber, Duck of Minerva, PINR, Captain Ed, Steve DeAngelis
 
Comments:
pan-asian nato won't happen. south koreans hate japan more than north korea.
 
"south koreans hate japan more than north korea."

Some might say they hate the United States more than they do North Korea.

Granted, but the same thing was once said about Germany and France and look at those two nations today. Or Greece and Turkey, between whom little love is lost.

Security structures are not about sentiment or brotherhood but about preventing instability and war. I doubt that South Korea wants to see a Japan disconnected from a U.S. alliance or developing independent nuclear weapon capability. Let the DPRK continue as it has been and that will be the end result.
 
Security structures may not be about sentiment but they are about national interest. South Korea has/is developing Korean nationalism not all that different from North Korea (which has the added Kim Jong-Il worship-as-God component). They are choosing a different path than ours. I don't see the US/South Korea alliance surviving, how do you see it expanding to include other countries? As far as I can tell, China has still not decided where it's fate lies. Right now they are more an antagonist than an ally. Talk of an alliance seems a bit misplaced...an alliance based on what? We have so little in common.

Barnabus
P.S. Once China starts buying hard assests in the U.S. (i.e. real estate and U.S. companies that they plan on running) then you will know that they've thrown their lot in with us.
 
Personally, were it not for a need to prevent future problems I'd be for dropping the ROK as an ally unilaterally. They're not worth the outlay on their own merits.

The Chinese are willing to buy, they want a hedge against the instability of their own economy, we aren't ready to let them buy like Brits or Dutch.
 
Post a Comment

<< Home
Zenpundit - a NEWSMAGAZINE and JOURNAL of scholarly opinion.

My Photo
Name:
Location: Chicago, United States

" The great majority of mankind are satisfied with appearances as though they were realities" -- Machiavelli

Determined Designs Web Solutions Lijit Search
ARCHIVES
02/01/2003 - 03/01/2003 / 03/01/2003 - 04/01/2003 / 04/01/2003 - 05/01/2003 / 05/01/2003 - 06/01/2003 / 06/01/2003 - 07/01/2003 / 07/01/2003 - 08/01/2003 / 08/01/2003 - 09/01/2003 / 09/01/2003 - 10/01/2003 / 10/01/2003 - 11/01/2003 / 11/01/2003 - 12/01/2003 / 12/01/2003 - 01/01/2004 / 01/01/2004 - 02/01/2004 / 02/01/2004 - 03/01/2004 / 03/01/2004 - 04/01/2004 / 04/01/2004 - 05/01/2004 / 05/01/2004 - 06/01/2004 / 06/01/2004 - 07/01/2004 / 07/01/2004 - 08/01/2004 / 08/01/2004 - 09/01/2004 / 09/01/2004 - 10/01/2004 / 10/01/2004 - 11/01/2004 / 11/01/2004 - 12/01/2004 / 12/01/2004 - 01/01/2005 / 01/01/2005 - 02/01/2005 / 02/01/2005 - 03/01/2005 / 03/01/2005 - 04/01/2005 / 04/01/2005 - 05/01/2005 / 05/01/2005 - 06/01/2005 / 06/01/2005 - 07/01/2005 / 07/01/2005 - 08/01/2005 / 08/01/2005 - 09/01/2005 / 09/01/2005 - 10/01/2005 / 10/01/2005 - 11/01/2005 / 11/01/2005 - 12/01/2005 / 12/01/2005 - 01/01/2006 / 01/01/2006 - 02/01/2006 / 02/01/2006 - 03/01/2006 / 03/01/2006 - 04/01/2006 / 04/01/2006 - 05/01/2006 / 05/01/2006 - 06/01/2006 / 06/01/2006 - 07/01/2006 / 07/01/2006 - 08/01/2006 / 08/01/2006 - 09/01/2006 / 09/01/2006 - 10/01/2006 / 10/01/2006 - 11/01/2006 / 11/01/2006 - 12/01/2006 / 12/01/2006 - 01/01/2007 / 01/01/2007 - 02/01/2007 / 02/01/2007 - 03/01/2007 / 03/01/2007 - 04/01/2007 / 04/01/2007 - 05/01/2007 / 05/01/2007 - 06/01/2007 / 06/01/2007 - 07/01/2007 / 07/01/2007 - 08/01/2007 / 08/01/2007 - 09/01/2007 / 09/01/2007 - 10/01/2007 / 10/01/2007 - 11/01/2007 / 11/01/2007 - 12/01/2007 /



follow zenpundit at http://twitter.com
This plugin requires Adobe Flash 9.
Get this widget!
Sphere Featured Blogs Powered by Blogger StatisfyZenpundit

Site Feed Who Links Here
Buzztracker daily image Blogroll Me!