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Accept Reality: North Korea Will Remain a Nuclear State

August 10, 2019 in Economics

By Doug Bandow

Doug Bandow

President Donald Trump has discovered that nations around the
world will not readily submit to his will. His administration has
increased sanctions on and made military threats against Cuba,
Venezuela, Russia, Iran and North Korea. So far, none of them have
surrendered to Washington. Only the Democratic People’s
Republic has come to the negotiating table.

The president’s willingness to talk with North
Korea’s Supreme Leader Kim Jong-un deserves praise, despite
complaints from the warmongering Right and partisan Left. However,
his demand for instant and complete denuclearization was never
realistic.

Alas, negotiations in which the president placed so much hope
have ground to a halt. Most recently, North Korean diplomats
skipped the ASEAN summit, where Secretary of State Mike Pompeo had
expected to meet with North Korean foreign minister Ri Yong-ho.
Said Pompeo: “We stand ready to continue our diplomatic
conversation with the North Koreans,” but, he added, “I
regret that it looks like I’m not going to have an
opportunity to do that while I’m here in Bangkok.”

U.S. policy toward North
Korea always has been one of second-best options. Preparing for a
world with North Korea as a nuclear power is a necessity for the
future.

Indeed, the bilateral relationship is deteriorating. The United
States and the Republic of Korea are conducting military exercises,
despite bitter attacks by Pyongyang. The DPRK is conducting
short-range missile tests, embarrassing the Trump administration
and unnerving both the ROK and Japan. The president continues to
express his confidence in Kim’s commitment to denuclearize, but the
former might find that position harder to defend in the face of
Democratic Party attacks as the 2020 presidential campaign
accelerates.

The North is forever unreasonable and obstructionist. That is
unlikely to change. But in this case Pyongyang’s position is
logical, reflecting the interests of the Kim family regime. After
all, Kim is supposed to abandon his leverage in return for vague
promises of positive benefits in the future. However, the United
States routinely coerces governments on its enemies list, such as
Serbia, Afghanistan, Iraq and Libya. Notably, none of those
countries had a nuclear deterrent.

In the latter case, dictator Muammar el-Qaddafi yielded his
nation’s missile and nuclear programs in return for promises
of official Western favor. He originally was welcomed in European
capitals, but when the Arab Spring hit Libya the United States and
its European allies took advantage of his weakness to force his
ouster. In truth, rather like the North, Washington cannot be
trusted. Indeed, after viewing Qaddafi’s fate, Kim would be a
fool to entrust his future to the United States. And whatever Kim
is, he is no fool.

He also probably doesn’t want to rely on …read more

Source: OP-EDS