Global Security Headlines

Friday, November 26, 2010

The North Korean Menace - Time for the stick?

The deadly artillery bombardment of South Korea's Yeonpyeong Island is yet more evidence that the cartload of carrots thrown at the North Korea nuclear impasse over the years has only emboldened the dictatorship in Pyongyang.
Kim Jong-Un to rescue

Spoiled Child in Pyongyang
The North Korean case is a perfect example of sparing the rod, spoils the child.

The impish regime in Pyongyang like most autocracies consumed the inducements, used negotiations to advance its nuclear program to fruition, and correctly interpreted the constant request for negotiations as a sign of weakness.

Today, North Korea stands at the brink in the death throes of a desperate transition to the Kim Jong-Un, Kim Jong-Il's youngest son. He is yet another corpulent member of the ruling family in a country that has suffered repeated episodes of famine, but obviously the ruling class was not affected. The twenty-something neophyte is supposed to save the dying regime?

China, who is the mother to the childish regime, is the key to resolving the North Korean imbroglio. For fear of disrupting any access to the lucrative Chinese consumer market and offending its banker, the United States is loathe to bluntly tell Beijing to solve the problem or have it solved.

American impotence to defend an ally from a regional bully is noted not just by China but its enemies around the world.

The North Korean menace ranges beyond the spooky corner of Northeast Asia. Pyongyanh is also heavily involved with Iran and also ships arms to terrorist groups like Hizbullah.

Higher Cost to End the Crisis
Now a declining yet nuclear-tipped Pyongyang threatens war with South Korea as Seoul prepares for naval exercises with the US.

World history is replete with examples that those who live by force like the thugs in Pyongyang only respect force. Why this is such a hard concept for many to grasp in the world capitals of democracies is baffling. Regime behavior can only be moderated by the stick since carrots only fatten resolve.

The cost of solving the North Korea case is higher now because past opportunities were squandered at the negotiation table as if (same for Iran) a rogue regime has any interest in volunteering ceding its chip at the table of international diplomacy.

A unified Korea, yes bordering China, under democratic control from Seoul, should be the goal and the appropriate measures should be undertaken to achieve it.
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