South Korea wants to
talk to North Korea.
July 18, 2017 "Information
- The Defense Ministry in Seoul proposed
to talk at the border village of Panmunjom,
while the Red Cross proposed separate talks
to discuss family reunions.
So South Korean President
Moon Jae-in has
made up his mind — after his inauguration on May
10 and Pyongyang's ICBM test on July 3.
Pyongyang may also be inclined to talk — as it
had already indicated. But there may be
preconditions, as in the suspension of those
provocative, annual US-South Korean military
drills. The US will say no. Once again, it's all
unclear whether US intelligence has 100% proof
that Pyongyang, apart from the ICBM, is on the
path to soon achieve other technological breaks,
such as building a guidance system and a
miniaturized, functional nuclear weapon capable
of surviving both the missile launch and
re-entry into the atmosphere.
Now for some crude, hard facts.
very well knows that nuclear weapons are
absolutely essential for the survival of the Kim
dynasty. Beijing not only knows it — but also
calculates that Pyongyang does not exactly see
it as a trustful ally. During the Korean War —
whose memory is pervasive all across the North —
Mao's key concern was to protect China's
borders, not the safety of its neighbor.
secret though is that a nuclear North Korea may
represent a perennial dissuasion against the US,
much more than a threat, but not against China.
So that frames the case, once again, as a
margin of maneuver against Pyongyang is rather
limited — something that President Trump as well
as the US deep state still do not understand.
And North Korea is not a Chinese national
security priority — unless the regime would
collapse and there would be an uncontrollable
influx of refugees.
only thing that matters for the Chinese
leadership is — what else — trade. And as far
as China-South Korean trade is concerned,
business is booming anyway.
Feverish speculation in the US about a "strike"
against Pyongyang is idle. Anyone with minimum
knowledge of the Korean Peninsula knows that the
response would be Pyongyang virtually wiping
Seoul off the map. Not to mention that US intel
is clueless on where all the dispersed North
Korean nuclear and missile development sites
minimally competent US "attack" would requires a
lot of infiltrated US Special Forces, as in
boots on the ground, with no guarantee
of success. In a nutshell; Washington,
realistically, is incapable of eliminating North
Korea's nuclear and missile programs.
to do? The only logical strategy would be
to admit — just as with India and Pakistan
in the late 1990s — that North Korea is a de
facto nuclear power.
Pyongyang's strategy, after all, is actually a
small marvel; you imprint the feeling you're a
totally unpredictable actor, and you scare the
living daylights out of everyone while
preventing any attempt at destabilization. As
much as wishful thinking prevails, that a US
surgical strike would be able to paralyze the
structure, US intel is clueless when it comes
to predicting Pyongyang's actions.
intel source familiar with the high stakes
in the Korean peninsula adds a few stark
observations; "The point that is not even
touched upon is that South Korea already is
within the range of North Korean nuclear bombs
even if the United States is not, and can be
liquidated by North Korea. We have to examine
the nature of the defense alliance with South
Korea. Does it mean that we can and will attack
North Korea to protect ourselves when we cannot
protect South Korea, triggering their
destruction in our self-defense?"
point is that if South Korea is virtually
destroyed by Pyongyang's response to American
strikes, "then our allies around the world will
have the uneasy feeling that they too would be
sacrificed as allies should they get in the way.
I would say that would be the end of the entire
US alliance structure, which actually is already
informed source is convinced that "the South
Koreans have forced the United States to agree
to forbear on any strike on North Korea, as to
support such a strike would be national suicide
for South Korea. The United States will do
this is happening just as what Seoul really
wants is to do business — in a Korean variant
of the China-driven New Silk Roads, renamed Belt
and Road Initiative (BRI). Seoul wants to build
a Trans-Korean Railway, and go even beyond,
connecting it with the Trans-Siberian and, what
else, the Chinese-built Eurasian land bridge.
That happens to be the so-called Iron Silk Road
concept, which South Korea has been dreaming
about since an Asia-Europe Meeting (ASEM) summit
"Overcoming the land divide between Asia and
Europe", connected to the vast trans-Eurasia
network, means the fifth-largest export economy
in the world would be getting even more
business. Handicapped by North Korea's
isolation, South Korea is de facto physically
cut off from Eurasia. The answer to all this
trouble? The Trans-Korean Railway. If only
President Moon could entice Kim Jong-un
towards a connectivity dream — and make him
forget his nuclear toys.
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