Friday, June 22, 2007

Trying To Avoid Another "Big Bang"

OK, so Dubya decides to abrogate the 1994 “Agreed Framework” that the Clinton Administration negotiated with North Korea stipulating that they would halt activity developing plutonium-based weapons in exchange for promises of a pair of light-water reactors and US diplomatic and economic relations.

Now, though, according to this AP story, you would think that North Korea wants to shut down its nuclear reactor, based on what Assistant Secretary of State Christopher Hill tells us (more on that in a minute).

So what was the big holdup under Bushco? Well, it was the $25 million of North Korean funds that the U.S. “froze” at a Macau bank over money laundering allegations (as noted here).

So, as the diplomatic tit-for-tat nonsense, name calling and posturing played out, North Korea managed to conduct at least seven prior missile tests since Clinton left office, working out the kinks in pursuit of God knows what.

And as noted above in the AP story, Hill's counterpart Kim Kye Gwan and Foreign Minister Pak Ui Chun are making overtures that could mean that North Korea wants to shut down its nuclear reactor, though Hill notes way, way down in the story that “it would take ‘a great deal of time, a great deal of effort, a lot of work’ in ridding North Korea of its nuclear programs, including weapons.”

So what exactly is there to feel good about here?


Anonymous said...

I wonder what North korea's private intentions are with all this.

doomsy said...

I think all of this is nothing but a game for North Korea. They will never give up their nuclear reactor; they will never eliminate the possibility that they could manufacture nuclear weapons. They will never do anything to eliminate the potential threat that they pose to the world. That is how Kim Jong Il is able to hold onto power. That is the only bargaining chip that they hold, since the country is in ruins economically and politically.

Every so often, they do something with their nuclear capability to get the attention of the world and use that as leverage to obtain food, oil, some kind of advantage of a sort with China or another country in the region...whatever (or, in this case, Bushco has been able to use this situation to manufacture some "story," with the help of a completely pliant corporate media, that could leave someone not paying attention with the impression that they're actually doing something constructive concerning one of the countries in the "axis of evil").

Five years from now, ten years from now, we'll probably be reading the same stories like this about North Korea. The difference is that Clinton paid a hell of a lot more attention to their ability to manufacture plutonium than Dubya did; Clinton didn't prevent it entirely, but I think he did the best he could. However, it's possible that "the dear leader" in North Korea could flip out and take a shot somewhere for real, at which point China would probably obliterate them and seize what was left of the country outright, something no one wants to see, of course.