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Urgent Warning: Time to Hit the Reset Button on US-Korean Policy


#1

Urgent Warning: Time to Hit the Reset Button on US-Korean Policy

Medea Benjamin

Touching down in Washington DC Friday night after a peace delegation to South Korea organized by the Task Force to Stop THAAD in Korea (STIK), I saw the devastating news. No, it was not that Reince Priebus had been booted from the dysfunctional White House. It was that North Korea had conducted another intercontinental ballistic missile test, and that the United States and South Korea had responded by further ratcheting up this volatile conflict.


#2

Why is North Korea our enemy?


#3

Because we always need an enemy and we pick a country we think we can defeat and whose attack the American dupes will accept. Like that worked so well in Iraq. No wonder North Korea is after a nuclear counter punch, it is the only deterrent the US recognizes.


#4

The psychopaths that are running/ruining things are just itching to go nuke and risk destroying everything in the process. Bush II got the ball rolling when he slapped sanctions on N Korea about 2001 which forced the north to start developing the nuclear programs. N Korea wanted to come to an agreement but the US would have nothing of it and goaded them to do something to protect their tiny country. And now here we are. Tensions are tight to say the least. Any attack on the north assures the destruction of the south and then the whole Korean peninsula would be reduced to rubble because that’s what the US does. WTF ever happened to diplomacy? Seems to be in short supply with the psychopathic neocons with the levers of power in their hands and Trump isn’t tough enough to stand up to them. The war began in 1950 by the Truman regime and still sticks in the craw of large factions of US policy makers.


#5

Here’s my proposal.

The United States seeks fully peace with North Korea with no other strings attached except union with South Korea will happen only through peaceful means via negotiation between only the South and North.

Then the United States ends sanctions and other attacks on North Korea and floods the north with aid and rebuilding its infrastructure (which never recovered from the Korean War like the South did.)

After a few years you know what would happen? N. Korea would be like China- a roaring Capitalistic nation that is Communist in name only. It and the South could have a relationship like China and Taiwan, where both claim to be the rightful Chinese government but exercise sovereignty only over themselves and live together in a unfriendly peace.

What we’ve been doing for the last 64 years has only continued to reinforce North Korea being the place it is.


#6

And that is why the U.S. will never let it happen. The last thing the globalist empire wants is another economic rival. They would rather the entire Korean peninsula burn to ash before that happens.


#7

The war began in 1950 by Kim il Sung, who took advantage of Truman’s Fulbright-esque “Declare victory and go home” policy. It took less than 3 days for Truman to change his mind, and that was barely enough to prevent Kim’s army from overrunning the peninsula.
… IMHO, our Korean War experience badly influenced what our leaders did in Vietnam and elsewhere.

And speaking of psychopaths, there are too many of them on the other side of the table. As for “Trump isn’t tough enough”, just a week ago Trump cut off what we were putting into Syria.


Viewed from here, Medea Benjamin needs to check her belief system for consistency. See

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If South Korea’s Pres. Park deserved to be ousted from power, then North Korea’s Kim Jong Un, Saddam Hussein and Muammar Gaddafi were or are one-million-uple-ly deserving to be ousted from power. Which happens to not be not quite the number of people they or their regimes had or have killed.

What would be the best policy? It has gotten to the point where the only ‘good’ policy is to close our eyes, stop our ears and believe that wonderful things could and are happening. Until the hist (anagram) hits the fan.
… Libertarians would advocate that there is no reason whatever to have anything on that side of the world, and pull them out. Too bad for the freedoms of the Taiwanese, but that’s their hardship, not ours.


#8

Medea Benjamin makes here a sane and very well-reasoned argument! There is nothing to be gained in continued threats and sanctions against North Korea. This “strategy” just increases their paranoia and strengthens their resolve. As she points out, there is nothing irrational about their fear and suspicion of us! We are making things worse. It seems to many of us as though the U.S. wants to provoke them. How could it possibly be seen otherwise to them?

It is way past time for our country to stop being the biggest bully in the world! This would make us a better country and the world a safer place.


#9

Agreed. The problem is: can we do that before the U.S. gets the whole world into a nuclear war?


#10

Alternatively, the US could withdraw all troops from the Korean peninsula and stop dumping US taxpayer money into that sinkhole. About the only thing that comes out of there is my Samsung phone and TV. Prolly manufactured in China anyway. Let South Korea deal with whatever happens. If South Koreans love their way of life let them defend it.

Apparently the US is spending about $1.5 billion in South Korea. I can’t even imagine how many EBT cards that can fill.

BTW, Clinton tried the carrot thing and it didn’t really work out.


#11

I once read all of the short releases on N. Korean policy going back a couple of decades. It was an amazing broken record. I don’t think Japan would be happy with a united Korea. I don’t think China wants the US on its border. I think North Korea is just sunk by all parties, and is sick of it.


#12

Clinton’s carrot was not much of a carrot at all.

If the US just pulls out Japan will re-arm. Just pulling out is not the solution. The solution is to woo North Korea. A fraction of the funds we give Israel would do it.


#13

North Korea is a brutal communist dictatorship. The best way is to let it implode. “Wooing” is just prolonging the plight of the North Korean people.

I really don’t care what Japan does. The US has been spending billions of $ to protect them and Western Europe (fine during the cold war). That has to stop. Europe has start funding their own defense against whatever perceived or real threat they face. Not sure about you but i about had enough of my tax dollars going to others who should be taking care of themselves.


#14

Economic aid is pennies compared to military aid being Benjamins. If we cut back on military spending and military foreign aid, we’d have plenty of money to woo North Korea and you could pay LESS taxes. Plus you wouldn’t have a country implode and the suffering of everyone in it or another war between the south and the north and the massive casualties.


#15

Stop it with the stupid “wooing” of NK. That regime needs to go down. The easiest way is to stop whatever “aid” is being sent in there that goes to the military and Party elite anyway. The sooner the better. All those people will be much better off. Trust me. I grew up under communist rule. The US did squat abt it. They were totally taken by surprise when everything collapsed in 1989.


#16

No, I won’t stop.

Honey always gets more flies than Vinegar. You want that regime to fall? I see two choices. Nuke them to oblivion and kill all the people or Bribe them. War didn’t work with China or Vietnam, but Bribing did.

Give them Coca Cola and KFC and soon they’ll be want you want.


#17

Problem with that is their stupid “juche”. They not gonna take Coke and KFC or at least the ruling Party won’t allow it. The Party and Kim dynasty has to fall first then, you strategy is going to work.

Communism in Easter Europe fell pretty much quietly. One day it was there, 6 months later it was gone. I’m not really familiar with Asian psychology so it might not be that easy there. Just look at how the US f-d up in the middle east. They thought bring down the strong arm dictators and the people are gonna build a democracy (see Germany and Japan after WWII or Eastern Europe after 1989). Looks like Islamic psychology is a little different. Instead they turned those places turned into fundie shitholes.


#18

We need to get away from this “my dick is bigger than your dick” foreign policy before millions are hurt.


#19

Your LibWingofLibWing idea has to be considered in light of what North Korea wants. A few of the things we can be certain about from what they say and what they do is

  • They want to leverage America out of the region.
  • They want to gain hegemony over South Korea. Short term goal. They profess to want to unify Korea under their rule, but surely know they can’t do it in the foreseeable future.
  • They want to earn money and brownie points by selling weapons to other foes of America, to push America out of everywhere.
    … Noting that two of those goals are also goals of people here opposed to the US’s role in the world.
    … And noting that those goals are also goals of China. Though that should be irrelevant to our choices.

As for Japan, your concerns about Japan rearming are overblown, and too preoccupied with “fighting the last war.” For a bit of realism, contrast British attitudes toward French and German arms in 1814 with British attitudes towards French and German arms in 1914, one hundred years later. Interesting how views switch in time.


#20

The USA Empire is pretty damn close to a brutal dictatorship.