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Damn North Korea and Kim jong Il


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This is just my opinion but South Korea is handling this incorrectly, than again the party in power (the grand national party) pretty much like our conservative republicans, is not exactly founded on diplomatic beginnings (they were a military dictatorship in the 60's).


Without the support of China NOTHING the UN does sanction wise is going to help. I think this is Kim's ploy to whip up his military brass and popular(like they have a choice) support for the next succession as well as leverage for more aid.


South Korea and the United states needs to (behind the scenes) ramp up for possible defense measures and let the international community inspect suspect ships. South Korea and the U.S. needs to take a passive but supportive role to everyone in this case.


Anything we do (i mean both of my countries) only serves to be fodder for that maniac to use as incentive for his people and show his "struggle" against western powers.


China and Russia is the key here and Russia is exactly right in that further sanctions on further impoverishes the nation which sooner or later will lead to a nothing to lose scenario that might lead to something catastrophic.


I know a lot of you keep up on the news and this is obviously a topic that interests me for a myriad of reasons. Escalating actions only lead to a crux in time where if one side is bluffing it could lead to a stupid decision. The west needs to understand Korean/Asian thinking when it comes to "face" meaning public reputation or behavior and how dynamic that is in the East. I know it sounds crazy but sometimes letting the other side "win" Face is the right answer. We have nothing to gain from showing military or diplomatic superiority, we just have to ride out this familiies insanity until they collapse internally with enough open channels to immediately provide structure and support (nuke tech).

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they dont work because North Korean does not care, all they care about is what they can extract from us in aid and about "face"/reputation of their own blown up sense of importance.


You cant work a deal with a child or criminal that has no moral compass/overblown sense of self with incentives or punishments. They can justify to themselves any response or action they choose based on those two incorrect principles they believe about themselves.


China can leverage the most effective because of aid and the power they have as the northern bordering country. Even North korean military elite understand they have to feed their military and they dont internally produce enough so that is the only real leverage point they have.


This is about containment until they collapse internally either by a "weak" new "leader" or military support collapses due to insufficient food and power to run their machines.


this is not about Obama I can assure you of that. North korea knows the military strength of the United states is unparalleled and if they kill any of the U.S. soldiers in South korea they may all die from a retaliatory attack. They know that regardless who the president is you dont screw around with the military its a simple fact they accepted a LONG time ago.


I dont know how far their "nuclear" program has advanced but I would bet we could shoot them down before they could launch. I am not real concerned YET, but with a maniac you never really know.

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Guest Aloysius
I think this is Kim's ploy to whip up his military brass and popular(like they have a choice) support for the next succession as well as leverage for more aid.

That sounds right to me. The succession part seems to be the most popular explanation.


This WSJ article fills in the bizarre details on which son's dictator stock is rising:


U.S. officials said they increasingly view [Kim Jong Il's third son] Kim Jong Un as an important player in North Korea's power equation. The 26-year-old has emerged as a stronger contender than either of his brothers. Kim Jong Nam, Kim Jong Il's eldest son, was widely discredited in 2001 when he was detained in Japan for traveling on a forged Dominican Republic passport in a bid to visit Tokyo Disneyland. The middle son, Kim Young Chol, has been described as frail and unlikely to possess the stature to lead.


Kim Jong Il seems to view Kim Jong Un as the most like him in views and values, said the senior U.S. defense official. The younger son's mother, Ko Yong Hee, who died in a 2004 car crash, is also believed to be Kim Jong Il's favorite of his three wives.


Kim Jong Un fascinates North Korea analysts as he studied at an international school in Bern, Switzerland and is reported to be a fan of Western pop stars.

As Dan Drezner suggests, maybe we could defuse the crisis by giving them Britney Spears. I'd even be willing to throw Michael Jackson in as part of the deal.

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Alert level raised on North Korea


South Korean and US troops have gone on higher alert after North Korea said it was scrapping the treaty that halted the Korean War more than 50 years ago.


Seoul's defence ministry said it would increase reconnaissance operations over North Korea.


North Korea recently tested a nuclear device and several short-range missiles but no significant troop movements within the country have been reported.


The UN Security Council is discussing a response to North Korea's nuclear test.


"Watchcon II took effect as of 0715 [2215 GMT]," said South Korean defence ministry spokesman Won Tae-Jae, adding that the five-stage combat alert level was at its second-highest level.


"Surveillance over the North will be stepped up, with more aircraft and personnel mobilised.


The US is to bolster its intelligence support.



The UN Command said the armistice - which has preserved a tense peace for more than five decades on the Korean peninsula - remained in force.


The UN Command is a multi-national military force headed by the US which fought for the South in the 1950-53 Korean war, and still stations 28,500 troops in the South.


Pyongyang has blamed its decision on South Korea's decision to join a US-led initiative to search ships for nuclear weapons, calling it a "declaration of war".


"Any hostile act against our peaceful vessels, including search and seizure, will be considered an unpardonable infringement on our sovereignty," said a spokesman for the North's army.


"We will immediately respond with a powerful military strike."


Punitive measures


This latest crisis comes just days after North Korea carried out an underground nuclear test, followed by the launch of several short-range missiles into the Sea of Japan.





27 May - North Korea says it is abandoning the truce that ended the Korean war and reportedly test-fires another missile

26 May - The North test-fires short-range missiles as South Korea announces it will join a US-led initiative to control trafficking in weapons of mass destruction

26 May - President Barack Obama pledges military support for America's East Asian allies, as the UN condemns the nuclear test

25 May - North Korea stages its second nuclear test, triggering international condemnation

29 April - Pyongyang threatens to carry out a nuclear test unless the UN apologises for criticising its recent rocket launch

14 April - Pyongyang says it is ending talks on its nuclear activities and will restore its disabled nuclear reactor after UN criticism of its rocket launch

5 April - The North goes ahead with a controversial rocket launch, seen by major governments as a cover for a long-range missile test


No other significant troop movements within the country have been reported, but analysts have warned of a further increase in military tension, including the possibility of a naval clash along the sea border between the two Koreas.


The UN Security Council's five permanent members - plus Japan and South Korea - are working on a strong resolution condemning North Korea's actions, including possible punitive measures.


Washington has reaffirmed US commitments to its allies Japan and South Korea while accusing Pyongyang of "sabre-rattling and bluster and threats".


US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton condemned the North's violation of Security Council resolutions, but also held out hope that North Korea would return to six-nation disarmament talks.


Moscow said that while world powers should be firm, they should not inflame tensions, adding that the stand-off could only be solved through talks.


Heightened tensions


Last month North Korea launched a long-range rocket over Japanese airspace, angering the international community.



Pyongyang said the rocket had carried a peaceful communications satellite, but several nations viewed it as cover for a missile test.


The UN Security Council condemned the launch and, in retaliation, North Korea announced it was quitting long-running six-nation negotiations on its nuclear disarmament.


It ejected all international monitors and said it would reopen its main nuclear plant at Yongbyon, which was closed in July 2007 as part of a disarmament deal.


When North Korea agreed in February 2007 to abandon its nuclear ambitions in return for aid and diplomatic concessions, there was real hope of reaching a settlement.


But the negotiations stalled as it accused its negotiating partners - the US, South Korea, Japan, China and Russia - of failing to meet agreed obligations.


Story from BBC NEWS:



Published: 2009/05/28 10:25:10 GMT


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"U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates said the situation was not a crisis and no additional U.S. troops would be sent to the region."


Ummmmm yea, because we are fighting 2 non-winable wars elsewhere and are stretched too thin. Like they are making a conscious decision to NOT send troops there. Come on.

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"U.S. Secretary of Defense Robert Gates said the situation was not a crisis and no additional U.S. troops would be sent to the region."


Ummmmm yea, because we are fighting 2 non-winable wars elsewhere and are stretched too thin. Like they are making a conscious decision to NOT send troops there. Come on.



Do you think for one minute Gates would give in and put the whole country at a stand still while we are allready in a recession. When was the last time we the US were at defcon 2? Cuba missle crisis?

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Do you think for one minute Gates would give in and put the whole country at a stand still while we are allready in a recession. When was the last time we the US were at defcon 2? Cuba missle crisis?


Wars games with Matthew Broderick and the great Dabney Coleman

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T this guy does not have any idea of the cultural differences that my people have therefore no real grasp on how and why the Kim family behaves as they do.


Bullying PR or tactics only further ESCALATES a "tough"man response in order to save face to his own military brass. Obama is the exact RIGHT person to be in charge now because


of his intelligence and nature to want to understand other cultures in order to formulate the correct response.


T the U.S. has ZERO need to show its military strength to anyone..... You should know that so any "big stick" diplomatic response is uneccessary and stupid (something Bush JR. would have done)


Dont buy into to the rhetoric of the situation, CHINA is the key to diffusing and dealing with this situation whether we like it or not. Patience and a measured diplomatic response is the key here. You have to understand the political/economic/military/cultural issues when you look at a nation like North Korea. THat is what Bush Jr. with his lack of intelligence and the neocons dont understand when formulating geopolitical/military policy.


Remember when the North Koreans detonated the first test? let history teach and guide you in how and why they did that as well as how they responded.


T this is something I unfortunately have some understanding and experience with. I dont know what will happen for sure but it is highly improbable they will really do anything in terms of actually attacking anyone. I expect them to ratchet up the "pressure" by testing more stuff for the foregone response from the U.N.... the further they go without actually crossing the line the better deal they can negotiate to "cease" or dismantle their capabilities in return for food/energy/goods. Look at the last 2 major times they did this, that is exactly what happened.


This is a major part of their economy now, international blackmail of nuclear proliferation is really profitable for them. I feel for my people who are stuck there but for him and the military elite I wish nothing but the worse levels of hell if they exist.




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Sev, we are so far in debt to China do you really think Obama will do anything? he needs them to continue buying our treasury notes.


It wasn't long ago hillary was over there begging them not to cut off the money supply. While China's response was we are cutting up the USA credit card.


Ask any korean war veteran who the were fighting and they will tell you it was the Chineese. So continue to buy all your goods from China mart and help them and N korea build up all the nukes and the worlds largest navy.


North Korea threatens military strike against South Korea

U.S. denounces North's threats and warns of consequences




U.S. committed to defending South Korea, Japan

Meanwhile, U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton denounced North Korea's "provocative and belligerent" threats and warned that it must face consequences for its nuclear and missile tests.


She said "North Korea has made a choice" to violate UN Security Council resolutions, ignore international warnings and abrogate commitments made during six-nation nuclear disarmament talks.


"There are consequences to such actions," she said, referring to discussions in the United Nations meant to punish North Korea for its nuclear and missile tests.


Clinton also underscored the firmness of the U.S. treaty commitment to defend South Korea and Japan, U.S. allies in easy range of North Korean missiles.


Clinton said she was pleased by a unified international condemnation of North Korea that included Russia and China, North Korea's only major ally and the host of the currently stalled disarmament talks.


The success of any new sanctions would depend on how aggressively China implements them.


Despite her tough words, Clinton held out hope that North Korea would return to nuclear disarmament talks and that "we can begin once again to see results from working with the North Koreans toward denuclearization that will benefit, we believe, the people of North Korea, the region and the world."


South Korean media were also reporting that Pyongyang appears to have restarted a plant that makes plutonium, which can be used in nuclear bombs.


According to the reports, satellites have detected signs of steam at the North's Yongbyon nuclear complex, an indication it may have started reprocessing nuclear fuel.


North Korea had stopped reprocessing fuel rods as part of an international deal. But the country is believed to have enough plutonium for at least six atomic bombs.


Yoon Deok-min, a professor at South Korea's state-run Institute of Foreign Affairs and National Security, said North Korea appears still to be in the process of mastering the miniaturization technology required to mount a warhead onto a missile.


Dont be so brash to say there is nothing to it.

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T I dont have to ask a Korean war vet I am South Korean and served. I know the history and geography BETTER than any American vet.


Yes I understand the dynamics of our INTERDEPENDENT financial relationship with China. They NEED us as much as we now use them as the Worlds manufacturing center. They dont have a market without us fueling their rise out of 3rd world status.


Just because of our dollar debt load with them means virtually noting because even China knows Kim Jong il is insane and they dont want him possibly detonating a nuke because any retaliatory strike would only spread nuclear contamination thru weather and water toward them.


As for my "brash" statements you should refer to my statement about the improbability meaning there always exists a possibility of stupidity.


This is not the time for idiotic Axis of evil statements and or aggressive military posturing because that only HELPS Kim jong il and his family retain power. Who knows we will see how this plays out but the possibility this works out EXACTLY like the past two tantrums is pretty damn high.


I always keep a close watch on this craziness because of the high liklihood of my recall if things went south. For my childrens sake and my family that lives in Seoul I hope this ends well and think it most probably will end the same as other times.

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I was just listening to a report that Kim Jong il is only using this as blackmail against the united states to get more food fuel and aid as Extortion from the US. And that by firing all these missles is only a way of showing the rest of the world that they can manufacture and sell missles and parts for them???for


Whats your take, do you still have family in S korea? If so what are you hearing from them.

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I enjoy learning about this Korean problem from you, Sev. You're the man.


I did find a good article on it. I can't imagine N. Korea not getting plenty of aid


from China already, plus some from the Soviets?


My fear is, that the N. Korea economy is non existent, and their huge military


expenses are unsustainable and N. Korea is looking to reunite with S. Korea


for their wealth.


Or something. I don't know, but it may explode.


Our jets can fly from Japan to N. Korea in 30 minutes? Wow.


It only takes about 15 minutes to fly from one Hawaiian island to another next door.

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Some info from ... Al Jazeera


News Asia-Pacific


North Korea: A state of war



At least one-third of North Korea's GDP is reportedly spent on the military [EPA]


For more than 50 years, North Korea has been ready to go to war at a moment's notice.


Cut off from the outside world behind barricades of barbed wire, landmines and concrete tank-traps, the so-called "hermit kingdom" has come to rely for its very existence on maintaining a constant war footing.


Visiting North Korea as a tourist last year, it was impossible to avoid the message thrashed out again and again on the streets and on the airwaves that the country is under constant threat of invasion and outsiders are to be feared.


It is the message that is drilled into children from the day they are born, during the minimum six years of military service that every citizen must undertake, and in the workplaces and homes of every North Korean.


It is the message that also underpins the governing national philosophy of "juche" or self-reliance, encouraging North Koreans to shun the outside world and fuelling a national sense of paranoia that the country's rulers use to maintain their iron grip on power.


Culture of war


In the capital, Pyongyang, escalators more than 100 metres long lead down to the city's metro rail system built deep underground.



North Korea's "military first" policy has made it a deeply militarised society [Reuters]

Accompanied by eerie piped music, the stations have been designed to act as bomb shelters in the event of a US nuclear attack that North Korea's leaders insist is imminent.


On the outskirts of the city, the state film studios churn out a steady diet of epics intended to fuel the image of a country standing alone, defiant in the face of constant foreign threat.


Almost all the films are based around the evils perpetrated on the Korean people by outsiders - the Japanese during their occupation of the peninsula, and the US and their "puppets" in the South.


The result is that North Korea is a deeply militarised society.


Under what is known as the songun or "military first" policy, all the resources of the North Korean state are directed primarily at the armed forces.


According to outside estimates – there are no official figures - almost a third of North Korea's meagre GDP is spent on the military.


Meanwhile, aid agencies say, around a third of the country's population relies on food handouts to keep them from starvation.


Travelling by train though the North Korean countryside to the Chinese border, almost every other person we saw at the various stations along the way wore a military uniform.


'Forgotten war'


Like many things in North Korea, however, all is not what it initially seems.


Quick facts

Official name: Democratic People's Republic of Korea


Population: 22m (July 2009 est.)


Size: 120,540 sq km


GDP: $26.2bn (2008 est.)


Military: 1.2 million active-duty personnel, world's fourth-largest armed forces


A closer look at some of the "Kalashnikovs" carried by the soldiers for example revealed they were nothing more than wooden replicas.


North Korea may have one of the largest armies in the world, but, it seems, it cannot afford to give them all real guns.


In North Korea though - in a society that is taught not to question authority - reality is irrelevant and image is everything.


The 1950-53 Korean War has often been referred to in other parts of the world as the "forgotten war", perhaps because it achieved virtually nothing other than to flatten large parts of the peninsula and kill some 2 million civilians.


On the Korean peninsula and in North Korea in particular, however, it has left deep scars.


The conflict was one of the most brutal of the last century, and it continues to carry a painful legacy – a legacy seen most poignantly in form of the thousands of divided families on either side of the heavily-fortified border.


The brief tearful reunions of mothers and sons, brothers and sisters, torn apart by the division of the Korean peninsula show how deep the wounds left by the war continue to run.


But while those wounds are undoubtedly real, they are also a political tool in the hands of North Korea's leaders.


Through relentless propaganda and by enforcing a rigid isolation from the outside world, it is that tool that keeps them in power and their people on the brink of war.





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just to summarize nothing really to worry about even though it seems to dominate the top news story headlines.... BS is what I call it, we test crap all of the time who cares if some poor/Retarded 4th world yes I said it 4th world nation is testing some garbage and spending money and funds they should be feeding their people with.


IF this idiot wants some action and help there are myriads of more effective tactics like say ASK for it and stop spending on the military... NO one cares about their chunk of land except for some South Koreans. NO ONE can take on the U.S. militarily so this Retard needs to learn from China and Russia and start a quasi free market system.


I REALLY REALLY hate this guy and his family but for the rest of you that are interested I would put the likelihood of insanity at less than 10%. This really is kind of like the Iran situation, a regime and country that is poor and unstable. Iran has oil income to feed its people where North Korea does not. Either one of these nations if it came to would maybe have what and Hour before we dropped hell on them.


No problems really from these idiots I just try to go about my day without seethng too much.

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