By Andrew L. Jaffee
North Korean “fearless leader” Kim Jong-il seems to be planning another missile “test” — aka a plan for harassment and/or extortion against the West — this time taking aim at Hawaii. Kim will probably get away with it again… and be offered some kind of concessions to placate his lunacy (see below). From the AP:
… A Japanese newspaper reported Thursday that North Korea might fire its most advanced ballistic missile toward Hawaii around the Fourth of July holiday.
A new missile launch — though not expected to reach U.S. territory — would be a brazen slap in the face of the international community, which punished North Korea with new U.N. sanctions for conducting a second nuclear test on May 25 in defiance of a U.N. ban. …
AND — as if all these missile/nuke “tests” were not enough — we find also today that:
North Korea’s massive stockpile of chemical weapons is as threatening as its nuclear program, analysts said Thursday, highlighting an aspect of the secretive regime’s pursuit of weapons of mass destruction that is rarely talked about. …
The independent International Crisis Group said the North is believed to have between 2,500 and 5,000 tons of chemical weapons, including mustard gas, phosgene, blood agents and sarin. These weapons can be delivered with ballistic missiles and long-range artillery and are “sufficient to inflict massive civilian casualties on South Korea.” …
Kim threatened Japan with a missile “test” on April 5 of this year. North Korea test-fired a long-range missile and five shorter-range rockets on July 4, 2006. It tested a nuclear bomb in October 2006. In May of 2007, Kim’s workers’ paradise shot several short-range missiles into the Sea of Japan. The North has a 1.1-million-man army, the fourth-largest in the world. All this, and Kim’s communist regime has gotten away with it pretty much scot-free — though the common people have suffered.
Before people go rushing to urge “dialogue” AGAIN with North Korea — which is exactly what its Stalinist leadership wants by “testing” missiles and nuclear devices — there are several facts to keep in mind:
1) Two million North Korean citizens starved to death because, “Military spending is estimated at as much as a quarter of GNP, with up to 20% of men ages 17-54 in the regular armed forces.”
2) Democracy blossoms in South Korea. It is the world’s 11th largest economy. A recent nighttime satellite image of the Korean Peninsula showed North Korea totally dark, while South Korea was glowing with light. South Koreans aren’t flocking north, but North Koreans flee to the south by the thousands every year.
3) Previous dialogue (appeasement) between the Clinton administration and North Korea only encouraged its pursuit of nuclear weapons. According to Colin Powell:
Because the last time we had a bilateral negotiation with the North Koreans, it resulted in the Agreed Framework, which bottled Yongbyon so that no weapons came out of Yongbyon for another eight years, but it left the capacity to develop weapons in place at Yongbyon; and while they were doing that and we were watching that, before the ink was dry on the Agreed Framework, the North Koreans had started to move in another direction to develop the same kinds of nuclear weapons that we thought we had capped at Yongbyon. We’re not going to fall into that trap again.
… We gave them [North Korea] the fuel, over a billion dollars. And the only thing that the Clinton administration extracted was a promise from a dictator that he wouldn’t use this [nuke tech], you know, for evil purposes here. In retrospect, isn’t it ridiculously naive to think that he would abide by this? …
Related: Dictator Watch, North Korea, Political Correctness, WMD