The Big Lie - Bush Is
Getting Tough On N Korea

By Joel Skousen
World Affairs Brief

In the wake of North Korea's purported underground nuclear test, it is still unclear whether Pyongyong is bluffing or not. Defense analyst Michael Evans notes, "There was still 'no definitive proof' that a nuclear device had been detonated at an underground facility in northeast North Korea, according to Western intelligence sources. 'For a first nuclear test, one would have expected radioactivity to have been released into the atmosphere, unless the device was small enough for the North Koreans to have contained all the radioactivity underground,' said one source. If no trace of radiation is discovered by the Constant Phoenix [a US surveillance aircraft specifically designed to sniff out residual nuclear traces], it would indicate that the size of the detonation was more in line with the estimate given by the South Koreans - less than one kiloton of TNT."
It is even possible that the nuclear device failed to fully detonate or that the North Koreans set off a large conventional explosion, faking their entrance into the nuclear club. Nevertheless, NK's continued nuclear saber rattling is aimed at showcasing the hypocrisy of US foreign policy: no military action against NK despite multiple in-your-face violations of nuclear agreements, versus the threat of imminent military action against Iran who has only a fledgling nuclear program.
How can Kim Jong Il continue to flaunt nukes at the US and be so sure the US will do nothing? The US has a track record of permissiveness toward this Communist regime that goes back decades (despite tough talk). More importantly, the US has privately assured Kim that they will not attack him militarily. Secretary of State Rice repeated this pledge publicly on Thursday.
As the BBC reported back in 2002, the US is partly responsible for funding Pyongyong's nuclear program: "The US Government has announced that it will release $95 [million] to North Korea as part of an agreement to replace the Stalinist country's own nuclear program, which the US suspected was being misused. Under the 1994 Agreed Framework an international consortium is building two proliferation-proof nuclear reactors and providing fuel oil for North Korea while the reactors are being built. ... In releasing the funding, President George W. Bush waived the Framework's requirement that North Korea allow inspectors to ensure it has not hidden away any weapons-grade plutonium from the original reactors. ... President Bush argued that the decision was 'vital to the national security interests of the United States.'"
There you have it - from clear back in 2002. President Bush himself declared that waiving any international inspections for NK and giving them $95 million for a paper agreement to stop their nuclear program was "vital to the national interest." Wasn't it obvious that NK would cheat? It was to all of us who decried this folly back then.
Even the White House press corpse couldn't keep from hinting at US hypocrisy in the President's special news conference this week. Here are a few excerpts [my comments in brackets]:
Bush: "I'm pleased that the nations in the region are making clear [how so?] to North Korea what is at stake. ... I thank China, South Korea, Japan and Russia for their strong statements of condemnation of North Korea's actions [talk and verbal condemnation is cheap]. Peace on the Korean Peninsula requires that these nations send a clear message to Pyongyang that its actions will not be tolerated. [But it will be tolerated!]
"The United States remains committed to diplomacy. The United States also reserves all options to defend our friends and our interests in the region against the threats from North Korea. ["All options" is diplomatic code for the threat of military intervention. This option was effectively negated by Secretary Rice's statement affirming that the US "has no plans to attack NK."]
"So in response to North Korea's provocation, we will increase defense cooperation with our allies, including cooperation on ballistic missile defense [another boon to US defense industry exports] to protect against North Korean aggression [which the US has no intention of stopping or preempting], and cooperation to prevent North Korea from exporting nuclear and missile technologies. [Which the US will not do, any more than it does now. NK continues to export missiles to a variety of Middle Eastern countries, including Iran.]
"We will take the necessary actions to achieve these goals [no specifics]. We will work with the United Nations. We'll support our allies in the region. [Note the absolute refusal to do anything unilaterally in China's back yard - a clear signal the US is only bluffing.] And together we will ensure that North Korea understands the consequences if it continues down its current path. [What consequences if there are assurance of no military action?]
"I can remember the time when it was said that, 'The Bush administration goes it alone too often in the world,' which I always thought was a bogus claim to begin with. [Is Iraq too far away to remember?] And now all of a sudden, people are saying, you know, 'The Bush administration ought to be going it alone with North Korea.' [Here Bush is referring to others' call (including NK) for bilateral negotiations - not unilateral military action.] But it didn't work in the past, is my point. The strategy did not work. [It didn't work because Clinton and Bush gave them what they wanted with no inspection guarantees of compliance.]
"I learned a lesson from that and decided that the best way to convince Kim Jong Il to change his mind on a nuclear weapons program is to have others send the same message. [If the message is permissive and without any teeth, it doesn't matter how many nations join in the chorus - Kim will laugh it off.]"
Bush sees where this is heading and tries to head it off by bringing Iran into the discussion, as if he is intending to solve both problems diplomatically: "But the United States' message to North Korea and Iran and the people in both countries is that we have - we want to solve the issues peacefully. [Few experts believe him on Iran.]"
Now, watch the sly double standard for compliance he articulates for Iran as opposed to NK: "We said: There's a better way forward for you. Here's a chance, for example, to help your country economically. [More promises of aid, just like the failed accords of 1994]. And all you got to do is verifiably show that you're - in Iran's cases, that you've suspended your weapons program; in North Korea's case, that you've got international safeguards on your program. [Meaning, we're going to let NK have their nuclear weapons program, with safeguards against proliferation, but not Iran - even with international inspections!]"
The White House press, lackeys though they are, smell an opportunity to trap the president. One reporter asks, "What about the red line, sir?" Red lines are supposed to be "go no further" demands that if violated will result in military action. Bush evades setting a hard line, despite his numerous "we will NOT tolerate" statements:
BUSH: "Well, the world has made it clear that these tests caused us to come together and work in the United Nations to send a clear message to the North Korean regime. [If it was so clear, how come we still don't know what it is? It certainly doesn't say, "stop or else we'll attack!"] We're bound up together with a common strategy to solve this issue peacefully, through diplomatic means. [There it is - no military threats.]"
On follow up, the reporter had him cornered with a contraction: QUESTION: "On May 23rd, 2003, sir, you said - you effectively drew a line in the sand. You said, 'We will not tolerate a nuclear North Korea.' And, yet, now it appears that they have crossed that line."
BUSH: "No, I appreciate that. And I think it's very important for the American people and North Korea to understand that that statement still stands. [Really? So when do the consequences start to happen? If not now that NK is a "Nuclear North Korea," when?] And one way to make sure that we're able to achieve our objective is to have other people join us in making it clear to North Korea that they share that objective. [No nation has said they share the objective of military reprisals, so we're still waiting for what "we will not tolerate" means!]"
While none of the press would accuse the president directly of hypocrisy, they weren't going to let the subject die:
QUESTION: "You spoke very passionately before about acting before it was too late on major issues. You faced one of those moments in early 2003. This was when the North Koreans had thrown out the international inspectors, said they were going to go ahead and turn their fuel into weapons. And you had a moment to tell them that they would face serious consequences if they were going to do that. You also had what may have been the last moment for any American president to destroy their fuel supplies while they were all in one place."
BUSH: "You mean bombing them?"
QUESTION: "Yes. And you chose not to. And I was wondering whether in retrospect you regret that decision at all, whether or not you think that because of the long history of deception that you pointed out before you should have acted differently."
BUSH: [Evading the question] "I used the moment to continue my desire to convince others to become equity partners in the Korean issue - North Korean issue - because I obviously look at all options, all the time. [Sure you do!] And I felt like the best way to solve this problem would be through a diplomacy effort ... ."
QUESTION: "I'd like to follow up on an earlier question about your rhetoric on Iran and North Korea. You said yesterday, in your statement, that the North Korean nuclear test was unacceptable. Your chief negotiator for the six-party talks said last week that North Korea has a choice, of either having weapons or having a future.
"When you spoke, a month or so ago, to the American Legion, you talked about Iran and said: There must be consequences for Iran's defiance and we must not allow Iran to develop a nuclear weapon. I'm wondering, sir - your administration has issued these kinds of warnings pretty regularly over the last five years. And yet these countries have pursued their nuclear programs [without consequences]. I'm wondering: What is different about the current set of warnings?"
BUSH: "That's a fair question. First of all, I am making it clear our policy hadn't changed. [What he isn't revealing is that there is a different policy for Iran as opposed to NK - which hasn't changed.] ... I thought you were going to ask the question, following up on Sanger: How come you don't use military action now? ... As a matter of fact, I'm asked questions around the country: Just go ahead and use the military. And my answer is, is that I believe the commander in chief must try all diplomatic measures before we commit our military. And I believe the diplomacy is, you know, we're making progress when we've got others at the table, you know? [Progress? Iran has asked for direct talks and Bush puts up huge road blocks: No talks till you quit all enrichment. What is there to talk about after the other side totally gives up? Moreover, NK talks have made NO progress - a total failure. So, where's the progress and what is the justification for "more talks" with NK?]"
The next reporter challenges the President's insistence on diplomacy by questioning why he won't engage NK in one-on-one talks: QUESTION: "Are you prepared now to just take the possibility of one-on-one talks with North Korea off the table?"
BUSH: "I'm saying as loud as I can and as clear as I can that there is a better way forward for North Korea and that we will work within the context of the six-party talks. [The establishment line is that the US doesn't want to hold one-on-one talks with NK so as to not give it legitimacy. I don't believe it. Sec. Rice even admitted the US has private contacts with NK: "We are not without contact with them. We even have channels that we still pursue."
The US has never challenged the legitimacy of NK, either in actions or in previous diplomacy - especially the failed 1994 nuclear accords. I suspect that this policy is due to US deference to Russia and China who control NK. Working through China and Russia continues the US policy of making it appear as if China and Russia are our allies, which is part of the globalist charade of downplaying the real future enemies. NK is only there to act as a future trigger for war - but not yet.]"
QUESTION: "Some in the national security community are wondering if, indeed, you are ready to live with a nuclear North Korea."
BUSH: "No."
QUESTION: "Well, they're saying that that is a possibility."
BUSH: "Well, they're wrong."
REPORTER COUNTERS: "One, China is not ready to put teeth behind sanctions, enough teeth to really threaten the regime [nor will it ever do so]. And, also, economic sanctions have limited effect on North Korea [being at rock bottom economically, and surviving that way for years]."
QUESTION: "And the follow-up, yes. Military options - there are a menu of options. The White House is saying once diplomacy has run its course and you've run through your timetable, what about military options against North Korea?"
BUSH: "Well, diplomacy hasn't run its course [and never will, in this case, till WWIII arrives, with NK acting as a trigger]."
I gave this quite a bit of coverage to show you the degree to which Bush is fudging on this issue. It should be fairly obvious to all my readers that Bush's hedging on military options with NK is a far sight different than the active military preparations the US is making to attack Iran.
As for the diplomacy of UN sanctions, Bloomberg news pointed out that, "China and Russia are balking at a new draft United Nations Security Council resolution being circulated by the U.S. that would prohibit countries from sending military and luxury goods to North Korea as well as industrial items that could be used in weapons programs...Language in an earlier draft demanding a freezing of North Korean assets related to counterfeiting, money-laundering or narcotics also was dropped." So what else is left? Nothing crucial.
The nuclear test by NK has had a negative impact on South Korea's "sunshine policy," a deliberate policy of appeasement with the North by its far Leftist government. Those who see this policy as dangerous and misguided have been vindicated by P'yongyang's continued radical behavior. Yet, it doesn't appear to derail the Western nations' deliberate promotion today of South Korea's Foreign Minister Ban Ki-moon to General Secretary of the United Nations.
The Left's Wayne Madsen (with his usual list of government sources) has this to say on the issue: "Although observers were surprised that North Korea conducted their test before the November 7 U.S. election, handing a national security plum to the Bush administration, others point to the test coming on the eve of the UN Security Council vote on the selection of the replacement for Kofi Annan as Secretary General [which happened today]. The [new Sec Gen] South Korean Foreign Minister, Ban Ki-moon, a 'non-denominational Korean Christian,' is believed to have links to the Unification Church of GOP and Bush supporter Sun Myung Moon. Sun Myung Moon also has significant economic interests in North Korea, reportedly partly owning a hotel in Pyongyang and a North Korean Fiat automobile plant." [The DIA claims Moon funneled $3 million to Kim Jong Il as a "birthday present." So much for Moon being an anti-Communist. I have always suspected that he is fronting for Korean Intelligence with money being funneled to him by the American CIA. His financial largess cannot be explained away by the selling of religious trinkets in Japan.]
Here's commentator Ian William's take on the Ki-moon nomination: "The business of selecting a South Korean as the world's secular pope was rushed through with almost unseemly brusqueness by the UN Security Council [because of US pressure] so it could discuss Kim Jong-il's diversion. The General Assembly will probably confirm Ban's appointment, predictably with no dissent, on Friday [It did]. It is probably too late now for his Sunshine Policy of engagement with North Korea to be held against him. [Not at all - this is the time that shows how idiotic the policy is!]. But it has been noticed that John Bolton, the US ambassador to the UN, expressed complete and almost proprietary satisfaction with Ban's appointment. It is almost reassuring to note that the US envoy's soul-mates in the conservative Heritage Foundation had expressed doubts about Ban's suitability, citing Seoul's reluctance 'to confront North Korea on human rights or its belligerence and nuclear ambitions' and alleging that 'Ban has said little about UN reform, and there are questions about his commitment to it. The current government in South Korea campaigned in 2004 with strong anti-United States rhetoric.'"
It is my analysis that Ban's ascension to the UN top job is specifically to enshrine South Korea's Sunshine Policy on an international level. His presence will ensure the international community will stay in lock step with US appeasement of NK until the next big war. Journalist Ronan Thomas sums up the grand futility of all the world's outpouring of empty rhetoric: "Diplomats have been muttering about the prospect of a nuclear-armed North Korea for almost 20 years. With this week's reported nuclear test at Gilju, Kim Jong-il has pushed past the doorman at the world's nuclear club. The membership committee appears powerless to act."
World Affairs Brief October 13, 2006. Copyright Joel Skousen. Partial quotations with attribution permitted. Cite source as Joel Skousen's World Affairs Brief (



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