Questions You Should be Asking the World Around You
Alright, so here’s the latest. It’s progress but not by very much. I’ll post up the latest news, then I’ll add my commentary at the bottom.
We Are Not Your Enemy
“We do not seek a regime change; we do not seek the collapse of the regime; we do not seek an accelerated reunification of the peninsula; we do not seek an excuse to send our military north of the 38th parallel,” Tillerson told reporters Tuesday in Washington DC.
That’s Secretary of State Rex Tillerson speaking to the media regarding NK.
Sanctions Are Not In Line With US Allies or Rivals.
“The United States launched a campaign against several states with the only impudent goal to use them as a tool for promoting its own interests. The US sanctions, which are aimed at saving the US economy through ensuring the energy market and increasing the export, do not hesitate to encroach upon interests of its allies and friends, not only its rivals,” the unnamed representative of the North Korean Foreign Ministry said, as quoted by the country’s embassy in Russia.
That’s a North Korean diplomat working at the NK embassy in Russia.
Peninsula Issue Requires Unity
Trump is wrong in his assumption that Beijing can single-handedly handle the matter. As Beijing has said, repeatedly, it does not have the kind of “control” over Pyongyang that the US president believes it does.
Nor will Beijing accept Trump’s allegation that it has done nothing. From Beijing’s perspective, it has significantly increased the pressure on Pyongyang by doing everything the strengthened UN sanctions regime requires of it.
The only thing that has proven to be true so far is no country can solve the DPRK problem by itself. The logical conclusion, therefore, is the stakeholders need to work more closely together in order to find a way to guarantee peace on the peninsula.
That’s an opinion article from the China Daily
First up, Rex Tillerson is sending very optimistic signals to Kim Jong Un. That’s a great leap of faith and we shouldn’t take Tillerson’s actions for granted. There are very few people that are interested in finding a relaxed and peaceful resolution and Tillerson is one of them. So that’s a vey positive sign from the US. This is Rex Tillerson attempting to cut through the fog to get the de-escalation process going. But somehow I suspect it would be better to bypass the media and speak directly to a Chinese senior ambassador. That would get the ball rolling!
Second. The North Korean official in the Russian Embassy speaking his mind. I think what we all have to consider here is that his country has been under sanctions for decades and his people are shunned wherever they go. I think it’s understandable for the NK diplomat to hold negative feelings towards the US. In this instance, he is very very unhappy. However, it’s that word. That word. “Impudent.” If there’s ever a word that identifies obsolescence, it’s the word “Impudent.” Nobody uses the word “impudent” anymore, and people just shrug off such insinuations in the modern day. Might I suggest “unfair,” or “imbalanced,” or “not beneficial to the North Korean people!” That will get the conversation started, because that gives the US a point of reference to work with. It also makes ‘the waters cooler to soak in’ so to speak. You want negotiations to happen, start there. You’ll see results real quickly.
Third. This article from the China Daily is an opinion article so it’s not very official. But op eds are usually a reflection of the overall sentiment of the people who read newspapers. In this instance, it’s the China Daily newspaper. Coupled with the fact that what he said is exactly what the Chinese foreign ministry said a week ago, it indicates that China has not yet made a move. It’s essentially a “pass,” which is unfortunate, but there’s a silver lining. The op-ed repeats what the Chinese government said, and that is “China cannot handle the problem alone.” Is that a sign of reluctance? There’s a really big opportunity that China is missing right now. The US is essentially passing China the ball. Giving China the opportunity to make the decisions. But the decision to “pass,” is a missed opportunity. The opportunity to move is actually much preferable than if the US were to bypass China altogether and confront North Korea directly. Because at this stage, the conditions are not present where a calm and non-confrontational negotiation can happen between the US and NK.
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By Ritu Tomar
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