JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: THE SITUATION BETWEEN NORTH AND SOUTH KOREA – AMERICA’S ROLE IN KEEPING THINGS JUST AS THEY ARE   1 comment

John Chuckman

COMMENT POSTED TO AN ARTICLE IN CHECKPOINT ASIA

 

“US-South Korea Talks on Trump’s $5bn Troop Payment Demand Collapse After Just 80 Minutes

“$5bn is politically impossible for Seoul as South Koreans understand the US is on the peninsula for its own reasons”

 

The enduring situation of North and South Korea with a lack of peace or any normal relations is pretty much the work of American policy and occupation.

North Korea only went through the huge sacrifice, for a relatively poor state, of developing nuclear weapons because it had endured three years of American carpet-bombing, killing one-fifth of its entire population during the Korean War.

America has always wanted North Korea to disappear, if not in an active war, then at least through the effects of strenuous sanctions and punishments. It has mostly never even talked to North Korea, until recently, and that effort now appears to have badly failed.

America wants unification of the Koreas, but under American terms.

The troops have never been in Korea just to keep peace or to defend democracy.

The fact is that South Korea, for most of its history, was governed by a series of slightly disguised authoritarian administrations. There was no democracy.

The United States was pleased, just as it was pleased with the series of tyrants who ran the artificially-created South Vietnam for some years.

As a side-effect of recent contacts, the leaders of North and South have established a relationship, an encouraging one. They are both quite intelligent and open to change. Moon is the most promising leader the South has had.

I think the two Korean leaders could, over a bit of time, iron things out themselves. There is a lot of goodwill. But the United States, without openly saying so, stands squarely in the way of that happening.

As in so many things, Washington’s view is “My way or the highway.”

I expect no breakthroughs. Washington is completely unwilling to make any serious goodwill moves, as with removing sanctions. And it is clearly keeping a tight rein on Moon in the South, so that he is not free to deal with the North.

Kim would be wise just to keep his nuclear arsenal in good shape, and I’m sure he knows that. He would very much like to be better integrated into the wide world, but the United States is not going to permit that.

And to add to the confusion and mess that prevails, along comes Trump demanding billions of dollars more from the South for its “defense.”

I wish there was something encouraging in the situation, but I fear there is not, not at all.

Trump’s Korean initiative has turned into something as stupid and indecisive as his efforts in Iran or Syria or…you name it.

_____________________

Response to another comment:

Of course, you are right. In theoretical terms.

“Kick the US out?”

How does anyone do that?

It isn’t just America’s military power, it’s the country’s immense financial and diplomatic leverage.

America is a determined bully with lots of dangerous toys. Three-quarters of a century of telling much of the world what to do has had its effects on the mindset of the entire Washington establishment.

It seems to me, we will only get real change, here and in other places, as American power diminishes relatively vis-a-vis China and Russia and others.

We are very much moving that way, but nothing of that nature happens quickly.

Unless, I should add, we have an economic catastrophe with the collapse of America’s economy and perhaps of the dollar, a not totally unrealistic possibility.

Posted November 21, 2019 by JOHN CHUCKMAN in Uncategorized

One response to “JOHN CHUCKMAN COMMENT: THE SITUATION BETWEEN NORTH AND SOUTH KOREA – AMERICA’S ROLE IN KEEPING THINGS JUST AS THEY ARE

Subscribe to comments with RSS.

  1. Agree with you 100% on Korea. My wife and I took a 4-day side trip to Pyongyang while attending the Beijing Games. The US media is not truthful about conditions, but read the works of Bruce Cumings, one of the foremost US authorities on both Koreas – and also a revealing book by a Swiss entrepreneur, Felix Abt, “A Capitalist in North Korea” – concerning his adventures there in establishing a joint pharmaceutical business. I wrote up our observations online at https://www.frugalfun.com/north-korea.html – US must sign a peace treaty and de-escalate before a miscalculation precipitates catastrophe.

LEAVE A COMMENT

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: