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North Korea thread

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What stops South Korea from negotiating a peace with North Korea?

It can't be the reticence of the US since with peace the South Koreans don't need the military support of the US any more.

So what else could it be?

That they don't have any reason to trust KJU?

Surely not......

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2 hours ago, msommer said:

What stops South Korea from negotiating a peace with North Korea?

It can't be the reticence of the US since with peace the South Koreans don't need the military support of the US any more.

So what else could it be?

That they don't have any reason to trust KJU?

Surely not......

They can do this on their own, but still need the US to sign off on it if I am remembering correctly.

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8 hours ago, The Commish said:

They can do this on their own, but still need the US to sign off on it if I am remembering correctly.

Are you sure it's not UN that needs to approve? The international side fought on a UN mandate IIRC

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3 hours ago, msommer said:

Are you sure it's not UN that needs to approve? The international side fought on a UN mandate IIRC

Perhaps...it's been a while since I read the history.  I thought the Mutual Defense Treaty between US and SK said otherwise, but I could be completely wrong.

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Posted (edited)
5 minutes ago, The Commish said:

Perhaps...it's been a while since I read the history.  I thought the Mutual Defense Treaty between US and SK said otherwise, but I could be completely wrong.

If it is a security council decision it might be the same thing as the US deciding due to veto powers. If (the US right to say no) is in the MDT with SK, SK could step out of that as well in order to get peace with NK. Not saying they should or would, but that they can - and that there must be a reason why they have not done so, despite Moon/Kim being so close to a peace treaty according to some.

Edited by msommer

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On 12/27/2019 at 9:10 AM, ren hoek said:

It seems you believe in a caricature of Kim where he would rather be an evil madman, than to open North Korea up to international markets.  He would gain far more for both himself and his country by joining the international community than he ever could by holing up in isolation.  He knows that.  

1. Where are you getting your insight about what Kim Jong Un knows or wants. Is it based on study of Kim Jong Un, or what makes sense to you in your gut?

2. In an open society, with access to not only markets but basic knowledge about the world for his people, how long do you believe Kim Jong Un would remain the worshipped supreme leader of North Korea?

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Posted (edited)
On 12/30/2019 at 10:02 PM, bradyfan said:

Kim is so overweight.  He looks like he may not last too long.

Despite its privilege, it must be an incredibly stressful life. He must know the long knives are waiting for him.

Speaking to Ren’s assertion above that KJU would prefer to exist in open markets, there’s no way. The entire grip on power is based on a cult, meticulous control of information, and alliances rooted in fear and greed. Those bonds are like tendons in meat. As soon as they start to warm they get gelatinous, then melt. The form of government cannot withstand meritocracy, even in low amounts. 

There is likely a good dose of scheming, unsavory deal making, and betrayal as it is. Stuff of paranoid fever dreams. 

Edited by Mr. Ham

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On 12/28/2019 at 11:15 AM, ren hoek said:

So where is your data/evidence for this?  You think the whole point of all this was to get some sort of international street cred, while doing absolutely nothing for himself or his people?  This "photo op" stuff- what exactly does he get out of that?  What is the transactional value of that?  Because as far as I can gather, that and 2 cents might get him a cup of coffee in 1960.  

You are almost certainly correct that his first interest is entrenching his own power.  He's not different from any other ruler that way.  But his second interest, as with all people who have power, is to expand their influence and further ingratiate their people unto themselves.  That's how power works.  That's how power has always worked.  There were real concessions there- dialing back the testing, turning over the remains, a historic meeting at the DMZ.  They wanted us to declare an end to the war.

Trump could have done that.  Trump could have declared an end to the war.  Period. He could do it right this second if he really wanted to.  

The reason he doesn't do that is not because he can't, and it's factually wrong to assert otherwise.  Trump knows how to do a press conference and sign pieces of paper. Both countries were already on board with it.  We didn't have to rely on his international prowess or negotiating ability at all.  It was a done deal if Trump just took the next logical steps.  It's insulting to pretend Kim's concerns of Bolton's "Libya Model" weren't merited.  It's understandable why they would seek good faith assurances before denuclearizing.  You don't have to think Kim is good to accept things as they are.  

The more likely reason is that the US national security state does not want peace in the region- it prefers a militarist version of the world so it can keep raking in money off our backs.  The US doesn't do peace.  So long as people go with this 3rd grade narrative so they can dunk on Trump to please their personal hatred of him, rather than addressing the real elephant in the room- that the US is ruled by the military industrial complex whether Trump is in office or not- the wars will never end.  

Are you suggesting that the President can unilaterally declare an end to armed conflicts authorized by Congress?

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Posted (edited)
On 12/27/2019 at 9:10 AM, ren hoek said:

It seems you believe in a caricature of Kim where he would rather be an evil madman, than to open North Korea up to international markets.  He would gain far more for both himself and his country by joining the international community than he ever could by holing up in isolation.  He knows that.  

He also knows that to nuke a foreign country would be to guarantee his own annihilation.  Kim never nuked anybody- that was the United States.  Kim never killed 20% of the North Korean population- that was the United States.  It’s time to try humility for a change.  

I think you need to spend some time reading some history, by which I mean actual books. The impulse for self-destruction and genocide by Kim, his father and grandfather, and dictators like them is well documented in paper and blood. The gulag system currently under way is just one touchpoint. Past famines in NK is another. The guy is a Stalinist, the regime was founded by Stalin & Beria. Etc. Too much to cover.

Edited by SaintsInDome2006
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10 hours ago, msommer said:

If it is a security council decision it might be the same thing as the US deciding due to veto powers. If (the US right to say no) is in the MDT with SK, SK could step out of that as well in order to get peace with NK. Not saying they should or would, but that they can - and that there must be a reason why they have not done so, despite Moon/Kim being so close to a peace treaty according to some.

Probably because they know Kim has nukes and has no intention of ever giving them up.

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3 hours ago, Henry Ford said:

1. Where are you getting your insight about what Kim Jong Un knows or wants. Is it based on study of Kim Jong Un, or what makes sense to you in your gut?

2. In an open society, with access to not only markets but basic knowledge about the world for his people, how long do you believe Kim Jong Un would remain the worshipped supreme leader of North Korea?

 

2 hours ago, SaintsInDome2006 said:

I think you need to spend some time reading some history, by which I mean actual books. The impulse for self-destruction and genocide by Kim, his father and grandfather, and dictators like them is well documented in paper and blood. The gulag system currently under way is just one touchpoint. Past famines in NK is another. The guy is a Stalinist, the regime was founded by Stalin & Beria. Etc. Too much to cover.

:goodposting: 

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Posted (edited)
3 hours ago, Henry Ford said:

1. Where are you getting your insight about what Kim Jong Un knows or wants. Is it based on study of Kim Jong Un, or what makes sense to you in your gut?

2. In an open society, with access to not only markets but basic knowledge about the world for his people, how long do you believe Kim Jong Un would remain the worshipped supreme leader of North Korea?

1.  The Koreas came to the table looking for the beginnings of a peace deal- and the US said no.  The evidence is what I saw with my own two eyes when these leaders met for their summits.  I don't believe Kim is an idiot, nor do I think he finds any personal benefit in a sanctions regime that has been suffocating his country for decades. 

I think, like any dictator, he is inclined to repressive tactics and crushing dissent.  But, like literally any political figure in the history of the world, he also believes in pursuing his own interests. 

2. The North Koreans could still regulate imports and exports easily enough.  I was referring to stuff like food, medicine, medical supplies etc.  I don't know how they would spin international press- perhaps they would blacklist media that was deemed too unfavorable to the regime.  But it's easy enough to imagine him spinning their improved livelihoods as a win.

The point is it's a lead the US should have followed.  And the reason it didn't is not because of, right or not, people's fetishization of Trump's diplomatic shortcomings, but because the US national security state believes in militarizing everything to the hilt.  Edit: and Trump being a hawk himself.  

Edited by ren hoek

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3 hours ago, SaintsInDome2006 said:

I think you need to spend some time reading some history, by which I mean actual books. The impulse for self-destruction and genocide by Kim, his father and grandfather, and dictators like them is well documented in paper and blood. The gulag system currently under way is just one touchpoint. Past famines in NK is another. The guy is a Stalinist, the regime was founded by Stalin & Beria. Etc. Too much to cover.

Ok, fair enough.  I am not trying to say Kim is a good guy.  The NK/SK summit was a once in a lifetime opportunity to broker a real peace arrangement, and the US failed. 

But the point about sanctions being a rock in his shoe and obviously against his interests, while simultaneously causing North Koreans to die wholly preventable deaths if the sanctions were ended, is not witchcraft.  You don't need to join the Atlantic Council reading list or pretend Julia Davis is a credible figure to know that.  We have mountains of evidence that explain the devastating real world impact of sanctions on 2nd/3rd world countries.  

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3 hours ago, Henry Ford said:

Are you suggesting that the President can unilaterally declare an end to armed conflicts authorized by Congress?

I had assumed that he could.  If not, I would think he could shut down every base and call every troop home if he really wanted to.  Executive order, bully pulpit, whatever. 

But the thinking by the North & South Koreans as far as I can gather was that the process would begin with the President making a formal declaration that the war was over.  And they would all move forward from there.

Instead we just get the same denuclearization stalemate.  What a shame.  

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50 minutes ago, ren hoek said:

1.  The Koreas came to the table looking for the beginnings of a peace deal- and the US said no.  The evidence is what I saw with my own two eyes when these leaders met for their summits.  I don't believe Kim is an idiot, nor do I think he finds any personal benefit in a sanctions regime that has been suffocating his country for decades. 

I think, like any dictator, he is inclined to repressive tactics and crushing dissent.  But, like literally any political figure in the history of the world, he also believes in pursuing his own interests. 

2. The North Koreans could still regulate imports and exports easily enough.  I was referring to stuff like food, medicine, medical supplies etc.  I don't know how they would spin international press- perhaps they would blacklist media that was deemed too unfavorable to the regime.  But it's easy enough to imagine him spinning their improved livelihoods as a win.

The point is it's a lead the US should have followed.  And the reason it didn't is not because of, right or not, people's fetishization of Trump's diplomatic shortcomings, but because the US national security state believes in militarizing everything to the hilt.  Edit: and Trump being a hawk himself.  

So, this is based on your gut instinct about what Kim Jong Un wants, not any actual research about the family or him or North Korea?

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1 minute ago, Henry Ford said:

So, this is based on your gut instinct about what Kim Jong Un wants, not any actual research about the family or him or North Korea?

It's based on my belief that the meetings were a bold, once in a lifetime move for peace on the Korean peninsula- and the fact that these meetings happened with overwhelming support by Koreans of every stripe.  The summits weren't a gut instinct that I made up in my head- they actually happened.  

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2 minutes ago, ren hoek said:

It's based on my belief that the meetings were a bold, once in a lifetime move for peace on the Korean peninsula- and the fact that these meetings happened with overwhelming support by Koreans of every stripe.  The summits weren't a gut instinct that I made up in my head- they actually happened.  

Your feelings about what they mean and how people on all sides feel about them are. 

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2 minutes ago, Henry Ford said:

Your feelings about what they mean and how people on all sides feel about them are. 

Ok

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34 minutes ago, ren hoek said:

I had assumed that he could.  If not, I would think he could shut down every base and call every troop home if he really wanted to.  Executive order, bully pulpit, whatever. 

But the thinking by the North & South Koreans as far as I can gather was that the process would begin with the President making a formal declaration that the war was over.  And they would all move forward from there.

Instead we just get the same denuclearization stalemate.  What a shame.  

The President doesn’t have authority to shut down Camp Humphreys. 

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4 minutes ago, Henry Ford said:

The President doesn’t have authority to shut down Camp Humphreys. 

Could he not call the military folks staffing it home?  I honestly don't know.  

Look, I concede on all the legal minutiae.  But it just seems natural that the 'commander in chief' could step in and say, 'look we're ending this military standoff and we will begin restoration of diplomatic ties to our North & South Korean partners.'  If the Executive branch routinely steamrolls Congress to start unilateral wars/interventions/coups, I don't see why people would have a problem with it going the other way for once. 

The commander in chief has more control over foreign policy than anything else.  I assume that is the reason why they were meeting with the President, and not Congress.  

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46 minutes ago, ren hoek said:

Could he not call the military folks staffing it home?  I honestly don't know.  

Look, I concede on all the legal minutiae.  But it just seems natural that the 'commander in chief' could step in and say, 'look we're ending this military standoff and we will begin restoration of diplomatic ties to our North & South Korean partners.'  If the Executive branch routinely steamrolls Congress to start unilateral wars/interventions/coups, I don't see why people would have a problem with it going the other way for once. 

The commander in chief has more control over foreign policy than anything else.  I assume that is the reason why they were meeting with the President, and not Congress.  

I know it sounds natural to you to say that he could do that, but much like Kim Jong Un’s motivations and whether there was ever a chance Kim would denuclearize, the reality isn’t based on what sounds natural because it’s much more complex than that. 

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4 minutes ago, Henry Ford said:

I know it sounds natural to you to say that he could do that, but much like Kim Jong Un’s motivations and whether there was ever a chance Kim would denuclearize, the reality isn’t based on what sounds natural because it’s much more complex than that. 

I don't know what Kim's thinking is- just like people who depict him as a cartoonlike stereotype from Hollywood movies don't- the reality is a lot more complex than that.  But I believe that he at least took steps toward a real diplomacy, and that he prefers policy which benefits himself, which ending the sanctions regime does.  

When someone like John Bolton starts talking about the "Libya model" for their country, it's easy to understand why the North Koreans would seek more assurances before stripping themselves of the only thing standing between them and regime change.  That's a sensible, logical response to a completely absurd demand by the US.  

The North & South were seeking the beginning of a peace accord from the US.  The Korean people were too.  The US/Trump did not come through for them, and that's the real tragedy here.  

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4 minutes ago, ren hoek said:

I don't know what Kim's thinking is- just like people who depict him as a cartoonlike stereotype from Hollywood movies don't- the reality is a lot more complex than that.  But I believe that he at least took steps toward a real diplomacy, and that he prefers policy which benefits himself, which ending the sanctions regime does.  

When someone like John Bolton starts talking about the "Libya model" for their country, it's easy to understand why the North Koreans would seek more assurances before stripping themselves of the only thing standing between them and regime change.  That's a sensible, logical response to a completely absurd demand by the US.  

The North & South were seeking the beginning of a peace accord from the US.  The Korean people were too.  The US/Trump did not come through for them, and that's the real tragedy here.  

It is possible that someday, maybe even soon, a President who is not a narcissist and hires decent people for his advisors will have the opportunity to help broker a lasting peace involving North Korea and South Korea that doesn’t involve stockpiles of deterrence and a DMZ. It was never going to be Trump, and certainly not in the way it’s been approached the last three years. And unless something substantial changes about the way Kim Jong Un behaves domestically and in foreign policy, it may well never happen while he is in charge. 

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What North Korea could gain from new weapons development

Quote

 If North Korea returns to long-range missile launches or other weapons tests in 2020, its military could make valuable technical advances and gain experience alongside whatever political message is sent to Washington.

...

After years of development, the weapons programs of North Korea are now advanced enough that it is hard to predict what it might test, said Jeffrey Lewis, a researcher at the James Martin Center for Nonproliferation Studies (CNS).

U.S. military officials have said they see a long-range missile launch as one of the most likely possibilities.

Other experts said North Korea could launch a satellite, deploy the new ballistic missile submarine it says it is developing, or field new domestically produced “transporter erector launcher” (TEL) vehicles for its largest missiles.

“Any tests or drills they run will not only allow them to develop weapons that are faster, longer-range, or more reliable, but they also give the people operating these systems more exposure to and practice using and deploying the weapons,” said Grace Liu, a research associate at CNS.

...

A warhead launched by an ICBM needs a protective reentry vehicle to help it survive the fiery descent through the atmosphere to hit its target.

After the November 2017 launch of its largest ICBM to date, the Hwasong-15, state media said the test confirmed “the safety of a warhead in the atmospheric re-entry environment.”

U.S. military officials later said North Korea had not demonstrated a survivable re-entry vehicle, though they did not discount the possibility.

During North Korea’s last ICBM tests in 2017, its scientists may have gleaned useful data on how their reentry vehicles worked, Panda said.

However, the tests were conducted on a “lofted trajectory” high into space, potentially limiting the usefulness of some of the data, as the missile would take a much different trajectory during a war, he added.

A final card North Korea could play is an atmospheric test of a nuclear warhead, though many analysts say that is unlikely, as it could anger Pyongyang’s backers in Beijing and Moscow.

 

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9 hours ago, Henry Ford said:

It is possible that someday, maybe even soon, a President who is not a narcissist and hires decent people for his advisors will have the opportunity to help broker a lasting peace involving North Korea and South Korea that doesn’t involve stockpiles of deterrence and a DMZ. It was never going to be Trump, and certainly not in the way it’s been approached the last three years. And unless something substantial changes about the way Kim Jong Un behaves domestically and in foreign policy, it may well never happen while he is in charge. 

:thanks:

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Also heard this morning that yesterday's events show places like North Korea that this administration is willing to escalate responses. 

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23 minutes ago, Max Power said:

Also heard this morning that yesterday's events show places like North Korea that this administration is willing to escalate responses. 

I'm sure they are very happy about that in Seoul. After all, that's where the artillery will barrage

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1 hour ago, Max Power said:

Also heard this morning that yesterday's events show places like North Korea that this administration is willing to escalate responses. 

If I were Kim, I would take the assassination as more motivation to develop nuclear weapons.

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1 hour ago, Max Power said:

Also heard this morning that yesterday's events show places like North Korea that this administration is willing to escalate responses. 

That's a good thing?

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4 hours ago, msommer said:

I'm sure they are very happy about that in Seoul. After all, that's where the artillery will barrage

Especially our forces there.  

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Documentary on NatGeo right now that is laying out exactly the issue with Trump's approach to NK by giving us a history lesson on the Kim Dynasty if anyone is interested.

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Tim Shorrock @TimothyS

Another North Korean official is back from the dead. Pretty good record for a non-Christian country LOL. But let me guess - was the "reported killed" story a Chosun Ilbo special repeated without confirmation by The Daily Beast or another US pub willing to print anything about NK?

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4 hours ago, ren hoek said:

Tim Shorrock @TimothyS

Another North Korean official is back from the dead. Pretty good record for a non-Christian country LOL. But let me guess - was the "reported killed" story a Chosun Ilbo special repeated without confirmation by The Daily Beast or another US pub willing to print anything about NK?

I guess I’d ask this guy for a link to a story saying she was killed. 
Link most that I found look like this. I hadn’t heard this originally so I went looking for some of the original reporting (as I often like to do.)

ETA: there is a small blurb about the fate of several members of the family saying she was “apparently poisoned after complaining about the execution of her husband, according to defectors” but doesn’t mention whether it killed her, but one could draw that conclusion as it’s listed with several other gruesome executions. 

Edited by Snorkelson

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1 hour ago, Snorkelson said:

I guess I’d ask this guy for a link to a story saying she was killed. 
Link most that I found look like this. I hadn’t heard this originally so I went looking for some of the original reporting (as I often like to do.)

ETA: there is a small blurb about the fate of several members of the family saying she was “apparently poisoned after complaining about the execution of her husband, according to defectors” but doesn’t mention whether it killed her, but one could draw that conclusion as it’s listed with several other gruesome executions. 

 She's probably spent the last six years at the North Korean equivalent of the French riviera, which totslly explains why she hasn't been seen for six years

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2 hours ago, Snorkelson said:

I guess I’d ask this guy for a link to a story saying she was killed. 
Link most that I found look like this. I hadn’t heard this originally so I went looking for some of the original reporting (as I often like to do.)

ETA: there is a small blurb about the fate of several members of the family saying she was “apparently poisoned after complaining about the execution of her husband, according to defectors” but doesn’t mention whether it killed her, but one could draw that conclusion as it’s listed with several other gruesome executions. 

Since the entire article is about her being very ill, I don’t think drawing the conclusion that it killed her would be very reasonable. 

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Somehow I missed the flat out rejection by NK to resume talks.....this is going swimmingly.  :mellow: 

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7 hours ago, The Commish said:

Somehow I missed the flat out rejection by NK to resume talks.....this is going swimmingly.  :mellow: 

Is there really a scenario that plays out well in NK? Run by bat#### inbred.

That Trump thinks he some sweet pen pal is hilarious though.

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16 hours ago, The General said:

Is there really a scenario that plays out well in NK? Run by bat#### inbred.

That Trump thinks he some sweet pen pal is hilarious though.

No...there's not....which has been the point all along.  The goal has always been to contain.  Thinking it can be actually fixed is like a woman getting in a relationship with a messed up dude thinking "I know the others failed, but THIS TIME I can fix him!!!!!"

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