Posted by: maboulette | May 2, 2017

Direct Talks with North Korea Might Be the Only Way


Rex Tillerson

Secretary of State Rex Tillerson signaled on Friday that the Trump administration may have finally accepted the one course of action that could stop North Korea’s nuclear threat to the world: direct talks.

 THREATS

After months of US military posturing and shows of force met by North Korean nuclear threats, Tillerson said in an interview with NPR that direct talks with the Kim regime “would be the way we would like to solve this.”

MIKE PENCE

This is a bit of a reversal from Vice President Mike Pence’s statement just over a week ago that the US would not consider talks with the North Koreans.

DENUCLEARIZING NORTH KOREA

However, the US’s and China’s shared goal of denuclearizing North Korea may be dead on arrival.

“Denuclearization is probably a nonstarter for a dialogue,” Yun Sun, a senior associate at the Stimson Center, told Business Insider.

2003 SIX-PARTY TALKS

In 2003, the Bush administration engaged in the six-party talks with North Korea, but in 2009, when the time came for North Korea to implement the verifiable and irreversible destruction of its nuclear capabilities, the Kim regime backed out.

SINCERITY IN DIPLOMACY

The experience proved a searing moment for US diplomats and created lasting doubts about the North Koreans’ sincerity in diplomacy, according to Sun. Since then, North Korea has written its possession of nuclear weapons into its constitution as a guarantor of its security.

WHAT TO TALK ABOUT

So while the US demands North Korea denuclearize and North Korea clings to its weapons for security, the question since 2009, according to Sun, has been: “If we are going to talk to North Korea, what are we going to talk about?”

NO MILITARY CAMPAIGN

At this point, the only way to eliminate the Kim regime’s nuclear program would be a large-scale, bloody military campaign in which the North Koreans would do their best to hit US and South Korean forces with nuclear weapons.

HOPE

But short of complete denuclearization, there is hope for peace and stability on the Korean Peninsula without bloodshed.

“A more realistic goal would be denuclearization in time,” said Sun, who said a moratorium or freeze on North Korea’s nuclear and ballistic-missile programs would present a much more fruitful place to begin talks.

CHIP TO MAKE A DEAL

“If we can engage North Korea and have a deal about them freezing their nuclear development in exchange for some sort of security guarantee, then the US and South Korea could suspend their military exercises on the peninsula,” he said.

IN THE PAST

North Korea has in the past offered such a deal, but the US has refused, saying its regularly scheduled, peaceful military exercises pose nowhere near the threat that nuclear proliferation does.

 

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