[International Herald Tribune, France]



Global Times, People's Republic of China

Time for South Korea, U.S., Japan to Revise North Korea Policies


So what can South Korea, the U.S. and Japan do to keep North Korea from continuing to lob threats, artillery shells and perhaps even nukes in their general direction? According to this editorial from China's state-controlled Global Times, the countries need to undertake a 'fundamental policy change' to end the vicious cycle that has plunged North Korea into ever-deepening poverty and isolation - and the South into a constant state of insecurity.




November 26, 2010


People's Republic of China - Global Times - Original Article (English)

After the recent artillery exchange in and around the Korean Peninsula, North Korea seems to be the only country to have gained. But Pyongyang is drinking poison to curb its thirst and is running head-long down a road that leads nowhere.


Stability is the shared goal of all the countries involved. North Korea wishes to maintain a stable government, while the South wants a stable border area. It's in the interests of China to keep the situation on the Peninsula uneventful. The United States hopes to see its influence in Northeast Asia unchallenged; Russia and Japan hold attitudes similar to China or the U.S.


But this shared goal is often undermined by other interests, primarily the North's pursuit of nuclear weapons and its continuing provocations. In addition, inconsistent policies toward Pyongyang on the part of the U.S. and South Korea contribute to agitation in the North, which in turn tends to overreact.   



Strategic trust among the players involved is almost zero. China's efforts to promote regional stability are often undercut by America's strategic intentions in the western Pacific. In addition, even Chinese initiatives are often given the cold shoulder by Pyongyang. The on-again, off-again Six-Party Talks best reflect the difficulty.




Global Times, China: Reliance on U.S. Will Not Ensure South Korean Security
JoongAng Ilbo, South Korea: It's Time to 'Retaliate' Against North Korea

Hankyoreh, South Korea: Ball's in U.S.-China Court After North's Barrage
JoongAnd Daily, South Korea: China's Premier Reacts 'Ambiguously' to Island Assault
JoongAnd Daily, South Korea: North Korea Used 'Thermobaric Bombs' in Assault
Debka File, Israel: U.S. Spurns Japan's Demand for Reprisal Against North
Debka File, Israel: Brits 'At War' with Stuxnet PC Virus; U.S. Says: Use it on North
Global Times, China: Dialogue of Artillery is a 'Tragedy' for Northeast Asia
Korea Times, South Korea: Military Hardliners Likely Behind Attack
Chosun Ilbo: China Must Act Now on North Korea Nuclear Threat
Dong-A Ilbo, South Korea: Island Panicked by Surprise Attack
Daily North Korea, South Korea: North Seeks to Shift Blame Onto South
Yonhap, South Korea: U.N. Command Seeks Talks with N. Korea  


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America's hard-line approach is unlikely to succeed on the Korean Peninsula. If it did succeed, it would mean the failure of Chinese diplomacy and bring unbearable strategic risk to China. But it appears equally unlikely that China's moderate stance will win out. All of which suggests a fundamental policy change from the U.S., South Korea and Japan is badly needed. Otherwise, the stalemate and test the tolerance of all the parties involved will go on.


The way things stand now, South Korea will continue living in the shadow non-stop provocations from the North, and Pyongyang will go on suffering isolation and poverty, which gets worse after every incident.


Among all of the countries with a stake in the region, it looks like South Korea is the one that can and should take the initiative. The question is: Is it willing to do so?


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[Posted by WORLDMEETS.US November 26, 9:30pm]


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