The reports coming from Asia do not sound good: Kim Jong Un is threatening to attack the free world – again – because it doesn't like the annual military exercise the US and South Korea recently conducted in the Korean Peninsula. North Korea (DPRK) seems to be growing from naughty to a menace. The US is displaying a tough stance, in accordance to the premise of Power Politics conveyed by President Donald Trump's inauguration speech, and the world seems shaken since the old order of things is being rattled once more.
The Genesis of the Problem
Korea had been annexed to Japan, in 1910. But after Japan lost the World War II, the Allies decided that Korea was to be divided at the 38th parallel: the North was occupied by the Soviet Union and the South was occupied by the United States. On the 25th of June 1950, North Korea (i.e. the Soviets) invaded the South (i.e. the US) and thus began a 3 year bloody Proxy war, with long lasting consequences as evidenced by the present events.
Today's conflict: is it a proxy war between Russia and the US or between China and the US (having Moscow been replaced by Beijing)?
Even though North Korea has been developing nuclear weapons, so far, it has failed to launch them in the air successfully; supporting thus the theory that North Korea is indeed working for its clients (e.g. Iran and Pakistan) and not for itself alone.
The close relationship between DPRK and China is a problem. Since the Kissinger era, the US has been appeasing the Chinese – allowing them to proceed with continued violations of the Human Rights of its own people, with the subtle disruption of African states, and with the support of the Iranian nuclear ambitions – by taking the world's attention away from the Red Dragon; however, the time has come to re-direct the spotlight right to Beijing.
A four year old child could easily look at the North Korea crisis and realise that Beijing is deeply involved in it; because the infant would ask a very simple question: why would a powerful neighbour passively watch a smaller one to develop, test and boast about the possession of nuclear weapons (a clear sign of aggression) unless he had a direct interest in the matter?
Besides trading with and selling “critical high-technology components” to Pyongyang (for its missile programme), plus the diplomatic support it grants to the Kim Dynasty; Beijing may have been using North Korea as a foreign policy instrument to indirectly display aggressive behaviour towards America, and its allies, without escalating to an all-out war. But now, given the American impatience towards the crisis in the South China Sea, the Red Dragon has seen it expedient to indirectly threaten the United States. Does the Red Dragon truly intend to engage in traditional war against the Eagle?
We will respond to an all-out war with an all-out war and a nuclear war with our style of a nuclear attack - Choe Ryong Hae
“Our style of nuclear attack”...could North Korea be threatening us with radiation, or nuclear, poisoning on civilian individuals? The image of Alexander Litvinenko comes to mind. If North Korea/China would use a number of its operatives in the West to conduct such attacks on the civilian population, then we would have the worst version of the so-called Lone Wolf attack.
Nay, the failed missile tests and the pseudo-display of military might are a distraction. If I were the military establishment I would rather focus on the Mr Choe's words – they tell us a lot more than a thousand images.
(Image: DPRK Parades New Missile Prototype[Ed.] - NBC News)