Saturday, March 2, 2013

North Korea Threatens South Korea with ''Final Destruction'' !

Riding high on the euphoria of setting off its third, and more powerful, nuclear device, North Korean diplomat Jon Yong Ryong threatened South Korea with ''final destruction'' during a debate at the United Nations Conference on Disarmament. His message from Kim Jong Un, his slanty-eyed, double-chinned, pudgy ''Dear Leader'', was; "As the saying goes, a new-born puppy knows no fear of a tiger. South Korea's erratic behavior would only herald its final destruction.'' (see photo) U.S. Ambassador Laura Kennedy said the threat was ''profoundly disturbing as well as being offensive.''

Jon's comments drew quick criticism from other nations, including South Korea, France, Germany, and Britain, whose ambassador -- Joanne Adamson -- said such language was ''completely inappropriate'' and the discussion with North Korea was heading in the wrong direction. ''It cannot be allowed that we have expressions which refer to the possible destruction of U.N. member states,'' she said. The Spanish Ambassador Javier Catalina said the comment left him stupefied and stated, ''In my 30 years of my career I've never heard anything like it and it seems to me that we are not speaking about something that is even admissible, we are speaking about a treat of the use of force that is prohibited by Article 2.4 of the U.N. charter.''

Pyongyang said the aim of the test was to bolster its defenses given the hostility of the United States, which has led a push to impose sanctions on North Korea regime. North Korea has already told key ally China that it is prepared to stage one or two more tests this year to force the U.S. into diplomatic talks. Impoverished and malnourished, North Korea is one of the most heavily sanctioned states in the world. Jon said, ''It is the disposition and firm will of the army and people of the DPRK to counter high-handed policy with a tough-fist policy and to react to pressure and sanctions with an all-out counter-action.''  Washington and its allies are believed to be pushing to tighten the noose around the DPRK's financial transactions in a bid to starve its porcine leadership of funding its nuclear and missile ambitions.

At the United Nations, the desire to impose ever harsher sanctions to try to curb further development of nuclear arms and ballistic missiles has long stalled in the face of Chinese opposition. The problem has always been what China will bear in terms of restricting its protege and neighbor, as well as whether it will cut back fuel shipments and other trade with North Korea. ''Moving forward, China really holds the key to what extent the actions will be different this time,'' said Suzanne DiMaggio, an expert at the Asia Society. The signs are hard to read. After North Korea's verbal threat, China will almost certainly join the U.N. in supporting tougher sanctions over the recent test near China's border (see test site photo) accompanied by sterner reprimands from Beijing against its recalcitrant ally, which obviously ignored Chinese entreaties not to take provocative actions.

However, as impatient as China might be with North Korea, there is little chance that the new Chinese leader, Xi Jinping, will move quickly to change the nation's long-held policy of propping up the walled-off government that has long served as a buffer against closer intrusion by the United States on the Korean peninsula. The Chinese military, and to a lesser extent the International Liaison Department of the Chinese Communist party, assert a strong influence on China's Korean policy, and both entities prefer to keep North Korea close at hand. Chinese and American analysts say, Chinese strategists cannot afford to abandon their ally, no matter how bad its behavior.''

At the same time, the Chinese Communist Party looks upon the North Korean Communist Party -- led by the grandson of the nations founder-- as a fraternal brotherhood. Indeed, relations between the two countries are are conducted largely between the two parties rather than between the two foreign ministries...the normal diplomatic channel. But within this basic contour there could be some adjustments by Mr Xi, according to Zhu Feng, a professor of international relations at Peking University, an advocate of a tougher policy by China against North Korea.

The Way I See It....China secretly hopes sanctions will make its job easier to make Kim Jong Un to see reason that further sabre-rattling will see China's aims in the region around it be dampened with surrounding nations feeling more insecure. One more nuclear test will not make China's new administration decide to abandon North Korea, but it will definitely worsen their relationship. It is already giving China a headache. Even before its nuclear test, North Korea was already facing growing diplomatic pressure. The U.N. Human Rights Council is widely expected to order an inquiry next month into its leaders' responsibilities for crimes against humanity. That should make his eyes squint even more!

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