Tuesday, August 11, 2009

US hypocrisy: North Korea, India, sanctions & the bomb

The DRPK's [Democratic People's Republic of Korea aka North Korea] vessel 'MV San' is in India's custody. To New Delhi goes the dubious honour of boarding a North Korean vessel in Indian waters in the Bay of Benegal, off the shores of the Andaman and Nicobar Islands [which is famous for the Thuggies, Indians pirates]. Indian authorities boarded 'MV San' armed with the authority of UN Resolution 1758, and with the right to search the ship's cargo. New Delhi has kept a sleepless on Myunmar which it is bruited has 'louche' dealings with the DPRK in nuclear technology. India also had the right to challenge the vessel since it was anchored in its waters without permission. So since the ship was in proximity nautically speaking to Myunmar, and since the US inspired sanctions see Pyongyang's suspicious hand in fomenting nuclear hanky panky, and since India is in a tight contest with China to curry favour with the Burmese military junta, New Delhi putting North Korea + Myunmar + an unauthorised DPRK vessel three and three together, and came up with an ah ha, we caught the DPRK playing nuclear transfer with Myunmar. Not.
New Delhi seized the 'MV San's crew of 39, and began interrogating its captain, officers, and hands. It scoured the vessel for traces of nuclear material, but found only 16.000 ton[ne]s of sugar for the Middle East. How long ship and crew will be detained, remains a question.
In late June and early July, the US aircraft carrier 'The John McCain 2' followed hot on the heels
of the 'Kang Nam 1', which an American journalist described as 'a tub', with the US 'knowingly' claiming that its destination was Myunmar, and its cargo nuclear technology. Well the DPRK ship gave the US aircraft carrier a run for its money; it took the US naval vessel on a wild goose chase into the South China sea, then executed a 180 degree turn, heading back to the safety of North Korean waters in the China sea. Thus it robbed eager US hands of seizing and boarding the ship in a neutral port or on the high seas.
How does this square with the 'private' but highly controlled and choreographed White House, trip of Citizen Clinton to Pyongyang to rescue two imprisoned US journalist and his 195 minute tete a tete talk with Kim Jong il? A good question. So far no great protest from Pyongyang of New Delhi's seize of the 'MV San' and crew. Which might indicate new private channels of talks are opening with the DPRK. Yet, no one will or cannot say for sure.
Let's now turn to US hypocrisy on the nuclear issue. India has never signed the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty; it built its own nuclear arsenal and carried out tests in the deserts of Rajastan. It steadfastly refused to sign the treaty; its gathering of nuclear warheads, brought into the nuclear club rival Pakistan who trained its nuclear devices towards India. New Delhi reciprocated by aiming its warheads on Islamabad. Now this has not stopped the BHO administration from signing an agreement with India in order to share nuclear technology with New Delhi. Translation, supposedly for peaceful purposes but this can turn deadly in developing military applications. Hardly a protest raised in the US; in India, thanks to stronger leftist parties, read the Communists, loud voices could be heard. But after the last elections which returned a stronger Congress party to power without Communist support, the stage was set for Washington's move which was eagerly agreed to by the Indian government. Thus we see the sheer hypocrisy of the US strategy on reining in the DPRK's nuclear programme. And we turn to this.
During the Clinton years, thanks to Jimmy Carter's face saving trip to the DPRK, the White House managed to put a damper on the DPRK's nuclear programme, with IAEA seals and inspections, and more, Pyongyang's signing of the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty. With George Bush in the White House, armed with the sword of righteous against 'evil', his administration and army of avenging angels in State and the White House scuttled the Clinton policy. This resulted in the DPRK opting out of the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty, sending packing the IAEA inspectors and removing the IAEA seals, and started up its nuclear development once against. Mr. Bush never one step away from a policy bereft of logic, tried to lure the DPRK back to talks without really talking to Pyongyang through the charade of the six party talks in Beijing. To not put a fine point on it, the Bush strategy so backfired that to get Mr. Bush's attention, Kim Jong il & co. exploded a nuclear device, thereby by stupidity he brought the number of members of the nuclear club to 8 nations. And then the Bush White House backpaddled fast in its North Korean non policy but didn't do much thereafter.
We are now in the opening months of a new administration. President Barack Obama [BHO] has gone one better than Mr. Bush in a hard line tack towards the DPRK. He opted for sanctions against Pyongyang when it didn't postpone a much advertised satellite launch on a long range missile, by running to the UN Security Council for sanctions against the DPRK, which he got through much arm
twisting. And the proverbial sand ground things to a diplomatic halt. Swift and non nonsense replies can out of Pyongyang. One, the DPRK refused ever to return to the six party talks; two, it again ordered IAEA inspectors out of the country; three, it started up again, its nuclear reactor; four, it tore up the 1953 Armstice Agreement, technically turning the frozen Korean War into a hot war again. And to put icing on the cake, it set off an large non nuclear underground explosion and fired more short and medium range missiles. Tensions and temperatures rose according in Washington and Pyongyang. And were it not for two US journalists who in pursuit of a story on North Korea refuges in China, had not violated North Korean territory, who could guess the next steps in mindless escalation? The trial and condemnation of the two reporters gave Kim Jong il a hook to get Mr. Clinton to Pyongyang, to pitch the DPRK's new demands for direct talks, and not going back to the six party talks, brushing aside BHO's refrain for returning to these dead talks and endless mantra of living up to past agreements.
US hypocrisy becomes more glaring in this sense. It turned a willing and eager DPRK who for years had been anxious to talk directly to the US, to iron out outstanding issues since the Korean War, now almost 6 decades old; Washington did talk but in very strict,limited terms, which under Clinton's presidency got results [see above]. Today the BHO administration faces new challenges whilst clinging to outdated and trumped demands. An endless stream of visiting firemen and scholars and Russians and Chinese have brought back information that Pyongyang was open to discussions with the US, and what's more willing to sign off on the nuclear programme. But Mr. Bush and now BHO think that the US is in the cat bird's seat. Yet, the Clinton's presidency got results [see above]. And yet Kim Jong il is willing to negotiate broadly on many issues; since its a nuclear power, it wants that recognised, and who knows if might destroy its very limited and small stockpile, as did South Africa and Libya, for recognition and equal treatment as a member of the world community. If BHO had applied the same stringent terms on nuclear Israel, peace and a Palestinian state would have come about without a doubt!
US nuclear hypocrisy knows no bounds. Were it not for the US, the DPRK would never have explosed a nuclear device. Without US blindness to results, the DPRK's nuclear plants would have remained monitored and sealed, even with some cheating here and there. Without the US eagerness to partner nuclearly with India, and maintain a double standard as to who and who shouldn't sign the Nuclear Nonproliferation Treaty, the world would be on sure footing.

No comments:

Post a Comment