World Press on North Korean Nuclear Crisis (Appril 5, 2014)

The Moscow Times published an article by Ian Buruma devoted to the ongoing North Korean nuclear crisis. "Nobody would care much about North Korea — a small and isolated country of 24 million people, ruled by a grotesque dynasty that calls itself Communist — if it were not for its nuclear weapons. Its current ruler, Kim Jong-un, the 30-year-old grandson of North Korea's founder, is now threatening to turn Seoul, the rich and bustling capital of South Korea, into "a sea of fire." U.S. military bases in Asia and the Pacific are also on his list of targets," the article begins.

 

The author reviews the Korean history and concludes that the Kims are typical Korean rulers, who are trying to secure their country's idenpendence and their regime's longevity by playing one superpower against another. 

 

"There is only one way to divert attention from this humiliating predicament: propaganda about self-reliance and the imminent threat from U.S. imperialists and their South Korean lackeys must be turned up to a hysterical pitch. Without this orchestrated paranoia, the Kims have no legitimacy. And no tyranny can survive for long by relying on brute force alone," the article reads.

 

 

"The tragedy of both Koreas is that no one really wishes to change the status quo," the author believes. "China wants to keep North Korea as a buffer state and fears millions of refugees in the event of a North Korean collapse. Meanwhile, South Koreans could never afford to absorb North Korea in the way that West Germany absorbed the broken East Germany when the Iron Curtain fell. And neither Japan nor the U.S. would relish paying to clean up after a North Korean implosion, either."

 

"And so an explosive situation will remain explosive, North Korea's population will continue to suffer famines and tyranny, and words of war will continue to fly back and forth across the 38th parallel. So far, they are just words. But small things —  the proverbial gun shot in Sarajevo — could trigger a catastrophe. And North Korea still has those nuclear bombs," the author concludes.

 

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