Trump Rules Out Diplomacy with North Korea

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Trump Rules Out Diplomacy with North Korea

by Stephen Lendman (stephenlendman.org – Home – Stephen Lendman)

Candidate Trump said “I would have no problem speaking to” DPRK leader Kim Jong-un.

Last April, he said “(i)f it would be appropriate for me to meet with him, I would absolutely. I would be honored to do it.”

Then came his “fire and fury” remark, along with threatening “all options are on the table,” followed by an August 30 tweet after Pyongyang’s latest ballistic missile test, saying “(t)he US has been talking to North Korea, and paying them extortion money, for 25 years. Talking is not the answer!”

According to a Congressional Research Service Report, Washington supplied North Korea with around $1.3 billion in mostly food and energy aid from 1995 – 2008. It was part of what became failed attempts to consummate a nuclear deal.

A 1994 US/North Korea framework agreement collapsed in 2002. Six-party talks begun in 2003 broke down in 2009, following disagreements over verification Pyongyang considered unacceptably intrusive.

Dealings with Washington are never easy for any countries. The US doesn’t negotiate. It demands. North Korea is hesitant about dealing with an untrustworthy country for good reason.

In response to reporters asking Defense Secretary Mattis if diplomacy is off the table with Pyongyang, he said: “No. We are never out of diplomatic solutions” before a meeting with his South Korean counterpart, adding:

“We continue to work together, and the minister and I share a responsibility to provide for the protection of our nations, our populations and our interests.”

Sergey Lavrov called potential new sanctions on North Korea “counterproductive and dangerous.” He also warned against a military solution on the peninsula.

According to China’s Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying, Beijing and Moscow share the same views on resolving contentious issues with Pyongyang, both countries strongly against war and tougher sanctions.

When it comes to imposing them, some “relevant sides storm to the front, but when it comes to pushing for peace they hide at the very back,” she said – no ambiguity about what country she means.

On Wednesday, Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi said “(u)nilateral sanctions are not in line with international laws, and are not supported by China.”

“A very important part of Security Council resolutions … is that we should continue to stick to peaceful and diplomatic means to resolve this issue.”

North Korea has been threatened by America throughout its post-WW II history – why it prioritizes a strong deterrent, the only way US aggression can be prevented, it believes.

Will Trump attack North Korea? Will hawkish administration and Pentagon generals choose this option?

Launching possible nuclear war on the Korean peninsula would be madness. Given America’s rage for war and dominance, it remains an ominous option.

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Stephen Lendman
Stephen Lendman
Stephen Lendman was born in 1934 in Boston, MA. In 1956, he received a BA from Harvard University. Two years of US Army service followed, then an MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania in 1960. After working seven years as a marketing research analyst, he joined the Lendman Group family business in 1967. He remained there until retiring at year end 1999. Writing on major world and national issues began in summer 2005. In early 2007, radio hosting followed. Lendman now hosts the Progressive Radio News Hour on the Progressive Radio Network three times weekly. Distinguished guests are featured. Listen live or archived. Major world and national issues are discussed. Lendman is a 2008 Project Censored winner and 2011 Mexican Journalists Club international journalism award recipient.