May 5th, 2017

Can North Korea…

be turned into East Germany?:

The difference between Germany and Korea is that while East Germany wanted only to be left alone, North Korea keeps threatening to conquer South Korea and reunify the country under its control, and to fire nuclear-armed missiles at the U.S. itself…

Simply put, it may be possible to defuse the current crisis without a war by cutting a deal along these lines: If North Korea will give up its nuclear weapons and cease threatening South Korea and the U.S., the U.S. and South Korea will guarantee North Korea’s sovereignty.

When I first read that, it sounded ludicrous. North Korea isn’t acting that rationally! But stick with it and read the rest.

Here’s the author’s bio:

Herbert E. Meyer served during the Reagan administration as Special Assistant to the Director of Central Intelligence and Vice Chairman of the CIA’s National Intelligence Council. He is author of Why is the World So Dangerous.

When I followed the Amazon link to Meyer’s book, I found more information of interest:

Mr. Meyer is widely credited with being the first senior US Government official to forecast the collapse of the Soviet Union — a forecast for which he later was awarded the U.S. National Intelligence Distinguished Service Medal, which is the Intelligence Community s highest honor.

That’s impressive, and an exception to the trend I discussed here.

16 Responses to “Can North Korea…”

  1. Gringo Says:

    If North Korea will give up its nuclear weapons and cease threatening South Korea and the U.S., the U.S. and South Korea will guarantee North Korea’s sovereignty.

    Which will also involve danegeld. Like Cuba, North Korea’s economy has performed disastrously when it hasn’t had a Sugar Daddy- the USSR and Venezuela for Cuba, and the USSR for North Korea. Given the current disastrous situation of the NorKo economy, I doubt that China is assisting it much.

  2. richardaubrey Says:

    North Korea exists to allow the Kim family to live in a style to which they have become accustomed, including immense, unaccountable power exercised at a whim and incredible adulation which, since it’s forced, is all the more piquant.
    To give up offensive weapons systems would mean they have to acknowledge nobody wants to bother them, which in turn would reduce justification for their regime.
    Plus, they’re nuts.
    Not. Happening.

  3. TommyJay Says:

    Mr. Meyer leaves S. Korea out of the discussion.

    I recall an international post-doc dinner, and the discussion turned to our teen years. An extremely nice, civilized man from Bengal India said he wanted to join the air force (but didn’t). Why we asked? “So I could kill Pakastanis,” he replied.

    I really know little about the cultures and conflicts in the two Koreas, but I did hear a story about 20 months ago from an army officer who was two or three ranks below the US command in S. Korea.

    He said that Pres. Park Geun-hye had begun firing artillery shells into N. Korea, not to destroy, but to threaten to destroy. The US command was in the dark and were panicked that Pres. Park was going to roll tanks or some other escalation would happen. Apparently cooler heads prevailed.

    Pres. Park was subsequently forcibly removed from power for reasons of embezzlement. One does not have to be a conspiracy theorist to imagine that things were more complex than the news reports let on. Pres. Park had been extremely bellicose towards N. Korea in the months prior to the artillery incident.

    I’m not really shedding light on the subject, but would caution against getting all “Rodney King” on the subject. Marxist ideology was forced on the E. Germans, not as much in N. Korea.

  4. blert Says:

    Their atomic program is the iron rice bowl for the ENTIRE NK regime.

    They are selling their technology to Iran for Big Bucks.

    It could not be more obvious.

    North Korea is no longer a vassal of Beijing.

    THAT’S the equation.

  5. Geoffrey Britain Says:

    “Can N. Korea be turned into East Germany?”

    No. N. Korea’s behavior shows a dedicated commitment to establishing the pre-conditions that will allow it to ‘reunify’ Korea under N. Korea’s leadership. This is NOT just Kim’s dream, it is an ideological imperative for the N. Korean leadership and its nomenklatura.

  6. groundhog Says:

    I agree with Aubrey.

    Kim needs enemies to demonize, so his subjects can blame someone else. If things become relaxed they might start noticing who is the real problem.

  7. SLR Says:

    makes sense to me… so does the next step if they won’t take the deal; if we have to overthrow the gov let China know we won’t unify and they can pick the replacement gov…

  8. richardaubrey Says:

    The population has been so wrecked by permanent malnutrition, both pre-natal and then as a general condition of life that their ability to function in a SKor kind of regime is questionable.

    The same is true of their propagandized world view, their reactions to issues in society, their ability to trust–informers have quotas–and their ability to plan for themselves.

  9. Cathy Says:

    Germany was unified in 1871 and the separate states had different cultures and identities. Korea has an incredibly strong identity as a people that has been internalized through repeated conquest by China or Japan. They are tribal but always Korean.

  10. Geoffrey Britain Says:

    Cathy is correct in that the Korean people’s identity is strongly nationalistic and tribal. This is the source of the N. Korean’s determination to see Korea reunified under N. Korean domination. I do not see that goal as Kim’s alone. It has long been ‘sold’ to the N. Korean people as a societal imperative.

    Whereas, given the North’s totalitarian governance, S. Koreans are ambivalent about reunification. For them, it’s a wishful but unlikely possibility.

    I suspect that underestimating the degree of indoctrination of the N. Korean people is a grave mistake. Should Kim suddenly drop dead of a natural heart attack, that indoctrination would remain. Reunification of Korea under the ‘just’ north is the societal goal of the N. Korean people.

  11. Tatterdemalian Says:

    Don’t forget that the media likes to tell you lies. Exaggerating the stupidity and irrationality of their opponents is one of the most dangerous lies they tell, less so to their opponents than to their fans.

  12. Frog Says:

    The worst thing that could happen to Korea is re-unification. The South Koreans could not financially afford it, and the brainwashed NORKs would overthrow the South.
    It will be a disaster if it happens.
    Better that North Korea be nuked. How can one possibly contemplate reunification with a lunatic force that has thousands of rockets aimed at Seoul, only 60 miles from the DMZ?
    There has not been a sci-fi movie made strong enough to replicate the horror of peninsular Korean war.

  13. Geoffrey Britain Says:

    The only way Pyongyang is going to be juked is if they first nuke someone else. Proactively nuking the bad guys is verbotten. A sacrifice of millions of victims is first required, so that a proportional reaction can be ‘morally’ justified.

    That is “Just War Doctrine”, a form of pacifism. When confronted by the predator, pacifism is sacrificial. But when confronted by a fanatical totaltarian system, pacifism is suicidal.

  14. Geoffrey Britain Says:

    That would be nuked, rather than ‘juked’.

  15. Gringo Says:

    The only way Pyongyang is going to be juked is if they first nuke someone else.

    Your typo of “juked” reminded me of the North Korean propaganda term juche, which is supposed to mean “self-reliance.”

  16. Ymar Sakar Says:

    “Juked” means evading a skill shot in League of Legends.

    North Korean defector talks about her country. It’s like Yuri Bezmenov times.

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Previously a lifelong Democrat, born in New York and living in New England, surrounded by liberals on all sides, I've found myself slowly but surely leaving the fold and becoming that dread thing: a neocon.

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