Tuesday, October 29, 2002

I noted in an earlier blog that it was unusual that James Kelly had cancelled press conferences in Seoul and Tokyo following his brief diplomatic trip to North Korea ealier this month. Of course the news has now come out that, during his visit, North Korea revealed that it indeed had a nuclear weapons program. This action is in direct violation of the 1994 Agreed Framework wherein North Korea conceded to freeze its nuclear program and begin developing light water reactors in cooperation with US consortium for energy.

The reaction of the US has been to try and get South Korea, Japan and China to harshly denounce the North for this action. However, Dubya Bush is having less success than perhaps he hoped for in this matter. The major regional nations, while willing to note that North possession of nuclear weapson is a) not desirable and b) and program to get more weapons is also not desirable, the countries have balked at being too harsh against the North.

I think the response shows that the Asian nations have recognised that the North won't just go away if they ignore it. After years of predicting its collapse, the regime remains. War is not desirable, especially now that we know they have weapons so it would seem that the best thing to do is to take on-board this new information and get back to the job of trying to cooperate and work with North Korea and to help it.

Currently reading:

"Hell" by Yasutaka Tsutsui