Tuesday, October 10, 2006

A Nuke for Kim Jong Il

"I'm very much proud," chortled the North Korean ambassador to the UN, cornered by the media on the streets of New York City. He was very much proud, it seemed, of the great achievement of his country's scientists, proud of his Dear Leader's demonstration that he could spit in the eye of the rest of the world with impunity.

As if further proof were needed of the disastrous failure of your global strategy of intimidation by American hegemony, Bush, it comes in the form of Kim Jong Il's underground explosion of a nuclear device in defiance of the world community. I recall you strutting to the podium--was it four years ago, or five?--and blustering on about your war against what you memorably termed the "axis of evil." I suppose now you'll use this latest outrage as evidence of how right you were. North Korea, Iran, Iraq, all tinderboxes, ready to explode.

I see it in a different light. It's not that this is a recent problem with North Korea. Your predecessor was obliged to address it in his own way and chose the path of negotiation and restraint, Who knows whether that path would have led to good results, had you chosen to follow it when you bullied your way into the White House. It's possible that, too, would have led to similiar frustration. But you never gave it a try. You had to be the anti-Clinton. Having hounded him throughout his administration, your people--like some new imperial dynasty--found it necessary to set about destroying everything the previous president had created, including the groundwork he had laid, with Madeleine Albright, for a detente with North Korea.

What a blunder! What an egregious misunderstanding of the simplest principles of human psychology! To threaten a man as insecure, as paranoid, as aggressive as Kim Jong Il is surely to invite the kind of reaction that you got. To isolate him, to refuse to speak to him directly--this bespeaks the behavior of the schoolyard rather than any grand strategy of international diplomacy. It may well be that, watching your shock and awe treatment of Saddam, Bush, he concluded that he could well be in for the same. It may well be that he concluded that the nuclear option was his best, perhaps his only form of protection. In this light, his choice of the nuclear path might even seem a rational one.

But even if we're dealing with a madman, Bush, whose choices fail the test of rationality, your way of dealing with him was flawed from the start. You provoked him, playing to his vanity and enabling his madness. You conspired to grant him greater power than he could ever have achieved by his own efforts. Because in humbling the great United States of America, in proving us to be weak and empty threateners who can do nothing to stand in his way, he has acquired a firm grip on your balls, Bush, and on America's, and is taking evident delight in the ability to squeeze them before the watching world.

I hold no brief for this insane dictator, who has abused his power only to bring misery to those unfortunate enough to live under his sway. His is a brute, a thug, a megalomaniac... whatever you want to call him, Bush, I'll readily agree. How sad, then, that we are now so limited in our options to address the very real threat he poses to the world at large. And what a terrible irony, that our country should bear so large a part of the responsibility.

1 comment:

GringoWithoutBorders said...

Let us not forget who also spit in the eye of the rest of the world with impunity and goes against the international community. Could it be, USA illegaly invading and killing Iraqis against the wishes of the world?????

Also was wondering what dictators North Korea keeps in power besides itself? You know, like the dictators and such USA supports. Why not just support one more dictator and make him a friend? We seem to do that so well.