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Archive for the ‘Korea’ Category

South Korea In A Corner, No Trustworthy Allie

Posted by Larry Barnes on May 21, 2010

Hillary Clinton: “The evidence is overwhelming and condemning”, and I am sure that international consequences over the sinking of a Southern warship in March will be swift boated by the Obama machine.

She said on a visit to Tokyo that, despite Pyongyang’s denials, evidence the North had torpedoed the ship was “overwhelming”.

South Korea’s president said the response to the sinking must be “very prudent”. On doubt that the lack of an allie will ensure that it is, and futile too boot.

He also firmly blamed North Korea when he addressed his security council.

It was a “surprise military attack from North Korea [that came] while South Korean people were resting late at night”, President Lee Myung-bak said.

Foreign investigators said in a report that a torpedo had hit the ship, killing 46 people.

Experts from the US, the UK, Australia and Sweden found that parts of the torpedo retrieved from the sea floor had lettering that matched a North Korean design.

Mrs Clinton has called on North Korea to “stop its provocative behavior” and her forceful personality will be instrumental in deterring homicidal maniacs. Mrs Clinton said it could not be business as usual with North Korea, I am confident new sanctions will plunge the North Korean people into extended suffering.

Action at the UN is most likely to be blunted by the Chinese government that holds economic daggers to the heart of the west.

A senior US official told me it is clear that South Korea does not wish to go to war and will not take steps that run that risk.

He added there is also no evidence that North Korea is preparing to go to war despite all the rhetoric.

The BBC has been able to contribute to the forgive and forget tendency by portraying the action as a “a one-off action”, without regard to a long history of North Korean aggression. The BBC has shown it not qualified to comment on world affairs with the assertion that “North Korea’s motivations are still unclear”.

Secretary Clinton has revealed the Obama plan by stating “This will not be and cannot be business as usual. There must be an international, not just a regional, but an international response.” This of course means that the international community will be to blame when no action is taken.

South Korea’s president’s plan of action to include taking the evidence of an attack to the UN Security Council in an attempt to win support for tougher sanctions on North Korea, proves he is aware of the corner he is in.

President Lee told his security council the sinking of the Cheonan on 26 March had violated the UN Charter and the 1953 armistice which effectively ended the Korean War as have many other actions taken by the North. But, let us ignore history. “Since this case is very serious and has a grave importance, we cannot afford to have a slightest mistake and will be very prudent in all response measures we take,” he said.

South Korean Defence Minister Kim Tae-young told reporters at a separate briefing that the North would be “made to pay”.

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Obama Throws South Korea Under The Bus

Posted by Larry Barnes on May 20, 2010

South Korea Must Determine Attack Response, Gates Says

By Lisa Daniel
American Forces Press Service

WASHINGTON, May 20, 2010 – It is up to South Korea, not the United States, to determine how it will deal with a North Korean attack on one of its ships, Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates said today.

Gates was asked by reporters at a Pentagon news conference whether a recent determination that North Korea sank the South Korean frigate Cheonan, killing 46 sailors on March 26, was an act of war.

“This was an attack on South Korea, and South Korea needs to be in the lead on the way forward,” he said.

Gates said the Defense Department supports the findings of a multilateral investigation into the attack that found a North Korean submarine fired a torpedo that sank the ship. “They’ve laid out some paths forward, and we will be consulting closely with them as they move forward.”

The military has not changed its normal readiness status in light of the findings, Navy Adm. Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said at the news conference. Mullen said he spoke with his South Korean counterpart yesterday, as well as with Navy Adm. Robert Willard, commander of U.S. Pacific Command, and Army Gen. Walter “Skip” Sharp, commander of U.S. Forces Korea.

“We’re all focused on the stability of that region,” Mullen said. “Certainly, we’re concerned. They are a great friend and a great ally.”

Asked if U.S. forces are stretched too thin to increase operations in the area if needed, Gates said “absolutely not.”

“We’ve known for a long time that if there were problems in Korea, our main arms would be the Navy and the Air Force, and they are not stretched the way the Army and Marines are.”

Gates and Mullen also took questions on several other hot spots around the world.

Asked about the latest NATO military campaign in Afghanistan, Mullen said the Kandahar campaign already is under way, and that leaders are not surprised at the increasing insurgent violence there.

“We expect this to be a tough year,” Mullen said. “The poppy season is over, and they’ve gone back to get their weapons. That violence would rise doesn’t surprise me at all.”

The admiral added that he is optimistic about the Kandahar outcome. “We’ve got the right strategy and the right leadership,” he said.

Turning to Pakistan, Gates and Mullen said Pakistani leaders are fully on board with fighting terrorist groups in the country, and recognize they share that interest with the United States. Pakistan is planning to execute a mission in the volatile North Waziristan region, and has seven divisions and 140,000 troops there, they said.

“We now have a mutual interest in trying to stop this group, to stop them from carrying out attacks outside of Pakistan, especially in the United States,” Gates said.

On Iraq, Gates said the military is on track to complete President Barack Obama’s plan to reduce troop strength there to 50,000 by Sept. 1. Some of the drawdown was postponed due to the delayed national election in March, but, Army Gen. Raymond T. Odierno, commander of U.S. Forces Iraq, “has total flexibility” with how he wants to manage it, he said.

Asked about the recount of Iraq’s election results, Gates said it was “a positive development, in that it reaffirmed the original count and the legitimacy of the election.”

Finally, on the United Nations resolution for sanctions against Iran, Gates said it is “somewhat stronger” than he expected. The resolution is important, he said, because it is a reminder of Iran’s isolation, and it provides a legal platform for countries and organizations such as the European Union to take more stringent actions of their own against Iran.

There is evidence that the resolution is making an impact inside Iran, Gates said, noting the extent to which Iran is trying to keep it from passing. The resolution, coupled with any action by individual countries, “has the ability to change behavior” in the Iranian government, he said.

U.S. officials say they are considering a variety of options, ranging from useless U.N. Security Council action to additional insignificant U.S. penalties.

“North Korea should know that provocative acts have consequences,” said State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley, of course they need not be significant.

But looming over the discussions is concern that a harsh reaction could escalate tensions to the point of clashes. There is also concern an aggressive response could trigger the collapse of what is arguably the world’s most isolated and authoritarian regime, U.S. officials said. It must be pointed out that the Obama administration is planning negotiations over which sides of the streets in Seoul that the North may occupy.

Posted in China, Korea, Military, Music, Navy, Obama, Politics, War Crimes | Tagged: , | Leave a Comment »

 
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