Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Regime Change North Korea

I joked about it the other night, but frankly toppling the Kim dictatorship is the only way to solve the never-ending nightmare of North Korea. And now Max Boot is taking that possibility seriously, "North Korea & Iran: Containment vs. Regime Change." After some background on the limited options vis-√†-vis Pyongyang — with discussion of the Cheonan incident, which killed 46 South Korean sailors — Boot notes the obvious solution:

The ultimate solution is plain: regime change. But how to achieve it is another matter. China is North Korea’s major remaining lifeline, but unfortunately it is hard to see how to persuade the Chinese to cut off their client state. They may not like Pyongyang’s powerplays, but they are even less wild about the notion of a unified Korea allied with the United States.
Actually, the way to achieve it is clear: The Obama administration should go to the United Nations requesting a resolution condemning North Korean aggression under international law. The U.S. should invoke Chapter VII of the United Nations Charter, declare a breach of international peace and call for a "police action" to preempt further North Korean attacks. This is not idle armchair analysis. South Korea's Foreign Ministry yesterday accused North of violating the 1953 armistice, and Seoul "has decided to sharply bolster its military arsenal in the tense Yellow Sea to counter any possible additional attack from North Korea." And the government has directed the military to revise its rules of engagement. Of course, Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao has already warned that Beijing "opposes any threat of force" on the Korean Peninsula, so we know the difficulties ahead. But we shouldn't blink. Given the Obama administration's soft-peddling responses to global threats so far, the U.S. needs to move beyond the current pleasure cruise gunboat diplomacy now under way off the Korean peninsula. The Washington Post reports on U.S. goals in the naval deployment, "U.S. Aircraft Carrier's Arrival Off Korean Peninsula Also Sends a Message to China":

In dispatching the aircraft carrier USS George Washington to the Korean Peninsula on Wednesday, the Obama administration said it was putting on a show of U.S. support for South Korea.

South Korea was attacked Tuesday by a deadly North Korean artillery barrage, days after the North revealed what could be a new nuclear weapons program, and President Obama said he wanted to stand "shoulder to shoulder" with an American ally.

But the carrier - with 6,000 sailors and aviators and 75 warplanes - has another audience: China. Exasperated with a lack of help from Beijing on the Korean Peninsula, the Obama administration is trying to pressure China to constrain North Korea.
That should be just a start. Developing news earlier today indicated that South Koreans were badly shaken by reports of civilian casualties in the Yeonpyeong attacks. And things won't get better with more patty-cake diplomacy and meaningless démarches from the Hillary Clinton State Department. B.R. Myers' essay at NYT is suggestive: "North Korea Will Never Play Nice." But to be even more explicit: Topple the regime in Pyongyang or be prepared for the next generation of deadly hostilities as Kim Jong-il prepares to cede the stage to his successor.


Stogie said...

Excellent report, Donald. I too have come to the conclusion that the communist government of North Korea must be taken out, though I do not know how to do it without a lot of bloodshed. Their leadership is crazy, downright maniacal, and it would appear only a question of time before NK launches a nuclear attack on the South.

Pat Patterson said...

Maybe the US and Chinese and most assuredly the Japanese should dig into the past and borrow the idea of neutrality guaranteed by all three sides. Austria would be a good example while an armed to the teeth Switzerland would not.

This guarantee would encompass aid for the essential absorption of the DPRK into the ROK because a compromise system between the two systems would be similar to the American Indians trying to play nice with the settlers and colonists encroaching on their territory.

The Vegas Art Guy said...

The next time DPRK does this Obama needs to crater several divisions of their beloved military. It's not like we couldn't do that with a squadron or three of B-52s loaded with J-DAMS.

But he won't we're stuck with Neville Chamberlain and so S. Korea is well and totally screwed.