[August 21, 2015] A few days ago the North Korean army fired a rocket into South Korean territory.1 Many Western experts contend this was just business as usual and nothing will come of it. However, if war were to break out on the Korean peninsula the level of death and destruction would exceed anything experienced in the world since an armistice between the two Koreas was signed in 1953.
For the most part, the incident was reported in the U.S. media but buried deep and for good reason. It follows a common pattern of the North Korean (NK) verbose leadership style ever since its origin as a communist nation in 1948, thus it’s not something interesting. In addition, the U.S. is distracted by a lively political season as numerous presidential candidates try to woe voters with a focus largely on domestic issues.
Today, our nations’ leaders don’t take the North-South Korean dispute seriously. For example, several senior leaders from the U.S. State Department recently noted that there has been no war in over 60 years and therefore none will occur because North Korean leadership knows they cannot win. While this may be a fine analysis, the conclusions do not necessarily follow. Our national leaders don’t have a firm grasp on the antagonism between these two nations and the NK leadership may not be interested in “winning” a conflict but from gaining concessions.
The communist nation of NK – more accurately a socialist dictatorship – considers its military as its priority2 and closely guards its isolationism as a form of protection against the West’s “decadence” and particularly against American influence. While the NK leadership hates the South Korean government, it saves its most blunt hatred for the United States.3 American leadership believes nothing will serious will occur ontheir watch and have adopted a policy of de facto appeasement.
South Korean and U.S. national leaders should consider a public denunciation of the NK army’s aggressive actions. We discovered that appeasement does not work against a determined enemy. Just ask Europe how the appeasement of Adolf Hitler worked out in 1939.
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- A mere 39 years ago, two American Army officers were murdered by the NK army in the Korean Demilitarized Zone. This attack is a good example of how the hatred fostered by NK leadership is internalized by the average army soldier. http://www.globalsecurity.org/military/ops/paul_bunyan.htm