By Craig Andresen – Right Side Patriots on American Political Radio
Given the complexity of the issue itself, perhaps the question is, in fact, too simple.
In a recent Facebook comment to that very question, John Hawkins, the owner of Right Wing News, answered that simple question in what one would assume was a well thought out way by stating that, “Not unless we were very sure a nuclear attack was coming. Reason being…A conventional strike would lead to Seoul being leveled almost no matter what we do. A nuclear strike is a terrible post WW2 precedent to set, rains fallout on South Korea and China and could alarm China enough (are they nuking us or North Korea) to cause them to launch nukes. Our best options would be sanctions, blockades and working with China (which Trump is having some success doing) to get the Norks to get rid of their program.”
As I said, one would assume that to be a well thought out response, but assumptions are often, and in this case, most definitely wrong…and let me count the ways…
“Not unless we were very sure a nuclear attack was coming?” How much more sure do we have to be? North Korea, thanks to Bill Clinton and his wife Hillary, have nuclear weapons, and just a few days ago, it became clear that the rogue North Korean regime has made their nukes small enough to be fit onto a ballistic missile.
And how exactly do we know this?
It’s not just on the say-so of the North Korean rogue regime, and not just in the past week as new sanctions were being put into place as many have stated. Again, those assumptions are 100% wrong. US. intelligence officials have assessed the situation in a report completed last month by the Defense Intelligence Agency…which also raised the number of nuclear weapons in the North Korean arsenal to 60.
Rational thought is that nobody in their right mind would use a nuke as a first strike weapon. The real and present problem with that is that clearly, Kim Jong Un is most definitely not in his right mind. He’s insane, and as only an insane person would employ a nuclear first strike…it doesn’t take any amount of imagination whatsoever to be sure that a nuclear strike from North Korea is coming. The only valid questions regarding such a strike are…when…and where?
Remember, Kim Jong-un wants to make a definitive statement to assert what he believes should be his rightful place on the world stage, and in his warped mind, perhaps the only way to get the rest of the world to take him seriously, is by taking the most drastic action imaginable.
Hawkins goes on to state that “a conventional strike would lead to Seoul being leveled almost no matter what we do.”
I’m not saying that Hawkins is completely wrong in this assessment, however, if he’s right in stating “no matter what we do,” that would indicate that North Korea, and their insane tyrant of a dictator have designs against Seoul and South Korea even if we do nothing at all. As I fully believe that could be the case, are we to wait until the invasion and destruction of South Korea begins before we take any action? That seems to be what Hawkins is indeed proposing.
Hawkins then says, “A nuclear strike is a terrible post WW2 precedent to set, rains fallout on South Korea and China…” Hawkins seems to be providing a response to a scenario that’s not being discussed in any of this, as nobody from the Trump administration has mentioned a nuclear preemptive strike against North Korea being on the table.
While I’m sure a nuclear response to nuclear action, should that be undertaken by Kim Jong Un, is a clear option…nuclear preemption on the other hand, is not a talking point. Then Hawkins continues…”and could alarm China enough (are they nuking us or North Korea) to cause them to launch nukes.”
This is about as close to a patently absurd statement as I have heard in a very long time.
In this day and age, which in fact has existed for well more than half a century, a country like Chia would know, to within a distance that could be measured with a standard one foot ruler, exactly where a nuclear detonation’s ground zero is located. Not only that, upon any nuclear launch, reactive, not preemptive as that option isn’t worth discussing from our vantage point, would be something of which the U.S. would inform other nations of directly before the strike takes place.
Then Hawkins really jumps the proverbial shark by stating that, “Our best options would be sanctions, blockades and working with China (which Trump is having some success doing) to get the Norks to get rid of their program.”
Perhaps Hawkins is unaware of the simple fact that we have had sanctions in place, against North Korea…continuously…since 1953.
I would ask John Hawkins, or any others who prefer the most ineffective strategy imaginable, why they believe sanctions actually work. They don’t, except for the fact that they have an adverse effect on the people and national economies of a sanctioned nation while their tyrants in control go happily about their business, in this case becoming armed with nuclear weapons despite the sanctions in place against them.
The problem with blockades is that countries like North Korea have trade partners who will, no doubt, challenge a blockade. Blockades also tend to have a slightly better chance of working on island countries, and North Korea has a shared border with China and Russia, two of their biggest trade partners. While President Trump has had modest success in getting China to apply an element of pressure against North Korea, don’t for one minute believe that China will agree to any sort of all out blockade.
Also, when it comes to blockades, and sanctions, consider the total lack of success both of those tactics had against Cuba and/or Iran. While both of those country’s economies and their people suffered, both Iranian and Cuban leaders continued to go about their business.
It is the final few words that Hawkins wrote in his response to the all too simple question regarding whether or not a preemptive strike is called for that smacks of pure delusion…Hawkins, like so many others believe that somehow, a combination of further sanctions paired with some sort of blockade will, “get the Norks (North Koreans) to get rid of their (nuclear) program.”
Not only has no country with nuclear weapons ever given up their “program” but we’re dealing with North Korea’s Kim Jong Un here, a man-child, certifiably insane who is hell bent on holding the civilized world hostage along with his equally insane co-rogue regime in Iran.
But if Kim Jong-un is attempting to hold the rest of the world hostage, and that is exactly what he’s trying to do…what ransom does he expect for his efforts?
Clearly, if all he wanted is sanctions removed to enhance his country’s economic standing…that could have been easily accomplished by not endeavoring to build a nuclear weapons stockpile and easing both restrictions and human rights abuses on his people.
However, in ramping up his quest for nuclear weapons under the Obama regime’s never watchful eye, because Obama knew Kim Jong-un would share his technological gains with Iran, what the insane North Korean despot really wants is military power.
Kim Jong-un wants the world to bow before him in fear, and under a Hillary Clinton presidency, which would have followed the Obama regime’s dream of a nuclear weapons supply line between North Korea and Iran, he would have had exactly what he so desired. However, with Trump in the Oval Office, and a reinvigorated U.S. military…Kim Jong-un’s quest has hit a wall of resistance.
In short, not only is the notion that Kim Jong-un would, for any reason imaginable, or unimaginable, get rid of the only thing that, in his mind would make him relevant on the world stage lacking any perspective whatsoever, the fact is that any and all who find themselves in the Hawkins line of thinking camp need to admit that they have no grip on reality at all.
There are five facts here that must be front and center at this point where North Korea is concerned…1) North Korea has at least 60 nuclear weapons, 2) North Korea has made their nuclear weapons small enough to be mounted on their ballistic missiles 3) At this point, North Korea’s ballistic missiles can easily reach Japan, or their stated first strike target of the U.S. Territory of Guam 4) A maniacal and insane man-child with a chip on his shoulder, a severe case of relevancy envy, an extremely short fuse and delusions of grandeur holds the button to those nuclear weapons, and 5) it is not a matter of if Kim Jong Un will push that button, it is a matter of when.
General Mad Dog Mattis has publicly stated that a war with North Korea would be catastrophic, and when one combines that with the basic battle plan as put forth by the military, one would think that a case was being made not to engage North Korea at all, but that simply is not the case.
Any military plan, basic or otherwise, always projects the worst-case scenario, which is what we have here. To do otherwise would be a fool’s errand.
While many in the halls of congress, mostly from the left, but including the squishy on the right, are painting dooms day pictures all the way up to an outbreak of WWIII, that would not be the case. For those who have been busy posting on social media that China and Russia would engage against the U.S. should we engage against North Korea with anything stronger than the passive-aggressive approach championed by the United Nations and their toothless sanctions approach, here comes your reality check.
China’s official state newspaper, last Friday, made it clear that should there be a war between the U.S. and the rogue regime in North Korea, China would remain neutral if North Korea launches any attack that would threaten the United States. In other words, should North Korea start the engagement, China would stay out of it.
The newspaper, which is state run but claims not to speak for the state also said that should the U.S. attempt regime change in North Korea, China should prevent it from happening. In Other words, if we start it with a preemptive strike, China would get involved.
And what of Russia, North Korea’s only other neighbor aside from South Korea?
Russia’s Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov called for “maximum restraint” in a meeting a week ago with his North Korean counterpart, and that is a significant statement because while Russia and North Korea are allies and trade partners, Russia currently lacks influence directly north of the 38th parallel. Russia, in fact, is much more likely to follow China’s lead in this matter.
To be clear, both China and Russia, as signaled by their votes to bring sanctions against North Korea, are trying to put distance between themselves and the insane madman, Kim Jong-un because being closely associated with a rogue nation, and the mental case who runs it is bad for their business.
North Korea’s only ally likely to immediately be drawn in would be Iran, and their involvement would most likely be action against Israel, which would be a giant mistake on their part.
As we have reported time and time again, North Korea and Iran have been sharing nuclear ambitions, nuclear technology and the same insane approach to hold the civilized world hostage. The last thing Iran should want to do is strike out against Israel, because that would most likely be the last thing Iran ever has the chance to do.
Defense Secretary Mattis has indicated that the U.S. is ready to counter any action taken by North Korea and President Trump issued a statement last Friday via Twitter saying, “Military solutions are now fully in place, locked and loaded, should North Korea act unwisely. Hopefully Kim Jong Un will find another path!”
I’ll get back to “another path” in a moment.
While many, including some supposedly on our side of the aisle are decrying President Trump’s harsh words, they are completely off the mark. The only way to deal with the ilk of Kim Jong-un is by first, not appearing weak in the face of his insane threats, and then by not backing down should he carry out even one of those threats. The fact that our President is ready to match the rhetoric, and that our military is ready to overmatch any ill-advised North Korean actions is sending a message to our enemies, and those of our allies who no longer felt respect for our stance on international matters, that the Obama regime’s era of cowardice, appeasement and outright support of our enemies is a thing of the past, and a reinvigorated era of American strength and positioning on the world stage is at hand.
Not only should the rogue regimes of North Korea and Iran be rethinking their combined positions regarding world domination, but so too should the U.N. be rethinking their support of rogue regimes and the despots of the world.
While the war of words is on, while North Korea continues to issue one threat after another, now in desperation, and while President Trump has his administration working behind the scenes with China to put something of a diplomatic squeeze on North Korea’s rogue regime and insane despot…a preemptive strike may well not be necessary, but our military stands ready, and clearly willing to finish whatever the despot starts.
But China is not the only entity with which the Trump administration is working to solve the problem that is North Korea, and this is where the rogue regime has “another path” from which to choose.
In the final months of his regime, Obama placed some sanctions on North Korea, basically to bolster his dubious legacy, but those sanctions infuriated Kim Jong-un who thought he had a green light from Obama to expand his nuclear ambitions through his alliance with Iran. Up until July of 2016, there was something called the “New York channel,” which was a backdoor diplomatic communications corridor of sorts between North Korea and the U.S. Department of State which ran through the U.N., allowing talks to take place even though no formal diplomatic ties between the U.S. and North Korea exist.
The “New York channel” was shut down when Obama placed new sanctions on North Korea, but…over the past few months, not days, is has been reopened which facilitated the release of the gravely ill, or injured Otto Warmbier, who died shortly after arriving in Ohio after being held by the North Koreans for more than a year.
Those involved in the “New York channel” from North Korea’s diplomatic side of things don’t seem as hell-bent on the same agenda of military might as does Kim Jong-un, in that they are, by many reports, working to secure the release of other Americans being held by the rogue regime they represent. Some fear that because of the highly charged war of words between Kim Jong-un and President Trump, that backdoor line of communications could once again close…but if North Korea’s diplomatic corps wants both peace and prosperity in their corner of the world, regardless of what their despotic leader wants…in combination with efforts that we know include China…the rhetoric and the tensions could well calm down without a shot being fired, but only if Kim Jong-un completely, and varifiably ends his nuclear weapons program never to return to it again.
That, of course, all depends on the insane tyrant, Kim Jong-un, and know that it will not be sanctions or blockades that bring such a result about, it will be force, applied by the U.S. and North Korea’s allies, and the threat of standing alone against the U.S. should he chose the military path that does it.
So…to answer the all too simple question, with a complex answer…no, a preemptive strike is not necessary against North Korea…because a reactive strike of overwhelming proportions would more than suffice if the insane despot of North Korea tries to make good on his threats, and because there are more than enough lines of negotiation open behind the rhetorical scenes at this point to turn the situation in a calmer direction from which real progress can be made in removing the nuclear threat from the Korean peninsula altogether down the road.
The ball is in North Korea’s court, and while Kim Jong-un continues to issue threats from a position of desperation, President Trump continues to work toward a resolution both from a position of negotiation and overwhelming power.
My advice to the insane North Korean despot…do not test President Trump’s resolve…it will not end well for you.
For more on North Korea and other scenarios, please read my RIGHT SIDE PATRIOTS partner and friend, Diane Sori’s, op-ed in the Patriot Factor by clicking here!!
Copyright © 2017 Craig Andresen / thenationalpatriot.com
RIGHT SIDE PATRIOTS…LIVE!
Tonight, Tuesday, August 15th from 7 to 9pm on American Political Radio, RIGHT SIDE PATRIOTS Craig Andresen and Diane Sori discuss all things North Korea, and important news of the day.
Hope you can tune in at: http://listen.samcloud.com/w/73891/American-Political-Radio#history