10 October 2006

Reaping what Clinton sowed

As time goes by we are seeing more and more how the Clinton's ineptness is becoming a foreign policy nightmare for us. With Kim Jong Il's test of an underground nuclear weapon and their successful launch of missiles into the Sea of Japan three months ago, we're seeing a dangerous escalation of violence in a rogue state. Hillary Clinton, in a classic example of "everything is Bush's fault", claimed yesterday that the North Korea debacle is a result of "Bush's failed policies." The Clintons are good at whitewashing over the facts and ignoring their own incompetence.
Clinton and Madeleine 'Half'-bright kowtowed to North Korea and provided the diminutive dictator with concession after concession. In October of 2000, Albright went to North Korea to cut a missile deal. While pronouncing Kim Jong Il a "jovial and forthcoming and interested and knowledgable" leader, she sat, watched and applauded at the national stadium as North Korea's nuclear and missile programs were floated by. Earlier that year she had declared to dictators world wide that the State Department would no longer call dictatorships "rogue states" but would be termed "states of concern." At that time North Korea proposed that in exchange for cancelling its missile program, the US would pay them $1 billion per year for 3 years, and provide the North Koreans with free satellite launches. Kim Jong Il was, in effect, rewarded for doing whatever he wanted.

From Rich Lowry's book, Legacy:

The US came to believe in 1997 that North Korea had built an underground nuclear facility in Kumchang-ri. The administrtation still dishonestly maintained that all was well with the Agreed Framework. On July 8, 1998, Madeleine Albright told Congress, the Agreed Framework had "frozen North Korea's dangerous nuclear weapons program."
When intelligence about Kumchang-ri became public in August 1998, Albright told frustrated senators at a hearing that she hadn't known about the information until later in July. The head of the Defense Intelligence Agency, present at the hearing, had to interrupt her: "Madame Secretary, that is incorrect." She had been told many months earlier
It was clear by the late 1990's to honest observers that North Korea still had a nuclear weapons program, while it was spreading missile technology far and wide and battening itself on American support.

~Legacy: Paying the price for the Clinton years" (Lowry) p. 242

And yes, it is Clinton's fault for where we are with North Korea.
But an aid policy initiated by the Clinton administration in the mid-1990s to finance two light water nuclear reactors in North Korea puts the isolated communist country on the fast track in the manufacture of nuclear weapons, William R. Graham and Victor Gilinsky told members of the House Policy Committee.

North Korea's missile proliferation has accelerated dramatically since the Clinton-Gore administration began giving aid to the regime in 1994.
"There were no known No-dong missile sales abroad until after the United States signed the so-called Agreed Framework with North Korea," House Speaker Dennis Hastert's North Korea advisory group reported.

But since U.S. aid began, the communist state has sold crucial technology to Iran for the Shahab missile that now threatens U.S. forces and their allies in the Middle East, and for a Pakistani missile in 1998 that disrupted the fragile stability of South Asia.


For once, the New York Times brings in a conservative opinion writer and, of course, he gets it right.

America has three key strategic goals in the wake of the North Korean nuclear test. The first is to enhance the security of those American allies most directly threatened by North Korean nuclear weapons: Japan and South Korea.
The second is to exact a price from North Korea for its nuclear program severe enough to frighten Iran and any other rogue regimes considering following the North Korean path.
The last is to punish China. North Korea could not have completed its bomb if China, which provides the country an immense amount of food and energy aid, had strongly opposed it. Apparently, Beijing sees some potential gain in the uncertainty that North Korea’s status brings. If China can engage in such conduct cost-free, what will deter Russia from aiding the Iranian nuclear program, or Pakistan someday aiding a Saudi or Egyptian one?
~ David Frum (NYTimes)

You know what's going to happen: Bush will say that he's "disappointed" and then go to the UN for sanctions. The UN will vote to criticize North Korea but nothing, in effect, will change. We'll hear admonishments, sanctions, calls for inspectors then more talk, talk, talk. The Democrats are already calling for "talks" to be set up with North Korea.

We should send a few planes into North Korea and bomb their delivery platforms. Talk is cheap but nothing says, "Stop it right now" than a few dozen daisy-cutters raining down on your palace and uranium factories.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Some of the points you make about the Clinton administration's handling of North Korea is true. But why do you give the Bush administration a free ride when it comes to their part in this mess? Clinton's bribing Kim Jong Il didn't work but neither did Bush's "tough guy" posturing. While he ignored the North Korean threat and invaded Iraq under the lie of WMD's,North korea was developing them. The reason North Korea is coducting missle and weapons tests while making threats is because they know the U.S is in no position militarily to challenge them. You talk about conducting a airstrike against their launching facilities. If we do so, we would probably start WWIII. The Koreans still have defense treaties with the Peoples Republic of China. So not only would we be declaring war on the Koreans but the Chinese as well. Not to mention all hell would break loose at the 38th parallel. It would be playing right in the North Koreans hands if we pulled a stupid John Wayne stunt like that. How do we fix this? I'm not sure. I do know UN condemnation means nothing. Sanctions may be the most effective way but they'll only work if China and Russia (The two countries responsible fo them having the technology in the first place.)Agree to cooperate with the rest of the world. There are many people responsible for the situation we are facing with North Korea but to put it squarely at Clinton's feet without acknowledging Bush's hand in this is not only wrong,but also not true.