Why is North Korea so against the US
Sunday was a day of anger for North Korea's authoritarian government. She published three angry statements. One came from Kim Yo-jong, the influential sister of ruler Kim Jong-un. It was directed against the South Korean government because it had again not prevented activists from flying balloons with texts critical of the regime to the north ("intolerable provocation"). The other two statements came from the State Department in Pyongyang and were directed against the United States.
The regime condemned Foreign Ministry spokesman Ned Price's statement that North Korea was "one of the most repressive and totalitarian states in the world". And because US President Joe Biden counted the small nuclear power among the "serious threats to the security of the US and the world" in his latest government statement, Kwon Jong-gun, director general of the US affairs department, announced: "The US -The head of government made a big mistake. "
Unfriendliness is part of the business in the relationship between the communist party dictatorship and a free market economy. But North Korea's new tirades didn't just follow usual US criticism. Kwon's statement was also in response to Biden's team embarking on a new North Korea strategy. Spokeswoman Jen Psaki confirmed on Friday that "we have completed the review of our DPRK policies".
DPRK is the English abbreviation for Democratic People's Republic of Korea, the official name of North Korea. And the review of the DPRK policy was one of Biden's first projects after he took office. Because of the conflict with China, security policy in East Asia is important to Biden. And it was clear that he had to change something after the spectacular diplomacy of his predecessor Donald Trump.
Trump met Kim three times, but it didn't work
Trump had met with Kim Jong-un three times in 2018 and 2019 and gave the impression that he could move Kim to a "grand bargain", a trade in sanctions against nuclear weapons. It did not work.
The US partners South Korea and Japan were involved in the review. South Korea's influence in particular was likely to have been important. The government of Democratic President Moon Jae-in stands for a course of rapprochement. And the new US strategy is based on the understanding that rapprochement is important. As Vice President under Barack Obama, Joe Biden once supported the concept of "strategic patience". This provided for: pressure through sanctions and no talks without a binding relenting to the end of the nuclear weapons program. It did not work.
"Our goal remains the complete denuclearization of the Korean peninsula," said Jen Psaki. But: "With the understanding that the last four administrations have not achieved this goal, our policy will not focus on achieving a grand bargain, nor will it rely on strategic patience." They want a "coordinated, practical approach that is open to diplomacy with the DPRK and that will sound out".
Independent professionals are impressed. Patrick Cronin from the Hudson Institute in Washington, for example, praised the news agency Yonhap: "After careful consideration, the US government keeps its options open without sacrificing the interests of the US or its allies." But how exactly the new policy would work was not clear. And whether it will make Korea a nuclear-weapon-free zone?
The goal is very far away. Pyongyang does not give the impression of wanting to give in. Senior Official Kwon's statement said: "Now that the keynote of the new American DPRK policy is clear, we will be forced to press for appropriate action. And in time the US will find itself in a very grave situation. "
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