perhaps you could address the feelings in SK about the current situation with NK and its threat (and I know they threaten often) to go to war with SK.
As I read reactions back “home” I am stunned by how stupid they sound over here ( I completely accept that I might sound as stupid over there). North Korea (NK from now on) may be a 'rogue nation" (whatever that might mean), but as far as anyone in this hemisphere can tell, they are neither suicidal nor stupid. The overseas misunderstandings seem to focus on two Myths
Myth One: NK is ready to nuke SK (or Japan, or the US) without hesitation
Answer: If NK had "no hesitation to nuke anyone" it would have happened long ago. This is their second test.. they have nukes and boats. That's all it would take.
Myth Two: Kim Jong IL (KJI from now on) is some kind of crazy man
Answer: Crazy like a fox. What leader in the world has turned less (no economic base, no real power, starving citizens, an army that can't win) into more international status? He's smarter than the last Bush (by some multiplicative factor) and as sneaky as The Hustler. NK is a nothing country, going nowhere, that still manages to lead bigger countries around by their noses.
They do this kind of thing to BUILD SUPPORT INTERNALLY by representing themselves as always under attack. In a way, NK is the classic Orwellian “1984” country, except that they’ve actually “always been at war with EastAsia (the US)” since “always” in Korea is judged as just past the last war, unless one needs to go back further in order to malign the Japanese.
There may be a third myth in here somewhere (like the horse in the pile of shit) about NK being “ready to revolt” but that’s a different issue
I think KJI still likes cigars and whiskey (this is a metaphor and a fact). If he attacks SK in any meaningful way the Chinese will kill his ass (thus removing tobacco and booze) before the rest of the world gets a chance to. There is also the fact that North Korea is very small and we know exactly where KJI and his friends in power live. Check out this very good article on how even Google can find the apparatchik of North Korea if you think they believe they are invulnerable.
The only, ONLY way NK goes for it is if KJI actually is insane and thinks he can get it done under the radar, by which I mean so quickly that no one can stop it before KJI his bad self is kilt.
I don’t believe either condition is true. To be fair, I live in Seoul, so I might have a betting interest in how this all turns out. ;-)
NK only has just two cards, and they can’t be laid down in the same game.
- They can toast Seoul. That would be the last thing they did, of course, and I believe they know that.
- China loves them as a buffer (but, you know, toast Seoul and that’s gone).
This is a pretty weak hand that KJI has played well. He has to bluster and bluff and the bigger reaction he gets from idiots in the United States (I’m looking at you neo-conservatives. WTF, you can’t have sex unless we’re about to go to war? Go back to your roots, grab the whiskey jar, beat the three-legged dog, and work on that car that will never run) the better he plays outside of the US. And the better he plays in NK itself.
And now his personal stakes are raised. Look at the pictures of him. He’s dying. He wants his stupid Juche revolution to continue. So he’s gonna beat the drums, rally the troops, and line up the future. It’s unlikely he’s pulling the trigger.
If the trigger does get pulled it will unfortunately be one of those retarded but inexorable processes in which one stupid little thing is followed by successively larger ones until the largest stupidity is accomplished.
Human stupidity, not insanity, is the biggest threat here. Cause when it comes to stupidity? We're exponential (existential?) that way!
Here in Seoul, I’ll still be as dead. But it will reassure me that it was due to human stupidity and some slowly built inertial suicide. This kind of end adheres to the rules of physics; I can accept it. What the fuck.. I'm old enough to die for any stupid reason.
Still, most people I know come from that Greek rational tradition. Then the enlightenment supposedly taught us to think.
This is the West’s moment to not get butthurt, to not react, to realize that NK wouldn’t be acting like this at all if their leadership had the slightest notion that they were winning and were going to stay in control.
When NK acts like this it is a sign of weakness, not a sign of strength. And every time, every US administration plays it the other way.
Pat Moynihan got murdered for coming up with the notion of benign neglect. But guess what?
It's called for. Unbury that fat Irish fuck and put him in charge of all of this. Stat!
OTOH, I'd be interested to know if the NKCIA is as lame as the US CIA . If they are, who knows what stupidity they are feeding KJI? And what he might believe is actually possible. If KJI's "intelligence" guys are as retarded as the US ones have been in the last 10 years?
Fuck... I might still end up doing that futile dog-paddle one attempts in a lake of fire.
I have enough soju for tonight. And the bibimbap at the place the cabbies go?
It was fucking brilliant.