North Korea: Trump’s Showmanship, sprout of peace and Post-Olympic guess

Photocredit: Getting images

By Ifeanyi Igwe

The gauzy images of a unified Korean team, synchronised cheerleaders and high profile delegate from North Korea got peace enthusiasts wondering whether a thaw in relationship between the Koreans were in store.

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Unfortunately, as the two nations were having good time with a visiting high profile North Korean delegate, Kim Yong Chol, who maintained that his country was prepared to engage in negotiations with the United States and the enthusiastic Moon welcoming the move, Donald trump slapped his “heaviest sanctions ever” on North Korea.

Speaking to a congregation of political leaders during a Conservative Political Action Conference, Trump remarked that the sanctions were an attempt to curb North Korea’s nuclear ambition.

He added a warning that if the strategy fails; a phase two that could be “very, very unfortunate for the world” could take shape.

Moreover, analyst warned that that move, just as the smouldering fire of peace was gaining traction between the two Koreas was threatening and disappointing.

They believe that far from the gospel of maximum pressure, the new sanctions will weaken Chinese collaboration with United States which has thus aided United Nations sanction against the North.

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This will be so because some of the companies targeted where Chinese. Of the ships targeted, 28 were registered in China and seven other countries.

It is believed in many circles that Trump was deliberately showing off. He is displaying his hard willingness to continue the old music in the Korean peninsula and a resolve to get the message clear as the South Korean government buys into the North’s olive branch.

It is believed in many circles that Trump was deliberately showing off. He is displaying his hard willingness to continue the old music in the Korean peninsula and a resolve to get the message clear as the South Korean government buys into the North’s olive branch.

The North Koreans did not see it that way, perhaps they thought the sprout of peace was threatened by those sanctions.

Quoting her foreign ministry, North Korea’s state media agency KCNA said “The two Koreas have cooperated together and the Olympics were held successfully, but the U.S. brought the threat of war to the Korean peninsula with large-scale new sanctions on the DPRK ahead of the Olympics closing ceremony.”

In the thinking of the North, a full scale implementation of the shipping sanction will mean that the United States is edging towards an economic blockade which will be an act of war, the state media said.

Though the US has revealed how it intends to implement the sanction. It has dismissed suggestions in some quarters that its navy would forcefully board any ship which is suspected of trading illegally with the North.

Though the information was that if commanded the Navy or Marine warships would deploy small boats carrying troops who are trained in what the Pentagon calls visit, board, search, and seizure operations.

Once aboard, military officials said, the search party would have two options: sweep the ship and turn it back over to its crew or, if ordered by their commanders, seize it.

However, the military has options short of boarding, officials said. It could track suspect vessels, by sea or with P-3 or P-8 surveillance planes, until they make port.

The United States or its allies could then call on that nation to inspect the ship’s cargo to determine whether it violated existing United Nations sanctions.

Meanwhile there are indications that the US and South Korea’s military drill will go on as schedule. Recall that it was postponed until the end of the Olympic Games, a move calculated to assuage the North by Moon

North Korea views such drills with suspicion and as a rehearsal for invasion. It has threatened to return to the trenches if the war game goes on as scheduled.

Nonetheless, the world was shocked on Tuesday as news trickled in that North Korea will accept denuclearization in exchange for security guarantee from the United States.

To many this development sounded like bomb shell but to the few that follow events in the Korean Peninsula, Tuesdays development is a reiterations of the North stance all the while. The difference lies within the periscope of context and language.

The North is simply saying the same thing they have been saying: if we are not secure as a result of US hostile policies towards us we have no option than to develop our own capabilities to counter the threats. But if the threats go away, we will surely put our asernals down because we will not then have any need for them.

Ifeanyi Igwe is a freelance journalist, who harbours a special interest in international politics. He has  written articles for international magazines and newspapers to that effect. He is a graduate of mass communication, University of Nigeria, Nsukka (UNN) in Enugu State.

 

 

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