[EDITORIALS]Don’t blame the AmericansFormer President Kim Dae-jung and the ruling party blame the United States for the North’s nuclear test. This is not true, in short, and this irresponsible argument does not help resolve the current security crisis. Over the past decade, it was North Korea who broke the consensus regarding the North’s nuclear development program. In 1991, North Korea adopted a joint statement on nonproliferation with South Korea while developing nuclear arms behind the scenes. North Korea admitted in 2002 that it had been developing nuclear devices even since 1994, when the United States and North Korea agreed in Geneva on freezing the North’s nuclear program. Building a light-water reactor was delayed because North Korean submarines infiltrated South Korea. But those who blame Washington for the North’s nuclear test are ignoring these facts.
They claim that the United States has only exerted a hard-line policy toward North Korea. But is this true? Together with South Korea, China and Japan, the United States promised that it would provide a huge amount of economic assistance as well as secure the regime if North Korea gives up its nuclear ambitions. However, North Korea, obsessed with possessing nuclear arms, ignored this deal and has crossed the line by conducting a nuclear test. Those who blame Washington do not see that this is the core of the North’s nuclear crisis.
North Korea conducted its nuclear test while being placed under financial sanctions by the United States. If this is the main reason, the United States should lift those sanctions. But this cannot be done because of the personality of the Bush administration. Will it be fair if we blame only the United States, which has no choice but to take such measures in order to keep its financial order, without reprimanding the party that committed the international crime? If North Korea had produced and circulated counterfeit Korean bills, would we have done nothing about it?
The United Nations will set stern measures against North Korea. Apart from that, the United States and Japan are designing separate measures. There is no chance the United States will say, “We will lift the measures against North Korea because it is our fault that the North carried out a nuclear test.” In this situation, if we blame Washington, South Korea will be labeled as the same country as North Korea and will certainly be isolated in international society. Mr. Kim and other politicians try to blame Washington only because they want to get away from criticism that their Sunshine Policy is a failure.