North Korea’s indecent proposalNorth Korea abruptly proposed a dialogue with the United States through a spokesman statement yesterday by the National Defense Commission. It asked for talks with senior U.S. officials so they could discuss matters from easing military tension to changing the armistice agreement into a peace treaty to building “a world without nuclear arms.” North Korea asked the U.S. to decide when and where. The North is trying hard to show it is more than willing to have dialogue with the world. However, it doesn’t seem sincere.
The statement emphasized the U.S. is culprit for the recently heightened tension around the Korean Peninsula. It also said the U. S. started the Korean War and systematically destroyed the armistice agreement. It is the North’s attempt to avoid the responsibility for the recently heightened tension by distorting the facts. It has been comprehensively acknowledged over the last several dozen years that the Korean War was started by Kim Il Sung’s surprise invasion under the approval of China and the USSR. Since 1953, when the armistice agreement was signed, North Korea has violated it over 420,000 times. It also unilaterally declared the agreement dead two months ago.
North Korea seems to have intentions to justify its nuclear arms development by arguing such false statements. Pyongyang is also saying its nuclear arms are to defend itself against the nuclear threat from the U.S. As a result, the North says the U.S. should stop its nuclear threats first if it wants to denuclearize the Korean Peninsula.
Pyongyang decided to develop nuclear arms because it knew well that as a closed despotic country it is hard to survive. It is impossible to keep its regime without serious violations of human rights. The North chose nuclear arms development as a way to avoid opening to the world. Furthermore, by forcing neighboring countries through nuclear threats to assuage it with economic assistance, the North attempts to revive its already bankrupt economy.
North Korea hopes to strike a deal with the U. S. while refusing six-party talks. It would not go back to the talks which are based on the assumption of a denuclearized North. It rather wants to start a dialogue for denuclearizing the peninsula along with nuclear disarmament of the U.S. as well.
Glyn Davies, the U.S. special representative for North Korea policy, said one day before Pyongyang’s statement that the U. S. will not accept North Korea as a nuclear-armed state and will not reward it just for coming back to talks. He seemed to say if the North wants dialogue with the U.S., it should take actions to show its sincerity in denuclearizing. China has kept continuously emphasized denuclearization of the North. If they really want to talk with the U.S. to bring peace to the peninsula, the North already knows what it should do.