24 1 min 8 yrs

And Russia too.

Nope, no idea. I can’t even think why we have an embassy in North Korea. For the record, the Foreign Office has declined to evacuate embassy staff, who must be really chuffed about that.

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  1. Never in our lifetime has there been a government as insane as this N Korean regime.

    I do not think that they are rational. I don’t think that they can be negotiated with. And anything is possible. Anything bad, that is.

  2. The President Kim Jon-un
    (Associate of Applied Science Degree in Barbering and Cosmetology -failed)
    is, despite appearances, very young.
    Either he is trying to prove himself or he is being manipulated.
    North Korea is such a controlled and repressed society that inwardly they must be crying out for freedom and prosperity. But how?
    Maybe this crisis will provide the pretext for just such a change.
    (Or we could ask Petr to go talk some sense into them..

  3. A militarised state with nuclear weapons is led by a 20-something with a mental age of 12.

  4. In the end it’s all bluster, designed either to enhance Yung Fat Kim’s reputation at home or to screw some more bags of rice from the Great Satan.

    Going to war isn’t about talk, it’s about mobilisaton and logistics, moving troops, armour and aircraft, building up stocks of arms, building supplies of oil and fuel and food.

    Right now US satellites must be bumping into each other over NK, spies will be tapped for every bit of info and listening posts will have the volume at 11, yet there’s not a peep about actual mobilisation in NK. It’s just big talk.

  5. Pete,
    It might be all bluster. There again if by some horrible miscalculation China gets dragged in it could turn quite nasty. China is flexing its military muscles as well as its computer skills.

  6. China has had the opportunity to display leadership in the region on this issue, but they have not done so.

    This may be because the Chinese military does not answer to the Chinese civilian leadership. The civilians have long been dissatisfied with NK’s provocations, but the military may be fine with it.

  7. I’m surprised China allowed NK to develop nukes in the first place. That was always going to be a possible blackmailing tool against Peking.

    Agit8ed –

    There might be a misculation. If everyone’s jumpy then a minor border skirmish could go big very quickly. It’s still the case though that wars take alot of planning and involve alot of noise and movement just to get ready. If the Norks really were gearing up then that would have been noticed.

  8. ( I said this before but it must be caught in the spotty spam filter )

    I’ve heard that China’s civilian leadership does -not- control the military there.

    And that could be part of the problem. The Chinese military may be more accepting of the lunatic next door.

    The Chinese civilian govt is furious at the endless NK provocation and drama, but they’re not the only power there.

  9. oh hell I said some of this twice.

    Any change in NK’s governance would be of benefit to a starved, oppressed population.

  10. “China should invade, de-capitate the regime and remove the nuclear weapons.”

    I think North Korea suits China’s purposes for now.
    Don’t forget (as many Liberals prefer to do) China is busy “assimilating” Tibet. The Chinese have a huge population to keep cowed and contented. The leadership will do whatever is in China’s best interests.

  11. China is always said to crave stability. But here they create major instability.

    They may think its fun to create problems for the US and Japan, but they’re also creating problems for a South Korea that they actually get along OK with.

    It should be in their long term interest to broker a deal whereby Korea is reunited, the North is demilitarized, US forces leave the South in large numbers, and the entire region is richer and calmer.

  12. I think part of China’s long term strategy is to become the dominant leader of a unified Asia.

  13. There won’t ever be a unified Asia.

    The Koreans / Japanese hate one another more than any two European groups do, and the Vietnamese won’t be bending the knee to the Chinese anytime soon.

    They can hope for a hegemony, but the Chinese antics in the South China Sea and the Japanese islands are actually pushing the neighbors to America and away from China.

    China has increasing clout, but but unity won’t happen.

  14. I think China has all kinds of strategies to achieve their aims, It doesn’t have to be a military one.

  15. They’ve got a lot of control over the small Indochinese countries ( ex Vietnam ) to their south – see above.

  16. Phantom,
    I think that as the world’s resources become seriously depleted we will see all kinds of weird things happening. Nations will be desperate to survive and feed their populations. We may well see all kinds of alliances formed. China’s peaceful invasion/expansion in Africa is a case in point.

  17. Right,
    It’s time for bed.
    Kinda quiet tonight.
    I miss our American friend… 🙂

  18. But why does the US provide NK with supplies and then tell Japan not to mention it when the Japanese raised questions about the flights to NK and equipment carried?


    The U.S. State Department even warned the Foreign Ministry against making further inquiries, saying they would harm bilateral relations, the sources said.

    U.S. military planes flew from an air base in Guam to Pyongyang and back on April 7, 2012, and again on a longer visit lasting from Aug. 18-20, the sources said.

  19. Agit – so you don’t question that the US sent equipment to North Korea? Tell you what – why don’t you do a bit of thinking and work out why the US would send equipment to North Korea just a few weeks before North Korea starts stomping about a bit.

  20. Allan,
    I learnt last night that u2 planes had been flying over North Korea, but John Kerry said he couldn’t tell me any more than that.
    So I thought you might know?

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