FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail

How Mr. Kim Came to Declare War on the United States

by CHRISTOPHER BRAUCHLI

Anything you can do I can do better,

I can do anything better than you.

–Irving Berlin, Annie Get Your Gun

Now that North Korea has declared war on the United States it is time for an historical analysis of how we have arrived at this state of affairs.  To do that we must go back at least one month and, for the true history buffs, back as far as 2010 when the United States and South Korea conducted exercises like the ones they are now conducting and for the buffest of all, all the way back to 1951 when members of my generation were given the opportunity to engage in prolonged stays on the Korean peninsula at no personal financial expense, a privilege still accorded more than 28,000 U.S. service personnel.  For our purposes, however a one-month analysis would seem to be more than adequate.  First a bit of perspective on the two principal players-the United States’ Barack Obama and North Korea’s Kim Jong-Un.

Mr. Obama is the president of the United States who has governed the country for more than four years, has a lovely wife and two daughters. He attended school in the United States and received an excellent education that has stood him in good stead while acting as president. Kim Jong-un is the leader of North Korea, sometimes described as the “dear respected Marshal” and the “brilliant commander of Mt. Paektu.” He attended both a private and a public school in Switzerland but the pacific characteristics of that country did not rub off on him nor did his education seem to have stood him in good stead.  He has a young beautiful wife who spends little time in the western limelight.

Following his father’s death in 2011 he became the Supreme Leader of North Korea or, in some North Korean releases “Marshal Kim Jong Un, the greatest ever commander,” thus equaling if not eclipsing both his father and his grandfather.  He is a belligerent sort who has barely, if yet, attained age 30.  Here is the chronology of how it happened that Mr. Kim declared war on the United States.

It started on February 12, 2013, when North Korea conducted a successful nuclear test that greatly annoyed the United States, South Korea and others.  In response to the test, on March 7, 2013, the United Nations Security Council imposed new economic sanctions against North Korea which made Mr. Kim angry.  Accordingly North Korea threatened a “pre-emptive” nuclear strike against the United States.  The next day it cut off its hot line with South Korea and voided its non-aggression pact with South Korea.  (For a complete timeline during March see The Telegraph’s comprehensive timeline published March 30, 2013.)

Alarmed by North Korea’s unpleasant behavior, on March 19th the administration (quite unnecessarily some would say) decided to see how far a nuclear B-2 stealth bomber could fly without landing.  The plane flew non-stop from the United States to the Korean Peninsula and back, dropping inert munitions on a range off South Korea’s coast.  Some thought the administration could have used a calculator to see how far the planes could fly without actually doing it. Of course that would not have had the desired effect described by Gen. Martin E. Dempsey who said:  “Those exercises are mostly to assure our allies that they can count on us to be prepared and to help them deter conflict.”  Although actions speak louder than words it is unclear that these actions did more than words could have done.

What is clear is that the flight really upset Mr. Kim.  To make matters worse and add insult to injury, on March 25th South Korea said that if North Korea “provokes South Korea . . . . the South may respond with a military strike on [among other things] statues of the North’s nation founder, Kim Il-sung and his son Kim Jong-il.”  That plus the mock bombing raid was too much for Mr. Kim.

He said North Korea was now  in a state of war with the United States (even though the U.S. had not threatened the statues) and a statement was issued that said in part:  “Now the heroic service personnel and all other people of the DPRK are full of surging anger at the U.S. imperialists’ reckless war provocation moves and the strong will to turn out as one in the death-defying battle with the enemies and achieve a final victory of the great war for national reunification true to the important decision made by Kim Jong Un. . . . They [U.S.] should clearly know that in the era of Marshal Kim Jong Un, the greatest-ever commander, all things are different from what they used to be in the past.  The hostile forces will clearly realize the iron will, matchless grit and extraordinary mettle of the brilliant commander of Mt. Paektu that the earth cannot exist without Songun Korea.  Time has come to stage a do-or-die final battle. . . .”  This is only a short segment from a many hundred-word declaration.

In a war of words with the United States Mr. Kim is the clear winner and the United States should acknowledge defeat by withdrawing from the field of battle.  Insofar as the war of belligerent gestures is concerned it’s a tie.  One can’t help wondering what would happen if the United States and its allies withdrew from that battle as well.  We’ll probably never know.

More articles by:

CounterPunch Magazine

minimag-edit

bernie-the-sandernistas-cover-344x550

zen economics

June 22, 2017
Jason Hirthler
Invisible Empire Beneath the Radar, Above Suspicion
Ken Levy
Sorry, But It’s Entirely the Right’s Fault
John Laforge
Fukushima’s Radiation Will Poison Food “for Decades,” Study Finds
Ann Garrison
Jeremy Corbyn, the Labour Party, and the UK’s Socialist Surge
Phillip Doe
Big Oil in the Rocky Mountain State: the Overwhelming Tawdriness of Government in Colorado
Howard Lisnoff
The Spiritual Death of Ongoing War
Stephen Cooper
Civilized, Constitution-Loving Californians Will Continue Capital Punishment Fight
Bruno Rodríguez Parrilla
Cuba Will Not Bow to Trump’s Threats
Ramzy Baroud
Israel vs. the United Nations: The Nikki Haley Doctrine
Tyler Wilch
The Political Theology of US Drone Warfare
Colin Todhunter
A Grain of Truth: RCEP and the Corporate Hijack of Indian Agriculture
Robert Koehler
When the Detainee is American…
Jeff Berg
Our No Trump Contract
Faiza Shaheen
London Fire Fuels Movement to Challenge Inequality in UK
Rob Seimetz
Sorry I Am Not Sorry: A Letter From Millennials to Baby Boomers
June 21, 2017
Jim Kavanagh
Resist This: the United States is at War With Syria
James Ridgeway
Good Agent, Bad Agent: Robert Mueller and 9-11
Diana Johnstone
The Single Party French State … as the Majority of Voters Abstain
Ted Rall
Democrats Want to Lose the 2020 Election
Kathy Kelly
“Would You Like a Drink of Water?” Please Ask a Yemeni Child
Russell Mokhiber
Sen. Joe Manchin Says “No” to Single-Payer, While Lindsay Graham Floats Single-Payer for Sick People
Ralph Nader
Closing Democracy’s Doors Until the People Open Them
Binoy Kampmark
Barclays in Hot Water: The Qatar Connection
Jesse Jackson
Trump Ratchets Up the Use of Guns, Bombs, Troops, and Insults
N.D. Jayaprakash
No More Con Games: Abolish Nuclear Weapons Now! (Part Four)
David Busch
The Kingdom of Pence–and His League of Flaming Demons–is Upon Us
Stephen Cooper
How John Steinbeck’s “In Dubious Battle” Helps Us Navigate Social Discord
Madis Senner
The Roots of America’s Identity and Our Political Divide are Buried Deep in the Land
June 20, 2017
Ajamu Baraka
The Body Count Rises in the U.S. War Against Black People
Gary Leupp
Russia’s Calm, But Firm, Response to the US Shooting Down a Syrian Fighter Jet
Maxim Nikolenko
Beating Oliver Stone: the Media’s Spin on the Putin Interviews
Michael J. Sainato
Philando Castile and the Self Righteous Cloak of White Privilege
John W. Whitehead
The Militarized Police State Opens Fire
Peter Crowley
The Groundhog Days of Terrorism
Norman Solomon
Behind the Media Surge Against Bernie Sanders
Pauline Murphy
Friedrich Engels: a Tourist In Ireland
David Swanson
The Unifying Force of War Abolition
Louisa Willcox
Senators Bernie Sanders, Cory Booker, Tom Udall Back Tribes in Grizzly Fight
John Stanton
Mass Incarceration, Prison Labor in the United States
Robert Fisk
Did Trump Denounce Qatar Over Failed Business Deals?
Medea Benjamin
America Will Regret Helping Saudi Arabia Bomb Yemen
Brian Addison
Los Angeles County Data Shows Startling Surge in Youth, Latino Homelessness
Native News Online
Betraying Indian Country: How Grizzly Delisting Exposes Trump and Zinke’s Assault on Tribal Sovereignty and Treaty Rights
Stephen Martin
A Tragic Inferno in London Reflects the Terrorism of the Global Free Market
Debadityo Sinha
Think Like a River
FacebookTwitterGoogle+RedditEmail