Provoking North Korea
by Stephen Lendman (stephenlendman.org - Home - Stephen Lendman)
America has been hostile toward North Korea since the Korean peninsula was divided post-WW II, artificially creating two nations from one.
An uneasy armistice persists post Truman's Korean War, North Korea victimized by US viciousness from then to now.
America's rage for war, its hostility toward sovereign independent countries it doesn't control, and its diabolical aim to colonize planet earth, pillage its resources and exploit its people threatens possible nuclear confrontation on the Korean peninsula and elsewhere.
The DPRK threatens no other country. It never preemptively attacked one throughout its history. On Thursday, Defense Secretary Mattis provocatively threatened "strong military consequences if (North Korea) initiates hostilities" - knowing it would only respond if attacked, its legitimate right under international law.
Secretary of State Tillerson said pressure will continue against the DPRK "to end its illegal nuclear and ballistic missile program" - no more "illegal" than America's programs, Israel's and other nations with these capabilities.
Tillerson: "We will remain vigilant against the North Korean threats through our military preparedness."
Fact: No North Korea threat exists, just America's. It's "military preparedness" provocatively prepares for possible war, why the DPRK needs a strong deterrent. Otherwise it's defenseless against US aggression if ordered.
In an interview with the American Prospect days earlier, White House chief strategist Steve Bannon's comment on North Korea clashed with Trump's saying:
"Until somebody solves the part of the equation that shows me that ten million people in Seoul don't die in the first 30 minutes from conventional weapons, I don't know what you're talking about, there's no military solution here…"
In a statement quoted by Pyongyang's state KCNA news agency, Kim Jong-Un said "(t)he United States, which was the first to bring numerous strategic nuclear equipment near us, should first make the right decision and show through actions if they wish to ease tensions on the Korean peninsula and prevent a dangerous military clash."
Beginning Monday, provocative large-scale joint US/South Korea Ulchi-Freedom Guardian military exercises will begin, continuing through end of August - what Pyongyang believes are preparations for war.
Instead of suspending them cooperatively with North Korea freezing its nuclear and ballistic missile tests, as strongly urged by China and Russia, the Trump administration refused, remaining confrontational instead of engaging with the DPRK diplomatically - the only acceptable option.
Joint Chiefs Chairman Dunford provocatively said "(m)y advice to our leadership is that we not dial back our exercises. The exercises are very important to maintaining the ability of the alliance to defend itself."
"As long as the threat in North Korea exists, we need to maintain a high state of readiness to respond to that threat."
Fact: The only regional threat is possible US aggression. China, Russia and South Korea strongly oppose war on the peninsula.
Last week, on his 100th day in office, South Korean President Moon Jae-in said "I say this with confidence. There will be no war on the Korean Peninsula ever again."
"We can't afford to lose all that we've built from the ashes of the Korean War. I will prevent another war at all cost."
Bannon essentially said the same thing, speaking for himself, not Trump or other administration officials.
On Thursday, Russia's Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Maria Zakharova said things seem "spiral(ing) (toward) confrontation…on the Korean peninsula."
Instead of resolving issues diplomatically, we're seeing "just the opposite." Threatened war if launched would be catastrophic, assuring "massive casualties" on both sides of the 38th parallel.
"In our interactions with our Chinese partners, we insist that there is no alternative to a peaceful solution of the range of problems on the Korean peninsula," Zakharova stressed.
China's Defense Ministry issued similar comments. War on the peninsula is unthinkable. Yet it could happen because Washington rejects responsible diplomacy.
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