[With a tip of my hat to H.L. Mencken.] Now that Democrats are suggesting that we bomb Kim Jong Il’s ballistic showpiece on the launching pad, we only need one more really dumb idea to make the role reversal complete.
“It would be advisable to bring about a much greater intensification of diplomacy, and this may involve direct talks between the United States and North Korea,” said [Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Richard] Lugar, R-Ind.
. . .
“We need to talk directly with North Korea. The sooner we do that, the sooner we’re going to get this resolved,” [Sen. Chuck] Hagel [RINO-NE], the second-ranking Republican on the committee, told CNN’s “Late Edition.”
Right. What a perfect time to ask Kim Jong Il for his list of demands. Or, as Japanese Foreign Minister Taro Aso put it,
“How can you put up a rocket and then demand talks? That’s intimidation, and makes it most difficult for America to engage in talks.”
There is absolutely nothing complex about this. We have been negotiating with the North Koreans for the last 20 years. We’ve tried it unilaterally, bilaterally, multilaterally. Various parties have given them aid, cash, food, oil. We’ve offered them light-water reactors, diplomatic recognition, and a peace treaty. We looked the other way while they eliminated two million of their own people. In those cases when we reached limited agreements, North Korea broke them. The only question is how long it takes to catch them.
It is always a temptation for a rich and lazy nation,
To puff and look important and to say: ““
“Though we know we should defeat you, we have not the time to meet you.
We will therefore pay you cash to go away.”
And that is called paying the Dane-geld;
But we’ve proved it again and again,
That if once you have paid him the Dane-geld
You never get rid of the Dane.
Really, I think this is all really not so much Bill Clinton’s fault as Al Gore’s. Gore’s is largely responsible for purging paper bags from our stores, meaning that when underinformed and overly excitable Washington luminaries read the paper, they have nothing to breathe into.
Get a grip. It’s called the Taepodong II because there has already been a Taepodong I. Yes, the range and payload are greater, and maybe in a few years this will represent a threat to the United States. And? Deterrence protected us against nuclear missiles for decades, but nothing — especially diplomacy and payoffs — will separate Kim Jong Il from his WMD or stop him from selling them to terrorists. Direct talks will not reduce that threat. The threat will only end when the regime ends.