United States of America and the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea haven’t experienced formal diplomatic relationships because of the ‘bloody’ Korean Warfare which formally concluded in 1953. After that, U.S.-North Korean relationships have been about as successful and enjoyable as the ties that bind Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump. And for some in Washington, that’s fine; with few exclusions of course!
Sanctioning North Korea because of its nuclear weapons research & development program, ballistic missile ‘test’ activity, or egregious human rights abuses is something every politician will acknowledge. In the event that you want to get the most conservative Republican & most liberal Democrat alongside one another in the same room, all you have to do is discuss about atrocities of North Korean leadership.
Kim Jong-un’s narrative is to totally cut every connection with the U.S. representatives, however, is a daring and probably a miscalculated move that won’t only give rise to an unhealthy relationship but will also make the situation a whole lot worse but may possibly also lead to rise in political & security concerns in the Korean Peninsula.
A tit-for-tat between Whitehouse and Ryongsong Residence is not new for both the sides. It’s beyond recognition, in the end, for the American Administration to shy away from any positive development in relationship with a state that threatens to turn Washington, DC into a cloud of nuclear rubble. History within the last couple of decades and through successive Democratic and Republican administrations points to a North Korean problem that seems immune to every policy put across the table. International as well as economic sanctions through the U.N. Security Council, isolation, containment, “strategic perseverance,” occasional discussions & hazards of military pressure have all resulted in an equally undesired solution: Pyongyang with a rapidly increasing nuclear weapons stockpile. Consequently, so, Presidents George H.W. Bush, Bill Clinton, and George W. Bush, Barack Obama all left office frustrated in their dealings with the Kim dynasty. President Donald Trump might follow in their footsteps.
The normal routine of action-counter action, however, has been especially pronounced this year. With every belligerent action from the North Koreans comes a reply from the western world that only angers Kim and his clique further. Conducting series of ballistic missile assessments and the North’s 4th underground nuclear test explosion in January gave rise to a severe round of recrimination from the U.S. First time in 3 years, the U.N. Security Council approved a strong resolution with China’s support that could mandate inspections of most of the cargo into and out of the DPRK. Nonetheless it was the Treasury Department’s initiative to slap sanctions on Kim Jong-un individually “for having involved in, facilitated, or been accountable for an misuse or violation of human rights,” that pushed Kim on his toes.
Slicing off Pyongyang’s New York channel may well not seem to be a huge a major deal breaker in the grand scheme of things. Over the bright aspect, at least North Korean officials were wise enough to avoid violence as retaliation.
But Kim’s decree is in most cases highly consequential; the DPRK’s delegation at U.N. HQ has been a powerful point of contact before for possible nuclear discussions between North Korea, the U.S. and the Six-Party group. Options have been explored, initial discussions and words have been exchanged with North Korean diplomats stationed in New York and situations that may have spiraled into a lot more serious were lowered to a degree by leveraging the DPRK delegation. At the minimum, North Korea’s everlasting mission in NY afforded America with a much better knowledge of a country that referred by U.S. intelligence as a Black-hole.
Last nail in the coffin by Kim has to be the severing the communication line between U.S. and North Korean officials. It may well not be popular in a town that is utilized to demonizing the North Koreans, however the U.S. would be best served by signaling to Kim’s circle that Washington won’t continue this circle of escalation and is also inclined to pare again the strain if Pyongyang is prepared to reciprocate.
Sometimes staving off further deterioration means taking the effort through a vibrant diplomatic gamble. We might be at that time now with the North Koreans. The time will be the true spectator!