With the Winter Olympics in South Korea coming to an end, thankfully without incident, the world is ready to observe just how North Korea repositions themselves.
It wouldn’t be absurd to think that North Korea will take only a brief hiatus before returning to their previous threatening posture, especially when it comes to the bizarre truce only recently enacted between Pyongyang and Seoul. Kim Jong Un was likely desperate for some token of his servitude to display to the world in order to roll back a sanction or two, given the incredible economic distress that comes with actively threatening to annihilate the United States of America.
And, even though the U.S. stood idly by and allowed North Korea’s chummy charade to carry on unquestioned during the games themselves, only a day removed from the Olympic action and we’ve already made our plans for the future of the hermit kingdom known.
Kim Jong Un will not be pleased.
“The White House on Sunday said any discussions with North Korea must lead to an end of Pyongyang’s nuclear program, Reuters reported.
“‘The United States and the world must continue to make clear that North Korea’s nuclear and missile programs are a dead end,’ the White House statement said.”
“South Korea announced that its president, Moon Jae-in, met with a senior official of the North’s ruling Worker’s Party during the closing ceremony of the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang.”
There is a long history of North Korea attempting to “play nice” for months on end, in order to wiggle out of recent economic actions taken against them, but this Olympic stunt was a strange one even for them.
And, adversely, the timing of this statement by the United States is a bold one. By beating North Korea to the media with a message of impassable rigidity, the United States has very deftly reset the game pieces for the next round of moves to fall in their favor. North Korea has only the option to react or not react, with no ability to skew or mutate the conservation whatsoever. They are allowed to say “Yes, we’ll have a seat at that table”, or, “No. Do your damnedest”.
Let’s hope for everyone’s sake they choose the former rather than the latter.