Inter-Korean conflict: Extremists, hysterics, and sober voices

The sober tone of American newspapers the New York Times and the Washington Post attracts attention against the background of bellicose messages on the part of the South Korean defense minister together with the commander of the US occupation troops in South Korea. The above-mentioned newspapers published articles devoted to the Saturday's clash. We have to say that their articles are close to the point of view of PRAVDA.Ru.

In the article “Line in the Sea Still Provokes Korean Clashes,” the New York Times does not conceal its surprise regarding the mess with the state borderline between the two Koreas. The author of the article, Don Kirk, deprives North Korean fishermen of their opportunity to sail in the sea, and North Korea as a country is deprived of a very relevant food supplies source. The Washington Post wrote: “Competition for the lucrative crab catch might have been a factor.”

The US State Department hurried to “punish” North Korea with the cancellation of top contracts, which were just taking shape. In other words, America indirectly proved the truthfulness of North Korean propaganda (cited in the Washington Post): the USA “was trying to push relations to the brink of war." What does this policy lead to?

Taking into consideration the fact that Pyongyang cannot rely on the allies it had during the period of 1951-1953 (China and Russia), the only security guarantee for North Korea is its missiles, which can cause so-called “unacceptable damage” to a potential aggressor, as it was with the opposition between the USA and the USSR during the Cold War.

It figures that American and South Korean “hawks” are assisting in Pyongyang’s missile program. The same story happened three years ago under the same circumstances, when Sough Korean ships won “the battle,” having sunk a North Korean vessel (in contrast to the current scandal). Western media outlets reported that 30 North Koreans died and 70 were wounded at that time, whereas South Korea had a couple of wounded men. This was a moment of humiliation, and Pyongyang was forced to activate its missile program.

Let’s assume that the USA will get away with it's scheme, in the event that the current conflict aggravates (this is the base of Bush’s policy, actually). However, the irresponsibility of South Korean hawks is striking. Let’s hope that there will not be another Korean war. Otherwise, they will destroy each other so fast our heads will spin. There is one hopeful aspect here: the governments of both Koreas limit themselves to the verbal sparring only; they are not rushing to burn all bridges. South Korean President Kim Dae-jung claimed that he was not going to discontinue the "sunshine policy." However, allowing North Korean fishermen to catch crabs next to their own shores would be the best way to show "sunshine." Needless to say, neither Kim Jong-il nor Kim Dae-jung want the tense situation to esculate; however, this might be the objective of the world's "anti-terrorist" crusader: the USA.

Andrey Krushinsky PRAVDA.Ru Beijing

New York Times graphic

Translated by Dmitry Sudakov

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