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PostKim-Trump Summit: Will Kim Give Up His Nukes? (Istvan Simon, USA, 06/17/18 5:33 am)
Thanks to David Krieger (June 15) for his analysis of the Singapore summit, a topic I started and had hoped would catch on.
Like David and much of the world, I would like the de-nuclearization of the entire world, not just the Korean peninsula. But unlike David, I have been very skeptical that it can be ever achieved. In fact, I do not believe that Kim Jong Un will give up his nukes, even though he just signed his intention to do so.
Trump wants to give security guarantees and economic aid for Kim to give up his nukes and rockets. But what are his guarantees worth, when just weeks before the summit his administration was so tone-deaf that two high officials, Pence and Bolton, mentioned the Libyan model? Clearly Kim Jong Un would be foolish to give up his nukes, for unlike Gaddafi he has actual nukes not just a nuclear program.
The very reason why North Korea was so determined to get nukes, willing to starve its population and even defy China to get them at any cost, is our invasion of Iraq and that determination was surely reinforced by the overthrow and killing of Gaddafi. But it gets worse. The credibility of the United States is zero in the world because of Trump's irresponsible actions. He withdrew the United States from the Paris accords, he abrogated the Iran nuclear deal, he unilaterally imposed tariffs on our allies. If he treats our allies with such disdain, how can any enemies trust him? The answer is they cannot, should not, and so this entire effort is doomed to fail, never mind all the smiles, or Trump saluting a general of North Korea with whom the United States is still formally at war!
I would like to finish this post with another important point. Let's suppose that I am wrong and that Kim Jong Un actually will destroy his nukes in spite of my skepticism. Secretary Pompeo has been harping at the word "irreversible." I claim It is meaningless and useless. Since Kim has actual nukes, even destroying them would not ever be irreversible, because he has the knowledge and technology to build new ones at any time.
JE comments: Who can walk us through the technology here? Let's suppose Kim gives up his nukes and the machinery to enrich uranium. How long then would it take him to re-boot and build a new bomb, should he desire to? Months? A year or more?
A technicality: the US and North Korea cannot still "formally" be at war, if there never was a declared war to begin with.