Facts are Stubborn Things

The current situation with North Korea is nothing new, and is not something that is a direct result of the Bush administration.

I say this despite claims from Democrats who have stated otherwise, such as Sen. Menendez (D) who said “Bush went to sleep at the switch [about North Korea] while he pursued his narrow agenda in Iraq.”

I find it interesting that the Democrats blame the entire situation with North Korea on President Bush, and as Sen. McConnell (R) said, “Listening to some Democrats, you’d think the enemy was George Bush, not Kim Jong Il.”

The unraveling situation in North Korea is in part a result of the plans attempted during the years of the Clinton administration. In 1994 there was a plan that was negotiated between the United States and North Korea that exchanged economic support for a cessation of nuclear activities. This proposal by President Clinton was for North Korea to stop nuclear research, and in return our country would give them 500,000 tons of free fuel oil, as well as two nuclear power plants at a construction cost of 4 billion dollars.

The agreement was broken repeatedly by North Korea. Each time the Clinton administration kept trying the same negotiation strategy of “economic handouts” over again only to see the Koreans taking the aid, removing the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) inspectors, and furthering their nuclear research. The continual offering of “enticements” and having them taken without any adherence to negotiations resulted in the same failures as each time before. The Arms Control Association stated that they believe based on compiled data that “North Korea unofficially renewed their nuclear weapons research in 1998”, three years before President Bush was in office.

President Bush has repeatedly said with clarity that he does not like the fact that North Korea has nuclear ambitions, and said that they “arming to threaten the peace of the world.” Democrats make it sound like President Bush is simply closing his eyes and wishing that the problem works itself out. Nothing could be further from the truth. President Bush does not believe in bilateral talks with a country that has a history of hollow promises, deception, and breaking agreements while taking our money and aid. What good does it do to negotiate privately with a madman who consistently lies and treats us like we are a puppet country with deep pockets from which to take money? It simply makes no sense. It has been shown in the last year that North Korea has been printing US Currency and has done so in the amount of 45 million dollars known to date. This fact coupled with their current nuclear testing does not sound like a country that really wants to cooperate and that we should cooperate with on a bilateral basis. There is no reason to do so, as the immediate concern of a nuclear North Korea is the Korean Peninsula and the use of the nuclear weapons in that region. Therefore it only makes sense to demand that North Korea communicate in an environment involving those countries as well.

President Bush has not wavered about Korea being a threat that needs to be dealt with and it is his stated goal that diplomacy will be the impetus to end this saga. It needs to remain clear however that it is neither former President Clinton’s or President Bush’s fault for failed policy.

It is apparent that former President Clinton did not learn anything from repeated failures and that his continuing willingness to hand over financial aid with nothing in return was complete insanity. At the same time, it was North Korea choosing to break promises they make. When they feel like they have thrown a long enough “tantrum”, then perhaps they will cooperate and talk.

Until then, we must not waver in our own strong stance against their hostile policies. As Ronald Reagan stated, “We must realize that no arsenal, or no weapon in the arsenals of the world, is so formidable as the will and moral courage of free men and women. It is a weapon our adversaries in today’s world do not have.”

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