"In this entire 30-year history of the North Korean nuclear program this is the first time that the international system has been able to actually impose a cost on North Korea for its nuclear behavior," Rice said. "It's able to impose that cost because China has been brought into the process in a way that China never was before." (FoxNews.com @ http://www.foxnews.com/story/0,2933,222658,00.html)
That is all well and good, but only if North Korea actually comes back to the table to carry out realistic negotiations over its nuclear proliferation, its counterfeiting of U.S. currency, its trade violations, and the war with South Korea (please don't tell me you were not aware they are still technically at war with S. Korea, they have been only in a state of cease fire since, what was it, about 1953).
Of course, even if North Korea agrees to talks, either with just the USA or the 6 party talks, what will it all matter in the scope of things. They already have their nuclear weapons capabilities now, don't they! So what is it that the USA, and the rest of the world, will try to get them to agree. My guess is that North Korea will be ready to stop violating the DMZ, they will probably be ready to stop counterfeiting US currency, they probably will hold back on money laundering, they will likely tone down anti USA rhetoric, they will allow inspection of their ships at sea or in and out of ports, they will discontinue testing medium or long range missile for awhile (but probably not more than a year or two); in short they will make concessions to the USA. Just look at what Kim Jong il was quoted as saying (from the same linked article above):
""If the U.S. makes a concession to some degree, we will also make a concession to some degree, whether it be bilateral talks or six-party talks," Kim was quoted as saying by the Chosun Ilbo."
Wow, how conciliatory of him. Well, tell me, what is it he and the North Koreans are going to do next. My guess is not anything that actually amounts to much, that is except for one thing. The one thing they will keep doing that will amount to an awful lot is, by my guess, that they will keep whatever nukes they already have, and will probably produce more of them in secret. Sure they will make concessions on all those other things since none of them, not even all of them combined, amount to a hill of beans.
Regardless of that though, the US, and the rest of the world, will sit down expecting to have meaningful talks with Kim Jong Il and his government over all those silly subjects *silly when compared to a madman with his finger on a nuclear trigger), and what will they accomplish. Not a whole heck of a lot. The only ones who are accomplishing anything are the North Koreans, and they have almost no resources of which to speak. My hat goes off to them for that, then I would just as well nuke them preemptively.
Of course my cynicism may be misguided. Kim Jong il may have had a change of heart. The North Korean people may also suddenly and almost miraculously have begun to think that we are their friends instead of their bitter enemies - a fact which has been inundated into the essence of their being since the day each of them was born. In addition the world may stop rotating (or is it revolving) and starting bouncing its way through the cosmic debris - yeah right.
While we are having the so called talks with North Korea, I can only hope we do so with one major goal in place, that goal being having them un-nuke their military (sorry I lacked a better word but you get my drift). Of course if that means getting rid of Kim Jong il in some fashion that would be a plus because I believe he is a lunatic, and keeping him in power of more than a Newspaper Stand would be dangerous for the whole world.
Am I right to be concerned, well more than 50 years of very recent tell me yes I am quite justified. Am I right for sure, only time will tell, but I am willing to bet I'm right. We need to get rid of this guy, and fast, especially now that he has nukes.
All the best,