NK nuke issue faces more uncertainties

Source:Global Times Published: 2013-4-3 12:33:00

North Korea announced Tuesday that it would restart its shuttered Yongbyon nuclear reactor, which means it will have more materials, namely plutonium, to make nuclear weapons. Pyongyang, while confronting both the US and South Korea, has intensified its nuclear threats, bringing the nuclear issue into a deadlock.

The US and South Korea can hardly take any new countermeasures. The nuclear issue has almost gone out of control.

Regional countries are witnessing Pyongyang, which has gained the advantage in  the confrontation with the US-South Korea alliance, create instability in Northeast Asia.

There will be a number of difficulties in dealing with North Korea in the future.

It's impossible to persuade the North to give up its nuclear ambitions. The international community will definitely not admit the North's status as a nuclear country.

It will be more realistic to freeze its current nuclear conditions and prevent it from conducting new nuclear tests.

The precondition for a soft landing for the regional situation is the normalization of the North's economy and a guarantee of its national security and regime stability. Before that happens, Pyongyang will not stop making trouble.

The North will continue to treat the South as leverage. Even if the South acquires nuclear weapons, the situation will not change.

North Korea is still the weakest country in Northeast Asia. North Korea should not be allowed to think it is a real power. China is unable to persuade the North to give up its nuclear programs, but it can play a role in urging the North's regime to keep calm.

China, in the context of the nuclear issue, is in a passive position, which is normal.

China needs to strengthen its military and economic power. This will allow China to handle strategic dilemmas more skillfully and ease the embarrassment it faces.

The North's decision to restart its Yongbyon nuclear reactor is only part of its game. The US has practically given up on persuading Pyongyang to abandon its nuclear program.

If China can adopt a less serious approach in the North's nuclear issue, it will feel very much relieved. China's strategic aim should be to prevent a major war from breaking out on the Korean Peninsula.

There will be more uncertainties in the peninsula.

China doesn't have the capability to prevent them from happening. It can only gain flexibility from its growing national strength.

China should not allow itself to become the first or biggest victim of a war on the peninsula. As long as China does this, it can still handle the peninsula crisis with a non-intervention policy.

China should strengthen its endurance in tackling a peninsular crisis and make a plan to deal with any emergencies, which is where China's initiative comes from.

Posted in: Editorial

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