Thursday, January 17, 2019 | ePaper

North Korea : A bone of contention

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Imran Rahman :
A silver line peeps again through black cloud with President Trump getting back on the track. The much expected summit to be held between the U.S boss  and North Korean chairman Kim Jong Un on July 12 in Singapore was about to be abandoned amid Trump's initial announcement of boycotting the meeting over his flimsy allegation against Kim Jong Un using inflammatory language against the U.S administration. Thanks for his good sense at last prevailed over. Both the leaders are known to be subjected to their instincts than reason. Both exchanged incendiary words in phases.
The word unpredictability goes in both the names. What would happen, had he not reconsidered with stubborn attitude to return to the table of discussion? It would not have only tarnished his image further of being at variance with his words as he proved himself so earlier in the recent cases through his withdrawal from Paris Climate Deal and recession from nuclear deal signed with Iran but also be a moral defeat for the U.S to North Korea as Pyongyang already proved itself true to its word by dismantling Punggye-ri nuclear test site.
Moreover, U. S would be considered a country fond of turmoil. We know of many historical events that having failed to arrive at any decisive conclusion in the war-field have successfully reached to lasting solution through constructive, objective and effective discussion.  
We don't know whether the upcoming summit will reach any effective deal between the two contentious states. But on the backdrop of existing geopolitical posture it is deemed to be playing a pivotal role in defining the fate of future world. A great curiosity among the diplomats and political analysts world-wide has surfaced about the prospects of the summit. Where wills the wave of Korean peninsula flow? Will it take a new turn after long 68 years? Who will win - capitalism or communism?
Apparently the meeting seems to be going to take place between U.S and North Korea with China being left on the sideline. But the innate significance of the meeting is deep-rooted with China keeping silent behind the curtain. Its silence does not mean the end of Beijing-Pyongyang longstanding amity. In fact, it is not possible for North Korea, a close door neighbor to China, with long heritage of shared values of identical cultural, social and political mindset to deal with anything subversive of mutual regional interest.
Since the Korean War in 1953, North Korea has been enjoying big brother like direct and indirect blessings from China. In fact, unless there was any China beside it, it would not have dared to pose a nuclear threat to the U.S. Today's North Korea is a brainchild of China. It has become a bone of contention between U.S and China over establishment of strategic stronghold along the peninsula. Following Washington's recent hectic diplomatic promptness, China lifted its economic sanction on North Korea armed by U.N resolution opening the gateway of rapprochement.  
U.S investment here is aimed at killing two birds with one stone. Its relentless pressure on Pyongyang for nuclear disarmament is not only for the sake of its own safety but also to weakening Chinese increasing strategic influence. If it can tame Pyongyang with any lucrative deal, it will be easier for Washington to contain the socialist juggernaut not only on peninsula but also throughout Asia.
But whether their dream would come true, entirely depends on how much concessions U.S administration can do in Pyongyang's favor. U.S demand of North Korean nuclear halt can only be matched by withdrawal of U.S military force and suspending large-scale joint military exercise in South Korea. But before reaching any deal with Washington Pyongyang must not forget that one who entered into friendship with U.S needs no foe. It must not forget how Iraq, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Libya and Syria paid off their price as its friend.

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