Jonathan Dresner: Bush's Noth Korean Policy Is a Muddle
Richard V. Allen's attempt (9/15) to defend Bush's North Korea policy as "exactly what is necessary" falls far short. It's ludicrous to call a policy which has consisted of a few largely ceremonial meetings a "steady, multilateral approach." I believe that the Bush administration is correct to involve North Korea's neighbor states in the discussions, but if a Democrat proposed proceeding at this pace, Republicans would call it a dangerous abandonment of our responsibilities to prevent nuclear proliferation and preserve political stability in an economically and politically vital region.
Contrasted with our policy towards Iraq and statements on Iran, our passivity towards North Korea validates North Korean Premier Kim Jong Il's sense of self-importance, and strengthens the argument that our Middle East policy has more to do with oil than with weaponry.
Jonathan Dresner, Ph.D.
Assistant Professor of East Asian History University of Hawai'i at Hilo
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