dearJulius.com Write For Us

South Korea forges ahead with charm offensive to Kim regime even as U.S. outreach cools

© Ahn Young-joon/AP A giant TV screen shows images of North Korean leader Kim Jong Un, right, South Korean President Moon Jae-in, center, and President Trump in Seoul on Sept. 5, 2018.

By Simon Denyer, The Washington Post
SEOUL

The enthusiasm and optimism of the South Korean government over its outreach to the North is on open display.

A huge image of President Moon Jae-in’s first meeting in April with North Korean leader Kim Jong Un adorns Seoul’s City Hall. Photo booths around the city allow people to pose against summit backdrops.

And on Tuesday, Moon heads to Pyongyang to meet Kim for the third time this year. This much is clear: Moon’s administration is leading the cheerleading about the dramatic diplomatic advances even as U.S. exchanges with the North appear to stumble.

Only by building trust, Moon’s supporters argue, will Kim be convinced to dismantle his nuclear weapons program. This approach stands in sharp contrast to views from within the Trump administration that Kim must take it all down before U.S. largesse can kick in.

Moon’s government says such hard-line stances in the past have been a “total failure.”

The South, instead, has opted to court Kim’s regime gradually. The easiest items came first: family reunification events, cultural and sports exchanges and South Korean business forums to look at a post-sanctions peninsula.

Recent days have brought a possible move into harder and more substantial rapprochement with the opening of a quasi-diplomatic “liaison office” that allows round-the-clock communications between the two sides for the first time since the Korean War.

“Together with the international community, we must provide North Korea with all the support and encouragement to make the right choices for itself,” National Security Council Director Chung Eui-yong told a defense forum in Seoul on Thursday.

It is an outside-the-box strategy that just might work.

But it also causes disquiet within Trump’s administration, among South Korean conservatives and in the region’s other cornerstone U.S. ally, Japan.

The Moon government’s interactions with the North often sidestep the fact that Kim still leads the world’s most repressive totalitarian regime. The South’s eagerness to embrace the North Korea leader also has left Trump’s “maximum pressure” campaign in some disarray, critics point out.

The fraying is most evident with China, the linchpin in the coalition that the U.S. president painstaking built last year to persuade Kim to negotiate.

Beijing is enforcing international sanctions less aggressively this year, experts on North Korea’s economy say. Trump’s starting a trade war with Beijing has not helped.

Critics of Trump also point out that there were no clear timetables or benchmarks set in Trump’s landmark Singapore summit with Kim in June.

“Since there was no detailed action plan, North Korea doesn’t take any detailed action,” said Shin Beom-chul, a senior fellow at the Asan Institute for Policy Studies in Seoul.

At the Seoul defense forum, South Korean ministers and their deputies praised the North for dismantling its nuclear weapons test site at Punggye-ri in May, and they supported Pyongyang’s demand that the United States reciprocate by officially declaring an end to the 1950-1953 Korean War.

There was talk of a “precious moment” in history, and of the Korean Peninsula making a huge contribution to world peace.

“We will not let this heartfelt opportunity slip through,” South Korean Defense Minister Song Young-moo said. “Returning to our 70-year history of conflict and hatred is not an option.”

But skeptics see North Korea pocketing the goodies on offer from Seoul and Washington — including a suspension of U.S.-South Korean military exercises — without offering irreversible, verifiable concessions in return.

Meanwhile, Pyongyang is adept at exploiting divisions between countries, or even within the U.S. administration itself between Trump and others who prefer more cautious moves with Kim.

“One of North Korea’s long-standing strategic goals has been to undermine the U.S.-Republic of Korea alliance,” said Andrew Scobell, a senior political scientist at the Rand Corp., a conservative think tank. “Kim Jong Un may seek to exploit the enthusiasm and goodwill of President Moon to create tensions in U.S.-ROK ties.”

Still, there are those in Seoul who are convinced that Kim understands that opening up the economy is the only way for his government to survive.

Yoon Young-kwan, a professor at Seoul National University and former foreign minister, is among them.

He notes that Kim apparently told a team of South Korean envoys this month that he hopes to achieve denuclearization before the end of Trump’s term.

“That is a very meaningful and important statement,” Yoon said. “North Korea never talked before about a specific timeline. If another U.S.-North Korea summit occurs and Chairman Kim Jong Un confirms this statement to President Trump, that will be meaningful progress.”

Presidential adviser Moon Chung-in was one of the architects of the Sunshine Policy of engagement with North Korea two decades ago. He also has faith in Kim but argues that the question of whether he is sincere is, at this point, irrelevant.

“If the North Korean leader says ‘I want to get rid of my nuclear weapons,’ then we’ve got to talk to him,” he said.

COMMENTS





Note: If you think this story need more information or correction, feel free to comment below your opinion and reaction.
Name

Afghanistan,25,Africa,1,Albania,3,Algeria,5,Andorra,1,Angola,1,Antigua and Barbuda,1,Argentina,5,Armenia,7,Aruba,1,Australia,23,Austria,1,Azerbaijan,1,Bahamas,1,Bahrain,4,Bangladesh,21,Barbados,1,Belarus,5,Belgium,2,Belize,1,Bolivia,1,Botswana,2,Brazil,19,Brunei,7,Bulgaria,5,Burkina Faso,1,Burundi,2,Cambodia,5,Cameroon,3,Canada,21,Central African Republic,7,Chad,5,Chile,1,China,47,Colombia,4,Comoros,1,Costa Rica,2,Croatia,3,Cuba,4,Czech Republic,1,Democratic Republic of Congo,1,Democratic Republic of the Congo,6,Denmark,9,Djibouti,3,Dominica,1,Dominican Republic,3,East Timor,3,Ecuador,2,Egypt,3,El Salvador,2,Eritrea,8,Estonia,10,Ethiopia,4,Federated States of Micronesia,1,Finland,3,France,48,Gabon,1,Gambia,1,Georgia,2,Germany,24,Ghana,1,Greece,10,Greenland,1,Grenada,1,Guatemala,1,Guinea,2,Guinea-Bissau,1,Guyana,1,Haiti,2,Honduras,3,Hong Kong,3,Hungary,2,Iceland,2,India,30,Indonesia,20,Iran,51,Iraq,21,Ireland,7,Israel,53,Italy,23,Ivory Coast,1,Jamaica,1,Japan,35,Jordan,2,Kazakhstan,1,Kenya,2,Kiribati,1,Kuwait,1,Kyrgyzstan,1,Laos,1,Latvia,1,Lebanon,6,Lesotho,1,Liberia,1,Libya,3,Liechtenstein,1,Lithuania,1,Luxembourg,1,Macedonia,1,Madagascar,2,Malawi,1,Malaysia,11,Maldives,2,Mali,3,Malta,1,Marshall Islands,3,Mauritania,1,Mauritius,1,Mexico,47,Moldova,1,Monaco,1,Mongolia,1,Montenegro,1,Morocco,1,Mozambique,1,Myanmar,15,Namibia,1,Nauru,1,Nepal,2,Netherlands,5,New Zealand,5,Nicaragua,3,Niger,1,Nigeria,8,Niue,1,North Korea,112,Norway,2,Oman,10,Pakistan,14,Palau,1,Panama,1,Papua New Guinea,1,Paraguay,1,Peru,1,Philippines,6,Poland,5,Portugal,3,Qatar,10,Romania,6,Russia,104,Rwanda,8,Saint Kitts and Nevis,1,Saint Lucia,1,Saint Vincent and the Grenadines,1,Samoa,1,San Marino,1,Sao Tome and Principe,1,Saudi Arabia,35,Scotland,1,Senegal,1,Serbia,2,Seychelles,1,Sierra Leone,1,Singapore,9,Slovakia,1,Slovenia,1,Solomon Islands,1,Somalia,4,South Africa,3,South Korea,51,South Sudan,4,Spain,13,Sri Lanka,3,State of Palestine,4,Sudan,2,Suriname,1,Swaziland,1,Sweden,5,Switzerland,5,Syria,39,Taiwan,3,Tajikistan,1,Tanzania,2,Thailand,9,Togo,1,Tonga,1,Trinidad and Tobago,1,Tunisia,1,Turkey,28,Turkmenistan,1,Tuvalu,1,U.K.,60,U.S.,333,Uganda,9,Ukraine,2,United Arab Emirates,10,Uruguay,2,Uzbekistan,1,Vanuatu,1,Vatican City,1,Venezuela,8,Vietnam,2,World,291,Yemen,2,Zambia,1,Zimbabwe,6,
ltr
item
World News: South Korea forges ahead with charm offensive to Kim regime even as U.S. outreach cools
South Korea forges ahead with charm offensive to Kim regime even as U.S. outreach cools
https://3.bp.blogspot.com/-IMiziPBlC7o/W53Wif8rgcI/AAAAAAAA-wI/jbHuvuf0JNs_qjFmnfiS6-_84SepdT_LgCLcBGAs/s1600/3.jpg
https://3.bp.blogspot.com/-IMiziPBlC7o/W53Wif8rgcI/AAAAAAAA-wI/jbHuvuf0JNs_qjFmnfiS6-_84SepdT_LgCLcBGAs/s72-c/3.jpg
World News
https://world.dailynewsview.com/2018/09/south-korea-forges-ahead-with-charm.html
https://world.dailynewsview.com/
https://world.dailynewsview.com/
https://world.dailynewsview.com/2018/09/south-korea-forges-ahead-with-charm.html
true
7260859670909019264
UTF-8
Loaded All Posts Not found any posts VIEW ALL Read More Reply Cancel reply Delete By Home PAGES POSTS View All RECOMMENDED FOR YOU LABEL ARCHIVE SEARCH ALL POSTS Not found any post match with your request Back Home Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Saturday Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat January February March April May June July August September October November December Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec just now 1 minute ago $$1$$ minutes ago 1 hour ago $$1$$ hours ago Yesterday $$1$$ days ago $$1$$ weeks ago more than 5 weeks ago Followers Follow THIS PREMIUM CONTENT IS LOCKED STEP 1: Share. STEP 2: Click the link you shared to unlock Copy All Code Select All Code All codes were copied to your clipboard Can not copy the codes / texts, please press [CTRL]+[C] (or CMD+C with Mac) to copy