Russian President Vladimir Putin raised many eyebrows in the west recently by confirming that he had invited the pariah North Korean Supreme Leader, Kim Jong-un, to come to Russia in May. Some saw this as a measure of the degree of desperation of Russia as US and EU economic sanctions take their toll. Far from a signal of desperation, however, it looks to this observer as a very shrewd move that could rob Washington of one of their favorite weapons.
As we noted in an earlier article, “Why Now North Korea?,” the rush by the Obama Administration to put new sanctions on North Korea on unproven allegations she was behind recent hacker attacks on Sony Pictures, a Japanese-owned company, stinks of a false flag operation by the usual suspects—the neo-conservative warhawks increasingly dominating Obama Administration policy since the 2012 war against Qaddafi’s Libya. I believe that there are very different reasons behind the rush to punish North Korea.
In a private discussion over dinner at the World Economic Forum at Davos Switzerland back in the 1990’s, where I was present as a free-lance journalist, I had occasion to have a fascinating talk with the late James R. Lilley about world events. He was at Davos, as he privately confided, to “baby sit” a delegation of generals from China’s Peoples’ Liberation Army. The year was 1998 as I recall and China’s leaders were being wooed by the West.
Over a glass of fine Swiss wine, we talked about China and Asian politics. Perhaps because he was enjoying what he said was a very informed discussion of world politics, he never got around to asking more about who I was. I was fine with that. The talk came to North Korea which then was subject of much consternation over its nuclear weapons program. At one point Lilley blurted a profoundly useful piece of intelligence. He said to me, “If North Korea did not exist, we would have to create it to give us the excuse to keep our Seventh Fleet in Japan after the end of the Cold War.”
Lilley was no novice to the games of US geopolitics. He, like his old friend George H.W. Bush, had been a member of the Skull & Bones secret society at Yale University. He was fluent in Mandarin having been born to missionary parents in Shanghai, China. He served in the CIA as leading China expert for 30 years and later became US Ambassador to Beijing during the (US-orchestrated) Tiananmen Square student protests of 1989. Lilley knew what Washington Asia politics were.
So with that insider comment in mind, let’s look at what could possibly be behind the sudden demonization, yet again, of North Korea
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