• North Korea: Mistaking weakness for strenth.


    Above is the USS Arizona Memorial, dedicated on 30th May 1962 to all those who died during the attack, straddles the ship’s hull, the ship itself can bee seen below the water. During the Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor on 7th December 1941, USS Arizona (BB.39) was bombed. After a bomb detonated in a powder magazine, the battleship exploded violently and sank, with the loss of 1,177 officers and crewmen.

    The Japanese attack on Pearl Harbor is widely seen as an unprovoked attack by one power on another. It was. But in a way, it was not.

    Pearl Harbor took place after Washington had imposed sanctions on Japan since 1940-41. This culminated in an oil embargo and the seizure of Japanese assets in July 1941. At that time, the United States sought to deter Japan from seizing Southeast Asia – and the oilfields of the Dutch East Indies (now Indonesia) – and demanded that Tokyo withdraw from Indochina and China.

    The result was that Tokyo concluded that the US sanctions made the occupation of southeast Asia essential. The man who planned the attack on Pearl Harbor, Admiral Isoroku Yamamoto was fully aware of the strategic positions of the two powers. His plan was to knock out the US Pacific fleet, advanced to a perimeter line and the dig in to resist the eventual US onslaught.

    American officials at the time widely assumed that Japan wouldn’t dare challenge the United States because, as then Assistant Secretary of State Dean Acheson later put it, “No rational Japanese could believe an attack on us could result in anything but disaster.”
    They were wrong.
    Today the FTSE dropped and the Gold price rose with the news of the latest ratcheting up of tension by North Korea.
    GOTO: http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/asia/north-korea-japan-missile-china-us-south-korea-hokkaido-pyongyang-a7917551.html
    For a long time now, sanctions have been placed on and enforced upon the Democratic Peoples Republic of Korea.

    Many will glibly assume that the sanctions have had no effect as the Kim regime persists with it’s strategy of developing nuclear weapons and an ICBM delivery capability of same.
    They are wrong.
    The sanctions have had a devastating effect on the economy of North Korea. The population – outside the ranks of Workers Party apparatchiks – are destitute.

    What the sanctions have brought about is a situation where Mr Kim is locked in to a limited set of responses. For Mr Kim, it is a very much a series of a life and death (his death) decisions. You see, if Mr Kim is seen to be defeated (by others in the Workers Party) they will move against him. They will have to as if forced to “back down”, Mr Kim will immediately lay the blame upon an unfortunate colleague and subordinate which will result in this poor person’s extremely unpleasant death!

    For them it truly will be a case of kill or be killed!

    At this point, Mr Kim will have two objectives. They are:

    1. To stay alive.
    2. To avoid an extremely painful death
    3. Acquire a nuclear ICBM delivery capability.

    Mr Kim’s predicament is that objectives 1 and 2 are achieved ONLY by achieving objective 3!

    Many strategists looking at Pyongyang’s position will conclude that to launch an attack on the USA and or it’s allies would be suicidal and therefore Pyongyang will not initiate such.
    They are wrong.
    IF Mr Kim finds himself out manoeuvred by Mr Trump to the extent that his nuclear weapons and missile programmes are halted he will at that point conclude that his days in this world have come to an end and that an agonising exit from the world awaits him.

    The danger – for the world – is this: IF Mr Kim concludes that he is likely to find himself out manoeuvred by Mr Trump, he will act precipitously as he will be unable to react of being out manoeuvred for by then it will be too late and he will be in the process of meeting his extremely unpleasant end!

    For Mr Kim, being out manoeuvred by Mr Trump will be being placed in a position whereby he can no longer continue with his nuclear weapons programmes. Worryingly, we appear to be reaching that very dangerous point.

    This is because Mr Edward Randall Royce, Member of the United States House of Representatives for California’s 39th congressional district (previously the 40th) and Chairman of the United States House Committee on Foreign Affairs since 2013 has stated that the USA’s goal now is to offer international banks that do business with Pyongyang a choice between bankruptcy and freezing North Korean accounts.

    It is difficult not to overstate the seriousness of the consequences if this policy succeeds. This is because without the services of these banks, Pyongyang’s ability to progress it’s nuclear and weapons programme becomes impossible.

    It is at such a point, Mr Kim will realise that his time in this world has come to an end!

    Mr Kim of course will not be the only casualty!

    The new junta will ruthlessly eliminate any and all persons they conclude are allies of Mr Kim.

    Mr Kim will not be alone facing a very gruesome end!

    Thus we are in a situation that faced with certain and painful deaths, Mr Kim and his immediate entourage may take a line from the last in Richard Wagner’s Der Ring des Nibelungen, Götterdämmerung, specifically enacting a nuclear version of Brünnhilde’s Immolation Scene at the end of the opera. This according to Albert Speer, was the Berlin Philharmonic’s last performance before their evacuation from Berlin as the Red Army approached!

    The logic of this is that Mr Kim and his immediate entourage know that are in Mr Osborne’s words, dead men walking and that by ensuring a nuclear strike they will achieve three things:

    1. Their less painful deaths.
    2. The deaths of their would be killers.
    3. Out manoeuvre Mr Trump to the extent that his nuclear strike against Pyongyang will be very much a pyrrhic victory as the geopolitical fallout for Mr Trump and the USA will be far greater and more extensive than the radiological fallout upon Pyongyang!

    As he dies, Mr Kim will know that it will be hard to overstate the consequences of a US nuclear strike against Pyongyang. Not only in it’s relations and tensions with China and Russia but the immediate collapse of NATO – due to the “meltdown” in political consensus in western Europe.

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