U.S. Should Keep its Nuclear Weapons Away from Koreas (Huanqiu, People’s Republic of China)
U.S. Congress members appear to be considering redeploying American nuclear assets to the Korean Peninsula. Would such a decision make matters there go from bad to worse? This editorial from China’s state-run Huanqiu warns of the unintended consequences of pointing nuclear weapons in North Korea’s general direction.
The Huanqiu editorial says in small part:
Right now, the two Koreas target one another with artillery. But if the U.S. redeploys and the South has U.S. nuclear weapons pointed at the North, Pyongyang will more vigorously pursue nuclear testing. The consequences for Seoul would be unpredictable, perhaps resulting in events similar to previous “accidents” – but this time involving nuclear weapons.
The security situation on the Korean Peninsula is like a muddy pond – and the feet of the parties in Northeast Asia are soiled with this mud. This is the curse of the Korean peasant. Given the situation now, the peasant is more than likely to just blow off steam, and unless something else intervenes, wait until the mud dries. But if there are new sanctions or a redeployment of U.S. nuclear weapons, it will be like stepping back into the muddy lake all over again.
Normal life in Northeast Asia has been greatly disturbed. History has been frozen on the Korean Peninsula, the last Cold War line of demarcation. The Chinese people well understand this. But South Koreans seem to think that this Cold War remnant needn’t have an impact on their enjoyment of the fruits of modern civilization. They take great pride in the difference in living standards between themselves and those in the North, and believe they need not pay attention to price for this tremendous disparity.
If the situation on the Peninsula further deteriorates, China can and must reexamine its own nuclear strategy and ensure the high-quality of its nuclear deterrence capability.
In his era of globalization, the whole of the Asia Pacific, even the entire world, cannot remain completely aloof to the chaotic situation on the Korean Peninsula. No one should gloat or believe they benefit from this mess.
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