News & commentary by Dave Maxwell. Edited and published by Duncan Moore.

1. Beyond ‘love,’ Trump has little to show from N Korea talks

2. S. Korea, U.S. closely working for OPCON transfer: defense ministry

3. North rallies people behind leader Kim amid lingering tensions

4. Kim Yo-Jong a sordid example of female leader

5. Is North Korea really prepared to end the Korean War?

6. North Korea is more unpredictable than ever

7. North Korean ‘YouTubers’ raise eyebrows in South Korea

8. He sends up balloons, and North Korea wants him dead

9. Ministry takes final step to delist defector NGOs over leaflets (South Korea)

10. Deployment of U.S. strategic bombers to Korea has become swifter

11. Seoul police say they’re questioning anti-North activists

12. US Forces Korea reports three more coronavirus cases from US arrivals

13. US-North Korea envoy doubts new Trump-Kim summit

14. Time to rethink the US-ROK alliance

15. Christian group continues to deliver bibles to North Korea via balloons

16. Half of coronavirus infections linked to sect followers (South Korea)

17. North Korea defector: I was imprisoned, tortured and sold as a slave

 

1. Beyond ‘love,’ Trump has little to show from N Korea talks

AP· by DEB RIECHMANN · June 29, 2020

I was queried by a journalist who interpreted this article as meaning the US was seeking another Trump-Kim meeting before the election.

I think too much was read into the anonymous official’s comments about the administration seeking a meeting before the November election. He or she was merely speculating about what might be an “October Surprise,” some kind of provocation or an “olive branch” which could be an agreement on talks.

That said I believe the administration’s policy is that our negotiators are ready for working level negotiations at any time and any place. It is up to Kim to allow that to happen. I do not know if the administration is aggressively seeking negotiations but I am sure it has transmitted messages to the regime it is ready to negotiate whenever he is ready.

I also think it is important to transmit to Kim Jong-Un that an October surprise will have little to no effect on the outcome of the November election. Kim Jong-Un is not that important to the American people. Yes, President Trump has been touting his “foreign policy success” with Kim being the promise not to test nuclear weapons and ICBMs but that only resonates with his base and is not going to alter any votes of Democrats or Independents.

It is my belief that Trump should not meet again with Kim until there are substantive working level negotiations that result in an agreement that can be brought to Trump and Kim for final negotiation and signatures. I also do not think Kim will meet with Trump unless he is assured he will receive substantial concessions, in the form of sanctions relief.

Kim remains upset with Trump because Trump has benefited politically from their three meetings but Kim has received no political benefit that can serve him at home. His failure to get sanctions relief is causing tremendous pressure on the regime.

Over the past year (since May 2019) Kim has created a “new normal” for missile and rocket testing. The lack of significant response from the US and the ROK has pushed the unknown “red line” further up the escalation ladder. If Kim thinks he can have an effect on the election through provocation he will have to go beyond the 21+ rocket and missiles of the last year.

The alliance must be prepared for the full spectrum of North Korean actions from a violent provocation to a renewed “charm offensive” of North Korean diplomacy. However, the current friction within the alliance provides Kim Jong-Un with an advantage. In order to be prepared to deal with the North, the ROK and US must resolve the key issues with the alliance and focus efforts on training and readiness.  The weaknesses in the alliance, especially the stalemate over the SMA/burden sharing, provide Kim Jong-Un an advantage and support his objective to divide the ROK/US alliance.

 

2. S. Korea, U.S. closely working for OPCON transfer: defense ministry

Yonhap News Agency · by 최수향 · June 29, 2020

Readiness of the ROK/US Combined Forces Command must take precedence over OPCON Transition. The ROK/US CFC has not conducted a major exercise since 2018. The Feb/Mar exercise this year was cancelled and the August 2019 exercises focused on the Initial Operating Capability (IOC). The command must exercise the defense plan for Korea as the top priority and conduct the FOC assessment as the second priority. If they can design the exercise to do both, that will be good. However, if they cannot, the priority must be on readiness over OPCON transition.

 

3. North rallies people behind leader Kim amid lingering tensions

The Korea Herald · by Choi Si-Young · June 29, 2020

Again, who does Kim fear more, the US or the Korean people living in the North?

 

4. Kim Yo-Jong a sordid example of female leader

The Korea Herald · by Christopher Walsh & Natalie Gonnella-Platts · June 29, 2020

No one should be deceived by Kim Yo-jong’s “charm offensive” at the 2018 Olympics.  She is an evil member of the evil Kim family regime.

 

5. Is North Korea really prepared to end the Korean War?

The National Interest · by Bruce W. Bennett & Soo Kim · June 29, 2020

An excellent run down by Bruce Bennett and Soo Kim. My short version à There can be no peace or denuclearization of the North for one simple reason: the existence of Kim Jong-Un and the nature and strategy and objectives of the Kim family regime.

 

6. North Korea is more unpredictable than ever

Bloomberg · by Jon Herskovitz · June 29, 2020

I do not think Kim Jong-un is strategically unpredictable. Tactically perhaps, but not strategically. He has not deviated from the Kim family regime strategy and objectives or the playbook.

 

7. North Korean ‘YouTubers’ raise eyebrows in South Korea

The Asahi Shimbun · by Tayuka Suzuki · June 29, 2020

Why does the North’s Propaganda and Agitation Department get to conduct its information and influence campaign while the alliance tries to stop escapees/defectors from continuing information operations for human rights objectives? We can do better. We must do better. 

This is an ideological war between the north and South Korea.  The people on the peninsula must make a choice between the Shared ROK/US and values and the “values” of the Kim family regime.

South Korea and the United States share the values of freedom and individual liberty, liberal democracy, free market economy, rule of law, and human rights.

The “values” of the Kim family regime are Juche/Kimilsungism, the Socialist Workers Paradise, Songun, Songbun, Byungjin, and the denial of human rights to sustain the regime in power.

We should be conducting and winning this ideological war.

 

8. He sends up balloons, and North Korea wants him dead

Foreign Policy · by Morten Soendergaard Larsen · June 29, 2020

We could do so much more than balloons and leaflets (and thumb drives).

 

9.Ministry takes final step to delist defector NGOs over leaflets (South Korea)

The Korea Herald · by Ahn Sung-Mi · June 29, 2020

This is so wrong. This will provide no benefit to South Korea. It will not positively influence North Korean behavior. This will only result in more demands from the North as Kim assesses that his blackmail diplomacy playbook is still effective.

These escapees who are citizens of the Republic of Korea should be protected and their efforts should be supported.

 

10. Deployment of U.S. strategic bombers to Korea has become swifter

The Dong-A Ilbo · by Sang-Ho Yun · June 30, 2020

Good.  Again, strategic reassurance and strategic resolve. We should remind Kim that the seven decades of North Korea indoctrination that makes sure every Korean in the North learns of the devastation inflicted on the North by US air power from 1950-1953 will pale in comparison to what US air power can and will do if Kim makes a mistake and attacks the South. He will not survive.

 

11. Seoul police say they’re questioning anti-North activists

AP · by Hyung-Jin Kim · June 30, 2020

Again, this is so wrong.

 

12. US Forces Korea reports three more coronavirus cases from US arrivals

Stars and Stripes · by Kim Gamel · June 29, 2020

Travel is a threat.  I wonder if Korea will have to take steps to ban travelers from the US as the EU may have to do.

 

13. US-North Korea envoy doubts new Trump-Kim summit

Channel News Asia · by AFP · June 30, 2020

Yes the coronavirus will make an in-person meeting difficult and unlikely. However, I think Kim will not meet unless he is guaranteed to receive substantial concessions in the form of sanctions relief. And I do not recommend President Trump meeting with Kim until Kim allows substantive working level negotiations and such negotiations produce an agreement that can be presented to both leaders for approval.

 

14. Time to rethink the US-ROK Alliance

Foreign Policy in Focus · by John Feffer · June 29, 2020

Another naive, sad, and dangerous op-ed that plays right into Kim Jong-Un’s hands. Some people need to rethink the nature of the Kim family regime and its strategy and objectives. And, of course, the op-ed blames the US for all the South’s ills. The presence of US troops is the most important contribution to deterring an attack from the North. The North is an existential threat to the South and it is in the US’s interest to prevent conflict on the Korean peninsula. 

 

15. Christian group continues to deliver bibles to North Korea via balloons

Persecution.org · by International Christian Concern · June 29, 2020

Keep up the fire. Of course, religion is another threat to regime survival. I would offer that the Korean people will need alternative belief systems when they learn that the Juche ideology and Kimilsungism are lies. The Korean people in the North will be hungry for faith.

 

16. Half of coronavirus infections linked to sect followers (South Korea)

The Chosun Ilbo · by Choi Kyu-Min · June 30, 2020

 

17.  North Korea defector: I was imprisoned, tortured and sold as a slave

Metro.co.uk · by Jihyun Park · June 29, 2020

We have to continue to read about the evil nature of the Kim family regime. These stories must be told, especially when there are pundits who want to give concessions to Kim Jong-un. He and his father and grandfather are responsible for these atrocities. And China is complicit in North Korean human rights abuses and crimes against humanity.

 

 (BEST OPORD EVER!) ………………………Grant’s Orders to Sherman, 1864

In a letter to MG William T. Sherman, dated 4 April 1864, LTG Ulysses S. Grant outlined his 1864 campaign plan. LTG Grant described MG Sherman’s role:

“It is my design, if the enemy keep quiet and allow me to take the initiative in the Spring Campaign to work all parts of the Army together, and, somewhat, toward a common center. . . . You I propose to move against Johnston’s Army, to break it up and to get into the interior of the enemy’s country as far as you can, inflicting all the damage you can against their War resources. I do not propose to lay down for you a plan of Campaign, but simply to lay down the work it is desirable to have done and leave you free to execute in your own way. Submit to me however as early as you can your plan of operation.”

MG Sherman responded to LTG Grant immediately in a letter dated 10 April 1864. He sent Grant, as requested, his specific plan of operations, demonstrating that he understood Grant’s intent:

” . . . Your two letters of April 4th are now before me . . . That we are now all to act in a Common plan, Converging on a Common Center, looks like Enlightened War. . . . I will not let side issues draw me off from your main plan in which I am to Knock Joe [Confederate GEN Joseph E.] Johnston, and do as much damage to the resources of the Enemy as possible. . . . I would ever bear in mind that Johnston is at all times to be kept so busy that he cannot in any event send any part of his command against you or [Union MG Nathaniel P.] Banks.”

The Papers of Ulysses S. Grant, Volume 10: January 1-May 31, 1864, by Ulysses S. Grant, edited by John Y. Simon. Ulysses S. Grant Foundation. ©1982. Excerpt from pages 251 through 254.

Hits: 2

6/29/2020 News & Commentary – National Security 6/30/2020 News & Commentary - National Security