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US asks permission from UN to hunt North Korean ships

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)
9/7/2017 (9 months ago)
Catholic Online (https://www.catholic.org)

Move would make war more likely.

In another sign war with North Korea is imminent, the U.S. is reportedly working to gain support for a proposal to hunt down North Korean ships around the world. Such permission would allow the U.S. to enforce UN sanctions with the power of the United States Navy, and it could also guarantee conflict with the rogue state.

The U.S. wants permission to hunt North Korean ships for inspection.

The U.S. wants permission to hunt North Korean ships for inspection.

Highlights

By Marshall Connolly (CALIFORNIA NETWORK)
Catholic Online (https://www.catholic.org)
9/7/2017 (9 months ago)

Published in Asia Pacific

Keywords: North Korea, nuclear, ships, sanctions, UN


LOS ANGELES, CA (California Network) -- The world is uniting against North Korea, but China and Russia have not agreed to cut off the hermit kingdom from trade. A clever proposal from the Trump administration to cut off trade with any nation doing business with North Korea has startled nations like China into paying better attention. China is now seeking to apply its hardest pressure yet to North Korea.

North Korea continues to develop a nuclear weapon and a missile which is capable of hitting the United States. Several reports suggest another North Korean missile test is imminent and may happen within days.


North Korea claims its nuclear program is to deter American invasion of North Korea, but its rhetoric is threatening. Some experts believe North Korea hopes to use their nuclear capability to force the United States to end military cooperation with South Korea, weakening its neighbor so it can invade in the future. Nobody is certain what North Korea wants to do, hence the alarm over their nuclear program.

To halt the program, the United States, South Korea and Japan have asked the international community to put pressure on the country. So far, none of that pressure has worked because China and Russia continue to trade with North Korea.

Last weekend, in response to the North's test of a hydrogen bomb, U.S. Ambassador to the UN, Nikki Haley, bluntly told the assembly that sanctions and talks have not worked. Haley made it clear that only one last attempt at sanctions could be made, and that attempt should involve ‽the strongest possible measures" to stop North Korea's nuclear program.

The reaction has been supportive, but disappointing. China and Russia have not pledged to suspend trade, even in spite of a U.S. threat to halt trade with any country that deals with North Korea. Trump's threat did provoke a reaction from China, which depends on U.S. trade to sustain its economy.

Ending trade with China would be painful for both the U.S. and China, but ultimately the U.S. would diversify its sources and develop domestic manufacturing, a move that although difficult, would improve the U.S. economy in the long term.

Motivated by the threat, China sent an unmistakable message to North Korea this week, firing missiles at itself from sea and shooting them down during a military exercise. The point of the drill was obvious. China will fight North Korea if the North provokes conflict. China has already pledged to attack any belligerent that starts war, be it the United States or North Korea.

The U.S. is lobbying the UN to shut down North Korean trade, a move that would harm millions by starving them. The North is suffering from a famine. However, an end to trade with North Korea could also starve their nuclear program of money, preventing its progress.

It is unlikely the North will stop its program this close to the finish. Nor will North Korea permit its ships to be stopped on the high seas. The UN is unlikely to grant the U.S. permission to stop the ships anyway. The long-term result will be a continuation of the North's nuclear program, and eventually the U.S. will need to stage an attack, or live under the specter of a nuclear armed North Korea. Both options may be equally terrifying.

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