A Dictator’s Heaven
There are very few countries left in the world that are run by a dictator. Unfortunate circumstances and continued geo-political interference by regional powers propagate dictatorship in Africa and Central Asia. However, a Stalin-esque dictatorship that breathes along that same blood line is nowhere to be found with the exception of a small nation located towards the bottom right of Chinese mainland. This nation is marred by grievances in all departments of life mainly due to policies of isolation and faltered economic priorities. A few days ago it managed to give an even bigger shock to the International community when it conducted a set of major nuclear warhead tests. From 2006 to 2016, the North Koreans conducted 5 nuclear tests.
Why was the recent test the most dangerous?
Kim Jong Un can now mount a large nuclear warhead on a missile and threaten western allies that lie within the range of his ballistic missile system. Once the test was conducted, the controversial leader of the country, a man that is worshiped as a God, was seen flashing a big smile as this news was given to him. After all, he now has the world’s most dangerous weapon at his disposal, enough to ward off some his biggest enemies which include the US and its ally – the much more financially sound and tech savvy South.
Kim Jong Un full throttled the process of missile mountable nuclear weapon development in part due to the growing resentment against him in his own country and partially due to the bloody endings dictators far more powerful than him have faced.
What did Qaddafi and Saddam not have?
Weapons of mass destruction surely – This very thought forced the man to bring stricter work routines coupled with classic dictatorial show trial torture on his nation’s scientific elite. Rewarding them with better facilities at the expense of the rest of the population and monitoring their each and every move, Kim Jong Un managed to deter the engineers and the scientists from escaping his prison. During the time period of the USSR, the focus of the CIA was getting out as many engineers and scientists as they could. This was done to ensure that the knowledge base of the country remained crippled and meeting R&D targets became harder.
This wasn’t the case with North Korea. CIA operations against the country’s R&D establishment were either negligible or non-existent in the amount of damage they would cause to the power hungry dictator’s lust for nuclear armament. In less than a decade, the North Korean regime established a fledgling ballistic missile program that can well provide them with a tactical edge in the region. This is a huge failure on the part of American and South Korean intelligence in deterring the North Korean effort. The country’s poverty and isolationism still didn’t prevent them from pursuing this goal. The entire decade was spent throwing around the issue of the Iranian nukes and how the Pakistani nukes – well protected by an entire paramilitary force known as the SPD would fall into the hands of terrorists.
When North Korea was blowing up nuclear bombs in 2006 it was a well established fact that the country possessed WMDs. The US still chose to ignore.
Both scenarios, highly unlikely, were rather motivated by vested political interests and questionable alliances : The real issue went ignored and diplomatic options and Black Ops to deter North Korea from developing weapons of mass production were put into the back burner.
The Balance of Power Shifts
The US will now be forced onto the negotiating table with the North Koreans. The superiority the US held over the country in terms of military might no longer exists as the close ally of the South is more or less in a hostage situation. The mere ownership of nuclear warheads subsequently alters the balance of power in the region and tips it in the favor of the country armed with nuclear technology – which now happens to be North Korea.
This is as a result of the amount of damage nuclear weapons can cause and more so due to the reason that control rests in the hands of a madman that will not think twice before using it. The focus of the US in bringing down Qaddafi; a dictator whose people lived in much superior social conditions than the North Koreans was ill-formed. Nothing justifies a dictatorship – but it all burns down to a question of priorities. Qaddafi could have been tackled diplomatically and via creating a low key pressure by aiding dissident elements withing and outside the government.
Ill formed priorities
The countries of Libya and Iraq face a mounting humanitarian crises today. The entire infrastructure rots in a dilapidated condition and the rise of apocalypse loving terrorist entities mar any attempt to resolve sectarian crises and political deadlocks. If an incursion had been planned earlier into North Korea instead and focus had been set on bringing down a real dictator who was actively involved in developing weapons of mass destruction the situation that results today could have been avoided.
Even now, the correct approach to tackling this crises would be to give the North Korean regime militaristic threats and to impose further sanctioning on the country in every possible domain. The sad part about this approach however is that mostly the North Korean people will suffer as a result. The people are too fearful of the regime and live in the past with regards to their exposure to technology and international current affairs. Thus aiding dissidence in establishing a resistance become increasingly difficult and near to impossible.
The Dealing Begins
Even though the US and its allies continue pushing their stance that a nuclear North Korea remains intolerable and accuse it of ‘recklessness’ the fact of the matter remains that the regime of Kim Jong Un has secured itself a valuable bargaining chip. When the regime started its nuclear tests in 2006 it was an established fact that the regime possessed weapons of mass destruction and yet the US chose to go after every other country during this critical time period.
The dealing with the dictator will now become increasingly complex, but the situation needs to be diffused as quickly as possible. Otherwise, the world’s most authoritarian regime may unleash a huge trial upon the globe in the shape of a third world war.