Today, John McCain came forward and placed all blame of the current crisis with North Korea squarely on Bill Clinton. Whatever respect McCain had won back from me is now gone again. George Bush's policy towards North Korea has been a complete and utter failure. Bush has had six years to stop North Korea from progressing on a nuclear program and has failed.
Until Bush took over, there were International Atomic Energy Inspectors in the country. The plutonium that they had prior to 1994 was sealed and stored and regularly inspected. In 2002, Bush claims that North Korea started a secret uranium enrichment program. To this day, there is still no proof that this program ever existed. But once we pulled out of the 1994 framework, we do know that the plutonium was unsealed, the inspectors were kicked out, the nuclear power plants were restarted, and North Korea used that plutonium in an attempt to become a nuclear state.
The North Koreans had to deal with John Bolton for the next 4 years. Talks went nowhere, and even career U.S. diplomats claimed that half of the problem was Bolton himself. Negotiations were predicated on North Korea stopping the enrichment of uranium, which the North Koreans denied doing, and we had no proof of them doing it. It is like saying, "I am going to keep you in jail until you stop trying to kill your wife," when there is no proof that you ever did try to kill your wife. We based our claims that North Korea was enriching uranium on our "intelligence" reports. Well, after Iraq, we see how good our intelligence was.
Unbeknownst to most Americans is that North Korea is toying with capitalism. Its Stalinist system has failed. It sees its neighbor to the north, China, who has retained authoritarian control over its masses while still engaging in an economic renaissance. North Korea wants to be seen as an adult and respected as one, even though, in actuality, it is just a bratty little kid because it has no experience with dealing on a global scale. It wants attention and is seeking it in the only way it knows how. It is unfortunate that we have to deal with a bratty little kid, but we do!
Do people not realize that we are still technically at war with North Korea? We signed an armistice but we have never signed a peace treaty. If you were them and saw what happened to Iraq, wouldn't you want a nuclear weapon too if Bush was in power, calling you the axis of evil?
I am not about to say that North Korea is a "misunderstood" nation and that it is really "good a heart" or all will be better if we just hugged. But for the love of all that is good and holy in the world, the hard line approach is not working!!! For the past six years, the Bush administration has "misundersetimated" North Korea, just like it "misunderestimated" the aftermath of an Iraq invasion or the results of ignoring Afghanistan.
The notion that this is Clinton's fault, six years after he left office is full of crap and McCain is too.
McCain blames Clinton policies for N. Korea woes
Update: McCain Targets Both Clintons