Last week, President Clinton announced his decision to ease sanctions
against North Korea in an effort “to pursue improved overall relations”
with the rogue, totalitarian, terrorist state — a nation with whom the
United States is still technically at war.

The decision was the result, the White House explained, of
discussions held between the U.S. and North Korean representatives in
Berlin earlier this month.

“On the basis of these discussions, it is our understanding that
North Korea will continue to refrain from testing long-range missiles of
any kind as both sides move toward more normal relations,” explained
White House spokesman Joe Lockhart.

Normal relations? The very same day Lockhart issued this statement,
here’s what the official North Korean news agency had to say about
warming relations with the U.S.: “… The most important aim sought by
the U.S. in the establishment of the ‘Theater Missile Defense’ system
(TMD) is to build up the sphere of its unchallenged domination over the
Asia-Pacific region. … It is working hard to militarily stifle the
DPRK (Democratic People’s Republic of Korea) through the establishment
of the ‘TMD.’ However, any ‘ missile defense’ system of the United
States will be of no use because of our strong striking power.”

In response to the action of the White House, KCNA issued this
statement Sept. 21: “The United States should show good faith by lifting
the remaining sanctions against the DPRK so as to make it a
comprehensive and substantial measure. Furthermore, if the U.S. is truly
willing to totally drop its hostile policy toward the DPRK and improve
relations with the DPRK, it should withdraw its forces from South Korea,
sign a peace agreement with the DPRK and thus root out the military
threat to the DPRK. The DPRK will reciprocate the U.S. practical action
to from its hostile policy toward the DPRK and improve relations with

Yeah, that’s really how North Korean bureaucrats write.

They added, for good measure, that the U.S. is pursuing missile
defense in Asia “in a bid to realize its ambition for world domination.”

What does this mean? It means the North Koreans believe they have
promised nothing for Clinton’s agreement. They believe they convinced
the U.S. to lift certain sanctions under a previous agreement reached
with the Clinton administration in 1994. They do not believe they have
made any additional commitments to forgo testing of long-range missiles.
And, even if they did acknowledge such an agreement, it would be
meaningless at best.

So who’s fooling whom?

The fact of the matter is that North Korea continues to act like a
nation at war with the United States, while the United States treats the
maniacs who run North Korea as if they were responsible, trustworthy,
elected officials who will act in the best interests of their country.
This is not the case.

Pyongyang has had an official policy to starve its own people by the
millions over the last year or two so that it can maintain its military
power. Conditions are so bad within the country that Koreans have fled
on foot, when possible, into China — hardly a bastion of freedom or a
refuge of safety and security.

Nevertheless, on a questionable “promise,” the U.S. is now ready to
allow the import of goods from North Korea, the export of goods to North
Korea, U.S. investment in agriculture, mining and infrastructure and the
resumption of normal “commercial” flights and shipping.

Understand what this will mean. North Korean officials make no
distinction between “commercial” flights and ocean shipping and
transportation designed for military and espionage purposes. Neither do
North Korea’s friends in Beijing for that matter.

So this nation, with which the U.S. is at war, will be permitted to
fly over large sections of the United States, dock in its ports and have
much greater access to militarily sensitive sites and population
centers. All this at the same time, the U.S. is citing the increased
dangers of international terrorism, bio-chemical warfare and suitcase
nukes in the years ahead.

Hello? Does this make sense to anyone? Why are we playing footsy with
North Korea now? Is the Clinton administration simply buying time until
its watch is over? What about the long-term interests of the U.S.?

Well, what else should we expect from the Clinton administration?

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