Plunge Pontificates

A place for my thoughts.

email me

Tuesday, July 12, 2005

South Korea lights up the North

In the latest proposal, South Korea would supply North Korea with electricity. This time, it wouldn't be building plants, but stringing lines from the South to the North.

An inadequate supply of electricity has left the North Korean economy in shambles. Trains, North Korea's main means of transportation, are electrically powered and seldom run on time. Blackouts are common even in Pyongyang, the North's capital. Unreliable transport hamstrings economic activities.
The South Korean suggestion is an offshoot of President Roh Moo Hyun's policy of helping North Korea rebuild its economy. The South contends that economic development would make the North Korean leaders more confident about their future so that they would open up the North to the outside world, improve the quality of life for its people and eventually consider reunification with the South. Critics have condemned the approach as coddling an untrustworthy regime.
South Korea's initiates are based on the premises that North Korea is willing to negotiate away its nuclear ambitions. But analysts also suspect that the North may stall the six-country talks to buy time to build more bombs to win recognition as a nuclear power, as well as winning quick economic benefits.

The hitch as I see it is that this is based on the North BEGINNING to dismantle their Nuclear program, not as a reward for actually having done something tangible on the road towards disarmament.

I'm sure the North will twist this and mutilate it and we will end up right where we started except that the North will have wrangled more food and other items from us.