Negotiating with North Korea and Iran

♠ Posted by Emmanuel in at 2/22/2007 05:29:00 PM
The political theater of negotiations where nothing of significance ever happens with North Korea and Iran is readily explained. My cynical and cyclical take on the matter goes like this: First, Kim Jong-il or Mahmoud Ahmadinejad delivers a speech on his country's right to develop nukes, typically peppered with statements about "Western warmongers" or "Satanic imperialists." Second, the international community, often led by the American "Globocop," roundly condemns these statements and presses for discontinuance. At this point, negotiators are sent offering carrots (food, aid, energy) and wielding sticks (sanctions, hints of armed conflict). After a period of being rebuffed, they get to talk to Pyongyang or Tehran. Usually, a tentative agreement is made that is trumpeted far and wide. In a short while, though, any hint of a deal reached is broken off as inspectors find these countries in breach of their obligations or as they are found to be negotiating in bad faith. Meanwhile, China and Russia are always there to ensure that possible UN sanctions are watered down That's all there is to it. At this time, the US is already overstretched by its commitments in Iraq and Afghanistan, neither of which is going particularly well. North Korea developed this delay-and-distract cycle; Iran is merely copying it. Stick with what works by loading Uncle Sam on the treadmill to nowhere. After all, what's America going to do? Invade?