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Ooooh, Mr. Bush calls the North Korean nuclear test “unacceptable.” Which is just what he called it before they carried out the test.

Unacceptable. What is that, the magic word, Mr. President? Unacceptable?

It’s a pity the Japanese didn’t think of this in 1945. If only they had announced that nuclear weapons were “unacceptable.”

And now we’re off to the UN to impose sanctions on a country where the government has no reluctance whatsoever to watch their own people starve or freeze.

Impose sanctions, cut off their cash, cut off their oil, that’ll show ’em.

Gosh, I wonder what the North Koreans could possibly do to raise some cash now? Let’s see if we can think of anything a rogue nuclear-armed state could possibly do to raise a few hundred million dollars. Anyone? Any suggestions?

Thank God there’s no country swimming in billions of dollars of oil money that would like a quick path to joining the nuke club.

Yesterday all North Korea had to put on the table was a possible weapon. Now they have a real one. The North Koreans just raised their market value by hundreds of millions if not billions of dollars. Iranians, Syrians and Al Qaeda all just booked flights to Pyong Yang.

But don’t worry: it’s unacceptable.

(Cross-posted from Sideways Mencken.)

  • http://gimps.de Maria making pictures

    Interesting development. I guess Bush is going to use the nuke test for his own purposes for winning the trust of frustrated people in the USA.

    Thank you for sharing this story with me !

  • http://2peros.blogspot.com/ DosPeros

    My dad use to say that my behavior was “unacceptable”…right before smacking me upside the head. “Unacceptable” only means something with a correlating smack upside the head, without it… it is actually contradictory…meaning “acceptable.”

  • reader_iam

    “Unacceptable” is right up there with “inappropriate” as modern-day words, applied in all sorts of situations, that set my teeth on edge.

    That aside, however, what precisely DO you want to be done?

    Ultimately–to put it very, very superficially indeed–this is a hand that primarily China needs to play, and indeed, it could be argued, is playing and has been playing for a very long time. Geopolitics, anyone? It really isn’t all about us.

  • david

    Reinstate the draft based on family wealth with the richest getting to serve their country first. Have their families provide body armor, humvee armor, and all other supplies needed. Then send them to invade North Korea with W in the lead landing craft. To a rallying cry of ‘democratize or die’, they would race up the beaches on their $6000.00 trail bikes to defend the homeland from the asian horde. Ain’t war glorious?

  • sleipner

    Now what would really be terrifying is if North Korea does one further test…of a successful intercontinental missile. Especially since I live in LA, one of their most likely targets.

  • Bob J Young

    Just a few technical point:

    1) North Korea has my permission to test all the bombs they want. Especially since every test means they use up their limited supply of weapons grade material. We should be goading them into doing some more tests. Maybe spread rumors that it was really just a big chemical explosion.

    2) Just because you manage to blow up your garage, doesn’t mean you know how to make a cluster bomb. It’s a lot easier to make a nuclear explosion in a laboratory setting then to make a deliverable weapon. That doesn’t mean they aren’t a dangerous bunch of lunatics with a terrible new toy. It just means that putting a nuclear weapon on a missile and hitting LA is still a very unlikely event.

    3) If I were the Japanese prime minister I would quickly amend the constitution then pursue my own nuclear program. They have had the capability of making a weapon for decades.

  • better dead than red

    Reader_iam
    “Ultimately–to put it very, very superficially indeed–this is a hand that primarily China needs to play, and indeed, it could be argued, is playing and has been playing for a very long time. Geopolitics, anyone? It really isn’t all about us.”

    Um, no. If Bush is committed to protecting Americans (granted, few facts support this position), then the State Department should be working overtime to solve this little problem. Current circumstances were avoidable had the Bush Admin talked to North Korea. Instead, Cheney foreign policy decided the best approach was to ignore, isolate, and hope for the implosion of Kim Il Jung’s regime. Bush launched a war against Iraq to keep purported WMD out of the hands of a madman. Once again, wishful thinking…greeted as liberators, democracy springing forth from the desert sands in full bloom. Now, because of wishful thinking, a lunatic has nukes.

    It is Bush’s fault. And the world is much less safer.

  • http://www.warning1938alert.ytmnd.com Jimmy the Dhimmi

    If Bush is committed to protecting Americans (granted, few facts support this position), then the State Department should be working overtime to solve this little problem.

    Apparently thats all it takes when dealing with “lunatics.” Overtime. Does Cheney get time-and-a-half for that?

    If only John Kerry were president. Not only does he control the wind and the waves over the Gulf of Mexico, he also has the credibility to convince Hezballah to accept the exsitance of Israel too. Imagine if these magical abilities were directed towards the Korean penninsula. For some reason, not being president is like cryptonite for him.

  • Bearman

    Yep, it’s all GW’s fault. No one recalls slick Willy’s foibles in NoKo, eh?
    Gateway Pundit remembers

  • Bearman
  • reader_iam

    BDTR:

    Current circumstances were avoidable had the Bush Admin talked to North Korea.

    Okey-Dokey! It seems to me that you’re the one who thinks that the United States generally, and Bush in particular, are all-powerful, a delusion shared by certain members of that administration, to be sure.

    I sure don’t.

    Beyond that, what can one say to someone who apparently things all things exist in a vacuum (connected by a hose to Bush, not my personal foreign policy hero, btw) and who, apparently, believes that N.K.’s position (literal and figurative) on the globe relatative to other countries position (literal and figurative) on the globe is utterly irrelevant? And–assuming that you think China is irrelevant to all of this and to a whole array of related diplomatic strategies, tactics and issues over a long period of time–who apparently hasn’t read up on the subject all that much.

  • http://sidewaysmencken.blogspot.com m.takhallus

    Reader:

    I don’t think we have a good move. The military option is a fantasy. So, I’m afraid, is Sean Aqui’s idea above of aiding a regional arms race of Japan and SK to pressure China. That’s heading toward a new cold war and China in 2006 ain’t the USSR circa 1948. China finances our debt, sews our clothing and represents a potential market of a billion Starbucks latte-sippers and Boeing 787 passengers.

    Clinton tried paying them off and succeeded for 8 years. Bush tried bluffing and 6 years later we have this. Neither bribery nor bluffing is a great basis for a rational foreign policy, but sometimes there are no good answers.

    I don’t think we’re going to be able to impose serious sanctions and I think about the last thing we want is a really desperate NK. So I think we’ll end up back at the Clinton policy: pay them to behave. Kim outplayed us, that’s all there is to it.

  • http://sidewaysmencken.blogspot.com m.takhallus

    Jimmy:

    You’re right, there’s no easy diplomatic answer here. Some problems are basically insoluble. This is one of them.

  • http://sidewaysmencken.blogspot.com m.takhallus

    Dos:
    Speaking as a father myself, I agree. When you say “or else” you better have something. You can’t just keep repeating “unacceptable.” You have to make it stick. Or shut up and walk away.

  • http://sidewaysmencken.blogspot.com m.takhallus

    Bob:

    You’re right, so long as assume limited quantities of fissile materials. Keep testing.

    But as for blowing up your garage, while you’re right that doesn’t exactly make you the United States Air Force, it does make you a crazy bomb-making S.O.B. we all have to look out for.

  • better dead than red

    The problem seems to be typically framed as: Clinton is an appeaser, and Bush sticks his head in the sand. So, all of this hand wringing about what to do. “NK has nukes, and there are no good options.”

    From my vantage point, Clinton was doing a lot to fix the problem. Call what Clinton did, bribery, appeasement, whatever; the point is he made progress with North Korea. Clinton stepped in at a time when NK could take the fuel rods from their old nuclear reactor and get enough product to use in a nuke. He convinced NK to lock the fuel rods up. In exchange, they would get a light water nuclear reactor (no by product that could be turned into dangerous nukes) to replace the old one, trade concessions, and safety guarantees from the US.

    Clinton’s “bribery” locked things away and kept NK in check. When Bush decided to ignore the problem, NK took the control rods out of deep storage and made a nuke.

  • http://warning1938alert.ytmnd.com Jimmy the Dhimmi

    Clinton’s “bribery� locked things away and kept NK in check. When Bush decided to ignore the problem, NK took the control rods out of deep storage and made a nuke.

    You forget BDTR, that yesterday was North Korea’s first nuclear test. But it is believed that Pyongyang had enriched the nuclear fuel, developed the misslile technology and assambled the first warhead between 1994 and 1999. They probably have manufactured enough warheads over the past decade to the point where only now they can detonate one.

  • reader_iam

    Where are you getting the “ignore” from? This is what is puzzling me. You might disagree with the ongoing approach to North Korea, and certainly with the point at which we find ourselves, but the “ignore” is simply contrafactual.

    Let me ask a question, here: Are we under the impression that the U.S. has had no contact with North Korea over the past several years and has not been involved in any diplomatic discussions, or whatever you want to call them, with regard to North Korea?

  • http://americanfootprints.com john

    http://www.gwu.edu/~nsarchiv/NSAEBB/NSAEBB82/

    Speaking of blame gamses: GW senior (and friends) is always of course completely off the hook.