As a strategy to not talk directly to North Korea about its nuclear programme, the George W Bush administration came up with the idea of sending the matter to a gathering of six countries–the US, South Korea, Japan, China, Russia, and North Korea–to resolve.
They never have yet.
China offered Beijing as the site of the meeting. Clever by half, the US wagered that China as a neighbour and ally of North Korea, it would pressure Pyongyang to bend to Washington’s will.
Never has happened. And the talks are on hold ‘sine die’.
Now, president Obama at the World Nuclear confab in Seoul, has button hold China’s Hu Jin tao, to lecture him on China’s responsibility to dissuade Pyongyang from its proposed satellite launch at the time of Kim Il Sung’s centenary.
China may have mixed feelings about North Korea’s plans, but it surely harbours an extreme revulsion at being lectured by another country about what it should or shouldn’t do.
Speaking of being ham handed…..
To make matters worse, South Korea’s Lee Myung bak is thumping his hollow chest in his usual display of braggadocio, boasting he will shoot down the satellite launch if its violates South Korea’s air space. An empty pledge in light of the DPRK’s announcement that the projected sending up of a satellite will go southwards towards the wide Pacific and not over South Korea.
Obama’s cockiness is very much in line with his administration’s war like posture in dealing with North Korea or Iran or for that matter with any country it doesn’t like. A good fight stirs up its blood, and negotiations leaves it cold.
China will not give into Obama’s blackmail. The US president has put on the plate his doctrine which sees China as America’s existential enemy now and in the long future.