Friday, July 08, 2016

Rumors of War - Kings of the East

North Korea fires missile from submarine, appears to have failed: South Korea - Reuters
Reuters reports: "North Korea fired a ballistic missile from a submarine on Saturday but it appears to have failed soon after launch, South Korea's military said. The launch comes at the end of a week of sharply rising tensions on the peninsula. It is only a day after the U.S. and South Korea pledged to deploy an advanced anti-missile system to counter threats from Pyongyang, and two days after North Korea warned it was planning its toughest response to what it deemed a 'declaration of war' by the United States. That followed Washington's blacklisting of the isolated state's leader Kim Jong Un for alleged human rights abuses."

Comment: China asked the U.S. not to deploy the anti-missile system. It might have been prudent for the U.S. to show regard for China's sensibilities and put the deployment on hold with the understanding that if  Pyongyang engaged in any further provocative acts, the deployment decision would be reconsidered. The U.S. would thus have engendered goodwill among the Chinese leadership (some of whom are not overtly hostile towards the U.S.) and at the same time, guaranteed the eventual deployment of the missile system when the North again conducted a missile launch, as there was little chance young Un would show restraint. Sadly, the opportunity has passed.

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