Wednesday, January 08, 2003

If the January eighth post of talking points memo is correct, the pendulum swings back to Bush bearing a heavy share of the blame for the Korean Crisis aka the Korean Non Crisis. Apparently former Clinton administration officials are prepared to testify they gave Bush the nuke info when he got into office. He chose to share it with North Korea while we were tied up with Iraq and Afghanistan, apparently hoping to weaken the Korean negotiating stance.

The talk about pulling our 37000 troops out of Korea (same Josh Marshall post) might not be as silly as he thinks - if it's talk. The idea isn't (I hope) to pull them out, but to make the South Koreans think seriously about the danger posed by North Korea. Many of them do, but public discussion might inform many more. There is something to be said for guns over butter, but they should be prepared to offer a larger share of the butter if that's their proposal. Let's remember, after Japan and Germany, they may well be our third most successful attempt at helping a nation to remake themselves as a democracy. They have much to be proud of, and don't forget all the wild swings American politics has taken over the past fifty years.

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