October 28, 2006

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When China Got the Bomb, 1964

It seems that in this hour of fear, when the last remaining Marxist-Leninist autocracy has gotten the bomb, that we may want to revisit the history books to see the justifications the last time such a state exploded one. This link I found illuminating and puts the geopolitics against America into perspective.

I think of course there are differences between China and North Korea in their motivations for getting the bomb - but perhaps what has changed more in the last 42 years is the United States. From a country that grimly accepted the possibility of apocalyptic nuclear disaster during the Cold War, the US would certainly not entertain any such cataclysm being a potential scenario resulting from escalation with North Korea, probably not even if it did not take place in its own country.

Does the phrase 'paper tiger', written by a Maoist hand in 1964 with reference to the deterrent power of the US nuclear arsenal still have relevance today, when North Korea is prepared to suffer losses of its people and the US is not? I wonder.

posted by HK Dave on 10.28.06 at 07:16 PM in the Koreas category.


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