Kim Jong IL Dead - Hope or Fear

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Predicting North Korea

Submitted: December 19, 2011

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Submitted: December 19, 2011



Kim Jong IL Dead - Now Fear or Hope?

North Korean leader Kim Jong Il died at age 69 today.  Aside from the grief of a nation who revered its dictorial leader, what will be the next international political position for the enigmatic nation?  There are expectations that the end of the 18 year rule of iron fisted leader will begin changes in North Korean relations with its concerned neighboring countries.  What are the possibilities?

First let's assume his passing was not part of a conspiracy that has a predetermined plan connecting his death being a requirement to further an agenda for the future planned actions of the nation.  It is of course possible that either internal or external forces assassinated him in order to enforce an agenda with goals still covert.Yet because he has in recent years prepared for succession to his son Kim Jong Un he may have, due to health reasons, expected his time to be short, and therefore his passing was natural.  It is reasonable to believe his son will continue in a fashion that in fact Kim Jong IL continued at the death of his even more nationally beloved father Kim IL-Sung began.  It may be a simple as a smooth status quo family succession of power, but on the other hand there is the possibility of drastic changes to come.

Good changes?  Perhaps there will be a warming of international relations.It could be that the nation may experience a slow thaw with progressive policy that will be encouraged by the international community.  Certainly it's long suffering population could benefit by modernization and an open door to business and cooperation with civil rights that give those people a new hope and vitality.  The North Korean nation is in a good position to improve the standard of living and rights for its people with simple gestures that invite change.  The world would be more than eager to expand markets and breath a sigh of relief at a potentially dangerous nation embracing peace and cooperation with its neighbors and the world at large.

Bad changes?  War.  There is still the possibility that a new hard line would make the world wish for the precarious balance Kim Jong IL maintained for almost the last two decades.  In that scenario could China begin the steps of influence toward a devastating proxy war?  Since World War Two the proxy war has been the war machine proliferation of choice.  Benefits for both the Eastern and Western military industrial, intelligence and technology powers would have a fulcrum.  It would limit the danger of an "all in" major war to controls over the fate and defeat or victory of just that single nation.  It could energize massive defense expenditures world wide.  In another scenario an internal nationalist sentiment led by a new council of North Korean war hawks could ignite a war for unification with its split brother country to the South.  This scenario could be considered a no lose situation for those in power in North Korea.  They may calculate that they will force the proxy war issue.  They may look at neighbors like Japan and think that even in their own defeat Western powers have been arbiters in peace and great prosperity of former enemies.  It may not be difficult to choose the glory of victory and benefit as Vietnam has, or lose and benefit as Japan has.

Here is my personal hope that the country of North Korea chooses the former rather than the later.


© Copyright 2018 Russ Maggio. All rights reserved.

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