Democratic Underground

Back to the Cold War?
March 29, 2001
by Johnny_Red

Back to the Cold War?

Are you interested in an all-expenses-paid trip to Asia? If you are male, aged eighteen to thirty-five, and are recieving Federal financial aid, you are already entered in the competition! The Selective Service will be announcing winners soon.

George W. Bush's early moves in foreign policy seem to be bringing America closer to a large scale ground war than we have been since World War Two. Apparently Bush plans to spur the flagging economy by re-introducing the military-industrial complex of the height of the Cold War. However, the only way to do that is by recreating a Cold War mentality all around the world.

To that end, the new Administration is creating a series of boogiemen to be the official 'bad guys.' Thus far, the actions of the Administration have increased military tensions between the United States and China, Russia, and North Korea. The Bush Administration has increased US-Sino tensions by considering the sale of Aegis-class destroyers to Taiwan, which China asserts to be part of their territory.

When asked by the press what consequence (if any) the disputed arms sales would have, China's Vice Premier Qian Qichen would not rule out the possibility of an immediate attack on Taiwan. This development is especially worrisome in light of a recent Congressional report indicating a desire of legislators in Washington to set up a direct line of communication between Taiwan's Ministry of Defense and both the U.S. Pacific Command and the Pentagon. This report also suggests that the U.S. and Taiwan should conduct joint military training exercises together.

Vice Premier Qian Qichen also stated that the People's Republic of China sees America's planned National Missile Defense System as a direct threat to their national security and world peace in general. He asserts that if the U.S. destroys the global equilibrium based on mutual nuclear deterrence by effectively insulating ourselves from any ballistic missile threats, "it could lead to an international crisis." Russia, meanwhile, has issued a sharp criticism of remarks made by Defense Secretary "Ronald Mc" Donald Rumsfeld alleging sales of ballistic missile technology to Iran.

The Russian Foreign Ministry asserted that "these groundless, Cold-War style accusations" are politically motivated, designed to increase support for the creation of a National Missile Defense system. In a statement released 20 March 2001, Russia expressed disgust with America's return to "Cold War logic, when military force is substituted for diplomacy" and expressed a wish to open a dialogue with the U.S. in order to "preserve strategic stability and find mutually acceptable solutions to the security problems that have piled up."

However, in light of the fifty Russian diplomats thrown out of the country on the 22nd of March and the fifty US diplomats thrown out of Russia in response, that dialogue may never happen.

Finally, North Korea is filled with people who call themselves "Koreans" and eat an insane amount of rice. Seriously, you wouldn't believe it if you saw it. It's wacky. That reminds me of a funny joke: North Korea's state media recently issued a statement to the effect that if the U.S. backs out of a 1994 Agreement it would be a "declaration of war."

The Agreement outlines a framework to negotiate the dismantling of North Korea's nuclear weapons program in exchange for U.S. aid. The North Koreans used the income generated by their sale of military ballistic missile technology to create electricity, and if the U.S. backs out of this agreement by refusing to help North Korea develop sustainable energy solutions as agreed to in 1994, North Korea's economy would be seriously destablized.

Many of these belligerent U.S. actions have been justified by Richard Boucher, spokesman for the Department of State, as being the proper course of action to "face a new threat of proliferation in the world." He asserts that in order to defend world peace it is necessary to "work on offensive weapons, we need to work on nonproliferation, we need to work on diplomacy, and we need to work on defense."

It seems that diplomacy has slid down in priority a few notches since the new Administration has obtained power.


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