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“No one should be allowed to throw a region and even the whole world into chaos for selfish gain,” [President of China Xi Jinping] said in a speech at an annual regional business forum in Boao, China. Mr. Xi did not single out any countries or disputes, but in separate remarks, China’s Foreign Ministry repeated its “grave concern” over the rising tensions on the Korean Peninsula.

In the past week, China’s Foreign Ministry has released several statements saying that it considers the North Korean situation to be of “grave concern.” On Sunday, the ministry repeated that phrase, saying that China had requested that North Korea protect foreign diplomats living in Pyongyang, the North’s capital.

For a fifth consecutive day, North Korea blocked South Korean workers and supplies from entering the [Kaesong] factory park, forcing 13 plants to stop production as of Sunday.

The most concerning detail of this story may be the ongoing shutdown at Kaesong, which could get much worse in a hurry.

What we should really watch for is if North Korea prevents the South Korean workers from leaving Kaesong, which could be interpreted by the South Korean government as a hostage situation, says Stephan Haggard, professor of Korea-Pacific Studies at the University of California, San Diego.

"Everything else," he said, "is just talk."

Meanwhile the war of pictures has already begun.
As military tensions continued to rise between North and South Korea yesterday, the propaganda war was well under way. The North released photos of attack dogs ripping apart an effigy of a South Korean leader. And the South staged an exhibition of disturbing images depicting atrocities it says were carried out in the North and verified by North Korean defectors.
And once again the only ray of light in this murky and explosive soup emanates from the Pentagon.
THE US has postponed an intercontinental ballistic missile test next week amid mounting tensions with North Korea. A senior defence official said that Defence Secretary Chuck Hagel delayed the long-planned Minuteman 3 test at an Air Force base in California because of concerns the launch could be misinterpreted and exacerbate the current crisis.
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Comment Preferences

  •  All it take is a spark... (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Frank Whitaker, koNko
    •  It takes more than a spark , (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      eowynsdottir, BachFan

      NK has done things in the recent past that are "sparks",
      those things did not result in a hot burning war .

      NK would have to do something huge , something SK and the US could not tolerate .
      I don't think NK will take that step .

      Drop the name-calling MB 2/4/11 + Please try to use ratings properly! Kos 9/9/11

      by indycam on Sun Apr 07, 2013 at 08:26:38 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

      •  I think it is a mistake to take this too lightly; (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        Frank Whitaker, bear83

        they have always acted bat-sh*t crazy, but this time their insanity is slightly different, and many of the world's leaders are taking this more seriously than is being reported in the press.

        In the 2013 global risks reports, North Korea is considered a flashpoint...

        But still, I hope you are right...

        •  I don't take it lightly . (2+ / 0-)
          Recommended by:
          Frank Whitaker, CwV

          Its a very strange combo of
          death by cop and Mexican stand off .

          We have tolerated the bull shit they have done in the past .
          China has agreed to sanctions this time around .
           

          but this time their insanity is slightly different,
          They have a new "card" to play with .
          and many of the world's leaders are taking this more seriously than is being reported in the press.
          I sure hope so , I'd like them all to work together to fix this up in a long lasting way . The poor people in NK need help .

          Drop the name-calling MB 2/4/11 + Please try to use ratings properly! Kos 9/9/11

          by indycam on Sun Apr 07, 2013 at 09:08:06 PM PDT

          [ Parent ]

          •  What has me worried is this April 10 shit. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            Frank Whitaker

            That's a new one.

            "Well, yeah, the Constitution is worth it if you succeed." - Nancy Pelosi // Question: "succeed" at what?

            by nailbender on Sun Apr 07, 2013 at 11:03:17 PM PDT

            [ Parent ]

            •  Me too. (0+ / 0-)

              The North Koreans were awfully definite about that date...

              The British Embassy in Pyongyang has received a communication saying that the North Korean government “would be unable to guarantee the safety of embassies and international organizations in the country in the event of conflict from April 10,” according to a UK Foreign Office spokesman.
              The Chinese are apparently taking this strange announcement seriously enough to ask for specific reassurances about the safety of diplomatic personnel...
              “At present, tensions on the Korean peninsula are rising unceasingly, and China expresses grave concern about this,” China’s Foreign Ministry said in a statement on its website (www.mfa.gov.cn).

               China, it said, had asked North Korea “to earnestly ensure the safety of Chinese diplomats in North Korea, in accordance with the Vienna Convention and international laws and norms”.

              •  "April 10th" is no real biggie. (1+ / 0-)
                Recommended by:
                indycam

                It's the date that NK is planning to proceed with their missile test...

                This dance has been going on for a long time. North Korea has been doing missile tests and issuing provocative statements since at least 1998. It's the equivalent of Donald Trump saying that he was going to do something "YOOJ!" that would shake up the 2012 election... and it turned out to be nothing.

                Chances are that the missile test will be laughably stupid. The missiles will break up less than two miles from the NK, North Korea will declare it a success and the rest of the world will laugh/shake their heads.

                Remember that this is a country that released a pathetically photoshopped image of the "might" of its army in order to scare international observers.

                On the off chance that the missile test does cause damage (such as the time NK killed 50 sailers aboard the "Cheonan" in 2010 or launched artillery attacks against SK civilians later that year.... ) North Korea will immediately scuttle backwards and say "No! No! That wasn't us!!!"

                Anytime North Korea actually DOES do something that could lead to war- like killing personnel from other countries- it balks and backtracks immediately.

                I'd chill if I were you. This is nothing. If you really want to worry about North Korea, stop looking at the possibility of nuclear war and start looking at the possibility of one of its ancient nuclear reactors melting down. As Fukushima showed us, even a very well-run, rich, liberal-democracy can have old reactors that can melt down, causing world-wide panic. Imagine the damage the ancient technology and badly-trained workers of North Korean can inflict!

                •  Have they ever given foreign diplomats a (1+ / 0-)
                  Recommended by:
                  Frank Whitaker

                  leave-by deadline that coincides with a missile launch?  Have they ever acted quite this crazy?

                  "Well, yeah, the Constitution is worth it if you succeed." - Nancy Pelosi // Question: "succeed" at what?

                  by nailbender on Mon Apr 08, 2013 at 04:34:31 PM PDT

                  [ Parent ]

                  •  They've done a heckuva lot worse! (0+ / 0-)

                    The "Cheonan" and the artillery attacks against SK civilians in 2010, the missile launch over Japanese airspace in 1998, the bombing of a Koreanair flight back in the eighties.... oh, the list goes on and on.

                    Basically this rhetoric has been going on for decades. It's the same old game. Notice that it's past April 10 and there's been no nuclear war :-) Not that I don't doubt that they're gonna launch that rusty missile, but there appears to be a few delays. Quel Surprise.

                    Frankly I'd be more worried if North Korea hadn't said anything for awhile. The "Cheonan" and the artillery attacks came after periods of odd silence. After all, if you wish to destroy a few nations, why would you first issue them long and elaborate warnings beforehand?

  •  The first block quote is about NK . (0+ / 0-)

    China is saying stop messing around .

    Drop the name-calling MB 2/4/11 + Please try to use ratings properly! Kos 9/9/11

    by indycam on Sun Apr 07, 2013 at 08:21:48 PM PDT

    •  As I stated in Frank's first diary on the subject (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Frank Whitaker

      Kim is seriously pissing-off China and the above quoted statement is very clearly pointed at the DPRK.

      You will find Mr. Xi's administration to be a bit more outspoken than pervious.

      China has had a lot of hardship over the DPRK and it's a very complicated political equation, but Kim's stonewalling and continued belligerence is pushing the limits, politically.

      What about my Daughter's future?

      by koNko on Mon Apr 08, 2013 at 06:46:22 AM PDT

      [ Parent ]

  •  sounds like China is just about as sick of these (1+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Frank Whitaker

    idiots as everyone else. Wonder what discussions are going on between US and them about it.

    •  Obama Phones Xi (4+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      wilderness voice, DeadHead, CwV, BachFan
      Citing unnamed administration officials, the The New York Times reported late yesterday that the recent US exchanges with China included a phone call from President Barack Obama to Xi.
      US officials briefed the Chinese in detail about US plans to upgrade missile defenses and other steps to deter the threats made by North Korea's young leader, Kim Jong-un, the report said.

       China has not protested publicly or privately as the United States has deployed ships and warplanes to the Korean Peninsula, the newspaper noted.

       That silence attests to both Beijing's mounting frustration with North Korea and the recognition that its reflexive support for Pyongyang could strain its ties with  Washington, the report said.

      No matter what was said, more talk is probably better than less.
  •  "High Anxiety" (2+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    ZappoDave, Frank Whitaker

    From NBC News:


    I still think this is just another attempt at international blackmail by the North Koreans to get aid for promising to be "good" until the next they go nuts. But one scary avenue would be what might happen if the North Koreans attempted to take a third option?

    For example, attacking South Korean or Japanese territory would precipitate a response, let alone the response that would happen if they actually have a missile that could hit the U.S. mainland. But what would be the response if they aimed one of their middle-range missiles, with conventional explosives, at or near Guam or other U.S. territories in the Pacific?

    Even if the missiles don't hit the islands, there would be debate over whether the North Koreans were trying to hit American possessions in the Pacific, and whether there should be a response? But there would be no good response to take against such an action, since any response against North Korea would only precipitate a retaliation against South Korea or Japan.

  •  Is there a link to the images the South.... (0+ / 0-)

    showed claiming to document the North's atrocities? The link provided only showed the North's part with the effigy of the South's minister.

    No snowflake in an avalanche ever feels responsible.

    by Magster on Sun Apr 07, 2013 at 09:55:16 PM PDT

    •  There are also drawings by prisoners... (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Magster

      If you scroll down that link, there are also a couple of drawings of conditions in North Korean gulags, supposedly from former prisoners, and that's all the documentation I know of, for this particular story.

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