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U.S. Perversity on Peace in Korea

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Just when you think that the U.S. national-security state’s policy toward Korea can’t get more perverse, it does. The latest perversion? Opposing a peace agreement between North Korea and South Korea! Imagine that. And why would U.S. officials oppose such an agreement? Because it would inevitably lead to calls for U.S. troops in Korea to be sent packing home to the United States. After all, when a peace agreement is entered into, what would be the justification for keeping U.S. troops in that faraway land?

Don’t believe me? Well, take if from the New York Times, one of the most mainstream papers in the country:

President Moon Jae-in of South Korea arrived in Pyongyang Tuesday for his third summit with Kim Jong-un, North Korea’s leader, to work toward a common goal: fashioning a political statement this year declaring the end of the Korean War. Such a declaration, although not a legally binding treaty, could carry far-reaching repercussions, helping North Korea escalate its campaign for the withdrawal of American troops from the South, analysts said. For that and other reasons, the United States has strong reservations about such a breakthrough.

Why the strong reservations? Wouldn’t you think that U.S. officials would be ecstatic about the prospect of peace in Korea? Wouldn’t you expect that to be the response of any rational person?

Not for a regime that has come to view Korea as a constant flashpoint to keep people on edge and afraid, thereby assuring ever-increasing budgets for the Pentagon, the CIA, the NSA, and their army of contractors and sub-contractors. And not for a regime that has come to view Korea as a place that permanently bases tens of thousands of U.S. troops. And not for a regime that continues to target the North Korean regime for regime change.

A peace agreement between the two Koreas would threaten all of those things. Suddenly, the national-security state would lose one its principal flashpoints for crisis and fear, one that it has relied on since at least 1950. It would also mean having to bring all those troops home and trying to figure out what to do with them. And it would mean giving up its dream of regime change, at least through military force.

That’s why U.S. officials are so concerned about the ongoing improvement in relations between North and South Korea and the possibility that the two countries could enter into a peace agreement.

South Korean president Moon Jae-in and North Korea’s leader Kim Jong-un continue their efforts to improve relations between their two countries. They are currently holding their third summit, with Kim visiting Pyongyang, North Korea’s capital, for the first time ever. Kim was met by huge throngs of people, organized of course by the North Korean regime, cheering for Kim, waving flowers, and chanting “reunification of the fatherland.”

Left out of these negotiations is U.S. officials. But so what? Korea belongs to the Koreans, not to the Pentagon or the CIA. It’s their civil war, a civil war that the Pentagon and the CIA butted into more than 60 years ago, and without the constitutionally required congressional declaration of war. Koreans don’t need the permission of U.S. officials to resolve their war and their differences.

What is concerning U.S. officials is that the two leaders might reach an agreement that doesn’t involve “denuclearization” by North Korea. But the only reason that North Korea has nuclear weapons is to deter the Pentagon and the CIA from attacking and invading North Korea for the purpose of regime change. With no regime-change attack by the United States, North Korea’s nukes become irrelevant.

But there’s the rub: The Pentagon and the CIA refuse to give up their goal of regime change in North Korea. They don’t want U.S. troops to come home. They want to keep them in South Korea forever (just like they want to keep their wars in the Middle East and Afghanistan, their war on terrorism, and their war on drugs going on forever). In that way, there is always the chance that North Korea can be provoked into committing some provocative act that could serve as an excuse for bombing and destroying North Korea’s communist, anti-U.S. regime and replace it with a pro-U.S. puppet regime.

Meanwhile, trying their best to ratchet up tensions and forcing North Korea to “denuclearize,” U.S. officials are doing everything they can to fortify their brutal systems of economic sanctions on the North Korea people, even lashing out against everyone they suspect is violating the sanctions, like Russia. They have to keep those North Korea citizens starving to death so that their public officials finally “denuclearize.”

In another perversity, South Koreans are being warned against violating U.S. sanctions by entering into mutually beneficial economic transactions with the North, such as working together to operate a passenger rail line between the two countries.

The best thing South Koreans could ever do for themselves and the American people is to boot all U.S. troops out of their country, whether South and North arrive at a peace agreement or not. Korea remains no business of the Pentagon and the CIA. But at least the American people are getting to see the real truth about the U.S. national-security state and its perverse and destructive policies.

This post was written by:

Jacob G. Hornberger is founder and president of The Future of Freedom Foundation. He was born and raised in Laredo, Texas, and received his B.A. in economics from Virginia Military Institute and his law degree from the University of Texas. He was a trial attorney for twelve years in Texas. He also was an adjunct professor at the University of Dallas, where he taught law and economics. In 1987, Mr. Hornberger left the practice of law to become director of programs at the Foundation for Economic Education. He has advanced freedom and free markets on talk-radio stations all across the country as well as on Fox News’ Neil Cavuto and Greta van Susteren shows and he appeared as a regular commentator on Judge Andrew Napolitano’s show Freedom Watch. View these interviews at LewRockwell.com and from Full Context. Send him email.