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[Editorial] No Peace without Verification of WMD.

Posted February. 18, 2002 09:19,   


President Kim Dae-Jung will have a third Korea-U.S summit meeting with U.S. President George W. Bush on the 20th.

Right now the two Presidents have different views on North Korea, and this has generated special interest domestically and internationally in connection with the relationship between North-South, Korea-U.S alliance, and the vision of North East Asia.

Therefore, our newspaper is also trying to state its basic standpoint.

We support ultimate reunification, reconciliation and peace in the Korean Peninsula as stressed several times before.

Reconciliation, peace and reunification, these three words are the very tasks that should be achieved as soon as possible by 70 million Korean people of the South, North and all over the world.

However, we have learned through historical experience that these tasks can never be achieved by declaration of discipline or negotiations, or symbolic slogans.

We have seen several times in view of world history that negotiations between countries or non-aggression treaty or peace treaty is thrown away like tissue paper and erupted in war.

Even the Korean Peninsula, despite its epoch-making negotiations, has returned to the starting point.

Of course, it is true that the negotiations between the North and the South were milestone, showing the direction that Korean people should go.

Despite the beautiful rhetoric, Korean peninsula cannot forget the severe crisis.

What were the reasons for it?

If we focus on the present time and ignore the past, we cannot help pointing out the problem of North Korean WMD and its large-scale arms arrangement near the cease-fire line.

The main issue is WMD including nuclear, biological and chemical weapons, and missiles that are used as means of transporting these weapons.

If they are used, it can destroy the whole human race regardless of North and South.

The reason why this point is being emphasized is due to the particular character of North Korea`s political system.

Frankly speaking, the political system of North Korea is a typical Stalinist totalitarianism, and this system can jeopardize people`s basic freedom and welfare for the sake of one man`s power and the privileged classes.

Particularly with regard to the severe food shortage of late1980`s, the state has been letting millions of people starve and die for nearly 20 years and turned the people into a pitiful lot.

Adding insult to injury, they celebrate major festivals such as ruler`s 60th birthday.

Where on earth is this kind of inhumane administration which shows off its shameless behavior proudly to the world?

Such extremely inhumane government which does not care about its people is trying to procure dangerous weapons or already possesses them, making neighboring countries nervous.

Moreover, it is our judgment that last 9.11 attack was enough to alarm nations who support terrorism at the national level.

By the way, North Korea gave partial consent to international treaties forbidding production of WMD and its expansion. Therefore, we expected North Korea not to aggressively pursue the production of these weapons.

Nevertheless, we and the neighboring countries are concerned regarding WMD of North Korea because it is displaying an extremely closed attitude on inspection.

Therefore, if North Korea accepts verification at international level, and let us throw away the concern regarding this matter through verification, the South Korean government`s support policy towards the North will be able to secure the people`s full agreement, even though the scale of support is already large.

On this point, North Korea should make an effort and do its best to remove the suspicion which South Korea and Pacific Rim nations have.

The first step can be stopping export of missiles and its development as well as signing a `joint declaration` against terrorism between North and South.

We strictly oppose another war in tje Korean peninsula.

It is disaster for the people, whatever the rationale.

What we desire is peace.

The North should co-operate wholeheartedly regarding verification of WMD.

In addition, we hope that the Korea –U.S. summit will not be drowned in extravagant diplomatic speeches but amend differences through exchange of concrete information and analysis. We can thereby make a sure step for the actual promotion of peace in the Korean Peninsula.

The U.S should also show a positive attitude about the peace process and refrain from approaching the matter with an entrepreneurial spirit.