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[Editorial] Ray of Light to N.K. Nuclear Crisis and S.K.-U.S. Alliance

[Editorial] Ray of Light to N.K. Nuclear Crisis and S.K.-U.S. Alliance

Posted August. 14, 2003 21:43,   


Today marks the 58th anniversary of Korea`s liberation from Japanese colonial rule in 1945.

On Liberation Day, we Koreans should make a resolution to develop the country up to the expectations of our ancestors, while remembering the sorrow they felt when the country under the rule of the colonial Japan and the joy when they regained the country from it.

Among a lot of challenges faced with us, we should think about North Korea`s nuclear weapons issue and Korea-U.S. relations first on the morning of Liberation Day. The North Korea`s nuclear weapons issue became an international issue involving the four major powers surrounding the Korean Peninsula. And the South Korea-U.S. relations are all the more important ahead of drastic changes in the security environment on the Peninsula, such as the relocation of the Yongsan Garrison and the movement of the U.S. 2nd infantry division. How to solve the two urgent issues will determine our destiny, whether we could improve our lot or we end up being controlled by outside forces again.

Fortunately, multi-party talks are scheduled to open to resolve North Korea`s nuclear ambitions. If the six parties to the talks, which are scheduled to start on August 27, fail to fine-tune, the talks could end up expressing six distinctive interests. In particular, Pyongyang`s firm attitude casts clouds over the six-way talks. The reclusive communist country made even a threatening statement that a non-aggression treaty and the U.S.` departure from its hostile policy toward North Korea is the only way to resolve the current nuclear crisis. If neither Washington nor Pyongyang made concessions to each other, the situation could lead to a collision between the two nations.

The answer to the North Korea nuclear crisis depends on what the six parties agree on at the talks. Cooperation among South Korea, the U.S. and Japan and fine-tuning with China and Russia will be critical factors to the success of the talks. Collaboration between South Korea and the U.S. also has an impact on the relocation of American soldiers stationed in Korea.

To unify public opinion is necessary right now. Divided opinions cannot give support to the government`s firm response. Even Though we have to have compassion on North Korean residents, our firm willingness not to tolerate a nuclear North Korea should come first. If we are divided in opinions, it could incur North Korea`s misjudgment. We should refrain from acts that could damage the South Korea-U.S. alliance. We should show a firm willingness to build a safe and peaceful nation, up to the expectations of our ancestors who fought for the independence of the nation.