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Donilon: US to take every measure to protect S.Korea

Posted March. 13, 2013 04:58,   


The national security adviser to the White House says the U.S. will mobilize every possible measure to protect its allies, including South Korea, from North Korea’s threat.

National Security Adviser Thomas Donilon, the point man spearheading U.S. policy toward North Korea, said this in a speech entitled “Rebalancing to Asia-Pacific” at the Asia Society in New York on Monday.

“The United States will not accept North Korea as a nuclear state; nor will we stand by while it seeks to develop a nuclear-armed missile that can target the United States,” Donilon said. “This will also apply to Pyongyang’s act to transfer nuclear weapons to a third country, terrorist group or arms traffickers.”

In the lecture, Donilon presented four major principles in U.S. policy toward North for the second term of the Obama administration. He said, “The days when North Korea could exploit any seams between our three governments are over," adding, "The alliance among the three countries is important to deterring North Korea’s aggression." Welcoming China’s support of the resolution on sanctions against North Korea, he added, “No country, including China, should conduct ‘business as usual’ with a North Korea that threatens its neighbors.”

Donilon presented the second principle by quoting former U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates, who said, “We (U.S.) won`t buy the same horse twice,” saying the U.S. will never surrender to the North’s threat or reward it. He stressed that strong sanctions will entail as long as Pyongyang denies change. Donilon also said the U.S. will hold North Korea responsible for (the North’s) development of nuclear weapons and transfer of nuclear materials.

The U.S. advisor informed of the last principle, saying, "The United States will continue to encourage North Korea to choose a better path." “As he has said many times, President Obama came to office willing to offer his hand to those who would unclench their fists. President Obama’s historic visit to Rangoon is proof of our readiness to start transforming a relationship marked by hostility into one of greater cooperation,” Donilon said, implying that North Korea should "reflect on Burma’s experience."

On what the U.S. government thinks of the position expressed by two-thirds of South Koreans that they would support their country going nuclear in recent weeks, he said in a Q&A session after his speech, “Considering the North’s provocations, (South Korean sentiment backing possession of nuclear weapons) is understandable.” As for specific measures, he objected to the nuclear bid, however, saying, “As shown in the recent Key Resolve military drill, we should use the bilateral alliance to cope with North Korea’s threat.”