Daniel John Sobieski
If there is anything positive about the crisis about North Korea, it is that we don’t have a President Hillary Clinton dealing with it. The wannabe first female president, if you don’t count Obama aide Valerie Jarrett, who orchestrated the disaster in the Middle East, would no doubt have the advice of William Jefferson Clinton, the commander-in-chief who is the godfather of North Korea’s nuclear program and the winner of the Neville Chamberlain Lifetime Appeasement Award.
Between the two of them they have royally mucked up the word. Hillary was there when President Obama precipitously withdrew from Iraq, creating the vacuum ISIS filled, and drew the red line in Syria with vanishing ink. She is the architect of the Libyan venture that turned Libya into a failed state and Benghazi a graveyard for four heroic Americans.
As for her husband, Bill Clinton and Jimmy Carter must be very proud. Their policy of appeasement of North Korea’s brutal dictatorship has now borne rotten fruit with the little fat boy, Kim Jong Un, now able to threaten the
world with horrors similar to those imposed on his own people.
When Clinton first learned of the North Korean nuclear program in 1994, a surgical strike against its Yoingbyomg reactor might have sufficed to send Pyongyang a message that a nuclear North Korea was unacceptable.
Instead Clinton allowed Jimmy Carter to engage in some private foreign policy and jet off to the last Stalinist regime on earth to broker a deal whereby North Korea would promise to forego a nuclear weapons program in exchange for a basket of goodies that included oil, fool, and, amazingly, nuclear technology.
Along the way, Carter praised North Korea’s mass-murdering dictator as a “vigorous and intelligent man.” And of North Korea itself, Carter said of this habitat for inhumanity,“I don’t see they are an outlaw nation.” Of course, the man who gave us the ayatollahs in Iran didn’t. That wouldn’t stop him from getting the Nobel Peace Prize. As Jonah Goldberg wrote in October, 2002:
Let's start with the Nobel Peace Prize Committee. On Oct. 11, the Nobel committee announced it would award its Peace Prize to Jimmy Carter. It was really an un-Peace Prize for George W. Bush, whom the Nobel crowd believes is a foolish warmongering meanie.
"In a situation currently marked by threats of the use of power," intoned the Nobel press release, "Carter has stood by the principles that conflicts must as far as possible be resolved through mediation and international cooperation based on international law, respect for human rights and economic development." Translation: Bush should be more like Carter….
… it was brother Jimmy who had the bright idea of lavishing the North Koreans with aid in exchange for their "cross-our-hearts-and-hope-to-die" promise that they would stop pursuing nuclear weapons technology. Of course, many argue it was Carter's mollycoddling of the North Koreans during his presidency that encouraged them to start their nuclear program to begin with. But hey, that's heavy water under the bridge….
The final agreement, which Clinton dubbed "a very good deal indeed," called for the United States to provide the North Koreans with $4 billion worth of light-water reactors and $100 million in oil in exchange for a promise to be good and an assurance that inspectors would be allowed to poke around at some indeterminate point down the road.
The rest, as they say, is history. Clinton, relieved perhaps that he would not have to use the military he once loathed, leapt on this deal as if it were a White House intern. In exchange for a promise to be good, Clinton accepted Carter’s deal and agreed to provide the nation that spends a quarter of its GNP on its military while its people starve in a gulag some $4 billion in economic assistance, including oil and light-water nuclear reactors.
Upon completing what became known as the “Agreed Framework” in 1994, Clinton praised it the same way Chamberlain praised the Munich deal with Nazi Germany:
At the time, Mr Clinton said: “This US-North Korean agreement will help to achieve a long-standing and vital American objective: an end to the threat of nuclear proliferation on the Korean peninsula.
“This agreement is good for the United States, good for our allies, and good for the safety of the entire world.
“It’s a crucial step toward drawing North Korea into the global community.”
Gee, where did we hear this before? Ah, yes, Neville Chamberlain, 1938, proclaiming peace in our time.
In 1998, a week after Clinton’s military chief of staff assured Congress that North Korea had no active ballistic missile program, Pyongyang launched a Taepodong ICBM over the Japanese home islands. Instead of blasting the launch sites, within two months Clinton sent North Korea another multi-million dollar aid package and reopened bilateral negotiations.
Robert Kaufmann, professor of public policy at Pepperdine University, said of the agreement Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton engineered:
"The North Korean deal of 1994 is the prototype for why open societies should not negotiate arms control agreements with rogue regimes. The North Koreans duped Jimmy Carter — an emissary of Clinton — and the Clinton administration to subsidize the North Korean nuclear program in exchange for the counterfeit promise that North Korea would limit itself to civilian nuclear power."
President Obama’ eight years of “strategic patience” sealed the deal. Unfortunately, his nuclear deal with Iran is the 1994 Framework deal with North Korea on steroids. Ironically, North Korea and Iran have worked hand-in-glove to develop the missile technology to deliver nukes. Now it has $150 billion and Obama’s blessing to test the missiles to deliver the nukes we may only have delayed the development of.
Once again we have negotiated an arms agreement with a rogue regime. Whatever transpires with North Lorea, Iran is coming up fast as a threat. And we all have Jimmy Carter and Bill Clinton to thank for setting the precedent.
Daniel John Sobieski is a free lance writer whose pieces have appeared in Investor’s Business Daily, Human Events, Reason Magazine and the Chicago Sun-Times among other publications.