Bush Flip Flops Again (Thank C*rist)

U.S. Offers N.Korea Incentives to Scrap Nukes

By Teruaki Ueno and Saul Hudson
BEIJING/WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The United States offered North Korea aid incentives on Wednesday to scrap its suspected nuclear weapons programs after key allies pressed for a way to break a deadlock in six-party negotiations.

There was no formal response from North Korea, which appeared as entrenched as ever and urged the United States to soften its "hostile" stance.

Completing a policy reversal, Washington presented a plan to allow other nations to supply energy aid and said it could consider giving North Korea assurances it would not be attacked, U.S. officials said. It also offered Pyongyang three months to start dismantling its programs, they added.

In return, the communist state must provide a full listing of its nuclear activities, disable some dangerous materials and allow monitoring, senior officials said in outlining the proposal made at the start of six-party talks in Beijing.

Bet that will please the chickenhawks
Washington is in a bit of a hole here. NK know that the US does not have enough troops to force a conventional solution and that the US will not use anything bigger as long as they don't use their nukes. NK also know that in any case the Chinese probably wouldn't accept the US starting something on their border - and the South Koreans would like not to have a war.

However the fact that NK does have nukes does a decent job of safeguarding the regime. Saddam didn't have any WMD and he was evicted - and that lesson is not lost on them (and on Iran seemingly but that's another thread).

So the stick seems to be missing - hence carrots are all the US has ... BUT ... the current administration and popular sentiment will resist "supporting dictators", "being soft on terrorism", supporting "the axis of evil" etc etc. Bit of a sh@t sandwich really.

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