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How should the world react to Korea crisis?

14:10 UK time, Wednesday, 26 May 2010

China has not censured North Korea over the sinking of one of South Korea's warships. How should the world respond to the crisis?

Seoul is hosting a three-nation summit with China and Japan over what it says was a torpedo attack by the North in March that resulted in the loss of 46 lives.

Chinese Premier Wen Jiabao said the priority was to reduce tensions and avoid a clash over the incident. But he did not mention North Korea by name or show support for possible UN sanctions against Pyongyang.

Pyongyang has fiercely denied the allegations and has announced it plans to sever all ties with the South.

Should the world get involved in the Korea dispute? How should North and South Korea resolve the situation? What will be the impact of this crisis? Are you in the region?

Comments

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  • Comment number 1.

    Send in the Somali pirates to sort them out! Honestly, can't the world leave two countries to work things out between them? The rest of the world has no dog in this fight, it's been the North and South Koreans and they should be the ones trying to reach a negotiated solution to this crisis. Getting the rest of the world involved will only make it into far more of a crisis than it already is.

  • Comment number 2.

    The United Nations Security Council must act now, even if it means war. Personally I'd like to see N.Korea totally isolated and embargoed.

  • Comment number 3.

    It's an opportunity to finish the job we left in 1953.

  • Comment number 4.

    How should the world react to Korea crisis?

    There aren't a huge number of options.

    Tougher sanctions will almost inevitably have a worse effect on the average rural or urban North Korean rather than party members, it is possible to target sanctions on the regime itself, but not on a large enough scale to serve as a punishment for their trangressions.

    Military action would lead to a very nasty conflict with a country led by a man so detached from reality that I doubt many of us would question his capacity to push the nuclear button, even on his own soil.

    On the plus side Kim's an old man & not in the best health so maybe the best option is to just sit tight & wait for him to die and hope the next North Korean premier is a little less zany.

  • Comment number 5.

    "Should the world get involved in the Korea dispute?"

    No. This has nothing to do with anyone else. The UK has already gotten involved in troubles in the Middle East and we all know how that ended (it hasn't).

    "How should North and South Korea resolve the situation?"

    In any way they see fit, so long as it doesn't involve or affect anyone else.

    "What will be the impact of this crisis?"

    It'll largely involve lots of mudslinging, before settling down. No need for anyone else to waste time, money and lives by getting involved.

  • Comment number 6.

    Do what? Have a war? The world against North Korea wouldn't take long to conclude so that's not really an option. Introducing trade embargoes might work but as they don't trade with anyone it probably won't. Stop the aid to them? The humanitarian world wouldn't like that so that's not an option. There is nothing that can be done other than sending troops to the area to act as a deterrent.

  • Comment number 7.

    An enormous emphasis on getting communications back up with N Korea is necessary.

    N Korea have an enormous army at their disposal, not to mention nuclear capability of sorts. Whilst N Korea seems to be deliberately escalating the situation, their allies need to convince them to back off such a dangerous stance. S Korea and the US, and the rest of the international community need to make EVERY effort to resolve this peacefully, and to diplomatically apply pressure to N Korea and her allies.

    A state in such a volatile mood has absolutely no right to be in possession of Nuclear weapons. If talks do not resume, violence will most likely be the culmination of this boiling pot.

    And people say we don't need Trident...

  • Comment number 8.

    The Chinese have some leverage with N.Korea, one would expect the Chinese to be involved in some diplomatic process with them.
    I don't think that the attitude 'War Office, you want a War?' is productive. Restarting the Korean War is not a realistic option, in fact it would be a lunatic thing to do.
    The problem is the leadership in Pyongyang.

  • Comment number 9.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 10.

    I am not sure what Hilary Clinton means by this statement. Clearly, the North Korean leadership is paranoid, schizophrenic, irrational and unpredictable so is unlikely to respond to rational argument. Furthermore, unless the Chinese feel inclined to get off the fence, concerted international action is difficult to say the least. However, for a start, South Korea must look to its own defences and associated plans, to ensure that they are up-to-date and realistic. No doubt, the US is doing the same, to shorten its own reaction times. Then, I would be increasing reconnaissance and surveillance of N. Korea for any signs of a military build-up, utilising the full range of sensors available.

  • Comment number 11.

    With Great Caution.
    North Korea is a military state with big problems, a looming famine which will cause some civil unrest.
    Historically countries with problems like these and possesing large armies tend to go on the rampage.
    Germany/Argentina etc. Unfortunately their leader is probably the loosest cannon around some might even say Nutcase.
    Its difficult because he will eventually do something that will provoke an armed conflict, the latest incident is getting very close to the mark. China needs to be brought on-side and make clear to North Korea that if it comes to conflict China will sit it out on the sidelines. This might bring North Korea back from the brink if they think they will be on their own .

  • Comment number 12.

    I read the BBC piece yesterday "strong message" where people from So. Korea are interviewed and was shocked to find this insane Leftist brainwashing has left people there unable to face the simple truth that the No. Koreans are evil and blew up thier warship and killed their citizens. Some there do do believe thier own government nor the American, British, and Swedish investigators of this attack. They will point to the rust, the machine marks, the chemical tests of the explosives, the proximiny of the American Navy and in their own minds look for any little excuse to deny reality.
    No. Korea is evil they are not misunderstood or of a different culture they imprison millions of their own citizens we have the pictures of huge labor camps, we have the testimony of defectors, they don't care when millions starve, they have a million man army and a nuclear program but can't buy food for thier people while Dear Leader is swigging down thosand dollar a bottle cognac.
    To those So. Korean Lefties, accept the truth and deal with it.

  • Comment number 13.

    The 'world' should be read as 'South Korea,US and Japan'only in that order for this situation.China too is a part of the problem but they are not in mood or a position to react/intervene for their own selfish reasons.

  • Comment number 14.

    Acting like this is a between conflict that only involves the two Koreas is stupid and ignores the history of the peninsula. Like it or not China, the US, Japan and Russia are all involved. If they were not the conflict would be taken care of very quickly when N. Korea invaded and took over S. Korea, which would of course lead to further conflict.

    At this point in the game it is very necessary to make sure that N. Korea is firmly punished for what they did, not militarily but economically. China must have its arm twisted in order to make them more amenable to clearing sanctions in the security council and the sanctions must be designed to hurt N. Korea deeply. N. Korea has been allowed to act like a spoiled bully for far too long. The world has changed greatly since the time of the Korean war and it is time to wake them up to a new reality.

  • Comment number 15.

    The international community must exert maximum economic and political pressure on North Korea. South Korea is a vibrant, peaceful, and democratic state that contributes much to world culture, commerce, and science. North Korea is a destabilizing state with a notorious human rights record and a long history of blackmail against its neighbors. Given the selfishness of the eccentric Kim Jong Il, I have no doubt that North Korea would use its nuclear weapons if the regime was threatened with collapse. The best case scenario is for South Korea to co-opt the military establishment in North Korea with the assistance of the Chinese so that the removal of the Kim clique can be accomplished with as little bloodshed as possible. In the meantime, countries like the UK should downgrade or suspend their diplomatic relations with North Korea.

  • Comment number 16.

    When you have an egotistical maniac leading a nation, it's only a matter of time before the rest of the world becomes involved.

  • Comment number 17.

    Well firstly we need to establish what happened. One report from the US (which is anti-North Korean) has determined the North were responsible which they deny. Since the US intelligence were wrong about the Gulf Of Tonkin incident and the weapons of mass destruction in Iraq I think it would be best to get a second opinion with neutral investigators. Better still why not invite the North down to see if they can track what caused the sinking and compare results? What does the North gain by sinking the ship and denying it? I am positive not all the facts are available so it's too early to be making hasty decisions that we will live to regret later (like in Vietnam and Iraq).

    Secondly any escalation of the conflict or things that could heighten tension such as planned naval exercises need to be stopped. The first task of everyone should be about avoiding a war that will cost hundreds of thousands of lives. US led forces tried to invade North Korea in the 1950s and it ended in disaster with the Chinese pushing them out. We need China onboard with whatever happens.

  • Comment number 18.

    It simply defies all logic to sink a war ship in times like this, using your own torpedo to advertise your identity. Unless it was an tragic accident. But, why would they do that incognito, if they wanted to provoke SK and the USA? There would be 100x better options for that and those guys are not stupid. This case is an obvious manipulation again. Just look at the main players in it...

  • Comment number 19.

    It would be far better (as far as Brits are concerned) for us to leave North and South Korea to sort their own mess out. Unless of course we do'nt have any of our own problems to sort out ? Afghanistan, Iraq, etc. USA please Note !

  • Comment number 20.

    This situation is extremely suspicious, another example of a false flag event in my opinion. To all Koreans - the biggest threat to your society is America - do you really think they are in your country for your benefit. There will never be a reconciliation between the North and the South whilst you have American troops on your land - kick them out, they only have there own interest at heart. I had no idea that there was an election due in Korea next week until I read a comment made by a South Korean on this website - this just added to my suspicions. On our news they show the warship but conveniently don't show the entry point of the torpedo - Why?
    A British, American, Ausralian and Swedish investigators went to investigate this incident - why the hell should we believe these unknown people - it not like they have a clean record apart from maybe Sweden but that's not to say this individual couldn't be fooled or corrupted.
    Let's start a revolution - Let's get all American military out of all the countries in the world - this list would include - Columbia, Cuba, most European countries, Japan, Korea, Iraq, Afganistan, many countries in the middle east etc etc etc the list goes on and on.

  • Comment number 21.

    Now you know why to keep our nuclear deterrent its only a mater of time.
    Off topic for a mo dose any one know what happened two that elderly English couple who were taken by the Somali pirates?from their yacht.?

  • Comment number 22.

    To escalate the problem into a war is not wise as we are already having wars elsewhere. South Koran leaders will do what is good to their region, and Americans should learn to protect their own country in times of calamities like the oil spill and Katrina.

  • Comment number 23.

    Millions still think the US govt was responsible for 9/11, never landed on the moon, etc so its no surprise that you have conspiracy people thinking that Australia, Sweden, USA, and Britain conspired to falsify the evidence.

    No doubt they think the USA is after N Korea's oil or some other nonsensical argument.

    I think S Korea is handling the situation properly - send the evidence to the United Nations - let that play out - and cut off economic aid to a country that doesn't deserve it.

  • Comment number 24.

    'How should the World react to 'Korea crisis'? Is the HYS question?

    First off: Any excuse for the money and share markets to get excited - buy/sell/sell buy - computer trades blah, blah?

    Second: I would always be suspicious of any publisised 'random' and 'isolated' attack by North Korea? What is the purpose and why? North Koreans are reported as close to starving - yet maintain a huge army and nuclear weapons? So, how did that happen?

    One might suppose the next most scary aspect of American foreign policy regarding all of Korea has to be Hilary Clinton?

  • Comment number 25.

    RoyaltyintheChampionship wrote:

    "US led forces tried to invade North Korea in the 1950s and it ended in disaster with the Chinese pushing them out. "

    I'm afraid you have it backward. The North Koreans invaded South Korea and a UN force, led by the USA, responded and pushed the North Koreans back across the border into their own country. The North Koreans were the aggressors, backed by the Chinese and USSR.

    As for the report about the recent sinking of the South Korean ship, it was not authored by the US. US experts participated in the investigation alongside experts from Australia, Canada, UK, and Sweden. The investigation was led by South Korea and the report was authored by the South Koreans.

  • Comment number 26.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 27.

    If the North Koreans sunk that ship then its an act of war. I don't think the US should take the lead though as they need to be careful to not be the moral crusaders they claim to be. An international coalition led by South Korea. They are a menace. Time to wipe them off the map

  • Comment number 28.

    I don't think you have to be a conspiracist theory to distrust the US intelligence services that mistakely accused North Vietnam of firing first which led to a war in Vietnam and mistakenly accused a country of having weapons of mass destruction which led to a war in Iraq. If we can double check their latest findings they have produced (which could well lead to a war in Korea) then we would be foolish indeed to not get an alternative opinion wouldn't we?

  • Comment number 29.

    I can't speak for the world, but the US needs to immediately withdraw our forces from South Korea. This a a Korean problem, not an American problem.

    This is not our conflict but a dispute among the two Koreas. The US has supplied South Korea with modern
    main battle tanks and the most advanced Aegis class cruisers; beyond that we have no business being involved
    In the debate and certainly shouldn't put our forces at risk to defend Korea. It's past time they stood on their own.

  • Comment number 30.

    I'm amazed how many "experts" are commenting here. I just have a small opinion myself: North Korea is NOT Iraq or Afghanistan. It is a known fact that they have ICBM, and that millions of people are in danger in a matter of minutes if USA or S. Korea or Japan decide to act. It's easy for you "experts" to call to war, thinking you are at a safe distance. The Atlantic Ocean just got smaller, don't you think? War is not the solution fellow earthlings. And i still wonder if that torpedo wasn't planted there for obvious reasons.

  • Comment number 31.

    #25 DCHeretic

    "I'm afraid you have it backward. The North Koreans invaded South Korea and a UN force, led by the USA, responded and pushed the North Koreans back across the border into their own country. The North Koreans were the aggressors, backed by the Chinese and USSR. "

    I'm well aware that North Korea were the aggressors and invaded the south first and the UN forces pushed them back to the border but then went beyond the UN resolution by invading North Korea and subsequently being pushed back on the Yalu river by the Chinese resulting in the longest retreat in American history. My point was the Korean War to liberate the South was a success, but in terms of invading the North was a disaster, hence my point about invading North Korea being a disaster.

    "The investigation was led by South Korea and the report was authored by the South Koreans."

    Ok so we have one side's account now let's look at the North Koreans investigation and compare the results before we decide anything.


  • Comment number 32.

    Sanctions won't work: the North Koreans don't have food as it is. Just force Switzerland to freeze Kim Jong Il's accounts and put the money in a fund for the eventual occupation and reconstruction of North Korea (North Korea's fall is inevitable and the world needs to be ready for it).

  • Comment number 33.

    Here are the dividend war monger lovers again, good time to get the war drums out. North Korea is just a way out to divert what really matters to any human being out there still able to think for themselves. Get the war drums going,hmmm let see North Korea or Iran which one will it be.

    Regardless,

    The dividend war monger lovers are trap from every direction the world economies, unrest to their mass, seekers of cheap trills and happiness in a box. It would be a better bet for the dividend war monger lovers to go after Iran as they can exploit Iran Natural Resources..as for North Korea what does the country possibly has in order for the dividend war monger lovers to declare war on North Korea, Moon Shine!!!! from rice derivatives sound very attractive for any utopians who seek happiness in a box, Moon Shine from rice derivatives.

    What crisis, what is happening in the Gulf of Mexico is more of a crisis and a threat to the world as Hillary next stocks moved will be if her way of life is enhance threw war.

    May God bless this New World Order, its financial institutions and its agents.

    In Only God I trust,


    Ex-Gatekeeper of the lost free world.

    They will wage wars in the name of peace, is a sign of the end of this New World Order as we know it.

  • Comment number 34.

    If the world would leave N/S Korea alone No Korea will implode and then the South can clean up and make all a better life. Unfortunately the world will not do that so we should prepare for the worst and hope for the best. History tells us our words simply do not work and the UN is truly a pitiful organization to assist; seems we went there before!

  • Comment number 35.

    Once again the America haters are out in force, showing their sympathy with yet another of the world's despotic dictators. They conveniently ignore a long list of North Korean provocations and aggression against South Korea so that they can irrationally claim that the sinking is an American conspiracy. The extreme anti-American left has about as much intellectual perspicacity as George W. Bush.

    Thank goodness for the US troops in South Korea and Japan. They are the best bulwark against North Korean aggression and Chinese expansionism. Just as American troops in Europe kept the peace during the Cold War, the American troops in Asia are a force of stability.

  • Comment number 36.

    North Korean sabre rattling is a regular occurrence. However,sinking a submarine isn't. I feel that Hilary Clintons interference is not helpful in this situation. Any action that is taken should happen through the United Nations and not through South Korea backed by the US, taking direct action .

  • Comment number 37.

    What is the point in imposing economic sanctions? North Korea doesn't care if its economy is in freefall, the same as Zimbabwe doesn't. It has no interest in the world around itself save to keep it out, and to keep its own people in.

    Fair enough. But sinking South Korean ships is an act of open belligerence and war. There was no hesitation with regard throwing troops at Iraq for its alleged proliferation of WMDs (no other crimes had been committed, second time around). Where's the problem this time? North Korea has confirmed that it has proliferated WMDs by detonating nuclear warheads, so surely that should be as good a reason as any to step in?

    What's good for the oil-rich goose clearly isn't good enough for the gander. No acts of war or WMDs gets invaded, acts of war and WMDs and we're all pussy-footing around them. Funny, that.

  • Comment number 38.

    Like all communist countries its really a dictatorship pretending to be communist.If you have to stop your own people from leaving,strave them,imprison and torture them it is a dictatorship. Can the world afford to have such dangerous dictators on their doorstep? No,but you cannot just jump in and topple the thugs who run the country.There has to be countries giving them aid and by doing so breaking the sanctions placed against them,so what use is it to rack up the tension or threaten to invade?
    The North needs no goading to start a war but if it wants one then it will end the domination of its people because it will be destroyed.China cannot afford to upset its trading partners and I cant see much support for North Korea from that quarter.The best solution would be for China to seek change at the top and give the people a better life,even the Chinese have a better standard of living.Its no good asking the UN they are about as effective as a wet lettuce.

  • Comment number 39.

    Realistically, we shouldn't do anything but with people suffering, it's hard to say that. Look at Iraq.
    As heartless as this sounds... Darwin style, they should let natural selection take its course. We have no business there.

    If only they had oil. Kim Jong Il would go from being pint sized corrupt nutter to the new the biggest threat to world security since Saddam and his invisible weapons of mass destruction.

    The Americans would borrow even more money to go there and bomb them - liberating the country by bombing them (with the UK wagging its tail behind) cause a civil war and getting everyone in the country to kill each other.

    Peace - American style.

  • Comment number 40.

    This is just another excuse for people to jump on their anti-USA bandwagon. Funny because Obama was elected on an anti-war mandate and here is reality biting. I guess Kim Jong-Il must be terminally ill and (like most dictators) has an obsessive self-identification with the People/Nation of Korea and believes the nation won't/shouldn't survive after him. Even when dictators act like this the liberals in the West still protest when action is taken against them. Sanctions against N. Korea won't work because the country is on the brink already and held together by the iron fist of his dictatorship. Sometimes, just like in Iraq and Afghanistan, military action is the last and only response.

  • Comment number 41.

    By leaving them to sort out their own problems!

    It's not as if the rest of us don't have enough troubles of our own!

  • Comment number 42.

    Let the North and South sort it out for themselves. We're too fond of sticking our oars in when it's obviously nothing to do with us.

  • Comment number 43.

    We should all be scared of Hillary Clinton?

    As for North and South Korea? Historically, in North Korea, tribal wars, like Iraq, were controlled to maintain peace? Many North Koreans leave North Korea everyday?

    As for the 'alleged' torpedo attack on a South Korean warship by North Korea - it's still under investigation - and being referred to UN. It would be wise for all to calm down and not be influenced by all the usual nutty media hungry suspects?

  • Comment number 44.

    "The international community must respond in the growing crisis over the sinking of a South Korean warship, the US says".
    The international community must learn to stay out of issues that are none of their business!

  • Comment number 45.

    Here we go again;

    Lets look at this objectively. North Korea has denied firing that torpedo - N.Korea might be a fringe state with a less than stable polictical leader - but they are not stupid; they would not fire a marked torpedo only to then deny it.

    what seems likely is yet another setup so we have yet another reason to go to war and we all know war means reconstruction contracts and the taking of a countrys resources.

    People - we need to stop blindly accepting what our corrupt governments are telling us (and they are ALL corrupt) and start looking at things objectively.

    Sanctions on North Korea won't work - The ruling elite will always have food and power - it is the normal everyday folk who suffer.

    war won't work; because frnakly I don't think N.Korea would think twice about luanching a nuke.

    I despair at the way this is all going (again) - unfortunately I think this is going to result in world wide annihilation for those of us who can't afford deep underground bunker living. All because of these power hungry, detached from relaity idiots (US and UK included) running our societys. I don't want to be part of these societys anymore; ergo; your societys rules no long apply.

    cheerio.

  • Comment number 46.

    20. At 3:45pm on 26 May 2010, Rich wrote:
    Let's start a revolution - Let's get all American military out of all the countries in the world - this list would include - Columbia, Cuba, most European countries, Japan, Korea, Iraq, Afganistan, many countries in the middle east etc etc etc the list goes on and on
    _______________________________________________________________

    Yes the list goes on.......but what price freedom sunny jim, do you really think that by saying to America or anybody else for that matter, " WE DONT NEED YOU ANYMORE" Do you really think NK wouldnt invade SK, or Syria wouldnt blow Isreal off the map......Presence by any nation to keeping the peace has always been the object in mind to stop others beating the daylights out of people who wish to live normal lives.

    If you want know about freedom and what we stand for have a read of The Glosters at Gloster Hill, then thInk really hard about what you are saying, because your the sort of person who would be good in the Forlan Regiment.

  • Comment number 47.

    I'm not sure we should get involved at all. It looks like the Chinese (via the UN) are already trying to mediate, and they are much more amenable to both sides than we or the US are to N.Korea.

    If either side ASKED us to get involved, then maybe we could think about it.

    IF it was an attack by North Korea (which is probable, but not certain), then it was an attack by a military vessel on another military vessel (it might have been different if they'd attacked a passenger ship). Both nations are officially still at war anyway.

    If we got involved, it would be like someone like Egypt (ie totally uninvolved) interfering in the troubles between the IRA and the UK in the 80s...

  • Comment number 48.

    Their bizarre actions leave little room for manoeuvre.

    Isolating them further is inevitable, but China needs to libve up to their international responsibilities and stop looking after their own short-term interests.
    Although sanctions may affect the people of N Korea more than the current leaders, the pressures that creates are enormous - open revolt becomes a greater possibility.

    Longer term, there is no way that states like these can be allowed nuclear weapons - they are forcing war on the world and playing a game of brinkmanship believing that the rest of the world is overstretched in Afghanistan and Iraq.

    This is why we need to get those countries sorted out quickly and be in a position to deal with other problems. That would likely see a change of attitude in Iran and N Korea.

  • Comment number 49.

    The mentality of these nutters in North Korea is beyond comment. Whilst the rest of the world has moved on in 60 years, Russian communism has collapsed, the Chinese version has moved to authoritarian capitalism and yet we still have North Korea locked in a time warp all of its own. At the end of the day, it's only China that has any influence over them. I suppose it suits China to keep the two Korea's divided and at each other's throats, but they won't want the North to actually go to war, so it's really nothing but rhetoric.

  • Comment number 50.

    I have a fantastic idea: How about the US pulls out of South Korea and let's them fend for themselves? That way when the North overruns them we can just say to the world, "Hey, you guys want less of us on the world stage right? Well then this is what that looks like. Welcome to Communist controlled South Korea. Taiwan, it was nice knowing you too. Looks like you're next". Of course our starting a war is equally as stupid.

    In the end the best move is to talk tough for the cameras and let this go away on its own. Nobody is going to start Korea II over 43 dead sailors.

  • Comment number 51.

    27. At 4:13pm on 26 May 2010, Matthew Thierens wrote:

    If the North Koreans sunk that ship then its an act of war."

    It was an act of war against South Korea - which it is already, officially, at war with...

    Why should the rest of the world get involved? Do we like World Wars or something?

    "They are a menace. Time to wipe them off the map"

    Unfortunately, it is believed they have nuclear weapons, and they certainly have chemical weapons. Their behaviour suggests they wouldn't hesitate to use them if their country was threatened. While we are probably safe here (at least from missiles from N.Korea), there are countries well within their supposed range. Do we really want to push them so they think they have nothing to lose by using these weapons?

    If there is a war with N.Korea, it will be a lot nastier than the Iraq or Afghanistan wars! We're not talking a couple of thousand casualties over 10 years, more like tens of thousands within months.



  • Comment number 52.

    There's an old saying to the effect that all politics are local. I have to wonder whether the government in the North is worried about losing its grip on power. The currency revaluation debacle a few months back showed that there are limits to how tightly they can squeeze their people without garnering a response. Nothing consolidates power in a dictatorship more easily than presenting the people with a common enemy. They may be provoking the South intentionally, to stir up an international reaction they can then use to show their people there is an external threat, and they have to stick together to face it.

  • Comment number 53.

    North and South Korea should resolve the issues themselves. Communism will not absorb the South so let them figure it out. If not the North will act out whenever they need something that the fruits of communism didn't bring (oil, food, medical.....).

  • Comment number 54.

    Cautiously.
    US Secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, is standing behind South Korean President, Lee Myung-bak, pledging "full support" for "his" stance against North Korea's "belligerence and provocation". (Mostly these are American words.) Clinton said there was no room for doubt.
    Chinese officials differ. Most Chinese experts do not feel that the case had not been proven. The Chinese Government contends that it has not got persuasive evidence to support the judgment about who sank the South Korean ship.
    Clinton said the US & South Korea will work to present the case before the United Nation's Security Council, though how she believes the United States can do this without Chinese support is questionable.
    The Chinese Premier, Wen Jiabao, showered Pyongyang with aid and friendship during his visit to North Korea in September, and when he visited two months later the Defense Minister, Liang Guanglie, said relations with North Korea were "sealed in blood".
    This month, North Korea's leader, Kim Jong-il, was received by all nine members of China's Politburo Standing Committee. China does not roll out this level of respect & courtesy to just any leader.
    Personally, I am dissatisfied with the evidence. The United States maintains vigilant satellite overview of North Korea, her sea lanes, and just about everything that every North Korean eats; so, why no satellite pictures of the North Korean vessel in close proximity to the South Korean vessel – before the deadly blast?
    Perhaps, the United States is trying to wedge the uniquely close relationship between North Korea and China. If so, I feel the only wedge the United States will make is between herself and North Korea AND China.

  • Comment number 55.

    The conspiracy theorists, in their blind hatred of America, have forgotten simple, inescapable truths:

    1-The South Koreans need a confrontation with the North like they need a hole in the head. They were hoping this was an accident.

    2- The team that concluded that North Korea was responsible had members from several countries. So then perhaps Sweden is in on the con?

    3- Remnants of a torpedo were brought up. Rusty you say? Well a torpedo is designed to be in water for several minutes at most - so who cares if it's made of metal that will rust after a few days? It has done its job, or run out of fuel by then.

  • Comment number 56.

    There is no problem. Just leave them alone. Dont trade with them. Dont help them. If China wants to help them, it will soon burden China to the point of tired or fedup.
    Existing UN measures are already isolating them.
    Dont provoke them. Dont fly into their air space. Dont drive boats near their water.
    Their leader will eventually die and new one takes over.
    China is a Capitalist with a communist underware. War is bad for business. The north invasion of the south is more like an escape from the north to the south.

  • Comment number 57.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 58.

    North Korea's life line is neither the South nor the west (Europe and America). It also is also believed to be a conduit for technology that China cannot make, sell and ship directly, to some customers in central Asia, the mid east and Africa. Though relatively few in number those customers are significant. Clearly the events unfolding now are far from being a badly timed, chance accident, but are being staged in a highly purposeful, deliberate and methodical way. World community censure, via the UN or otherwise, of North Korea, will test the strength of its most important partnership, which is unlikely to be broken in a time when the sky rocketing success of China's industrial revolution is beginning to fall back to earth, towards an increasingly uncertain future, as currency pressures, even higher inflation in China, and environmental and social deterioration vex the red dragon in with problems that it may not be able to resolve, pushing it to find something to blame for its troubles, outside of its own borders, while preserving its internal power structure against the potential for internal disquiet, and a period of intense political change.

  • Comment number 59.

    This sounds all the more like something engineered by the U.S. to create an international crisis over something which, if the purported evidence is true, should be between South and North Korea alone. The U.S.via Hillary Clinton is deliberately pouring gasoline onto this situation in order to create a crisis designed to benefit U.S. interests. About the evidence surrounding the ship's sinking - I have my suspicions that it may well be fabricated, just as was Colin Powell's supposed evidence presented to the U.N. which was used to justify the U.S./Anglo invasion of Iraq.

  • Comment number 60.

    Let us use Korea as a metaphor.
    We have the free Democratic South aligned with the US, Japan, Australia, Britain, and the rest of the democratic Western world. They have a free press, a vigorous political system, art, entertainment, industry, economy, an electrical grid, abundant food and clean water, and a welfare system for the old and infirm.
    Then we have the North aligned with China, Russia, Burma, and Iran a brutal dictatorship maintaining control only by the strictest media control on the planet, a cult of personality around a meglomanic who allegedly has the world largest pornography collection and a taste for the world s most expensive liquors and gourmet delicacies, while much of his population fights repeated bouts of starvation and despair. They have large work camps easily visible from satellite and we know from defectors people are being worked to death there without human comfort with even the basic family bonds are ripped apart for the benefit of the state. Their one and only export, weapons of death and mass murder.
    Now look who the International Left sides with, Look who our own Lefties trust.

  • Comment number 61.

    Support the South Koreans, put pressure on China. Not much more that can be done. War is out of the question.

    China will never go along, unfortunately. While the rest of Asia would like to see the north Korean dictatorship taken down and Korea united, China will do everything it can to prevent that, despite the repressive rule of the Kim family. They are too afraid of a collapse that would lead to a flood of refugees into China, and a US ally with a shared border with China.

  • Comment number 62.

    "54. At 5:32pm on 26 May 2010, BluesBerry wrote:
    The United States maintains vigilant satellite overview of North Korea, her sea lanes, and just about everything that every North Korean eats; so, why no satellite pictures of the North Korean vessel in close proximity to the South Korean vessel "

    ---


    You do understand that submarines are generally not visible from satellites, right? They tend to travel UNDER the surface of the ocean.

  • Comment number 63.

    For all those of you who think this may well be a put up show as you say read this..

    Immediately after the sinking of the ship, North Korean propaganda was quoted as saying that '(our) Great North Korea military smashed South Korean Navy and they are in panic now', even though Pyongyang officially denied any involvement in the attack.

    This was taken from an article from the Royal United Services website a world renowned and respected institution. Please dont think I advocate war far from it but some of the opinions expressed are simplistic and dangerous, sometimes doing nothing is just as dangerous as pulling the trigger. All we can hope is that common sense prevails. Something alas I feel is lacking in large quantities from all parties.

  • Comment number 64.

    After the debacle of the 'evidence' of Saddams WMD, I wouldn't believe anything the USA presented as evidence now. The only thing that works in the long run is negotiation, which admittedly is easier said than done as far as the North Koreans are concerned, but their beloved leader will not live forever, will he?

  • Comment number 65.

    I highly doubt with the current levels of U.S. troops in the South anything will occur.

    If, however, they announce another 50-80k are heading to the south..then war it will be, along with a world-wide stock market sell off and oil prices once again being above $100.

    I'd imagine Taiwan are watching this worryingly, hoping that they do attack...because if China sees America wont intervene with the North, its more than guaranteed China would see this as a signal America wouldnt defend Taiwan if China did decide to attack.

  • Comment number 66.

    North Korea committed an act of war and the world doesnt want to know.
    Israel defends itself and the world is on its back ASAP.

    Double standards as usual.

  • Comment number 67.

    The key to stopping North Korea is China. Therefore any action taken must be with the agreemenet of China. To act without agreement with China means escalating the conflict over a wider area. China has been fairly quiet on this matter so any moves against North Korea could develop into moves against China.

    This would be very dangerous so what we must be sure of is that we retain our nuclear weapons no matter what.

  • Comment number 68.

    54. At 5:32pm on 26 May 2010, BluesBerry wrote: snip

    "Personally, I am dissatisfied with the evidence. The United States maintains vigilant satellite overview of North Korea, her sea lanes, and just about everything that every North Korean eats; so, why no satellite pictures of the North Korean vessel in close proximity to the South Korean vessel – before the deadly blast?"

    It's called a submarine - a vessel which submerges underwater to avoid detection - guess they don't teach that in school anymore.


  • Comment number 69.

    Let them get on with it. Why on earth does the West always have to get involved in disputes such as this one and I'm thinking the USA here in particular. Surely for goodness sake the Koreans are old enough, ugly enough and big enough to sort out their own problems otherwise I can see the UK siding with the US yet again should there be a military solution.

  • Comment number 70.

    If only people would think before believing the media and politicians.
    Two countries technically at war. Submarine from North, warship from South, in disputed waters. Submarine fires torpedo. Torpedo sinks warship.

    It's hard to believe that the warship with its sonar and radar and accompanying firepower (I'm sure it did not operate alone without backup) did not return fire after being fired upon. Strange.

    China says it will make it's own assessment. Until then, I'm inclined to think that it's a cover-up by S. Korea to conceal it's screw-up.

  • Comment number 71.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 72.

    Sort the North out once and for all, they are taking the mick out of the rest of the world as they know we are weak and wont do anything

  • Comment number 73.

    7. At 2:55pm on 26 May 2010, SpeelingMistake wrote:

    ...

    A state in such a volatile mood has absolutely no right to be in possession of Nuclear weapons. If talks do not resume, violence will most likely be the culmination of this boiling pot.

    And people say we don't need Trident...


    Perhaps, since Germany doesn't have Trident, North Korea will nuke Germany, or for that matter Sweden or Spain. Any time now, boatloads of refuges from those countries can be expected at our borders quaking with fear because their governments don't have nuclear weapons and they could be attacked by North Korea at any time.

    No, I don't think so.

    Hang on, if they don't need to spend £100 billion on Trident why do we?

  • Comment number 74.

    An international investigation found that the ship, the Cheonan, was hit by a North Korean torpedo on 26 March with the loss of 46 lives.

    Yes, but can we prove they fired it?

    Can we be sure this isn't one of those dirty tricks that some countries like to play if it is in their interest to do so?

    At the end of the day this is a United Nations problem and if it isn't then we should scrap the institution.

    It is in no ones interest to start another war so come on world leaders sort it out.

  • Comment number 75.

    Most articles on this don't point out that the US was conducting a joint training exercise with the S. Koreans when they were attacked.

  • Comment number 76.

    I suppose we could have a war. Maybe people would then remember the British and allied soldiers who died in that dump during the last war we had there. Too easily forgotten.

    Funny how most wars are started in response to a naval incident. Remember the Gulf of Tonkin. The sinking of the Lusitania. I am no supporter of the loony in charge of the North, but do not trust the international experts who say that blame lies with them. Too many lies get told when war is on the cards. Remember the WMD.

    Just let them get on with it. Sell arms to both sides, support capitalism.

  • Comment number 77.

    arunmehta wrote:

    The 'world' should be read as 'South Korea,US and Japan'only in that order for this situation.China too is a part of the problem but they are not in mood or a position to react/intervene for their own selfish reasons.

    _______________________________________________________________________

    I would change the order to "US, Japan, South Korea".

  • Comment number 78.


    As far as I’m concerned it is an ‘alleged’ torpedo attack. The ‘International’ investigation’s findings lack credibility because it was conducted and led by US, UK, Australia and Sweden. I smell a rat.

    As for the ‘alleged’ remains of the torpedo, how can we be sure that the remains of the torpedo currently being displayed is the actually one that sank the Cheonan. After all, South Korea did find N.Korean torpedoes several years ago.

    Also, why would N.Korea sink a S.Korea ship and then not own up to it? What does the North have to gain? I don't buy the paranoid lunatic card.

    It just seems all coincidental that countries that are against the US administration all have (conveniently) reasons to be targeted.

    Iraq -Weapons of mass distraction. (Lies)
    Iran -Building a bomb. (Unknown)
    N.Korea –Sank a South Korean ship. (Unknown)


    For me, The US lacks credibility because they lied about Iraq and WMD's.... Therefore thay have lost my trust.

    Anyway, even if the truth is not told The US now has access (without reason) to patrol the seas in the Far East. Something it did not have before.

  • Comment number 79.

    Ignore them - leave them alone to sort out their own problems.

    Why?

    To intervene would be to initiate a full-blown WW III.

  • Comment number 80.

    ONE-SICK-PUPPY wrote:

    We have the free Democratic South aligned with the US

    _________________________________________________________________

    True democracies align with their people, not with former(?) colonial masters.

  • Comment number 81.

    ONE-SICK-PUPPY wrote:


    Then we have the North aligned with China, Russia, Burma, and Iran a brutal dictatorship

    _______________________________________________________________________

    According to what bigoted theory of yours is Russia not a democracy? When you cut through all your racist dogmas, democracy has one and only one definition, consent of the people.

    All the fraudulent appendages like free market, which itself is a fraudulent euphemism for capitalism, have been created by those who want to corrupt democracy.

    Oh democracy, how many frauds are committed in thy name.

  • Comment number 82.

    The burning question is why on earth did North Korea destroy a South Korean warship? Obviously, since the partition, the two countries have been at loggerheads, but I simply cannot see a good reason for such an extreme act of aggression, especially as North Korea has edged a little closer to the USA by softening its nuclear stance recently. It could've been a simple case of the jitters by the submarine captain, but surely he would've needed authorisation by a higher-up.
    One has to look at possible vested interests in a conflict between the two, and to the fact that virtually every war that the USA has been involved in has been initiated by a staged incident. That may sound conspiracy-obsessed, but what on earth does North Korea stand to gain from a war, knowing very well that the USA would support their southern neighbours? Unless it believes that history will repeat itself and the Chinese hordes will coming streaming across the border?
    I cannot believe that the North Korean leadership sat around a table and came up with "Let's sink a South Korean warship - that should liven things up a bit." There has to be far more than meets the eye over all this. Interesting that on the BEEB news this morning, it was said that they are continuing to trade...hmmm.

  • Comment number 83.

    >>US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton says the international community must respond in the growing crisis over the sinking of a South Korean warship.

    Lets start with a respond to the US armed forces shooting down a *PEACEFUL CIVILIAN* airliner and then we can move on to two countries that are still technically at war !!

    Any thing else is sheer hypocrisy by Hillary Clinton !!

  • Comment number 84.

    82. At 6:53pm on 26 May 2010, NEARPOSTHEADER wrote:

    The burning question is why on earth did North Korea destroy a South Korean warship? Obviously, since the partition, the two countries have been at loggerheads, but I simply cannot see a good reason for such an extreme act of aggression


    ---------

    For the same reason they blew up a S. Korean airliner in 1987, among their other terror attacks. They're a brutal, repressive dictatorship that uses the appearance of external threats to keep their population willing to accept the brutal repression and horrible deprivation they are forced to endure.

  • Comment number 85.

    Not having generated enough war, death and bloodshed on their hands, our armchair HYS generals want even more conflict in the world.

    We recently celebrated the 35 anniversary of the liberation of Vietnam, when Vietnam finally sent the barbaric US invader home and reunited their country. The Americans commited this crime against humanity based on a massive lie at the Gulf of Tonkin - false flag operations to wage a chemical war. Is it no wonder that the US fear and refuse to sign up to the International Criminal Court?

    No, there is a growing movement for South Korea to expel its foreign occupiers and allow the Koreans to engage without interference in talks of the future of One Korea.

  • Comment number 86.

    This is all going to turn out to be tempest in a teapot. N. Korea knows that with China backing them up that they have nothing to fear. China will make a pretense of scolding N. Korea [wink, wink, nod, nod] and the useless, impotent old men in the UN will accomplish their usual nothing. In the end, Glorious Leader has tweaked the noses of S. Korea and the U.S. yet again. People say that man is crazy. Yeah, crazy like a fox.

  • Comment number 87.

    At 6:30pm on 26 May 2010, SimpleSimonMetAPieMan wrote:

    "As far as I’m concerned it is an ‘alleged’ torpedo attack. The ‘International’ investigation’s findings lack credibility because it was conducted and led by US, UK, Australia and Sweden. I smell a rat. .....Anyway, even if the truth is not told The US now has access (without reason) to patrol the seas in the Far East. Something it did not have before."

    So your theory is that 4 countries conspired to pin the sinking of a S.Korean ship on N. Korea so the USA could patrol the seas in the Far East?

    In case you didn't know it the USA patrols the Far Eastern international waters and has done so for your whole life. They don't need to sink their allies ships nor need any excuse to do so.

    Anti USA rants are common - just wish they would become more cogent.

  • Comment number 88.

    How should the UK deal with the problem? Perhaps we could sell bullets to both sides and clear the National Debt.

  • Comment number 89.

    If you were the commander of the warship with advanced sonar system to track submarines and see a torpedo homing in, what would you do? RETURN FIRE!!

    If you were the commander of the warship conducting joint exercise with the USA and was accidentally hit by friendly fire, or if you fell asleep during your watch and ran over a underwater mine, what would you do? Find someone to blame.

    Pick one of three : Al-Qaeda, Iran or North Korea.
    Simple, North Korea.

  • Comment number 90.

    Why can't Hillary Clinton behave like the QUEEN of England? Or is it considered misbehavior in USA, when you don't speak much?

  • Comment number 91.

    I suspect the North Korean Navy are going to lose one or two (maybe even more) of their submarines in the next few months. Being submerged will mean that nobody will prove where they were fatally holed and hence no evidence.

    Solves the problem without giving a maniac an excuse to shell Seoul into decimated oblivion. No submarines left = surface warships are safe.

  • Comment number 92.

    "89. At 7:22pm on 26 May 2010, Jeff Phua wrote:

    If you were the commander of the warship with advanced sonar system to track submarines and see a torpedo homing in, what would you do? RETURN FIRE!!"

    ---

    Return fire at what target? If the N. Korean submarine is running slow and quiet, unlikely that S. Korean sonar would get a fix quickly enough to target ASW weapons and fire. Especially if the S. Korean ship is moving at high speed, which greatly reduces the effectiveness of sonar.

  • Comment number 93.

    Let's not stick our noses into another affair that has nothing to do with us whatever. Just leave North and South Korea to sort it out themselves. We really cannot afford to spend more money and troops on a conflict that is not our concern.

    If Mrs Clinton wants action, then by all means the USA can go it alone. I just hope that our new coalition government stands up for a change, and tells the US we want no part in another war that leads nowhere.

  • Comment number 94.

    The reaction of which world are we talking about here, the American world or the Chinese world ?. Just look at the Northen Limit line drawn up by the US after the 1953 war. It is so deliberately twisted in South Korea's favour. But rather than listening to the North's just demands South Korea and its America overlord have sought only to squeeze and iolate the North. This crisis is the result of that failed approach and the US and its lackeys, South Korea and Japan, can huff and puff all they like, they know thay can't do a darn thing with China protecting North Korea. And not forgetting that North Korea is nuclear armed and has a lot less to loose than its enemies in the event of war.

    Time for a different approach America or face even more humiliation.

  • Comment number 95.

    What are we supposed to be worried about ? The North Koreans haven't invaded anyone or flown aircraft into the World Trade Centre. The likelihood of them lobbing missiles at anyone, nuclear or otherwise, is pretty remote. What does surprise me is that they have not admitted the sinking and counterclaimed that the South Korean warship was in their territorial waters. I think someone in the North Korean navy made a big mistake and they won't admit it because that would make them look incompetent.

  • Comment number 96.

    What gives the West the idea that they should get involved.

    I say keep our own counsel and act with caution. For far too long we have dipped out proverbial toe into every dispute around the globe. Time to step back and concentrate on home grown problems.

  • Comment number 97.

    North Korea is a rogue state. It has since the 1960s consistently defied UN resolutions, launched military attacks on it's neighbours and has developed nuclear weapons outside of any treaties. It has infiltrated hit squads into forgeign countries to organise the planting of bombs and assasinations which have murdered people in other countries. All the time it is protected from any outside hostility by China which gives it weapon systems and aid without which it couldn't survive.

    Now replace "North Korea" with "Israel" and "China" with "America" and you see how crazy the world we live in is. This is not meant to be an anti-Israeli post, I simply mean to show other posters that there are no good guys when it comes to wars.

  • Comment number 98.

    I'd say with great care although North Korea is not really a great threat. There military technology is mostly 30 or 40 years out of date and if war were to break out they'd be fighting on several different fronts.

    Not smart.

    One has to wonder though just why they decided to torpedo that warship, I’d love to know the real motivation for it.

  • Comment number 99.

    hasn't there been enough western lives lost in the past regarding north and south Korea, if these armies want to kill each other leave them to it, The USA should stay out of it, they have instigated enough wars with hundreds of western soldiers deaths without full proof of any wrong doings.

  • Comment number 100.

    How should the world react? simple stay the hell out of it, it's not our ship they sunk so for once us and America needs to stay out of it. We are already in one war we can't find the whole f the world at once!!

 

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