The Korean Conflict ended in July of 1953. The battle lasted for over three years, but the war has not yet ended. Family members have been separated and tension remains between the North and South. In a surprising turn of events North Korea’s leader, Kim Jong-un, said that he would be willing to attend a summit between the two nations “if the conditions were right.” Is this real or has an imposter replaced the President of North Korea?
Since he became the Supreme Leader of North Korea in December of 2011, his rhetoric has been hateful and filled with threats to South Korea and the United States. Because of the history between the two nations skeptics have doubts such a meeting will occur between Kim Jong-un and South Korea’s President Park Geun-hye in the near future.
There have been moments which offered hope that peace talks would begin in earnest. Just three months ago a North Korean delegation made a surprise visit to the South and last Monday a high-ranking Seoul official faxed the North suggesting a meeting between cabinet ministers in January.
The people of the North and South want reunification, but the problem has always been governments with opposing ideologies. It seems unthinkable that the communist government of the North and the Democratic regime of the South could find a way to mesh nations. President Park cites the reunification of East and West Germany, hoping that such a situation could be feasible in Korea.What can be hoped for is agreement pertaining to businesses along their border and less-restricted travel between countries.
Because of the South’s strong economic situation, and because it has several western allies, Kim Jong-un has denounced President Park’s plans. He condemns any and all attempts to allow other nations to be involved in any reunification process. Kim Jong-un continues to rail against joint military operations between the United States and South Korea. He also declared that the continuation of balloons sent across the North’s border, containing messages critical of the government of Pyongyang was a violation of the present treaty between the two nations. South Korea says that they are nothing more the acts of “free speech.”
The last significant talks between the nations, who technically remain at war, was in 2014. Only an armistice was agreed to in 1953 and some families who had been separated since formal hostilities ended 60 years ago were reunited after the talks.
Because the United States is a close ally of South Korea, tensions have escalated in the past week. When Sony Pictures was allegedly “hacked” and personal and private information about studio personnel as well as actors and agents was revealed, our government and Sony initially blamed North Korea for the cyber-attack. Kim Jong-Un denied that North Korea was involved. The release of the movie The Interview, a comedy about the attempted assassination of Kim Jong-Un, was assumed to be the impetus.
The United States government continues to blame North Korea, but experts working for elite cyber-security firms are convinced that it was an inside job. The film was pulled from release, but Sony reversed itself and released it in a limited form as well as making it available for internet purchase. Considered a mediocre film by critics, the limited release produced a profit for the theatrical giant.
By James Turnage