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Foreign Affairs

Don’t give in to the ‘North Korean shake down’

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North Korea detonated its sixth and largest underground nuclear test on September 3, 2017. In response to the nuclear denotation, the United Nations Security Council on September 11, 2017, unanimously adopted a US-drafted resolution to impose the harshest sanctions ever imposed on North Korea. These sanctions are significant because unlike previous sanctions these sanctions have enforcement mechanisms which can cause significant economic damage to the economically beleaguered North Korea.

In typical, North Korean fashion, they responded to these sanctions today by launching a missile over Japan. They did not hit Japan as that was not their intention. They intend to do what they have done with all past US administrations. Act recklessly and then demand the lifting of sanctions as well as money to curb their activities; which they never do.

The North Korean Shake Down

This strategy is what I call, “The North Korean Shake Down.” Give us money or we will kill you all.

Now, North Korea knows what they have done is an act of war, but they also know they will get away with it because they never actually hit Japan. They know if they did strike Japan that a war will most certainly break out and the North Korean regime will come to a quick end.

Almost certainly, North Korea will have no backing from their Chinese and Russian allies. They will be left alone to face South Korea, Japan, and the United States. If a war breaks out, it will most certainly result in millions of deaths and Seoul South Korea will most likely look like Berlin at the end of World War II.

So what is the solution to the dilemma we find ourselves in currently?

We can either lift sanctions and give them money and allow The North Korea Shake Down to continue to exist. We can declare war on North Korea and thus almost certainly guarantee the destruction of Seoul as well as ensure that China and Russia will then back North Korea against a pre-emptive strike by the US and her allies. We can do nothing and just ignore them, or we can flex our muscles.

Flex our muscles

But how do we flex our muscles? I believe we do this by announcing a boost in missile defense in South Korea and Japan. I mean a system that would make Israel jealous, type of missile defense. We pull out all the stops, and when the time comes, we use it.

That’s right we use it. We show we mean business. Next time North Korea attempts to launch a missile over Japan or do a missile test we blow it out of the sky. Not once but every single time. The US, South Korea, and Japan can see this missile immediately after it launches. They can immediately calculate the trajectory of the missile and blow it up, but they never do, they just sit there and no nothing.

We need to step up our game and let the world know that we will not tolerate rogue regimes like North Korea that threaten the United States and her allies. Weakness breeds boldness in our enemies. Imagine if we did what I said in North Korea. What do you think Iran would think next time they try and shake the down the United States for hostage money?

Do you think they might think twice about doing that? I think they would and if they didn’t and tried to get another $400 million from the United States to release hostages, but in response have the President go on TV and boldly say, “Iran has committed an act of war against the United States by illegally taking US hostages. Iran has 24 hours to release these Americans into our custody, or we will begin striking Iranian military facilities.” Do you think Iran would release the hostages or sit there and see their navy destroyed? They would comply initially and if they didn’t, they would after we destroy a few of their ships. I do not doubt that.

Peace through strength

You see the purpose of showing strength isn’t to start a war. It is to show our enemies that we mean business and past administrations projected weakness to our enemies. We must no longer project weakness as the standard operating procedure of the United States. We must be strong and diplomatic but make no mistake North Korea, Iran, or a number of our enemies will never respond to diplomacy unless you project strength.

Mr. Roditis is an entrepreneur and owns several companies. He graduated from UCSD with a B.A. in Political Science/International Relations with a focus on National/International Security Studies. He's a former City Commissioner with the City of Anaheim, CA. He's a Conservative Constitutional Federalist. Follow him on Twitter @KonRoditis

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2 Comments

2 Comments

  1. Andy

    September 15, 2017 at 6:38 am

    Here’s the problem: Do these missile defense systems actually work as advertised? What are the repercussions if a defensive interdiction is launched and they all miss?

    If these mighty systems miss a relatively crude NKorean missile, everyone will know it’s all but useless against the developed world’s armament. Our developed adversaries probably already know the probable answer, but this would remove all doubt. What would the public and political fallout be?

    • Konstantinos Roditis

      September 15, 2017 at 8:37 am

      There are different issues with missile defense, short range and artillery success has been shown in Israel’s Iron Doom. A THAAD system is better suited for the Japan situation. We have had some failings in long range ICBM tests here in the US but shorter range we have had promising results. The thing is you don’t launch one missile for everyone they launch. You launch a few to increase the probability for success. The political stunt by N Korea can be defended against. The strategy is to project strength and resilience not was. Ultimately sanctions against Chinese firms that break sanctions is the best strategic move, if that fails then the only other way is for the US to take bold avtion and put sanctions on the Bank of China which launders money for NK in a way to avoid sanctions. If we escalate to this then China will greatly suffer economically and may cause their collapse. They will not want that so you project strength through missile defense and sanctions at the same time and continue to put pressure and sanctions incrementally on Chinese firms until they agree to remove Kim Jung-Un from power.

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Education

Whoopi is right about the behavior of UCLA Basketball players in China

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Whoopi Goldberg

I’m not a big fan of Whoopi Goldberg, okay but I have to tell you that I agree with her regarding the following statement.  This is in regards to a couple of UCLA basketball players who thought they could take something from a store in China and not pay for it.

You embarrassed your families, you embarrassed the country, and you embarrassed the president. Now I’m not a big fan of the president, but the fact that he had to call and get your asses out of there is not anything to be proud of or think is cool.  If this isn’t the stupidest thing a young person has done, particularly if you’re over six-feet tall, and black… is this just the ridiculous stupidity of youth?

Let me add one more thing. You’re an embarrassment to UCLA itself, and their athletic department as well.  Now I am not a big fan of those who run academia, but if these jerks are given the right punishment, I shall give the university credit and praise for doing it.  All right UCLA, the ball is in your court.  Do something right for once.

Further Reading

Whoopi Goldberg to ‘Stupid’ UCLA Players: You’re Fortunate Trump Could ‘Get Your A**es Out’ of China

http://freebeacon.com/issues/whoopi-goldberg-ucla-players-fortunate-trump-get-out-china/“Now, you’re in China—you’re this big!” she said, reaching high into the air to indicate the players’ height. “It’s not like you’re gonna blend, you’re not going to blend in, run out.”

Goldberg said their families and mentors had no doubt told them numerous times not to do things like this, and she said the foolishness of youth is the only explanation for something so dumb.

President Trump says ‘You’re welcome’ after UCLA Bruins players thank him for help with China incident

http://www.espn.com/mens-college-basketball/story/_/id/21432885/president-trump-says-welcome-ucla-bruins-players-thank-help-china-incidentUCLA athletic director Dan Guerrero said freshmen LiAngelo Ball, Cody Riley and Jalen Hill stole from three stores, were arrested and surrendered their passports. Trump, who was already on an Asia trip, spoke to President Xi Jinping of China about the incident, and the players were allowed to return to the United States on Tuesday.

On Wednesday, all three read prepared statements at a news conference in which it was revealed that they have been suspended from the team indefinitely. They thanked the Chinese government and police for how they were treated and United States officials for helping secure their release.

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Economy

Trump gives China “great credit” for “taking advantage” of U.S. on trade

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Trump gives China great credit for taking advantage of US on trade

From the day Donald Trump announced his candidacy for the presidency up until election day, he railed against China for taking advantage of the United States economically. His push for “fair trade” even changed the long-standing Republican paradigm of free trade.

As President on his first trip to China, his tune has changed. He still believes that China takes advantage of the United States on trade, but he doesn’t blame them. In fact, he gave China and President Xi Jinping great praise.

“I don’t blame China. After all, who can blame a country for being able to take advantage of another country for the sake of its citizens?” he said shortly after signing non-binding business deals worth $250 billion. “I give China great credit.”

It has been a common aspect of the President’s modus operandi when dealing with U.S. and world leaders to be cordial and complimentary towards them when with them or talking to them directly, then returning to negative rhetoric later. This was most clear in his dealings with Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto.

While the business deals were positive notes for these initial meetings, the topic of North Korea was more severe. Trump called on China to cut economic ties in an effort to make them halt their nuclear weapons program. He said the Chinese President could “easily and quickly” resolve the situation through pressure as the biggest ally to North Korea.

“I know one thing about your president, if he works on it hard, it will happen,” Trump said while addressing the crowd at the signing ceremony. Following light chuckles from the crowd, he added, “They know.”

Further Reading

Trump does not blame China for ‘unfair’ trade

http://www.bbc.com/news/business-41924797The total trade relationship between the pair was worth $648bn last year, but trade was heavily skewed in China’s favour with the US amassing a deficit of $310bn.

While still characterising the relationship as “very unfair” and “one-sided”, Trump said on Thursday that China was not at fault, instead blaming previous US administrations.

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Foreign Affairs

Russian lawyer claims Trump Jr. said administration would reconsider Magnitsky Act if Trump won

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Natalia Veselnitskaya

If it can be proven, it could be the smoking gun special counsel Robert Mueller needs to tie the Trump campaign directly to Russian collusion. It will likely take more than the testimony of Russian lawyer Natalia Veselnitskaya, though, and her potential testimony is the only evidence that the Magnitsky Act was ever discussed.

The act was punishment signed by President Obama in 2012 for the death of Sergei Magnitsky in 2009. It affected 18 Russians, preventing them from entering the United States or using its banking system.

Magnitsky Act – Wikipedia

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Magnitsky_ActThe Magnitsky Act, formally known as the Russia and Moldova Jackson–Vanik Repeal and Sergei Magnitsky Rule of Law Accountability Act of 2012, is a bipartisan bill passed by the U.S. Congress and signed by President Obama in November–December 2012, intending to punish Russian officials responsible for the death of Russian tax accountant Sergei Magnitsky in a Moscow prison in 2009.

In 2009, Russian tax accountant Sergei Magnitsky died in a Moscow prison after investigating fraud involving Russian tax officials. While in prison, Magnitsky developed gall stones, pancreatitis and calculous cholecystitis and was refused medical treatment for months. After almost a year of imprisonment, he was beaten to death while in custody.[1][2][3]

Veselniskaya claim she met with Trump Jr., then-campaign manager Paul Manafort, and adviser and Trump’s son-in-law Jared Kushner. During the meeting, she claims Trump Jr. made a veiled offer.

“Looking ahead, if we come to power, we can return to this issue and think what to do about it,” Trump Jr. said of the 2012 Magnitsky Act, according to Veselnitskaya. “I understand our side may have messed up, but it’ll take a long time to get to the bottom of it.”

Even if he didn’t make the offer, the alleged attempt to acquire opposition research on Hillary Clinton, which Veselniskaya claims he kept going back to in their conversation, is enough to be considered worthy of investigation.

At this point, it’s her word versus theirs and there’s little to no chance anything can be made of it legally. The account of one witness, particularly one who is as shady as Veselniskaya, won’t be enough to make Mueller move forward. He’ll inquire. He’ll search for any other evidence, but if nothing else is found, he’s nowhere. The allegations of one eyewitness cannot be enough to take down a President, his campaign, or his administration.

Further Reading

Russian lawyer: Donald Trump Jr. said Magnitsky Act could be reconsidered if Trump won

http://www.washingtonexaminer.com/russian-lawyer-donald-trump-jr-said-magnitsky-act-could-be-reconsidered-if-trump-won/article/2639744Veselnitskaya attended a meeting at Trump Tower on June 9, 2016, with Trump Jr., then-Trump campaign chairman Paul Manafort, and the president’s son-in-law, Jared Kushner.

Veselnitskaya said she met with Trump Jr. and other campaign officials last year to show them evidence that Democratic donors evaded taxes and to push for the repeal of the 2012 Magnitsky Act.

Specifically, she said she had sent Trump Jr. information about Ziff Brothers Investments, which is linked to hedge fund manager William Browder. Browder and Ziff Brothers Investments invested in Russia, and Browder pushed for passage of the Magnitsky Act, which Veselnitskaya is lobbying against.

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