Monday, April 04, 2005


according to Reuters:
North Korea wants an open and explicit U.S. apology for calling it an outpost of tyranny as a precondition for returning to nuclear talks, its senior envoy to the United Nations was quoted as saying on Friday.


"The conditions and justification for the six-party talks must be set up correctly, and that is for the United States to sincerely apologize for the 'outpost of tyranny' comment and withdraw it," the North's deputy U.N. ambassador Han Song-ryol was quoted as saying by Yonhap news agency.

"This is an issue that the United States must apologize explicitly for," Han was quoted as saying, rejecting recent conciliatory comments Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice made during a recent swing through Asia.
Apologize for telling the truth? Of course life is always more grey than the Manichean black and white some what prefer it to be but if the DPRK is not an "outpost of tyranny," what is?

On the other hand, the DPRK demand really does speak to a core disagreement: is the U.S. willing to pursue a course that might result in peaceful co-existence with the DPRK, or is the American goal irrevocably the end of the North Korea? If it is the latter, why should North Korea bother to talk?

UPDATE: The U.S. wastes no time in dismissing this latest North Korean demand:
In a lecture at Seoul National University, U.S. Ambassador to South Korea Christopher Hill said the North's setting of conditions "was not helpful."

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