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Tsutomu Nishioka

【#511】Panmunjom Declaration Represents Deception and Betrayal

Tsutomu Nishioka / 2018.05.02 (Wed)

May 1, 2018

     “The two leaders solemnly declared before the 80 million Korean people and the whole world that there will be no more war on the Korean Peninsula and thus a new era of peace has begun,” says at the outset of the so-called Panmunjom Declaration announced on April 27 by South Korean President Moon Jae In and North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un. I felt strongly uncomfortable with the declaration especially because of the above-cited sentence.
     The international community including South Korea has imposed severe sanctions on the North, concluding that rogue nations having nuclear missiles, such as North Korea, could disrupt world peace and transfer those missiles to terrorists. The United States has repeated military drills near the Korean Peninsula, threatening to take military action unless Pyongyang dismantles nuclear missiles.
     The avoidance of war depends on Kim Jong Un’s complete dismantlement of nuclear missiles. Nevertheless, the declaration unilaterally asserts “there will be no more war.”

No mention of nuclear missile dismantlement
     Another ridiculous point of the declaration is that the document makes no mention of the key nuclear missile dismantlement while envisioning a rosy future of relations between North and South Korea. Japanese media gave a false impression as if Kim Jong Un had promised to dismantle nuclear missiles by devoting much space to the declaration’s sentence saying, “South and North Korea confirmed the common goal of realizing, through complete denuclearization, a nuclear-free Korean Peninsula.”
     For North Korea, however, the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula means a proposal made by Kim Jong Un’s grandfather and the late president Kim Il Sung in 1991. The proposal defined the denuclearization as including the withdrawal of U.S. troops from the peninsula and the dissolution of the U.S.-South Korea alliance. This is the reason the young Mr. Kim told Chinese President Xi Jinping recently that the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula represented Kim Il Sung’s teaching.
     Rightly after mentioning a “nuclear-free Korean Peninsula,” the declaration says “South and North Korea shared the view that the measures being initiated by North Korea are very meaningful and crucial for the denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula.” “The measures being initiated by North Korea” refer to a decision at a general meeting of the Central Committee of the Korean Workers’ Party on April 20 to suspend nuclear and missile tests and dismantle a nuclear test site. However, Pyongyang emphasized that the reason for the decision was the completion of a “state nuclear force.”
     On April 22, furthermore, Pyongyang ordered media organizations and writers to spread propaganda that North Korea had become an imposing nuclear power thanks to efforts by Kim Jong Un. In other words, the “denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula” means that North Korea, as a nuclear country, and the United States would implement nuclear disarmament on an equal footing.

Moon failed to take up human rights problems
     President Moon could hold very amicable talks with Kim Jong Un because the president refrained from taking up human rights problems that Pyongyang is loath to discuss. While touching on North Korea’s abduction of Japanese citizens at the request of Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe, Moon made no mention of abducted South Koreans and the detention of South Korean prisoners of war. He failed to discuss the oppression of defectors as well as political prisons that a United Nations commission criticized for human rights abuse amounting to oppression by Adolf Hitler and Pol Pot. Furthermore, Moon unilaterally declared a ban on balloon leaflets that North Korean defectors had been sending out of their own pockets to tell their compatriots in North Korea of truths. In summary, the Panmunjom Declaration represents deception and betrayal.

Tsutomu Nishioka is a member of the Planning Committee at the Japan Institute for National Fundamentals and Visiting Professor at Reitaku University.