North Korea’s supreme leader Kim Jong Un has once again declared the US as its “biggest enemy”, barely 10 days before Joe Biden takes charge as President. Last year, Donald Trump became the first sitting US President to step into North Korea to meet Kim.
In a five-yearly congress of the ruling Workers’ Party of Korea, Kim announced that North Korea “should focus and be developed on subverting the US, the biggest obstacle for our revolution and our biggest enemy,” the country’s official Korean Central News Agency (KCNA) news agency reported.
In a veiled statement, Kim took a dig at the President-elect Joe Biden. “No matter who is in power, the true nature of its policy against North Korea will never change,” he said without naming Biden.
After exchanging nuclear threats, Kim and Trump displayed an unprecedented bromance that made Trump the first sitting US President to cross the demarcation line into North Korean territory where he met Kim. At the time, Trump declared the meeting “very very good.” He claimed that “something comes of it, something very important, but a lot has already come of it” adding that the relationship between the US and North Korea was a “fiery mess” during previous administrations.
On nuclear forces and missile force modernization, talk of:
– longer-range missiles
– better missiles
– hypersonic missile
– military reconnaissance satellites
– solid-fuel ICBMs
– new UAVs
– new nuclear warheads
– tactical nuclear weapons
— Ankit Panda (@nktpnd) January 8, 2021
Under the Obama administration, North Korea’s increasing nuclear arsenal was a foreign policy issue that didn’t find a substantial solution. Analysts believe that Obama’s “strategic patience” toward North Korea didn’t work in the denuclearization of Pyongyang.
Ignoring warnings from the international community, Kim has continued to weaponize the nation by equipping it with intercontinental ballistic missiles (ICBMs) carrying nuclear warheads.
After North Korea conducted nuclear tests in mid-2009, the United Nations Security Council moved sanctions, banning arms movement to and from the country. Following the move, Obama sent a special envoy to Pyongyang along with a personal letter to Kim.
The message was sent through the convoy that the Asian country had a choice: “continued and further isolation or benefits for returning to the six-party talks and dismantling their nuclear weapons program”.
“It is also incumbent upon all of us to insist that nations like Iran and North Korea do not game the system,” Barack Obama had said during his 2009 Nobel Peace Prize acceptance speech.
In 2012, Kim agreed to halt nuclear tests in exchange for food aid. Pyongyang said that it would suspend uranium enrichment and long-range missile tests and admit United Nations officials to monitor the nuclear facility in exchange for 240,000 tonnes of food aid.
#breaking KCNA: Kim Jong Un orders development of advanced nuclear weapons capable of striking the US mainland, applying pressure on incoming Biden admin & raising speculation of looming test: “Nothing would be more foolish & dangerous than not strengthening our might tirelessly” https://t.co/yC3fNvLhEc
— Will Ripley (@willripleyCNN) January 9, 2021
However, North Korea continued to test nuclear weapons following which Obama threatened that the US “will not hesitate to use our military might” to defend its allies, saying that “a pariah state that would rather starve its people than feed their hopes and dreams.” Vice President Biden had earlier called Kim a “thug”.
In the recent address, Kim touted that his foreign policy has led to “external prestige of the country raised remarkably.” He pledged to take the capabilities of the country to a “higher level.” The KCNA news agency said that the relations between North and South Korea “have now returned to the pre- Panmunjom Declaration state, the dream of unification is now even further away.”
“If [South Korea] really wants peace and unification and is concerned about the future and the fate of the nation and future generations, it should not just look on this serious situation and should take active measures to resolve and improve existing inter-Korean relations, which are on the verge of disaster,” the report added.