N. Korea Launches ICBM

US Fires Diplomats Back in Response.

From the Washington DC Examiner:

The Bush administration said Tuesday that North Korea’s firing of a series of missiles into the Sea of Japan was a provocation, but not an immediate threat to the United States.

The administration quickly launched a diplomatic counter offensive to the missile shots – including one missile capable of reaching the Unites States, but made clear the response will be diplomatic and not military.

“You are going to see a lot of diplomatic activity here in the next 24-48 hours,” said National Security Adviser Stephen Hadley.

Uh-Huh.

So what to make of it. The 5 (or six – reports differ) missiles all failed, even though all but one were old, relatively reliable technology. Were they purposely destroy? By the N. Koreans or by us? If this was just a show during the very celebration of U.S. independence (and within minutes of the launch of the Space Shuttle), then why wasn’t China notified so that the U.S. military would not go to high alert? If this was not a demonstration, then can we safely assume that Kim Jong Il is not the only incompetent insaniac in N. Korea, and that they are utterly incapable of threatening the U.S. mainland? As it is, without the U.S. military lifting a finger (much less a cruise missle), N. Korea is facing another season or two of severe food shortages and depravation, and I’m certain that Condoleeza Rice will make sure of it even if Kim wasn’t doing that so well on his own, squandering his nations resources in this particular manner.

So should we squish them like bugs, or ignore them like ants?

One doesn’t reward behavior in pets or children that one wants to discourage, but Kim is neither. His is a genocidal maniac who possibly has a nuclear weapon or two that he considers his toys to play with, and a nation of starving people who deserve better because they are human, despite the attempt to be first among the axis of evil. He poses no real danger to us, except for two very powerfully placed assets; those in the intelligence community who seem to be playing fast and loose with national security, and those in the State Department who should be at the service of the president, but are not.

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