After the fall of the Berlin Wall and the collapse of the old Soviet Union; we had a monopoly on power. That has diminished with China changing its economic power to a growing military power and having pushed the US further from Chinese shores in the South China Sea, and the Pacific Ocean, and our Asian reset has stalled. Meanwhile Russia, relying on oil, is trying to rebuild its presence in the Middle East and Eastern Europe, but the real problem is North Korea with bombast and threats towards the US, such as, a proposed but the unlikely nuclear bombing of Guam, our military base in the Pacific! They seem to be backing off that now with words on the waters near Guam.

US Media, the world, and our President portray, Kim, as a buffoon, but we are underestimating his threat. Kim, has the ability to motivate his people, and he has survived 6 years of rule, and has fought off any internal threats, and though it seems illogical he feels no compunction to follow Chinese rule, and often rants against it. Yes, China is his best benefactor, but there are limits to Chinese power and control. He has deviated from the rule of his father and grandfather. The harsh realities of work camps, and hunger have lessened under this current leader, who says he seeks to end hunger and create nuclear weapons. Indeed, their economy and markets are growing.

Foreign trade is increasing with Russia and India -now its third largest-trading partner, helping to create markets. We do ourselves injustice, by not seeing this man, as a clever dictator. Along those lines, we need to make sure that Japan is in a position to defend itself, and South Korea faces less peril along its demarcation lines. In any event, the President’s words, and this dictator at his words can make discernment an unsure folly. Let us watch the war of words, and look towards containment. Japan, South Korea, North Korea, and the US need to become more aligned in talk than words.

Bill Weightman