Struggles of Diplomacy

north korea satellite nasa lights OLD

How far can diplomacy go? With the recent release of the UN report detailing extensively the crimes being committed in North Korea, the UN is calling for greater international pressure on the nation and for the North Korean government to close its labor campus. But when a whole government is in denial anything is happening, what happens then?  Unfortunately, the UN has a poor reputation when it comes to imposing certain demands.

Additionally, beyond imposing more sanctions (which many can argue are not really that effective)  what else can the international community do? Now that the UN is willing to concentrate on more than just the proliferation of nuclear weapons in North Korea, does this mean anything for how people the international community approaches diplomatic efforts with North Korea now?  To exacerbate matters China’s veto power is hindering the international community’s efforts to do something more productive.

This is where diplomacy struggles, especially if a  entire government is in denial. It is astonishing that human rights abuses to the extent we see in North Korea  has been going on for over six decades. What role can diplomacy have now that there is an official report of the extent of these crimes? While I like to think that diplomacy can make a difference, this is where diplomacy becomes  a monologue where North Korea refuses to budge because it believes it has nothing to gain from opening itself up to dialog.  Military force is simply not an option ( nor is it something anyone wants to  risk doing). What can the international community do and should they do anything?  I am curious to know what others think.

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6 thoughts on “Struggles of Diplomacy”

  1. Thank you for your thoughts on the implications for diplomacy of the recently released UN report on atrocities in North Korean political prisoner camps. It does sometimes seem that diplomacy is just a lot of talking without much progress. I wonder, though, if the media report you cite does provide a sign of hope and rising social power in at least Japan and EU within the international community? I refer to their proposal in the Human Rights Council to perhaps set up a small office in the region to gather more evidence and conduct an awareness campaign.

    -Debbie Trent

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