Pat Buchanan Explains "Little Rocket Man's Risky Game"

Authored by Patrick Buchanan via,

In the morning darkness of Wednesday, Kim Jong Un launched an ICBM that rose almost 2,800 miles into the sky before falling into the Sea of Japan.

North Korea now has the proven ability to hit Washington, D.C.

Unproven still is whether Kim can put a miniaturized nuclear warhead atop that missile, which could be fired with precision, and survive the severe vibrations of re-entry. More tests and more time are needed for that.

Thus, U.S. markets brushed off the news of Kim’s Hwasong-15 missile and roared to record heights on Wednesday and Thursday.

President Donald Trump took it less well.

“Little Rocket Man” is one “sick puppy,” he told an audience in Missouri.

U.N. Ambassador Nikki Haley told the Security Council that “if war comes … the North Korean regime will be utterly destroyed.”

She then warned Xi Jinping that “if China does not halt the oil shipments” to North Korea, “we can take the oil situation into our own hands.”

Is Haley talking about bombing pipelines in North Korea — or China?

The rage of the president and bluster of Haley reflect a painful reality: As inhumane and ruthless as the 33-year-old dictator of North Korea is, he is playing the highest stakes poker game on the planet, against the world’s superpower, and playing it remarkably well.

Reason: Kim may understand us better than we do him, which is why he seems less hesitant to invite the risks of a war he cannot win.

While a Korean War II might well end with annihilation of the North’s army and Kim’s regime, it would almost surely result in untold thousands of dead South Koreans and Americans.

And Kim knows that the more American lives he can put at risk, with nuclear-tipped missiles, the less likely the Americans are to want to fight him.

His calculation has thus far proven correct.

As long as he does not push the envelope too far, and force Trump to choose war rather than living with a North Korea that could rain nuclear rockets on the U.S., Kim may win the confrontation.

Why? Because the concessions Kim is demanding are not beyond the utterly unacceptable.

What does Kim want?

Initially, he wants a halt to U.S.-South Korean military exercises, which he sees as a potential prelude to a surprise attack. He wants an end to sanctions, U.S. recognition of his regime, and acceptance of his status as a nuclear weapons state. Down the road, he wants a U.S. withdrawal of all forces from South Korea and international aid.

Earlier administrations — Clinton, Bush II, Obama — have seen many of these demands as negotiable. And accepting some or even all of them would entail no grave peril to U.S. national security or vital interests.

They would entail, however, a serious loss of face.

Acceptance of such demands by the United States would be a triumph for Kim, validating his risky nuclear strategy, and a diplomatic defeat for the United States.

Little Rocket Man would have bested The Donald.

Moreover, the credibility of the U.S. deterrent would be called into question. South Korea and Japan could be expected to consider their own deterrents, out of fear the U.S. would never truly put its homeland at risk, but would cut a deal at their expense.

We would hear again the cries of “Munich” and the shade of Neville Chamberlain would be called forth for ritual denunciation.

Yet it is a time for truth: Our demand for “denuclearization of the Korean peninsula,” is not going to be met, absent a U.S. war and occupation of North Korea.

Kim saw how Bush II, when it served U.S. interests, pulled out of our 30-year-old ABM treaty with Moscow. He saw how, after he gave up all his WMD to reach an accommodation with the West, Moammar Gadhafi was attacked by NATO and ended up being lynched.

He can see how much Americans honor nuclear treaties they sign by observing universal GOP howls to kill the Iranian nuclear deal and bring about “regime change” in Tehran, despite Iran letting U.N. inspectors roam the country to show they have no nuclear weapons program.

For America’s post-Cold War enemies, the lesson is clear:

Give up your WMD, and you wind up like Gadhafi and Saddam Hussein.


Build nuclear weapons that can threaten Americans, and you get respect.

Kim Jong Un would be a fool to give up his missiles and nukes, and while the man is many things, a fool is not one of them.

We are nearing a point where the choice is between a war with North Korea in which thousands would die, or confirming that the U.S. is not willing to put its homeland at risk to keep Kim from keeping what he already has — nuclear weapons and missiles to deliver them.


IH8OBAMA JohninMK Fri, 12/01/2017 - 19:48 Permalink

Buchanan can't even remember when the NKs took our billions in grain and other goods, we gave them everything they wanted, in return to not persue a nuke program and they violated the agreement once they had what they wanted.  They have violated every agreement we have ever made with them.  The only thing they understand is the tip of a spear stuck in their face. 

In reply to by JohninMK

roddy6667 IH8OBAMA Fri, 12/01/2017 - 20:17 Permalink

So we give them some grain, they give up the weapons the need to deter American agression, and America invades their country and makes it into a wasteland like Iraq or Libya??? They are not stupid.As long as they have a way to deliver a nuclear warhead to NYC, Washington DC or LA or Tokyo they have a deterrent. They don't need missiles to attack from 7000 miles away. A Panamian flagged Nigerian freighter operated by North Korea can cruise into any harbor in the US and nobody can detect it or stop it. The one in New York would shut down the financial center of the Western World  and the largest East Coast harbor. BTW, America has violated every agreement it entered into, starting with the Indians.

In reply to by IH8OBAMA

Tbirdthree roddy6667 Sat, 12/02/2017 - 12:45 Permalink

After Iraq, and Killary & Obozo's (and the EU's) reckless destruction of Libya, what possible reason would the Little Rocket Guy have to give up such weapons his decrepit and impoverished little country worked so hard to develop?  Has history shown that he would be blessed with a welcoming hug from a relieved  Western World, happy to welcome him into the family of nations? Does it teach him that his Hermit Kingdom would be showered with aid and investment as a reward for his wisely forgoing such weapons?Or is Khadafi's sad end more what he expects if he lets go his grasp of his Little Rockets? Same question for Iran....We all know the answer. Nuclear Arms as  the only garantor of a rogue regime against Western intervention makes perfect strategic sense and is the only logical option for NK, and probably Iran, given the West's recent duplicitous dealings.But if the US doesn't stop him now with a costly and tragic war nobody wants, the result will be a nightmarish nuclear arms race probably beyond anyone's ability to prevent or contain.We have Lunk Heads Obumpkin, Killary, and the Neo Cons to thank for that.  Nice Going.

In reply to by roddy6667

luckylongshot roddy6667 Sat, 12/02/2017 - 10:30 Permalink

The big picture here is that America destroyed Noth Korea in the Korean war. North Korea then recovered and decided it needed a nuclear deterrant. Then America started invading and killing leaders of countries it did not control and North Korea decided to develop better nuclear weapons. Then hackers exposed a plan by America to kill the North Korean leadership and North Korea fast tracked ICBM development and increased nuclear testing. Now we are told by our dishonest media that America somehow still has the moral highground in this unfolding story of  American brutality and aggression. This story is all about an out of control America bullying and murdering people.

In reply to by roddy6667

MEFOBILLS IH8OBAMA Fri, 12/01/2017 - 20:37 Permalink

They have violated every agreement?  It is one sided?…Quote from Jimmy Carter:Unfortunately, because of actions by both North Koreans and the United States, the Agreed Framework collapsed on December 2002 [under George W Bush]. The international inspectors were expelled, and the North Koreans regained unrestricted access to spent fuel rods form which plutonium could be manufactured. Since then, North Korea has had the capability which it probably employed, to reprocess enough plutonium to make half a dozen nuclear weapons. Additionally, it is accumulating more spent fuel each year, and without a change in the current policies of North Korea and the united States, Pyongyang’s capacity to manufacture nuclear weapons will significantly increase in the future.I believed then, as did Bill Clinton and his top national security advisers, that the Agreed Framework of 1994 was a major foreign policy success. It made the world safer, and its collapse was a tragedy, even for North Korea. This outcome was not inevitable….

In reply to by IH8OBAMA

East Indian IH8OBAMA Sat, 12/02/2017 - 13:48 Permalink

Norks abided by the 1994 Agreement, to the best of my knowledge. America never pointed out how he reneged on the agreement. The agreement was that in exchange for a civilian nuclear reactor, NK would stop pursuing Uranium enrichment and hand over the U stocks. NK did that. But got no reactor! Because the Americans raised the bar and demanded something else not agreed to. Americans are seen as "not-agreement-capable" not just by Russia but also by NK.

In reply to by IH8OBAMA

Mustafa Kemal max2205 Sat, 12/02/2017 - 10:00 Permalink

"I don' get why we have not vaporized this dickhead months ago....are we fucking stupid? "Thats simple. Millions of SK and many americans would die. We are stupid for escalating this. If we were actually smart we would acceptthe fact that NK is a nuclear power and live with it. If we were smart we would accept the fact that the Syrian war is over and Syria won, and get out.We also are stupid for raiding our treasury and destroying our ecomonics through a huge MIC. 

In reply to by max2205

JohninMK Deathrips Fri, 12/01/2017 - 19:30 Permalink

No S-400 installations nearby and their role is to protect Russian installations not Syrian.The IAF aircraft are careful not to enter Syrian airspace, launching their munitions outside Syria, often over Lebanon who has no airforce to mention. Apparently it is claimed 3 of 5 Israeli missiles were brought down, probably , if they were, by S-200 systems. One at least was filmed.By a remarkable coincidence several attacks by terrorists appear to have taken place in this general area at almost exactly the same time. ISF a terrorist supporting airforce? Impossible.

In reply to by Deathrips

cherry picker Fri, 12/01/2017 - 19:12 Permalink

Israel, China, Russia, India and Pakistan all have nukes and probably 10 or 12 other countries and if they cant missile them in, I am sure a sub or a harbor nuke would do.What's the big deal about NK?

Fundies Fri, 12/01/2017 - 19:31 Permalink

And in breaking news, North Korea has tested a circumcised missile. The helmet shaped payload tip is said to be beneficial both aerodynamically, as well as carrying a bigger load and providing more pleasure for its recipient.

richsob Fri, 12/01/2017 - 19:23 Permalink

We either live with Fat Boy continuing to do what his family has done for generations: anything he damn well wants to do.  Or we launch a sudden all-out nuclear attack at night and in 1 hour send North Korea back to 1000 BC.  Those are the choices we have because all the tough talk in the world won't change anything.  Would someone please tell Trump most of us are tired of his BS bravado act?

JohninMK richsob Fri, 12/01/2017 - 19:38 Permalink

Think that it rather delusional to believe that the US has that kind of capability. You have been reading to much 'the victor writes the history' shit and MIC sales brochures.The NK are ready for exactly what you describe and the result would be the death of hundreds of thousands of SK citizens and tens of thousands of US military.Followed by the collapse of world trade and the US$ as SK is so critical in many areas.You think Trump wants to go down in history with that on his record?Also do you think that the US has the right to shit on any other country it chooses, at any time it chooses?

In reply to by richsob

richsob JohninMK Fri, 12/01/2017 - 20:29 Permalink

I didn't say they were good choices.  And yes, people would die.  Is that better than millions of Americans being killed a few years from now?  To me it is.  Just a shame we waited 10 years too late to fix the problem when it was a helluva lot less painful to do it.  Now we're stuck.  Would Russia sacrafice foreigners to save Russian lives?  Would China or Iran or Ethiopia or the Ivory Coast do it?  Yea.  Will the U.S.?  I doubt it.  We'll wait to get hit and then what you say would happen if we attack North Korea now, will happen then when we retaliate.  The economy will crash, etc., etc.

In reply to by JohninMK

wisehiney Fri, 12/01/2017 - 19:33 Permalink

To Seoulians...... Someone said the Big Man May be joining us soon But I never was the type to hang With the harbingers of doom And this party is addictive Self-destructive, no doubt So I hope that someone saves a seat for me On the last plane outMen of reason, not of rhyme Keep the spoils and share your crime Goodman, Badman, lost without A hope for passage on the last plane out(Toy Matinee band)

Davidduke2000 Fri, 12/01/2017 - 19:41 Permalink

Kim knows he has the yanks beat, what's good for israel is good for him, nobody will ever touch NK or else. if China and Russia who have borders with Kim are ok with his nukes, who is the us who is 10,000 miles away to tell him to disarm?

besnook Fri, 12/01/2017 - 19:46 Permalink

kim is just kinetically acting upon the wishes of china and russia who have both castigated the usa for meddling in the asian sphere. kim's job is to show asia that the usa is a pain in the ass that cannot really protect them but they know how to take advantage of the countries.

Dun_Dulind Fri, 12/01/2017 - 19:48 Permalink

The speed at which the Norks have blown through all the technological hurdles leading to a globally reaching MIRV makes me think that either they are completely fabricating their endeavors or they're getting help from the Chinks or Ruskies.In terms of fabricating their endeavors - it might be coming from Chunky Kim Jong himself, or our MIC is bullshitting their way to another war just to keep my country tis of thee solvent.Either way, the US needs perpetual war to keep the gears of theft and graft grinding along - now more than ever since they got their fucking asses handed to them in Syria. 

Sam Spayed Fri, 12/01/2017 - 19:51 Permalink

----In the morning darkness of Wednesday, Kim Jong Un launched an ICBM that rose almost 2,800 miles into the sky before falling into the Sea of Japan.

North Korea now has the proven ability to hit Washington, D.C.

Unproven still is whether Kim can put a miniaturized nuclear warhead atop that missile, which could be fired with
precision, and survive the severe vibrations of re-entry. More tests and more time are needed for that.----

NK is 6,778 miles from DC. How does this "prove" that NK has the ability to "hit" DC?

just the tip Sam Spayed Fri, 12/01/2017 - 21:43 Permalink

as you state, re-entry is a bitch.  the boost phase has been proven.  they now have a reliable, sort of, and all important, second stage engine.  if the trajectory is flattened out, instead of damn near straight up, the distance traveled increases substantially.  2800 straight up is "about half" of 6778 horizontal.  and with a flattened out trajectory, re-entry is on cruise control.will they hit deecee?  fuck no.  they'll hit my house.  and i'm in flyover country.  but i don't think kim wants to go fishing in the atlantic either.

In reply to by Sam Spayed

richsob Fri, 12/01/2017 - 20:32 Permalink

What's going to happen when some crazy SOB sells the Ukraine some nukes?  Or Chechnya gets hold of a few nukes.  We'll see how Russia plays things out.  I don't want it to happen but who gets what they want in this world?  We just live with what we get and do the best we can.

just the tip richsob Fri, 12/01/2017 - 21:31 Permalink

OTthat was one dumb thing ukraine did when the USSR closed shop.  one of the details of the closing shop would be that ukraine would give back to russia all of russia's nukes.  as everyone knows, russia's fixed site nukes were all in ukraine.  sort of neat militarty stradegy if i say so myself.  aim all of you missiles at a country(US) from another country(ukraine).  so when the shooting starts, ukraine gets incinerated.  so back to the USSR closing shop.  as the red army was everywhere, and the soviet era intelligence services were facing extinction, and therefore on a hair trigger, ukraine had little choice in the matter.   the ukraine had to dismantle the weapons and return them to russia before russia would let the USSR dissolve.  not the reason, but one of the reasons.  and a major one at that.  if they had held onto those nukes, then, this would be an entirely different ball game today.

In reply to by richsob

you know they … you know they … Sat, 12/02/2017 - 00:44 Permalink

I pray every day for someone/anyone to blow that piece of shit country off the face of the Earth. I just want the wars and death and destruction in the name of some stupid religion, to stop. (((They))) are why we can have no peace.And our politicians, through their actions, prove they care more about israel, than their own citizens. I assure you, threatening to destroy israel is much, much more scary and serious, for our politicians. They couldn't care less about the random people killed somewhere in flyover ameica, other than as an excuse to make war with NK. What they don't want is their treasured sacred land in israel destroyed. It's a religious thing actually. And they are fk'ing nuts.

In reply to by you know they …