Friday, June 24, 2005

Polish Guy #3

The third question, why Iraq, instead of North Korea. My answer, because we could handle Iraq. All negotiation requires two things: the ability to reward and the ability to punish. With North Korea we lack the ability to punish, which is why our agreements so rarely last. The North Koreans have discovered that, by breaking a treaty, they can renegotiate a more lucrative one. Why do we lack the ability to punish North Korea? South Korea. The North Korea border is all of 25 miles from the city center of Seoul which has about a quarter of South Korea's population. With manpower resources of 1.2 million, as compared to South Korea's 650,000, there is little chance, short of nuclear weapons, that, should there by a war, the U.S. and South Korea could prevent a devastating counterattack. The War in Iraq, on the other hand, was unique in world history. Traditionally, when attacking, one needs a three-to-one manpower advantage. In the War in Iraq, the United States et al were outnumbered, the enemy knew exactly where and when we were coming, and we didn't care. I'm quite positive that, had the relative military merits been reversed, we would currently be engaged in North Korea.


Blogger Noumenon said...

Even if we could handle Korea, we couldn't handle Iraq and North Korea, so we needed to pick one and get started.

9:11 AM  

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