Jeremy Corbyn has shown the Tory government how much of a threat to its office he really is.
In an article in The Mirror, Corbyn writes about the increasingly dangerous stand off between the US and North Korea. And his plan to tackle the threat of this looming nuclear war is one you would expect from a leader. Or, at least, from one concerned about saving the world from nuclear annihilation.
In contrast, Prime Minister Theresa May is yet to comment at all on the situation; even though as a hand-holding friend of Donald Trump, she is well placed to intervene. And her refusal to take two minutes out of her summer holiday to assure her country that she’ll do her utmost to stop these tensions simmering over has many wondering who really should be PM:
— EL4C (@EL4JC) August 13, 2017
Wind it down
Tensions between the US and North Korea have flared over recent weeks. The US has been threatening intervention and staging military drills close to North Korea. And North Korea has carried out missile tests and threatened a US-run island. Given the actions and personalities of the leaders of both countries, some believe a nuclear war is entirely possible.
But there is also some speculation that the US asked the UK to join forces with it against North Korea. Some sources dispute this. But in his Mirror article, Corbyn urges the UK government to categorically rule this out. He writes:
Our government must not drag our country into any military action over the Korea crisis, including joint exercises. There can be no question of blind loyalty to the erratic and belligerent Trump administration.
Corbyn also urges Trump and Kim Jong-un to “immediately wind down the war of rhetoric” because:
… the war of words between Washington and Pyongyang risks derailing efforts to move towards essential de-escalation and demilitarisation.
So Corbyn’s message is that all those involved have their part to play in reducing tensions. But although May is yet to comment, Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson has spoken out. And he has a slightly different take on the matter:
The North Korean regime is the cause of this problem and they must fix it
— Boris Johnson (@BorisJohnson) August 12, 2017
The international community is shoulder to shoulder in ensuring North Korea stops its aggressive acts.
— Boris Johnson (@BorisJohnson) August 12, 2017
Johnson then tweeted that the UK and its partners are working to find a “diplomatic” solution to the crisis. But how does Johnson expect diplomacy to work when he’s already engaged in finger-pointing at one side?
Furthermore, many experts agree that North Korea maintains its nuclear weapons to avoid regime change efforts, as happened in Iraq and Libya. So if the US, UK and their international partners demand compromises from the Kim dynasty without taking steps to address that issue, their diplomacy is going nowhere. And that’s something that Corbyn also raises:
US-led regime-change wars and the threat of more to come have made this crisis more dangerous and difficult to resolve.
For all our sakes
Real diplomatic efforts are essential, Corbyn writes, because there’s a lot at stake:
Any nuclear conflict over North Korea today would kill millions of innocent people in the Korean peninsula and beyond, with devastating fallout in China, Japan and elsewhere…
The risks of an unintended escalation into full-blown conflict are too great for the whole world.
Finally, Corbyn calls for pressure on a global scale, to pull the situation back from the brink:
In the interests of sanity and safety for the whole world, global pressure for dialogue and diplomacy must be overwhelming.
That’s sound advice. And it’s the sort of instruction that should be coming from the current Prime Minister. But instead, she’s opted for stony silence. And her Foreign Secretary is just fanning the flames. No wonder people are starting to question whether the current government is truly up for the task that lies ahead.
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