A ruling party lawmaker today urged Japan to break the terms of its pacifist constitution and pre-emptively attack North Korea following the Stalinist state’s nuclear bomb test.
“North Korea poses a serious and realistic threat to Japan,” stated former defense chief Gen Nakatani in Tokyo at a meeting of Liberal Democratic Party officials. “We must look at active missile defense such as attacking an enemy’s territory and bases.”
Nakatani said the attack could be accomplished by equipping navy ships with cruise missiles.
The former defense minister’s warning arrives on the heels of an LDP panel proposal that Japan should change the terms of its pacifist constitution, written by the U.S. after world war two to prevent Japan using hostile force to settle geopolitical disputes, to enable a military attack on North Korea.
“The Japanese government has built a defense network since a North Korean Taepodong-1 missile flew over Japan in 1998 that includes anti-missile batteries around Tokyo and is expanding to other major cities. Defense Minister Yasukazu Hamada in March ordered the shooting down of any North Korean missile or related debris that entered Japanese territory,” reports Bloomberg.
It’s not an exaggeration to conclude that any attack on North Korea could eventually lead to world war three. North Korea and China are allies and both have nuclear weapons. If North Korea is attacked by anyone, its first course of action would be to strike South Korea, a close ally of the United States. This would obligate the U.S. to retaliate, bringing American troops to the Chinese border and any escalation from that point would be a disaster.
As we reported yesterday, if you’re wondering how North Korea got its nukes in the first place, look no further than the U.S. government itself.
Two years before North Korea was included in the “axis of evil,” former U.S. Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld, during his time as executive director of ABB, signed off on a $200 million dollar contract to build light water nuclear reactors in North Korea.
Rumsfeld was merely picking up the baton from the Clinton administration, who in 1994 agreed to replace North Korea’s domestically built nuclear reactors with light water nuclear reactors.
According to Henry Sokolski, head of the Non-proliferation Policy Education Centre in Washington, “These reactors are like all reactors, they have the potential to make weapons. So you might end up supplying the worst nuclear violator with the means to acquire the very weapons we’re trying to prevent it acquiring.”
President George W. Bush provided another $95 million in April 2002 towards the construction of more reactors in North Korea, as well as a further $3.5 million in January 2003.
Construction of the reactors was eventually suspended, but North Korea had an alternative source through which they could obtain the nuclear secrets vital to building an atom bomb arsenal – CIA asset and international arms smuggler AQ Khan.
In 2004, Dr. Abdul Qadeer Khan, the father of Pakistan’s atom bomb program, admitted sharing nuclear technology via a worldwide smuggling network that included facilities in Malaysia that manufactured key parts for centrifuges.
Khan’s collaborator B.S.A. Tahir ran a front company out of Dubai that shipped centrifuge components to North Korea.
Despite Dutch authorities being deeply suspicious of Khan’s activities as far back as 1975, the CIA prevented them from arresting him on two occasions.
“The man was followed for almost ten years and obviously he was a serious problem. But again I was told that the secret services could handle it more effectively,” former Dutch Prime Minister Ruud Lubbers said. “The Hague did not have the final say in the matter. Washington did.”
Lubbers stated that Khan was allowed to slip in and out of the Netherlands with the blessing of the CIA, eventually allowing him to become the “primary salesman of an extensive international network for the proliferation of nuclear technology and know-how,” according to George W. Bush himself, and sell nuclear secrets that allowed North Korea to build nuclear bombs.
“Lubbers suspects that Washington allowed Khan’s activities because Pakistan was a key ally in the fight against the Soviets,” reports CFP. “At the time, the US government funded and armed mujahideen such as Osama bin Laden. They were trained by Pakistani intelligence to fight Soviet troops in Afghanistan. Anwar Iqbal, Washington correspondent for the Pakistani newspaper Dawn, told ISN Security Watch that Lubbers’ assertions may be correct. “This was part of a long-term foolish strategy. The US knew Pakistan was developing nuclear weapons but couldn’t care less because it was not going to be used against them. It was a deterrent against India and possibly the Soviets.”
In September 2005 it emerged that the Amsterdam court which sentenced Khan to four years imprisonment in 1983 had lost the legal files pertaining to the case. The court’s vice-president, Judge Anita Leeser, accused the CIA of stealing the files. “Something is not right, we just don’t lose things like that,” she told Dutch news show NOVA. “I find it bewildering that people lose files with a political goal, especially if it is on request of the CIA. It is unheard of.”
In 2005, Pakistani President Pervez Musharaf acknowledged that Khan had provided centrifuges and their designs to North Korea.
With this history in mind, the shock, condemnation and indignation being expressed by the U.S. government in response to North Korea’s second nuclear bomb test is tinged with hypocrisy to say the least. Through their policies in aiding North Korea to build light water reactors, and via the CIA asset AQ Khan who was protected at every step of the way while he helped provide North Korea with the means to build a nuclear arsenal, the U.S. government itself is directly complicit in providing North Korean dictator Kim Jong-Il with the nuclear weapons that they are now condemning him for testing.