Day By Day

Friday, January 25, 2008

Kim Collapsing?

Fascinating piece in Janes on North Korea.

Kim Jong-Il's regime could collapse within six months, bringing chaos to North Korea, observers and intelligence sources in Asia have told Jane's.

A joint United States report by the Center for Strategic and International Studies and the US Institute for Peace has also revealed that China has "contingency plans" in the event of North Korea's implosion. The report, entitled 'Keeping an Eye on an Unruly Neighbor', said that China was prepared to "take the initiative" and had a military strategy for securing North Korea's "loose nukes" should Kim Jong-Il's rule fail.

Read it here.

Of course, as the article notes, this is not the first time that we have heard predictions of the regime's imminent collapse. Back in 1997 the delusional loons at the CIA predicted that Kim would be gone within five years. Ten years out and we're still waiting.

Still there might be something to the new rumor. Supposedly Kim and his cronies have been quietly moving lots of their wealth out of the country in case they have to make a sudden exit. Of course this last piece of information comes from the CIA so take it with a heaping teaspoon of salt.

This information, of course, raises the question of just how much of our policy toward Korea has been based on expectations of regime collapse? That could explain a lot -- especially our locking China into the six-power talks regarding Korea.