This article about current U.S. and North Korean relations provides a good illustration of one of the biggest problems with having a foreign policy that is dependent on other nations yielding to the threat of overwhelming U.S. military force, or “falling into line” if you will. Many countries’ governments will see such a policy as a threat to their country’s sovereignty and to their own administration. Instead of embracing a peace on terms defined unilaterally by the U.S., they will instead prepare for the eventual conflict between their interests and “American interests”, as defined by the U.S. government.
One would be hard-pressed to find a better example than North Korea, which has maintained a defensive posture toward the United States since the two countries became enemies upon the United States’ entry in the Korean conflict over 50 years ago. The North Koreans have one of the world’s largest armies, they are believed to possess the ability to hit the U.S. with a nuclear weapon, and they are (if you’ll pardon the phrase) hell-bent on not being controlled or conquered by the U.S.. They’ve stated openly their desire to develop their nuclear weapons capability as quickly as possible, for the stated reason that they feel the U.S. is an active threat to their national security.
Here’s an excerpt from this disturbing article:
North Korea fervently believes it is next on America’s list for pre-emptive strikes, says Strong. It takes George Bush’s rhetoric in his ‘axis of evil’ speech as a very real threat to its national security. Washington says it seeks a diplomatic end, but has not ruled out a military solution.
‘There is such a complete breakdown of trust and confidence between these two countries that they are now unable to read the intentions of the other so there is real potential now for this to escalate into conflict,’ Strong said.
He said the North Koreans were prepared for war but ‘anxious for peace’. The stand-off between the two nations first flared in October when US officials said North Korea had admitted having a secret nuclear programme in violation of a 1994 agreement. As punishment, Washington and its allies suspended promised oil shipments.
North Korea retaliated by taking steps to reactivate mothballed facilities capable of making nuclear bombs and withdrawing from the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty. It also deported UN monitors.
It claims it pulled out of the treaty because non-nuclear countries were supposed to be protected by nuclear powers like the US, not threatened.