24 March 2005

Deadline or Not?

U.S. President George W. Bush backed off reports of a June deadline for North Korea to re-enter the six party talks while answering questions after the North America Summit in Texas March 23. The initial idea of a June deadline was raised during Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice's visit to East Asia.

Much more interesting than a June deadline (or not) is the current spat in South Korea over whether the Bush administration intentionally misled Seoul about the issue of potential North Korean sales of nuclear material to Libya.

The perception of deception only reinforces among many in Korea that the United States only considers its own interests while dealing with the Korean Peninsula. Of course this is true, and well it should be, as any country is primarily interested in their own... well... interests. Of course, since those interests involve the lives and livelihoods of the Koreans, it is understandable that they are upset as well.

Perceptions matter.
Misperceptions matter as well.

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