Coppermine wrote:Pogotheostrich wrote:So before this gets locked, the U.S. is basically powerless to do anything to N. Korea cause they are being propped up by China. Unless we take the hard line against China or China agrees to punish N. Korea we basically have no options.
Sort of, China seems to have the most leverage at least and N. Korea knows it. They want "unilateral" talks with the United States so the pressure will be on us to confront them and make some sort of deal, but we are reasonably refusing such an offer unless N. Korea agrees to sit down with the U.S., S. Korea, Japan, China and perhaps Russia and a few other nations in that area. In any case, the only country whose sanctions can truly affect the N. Koreans is the Chinese, and they don't want to do it because it will completely destabilize their economy (not that it's even stable now).
Most leverage? Try all. As long as China backs them up no one has any leverage. Take the U.S., sanctions won't work cause they get most everything from China anyway. We won't commit to a full out war for fear of China getting involved.
N. Korea asking for "unilateral" talks with the U.S. seems like a power play to me.