Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Cheonan Incident

As you probably know, a South Korean warship sank over 3 weeks ago and a few dozen men died.  When the ship sank, it was news here of course and there was 24/7 coverage on the news stations.

I have been amazed how public opinion has been evolving.  The government has been saying that people should not jump to conclusions (i.e. the crazy midget downed the ship).  Initially, most people I talked to said they did not know what happened, but they did not think the North Koreans were behind it.  A couple of weeks ago, the defense minister said that it was probably a torpedo that hit the sub.  My friends were still saying they were not sure.  Now more and more voices are saying it was a torpedo probably sank the sub, and of course, the suspicion is the crazy midget was probably behind it.

The big question is what will happen if it is proven that the North Koreans did it.  One friend said, "You should leave because there will be a war". I don't believe that, but it seems likely that the heat is getting ready to be turned up.  There are likely to be more conflicts, especially naval ones, in disputed areas.

As always, everything depends on how the Chinese weigh in on things.  I do not think they control North Korea, but without their support, the North Korean regime would have a limited life span.  I am guessing that the Chinese would like to see a change if for no other reasons it would end the refugee problems and would be a new market for Chinese goods (instead of aid).  On the other hand, the North would likely come to the US sphere of influence which is pretty objectionable.

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