US-Led Meeting Focuses on New North Korea Sanctions

US: World Must Not Be Fooled by North-South Talks

Ongoing bilateral talks between North and South Korea have focused heavily on reducing tensions on the Korean Peninsula, but across the Pacific in Vancouver, 20 nations met at a US-led discussion on North Korea, and the message was clear, pretend the talks aren’t happening.

.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson arrives for a photo op during the Foreign Ministers’ Meeting on Security and Stability on the Korean Peninsula in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, January 16, 2018.

US officials warned the world not to “be fooled” by the talks with South Korea, and the countries instead agreed to focus on imposing a whole new round of sanctions and other measures against North Korea to force them into disarmament.

Even Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, who is usually very pro-diplomacy, was on message that the South Korea talks don’t count, saying the US needs to increase pressure on North Korea until they agree to “come to the table for credible negotiations.”

Of course, no such negotiations are liable to ever happen, with President Trump often scorning the idea of diplomacy, and the State Department insisting such talks are dependent on North Korea agreeing to all US demands as “preconditions.”

Instead, the US policy is to pretend that any progress being made on diplomacy by other nations isn’t happening, and to keep agitating for more sanctions, even as the Pentagon prepares to attack North Korea outright.

Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is Senior Editor for He has 20 years of experience in foreign policy research and his work has appeared in The American Conservative, Responsible Statecraft, Forbes, Toronto Star, Minneapolis Star-Tribune, Providence Journal, Washington Times, and the Detroit Free Press.