Fox News reports the United Nations Security Council has received a report accusing North Korea of selling banned nuclear and missile technology to Iran, Syria, and Myanmar, using “multiple intermediaries, shell companies and overseas criminal networks to circumvent U.N. sanctions.”
If you’re wondering where Myanmar is, it used to be Burma. It’s currently ruled by a military junta. Nobody likes them very much, so they want nukes as a deterrent against regime change. If you’ve always thought of Burma as a pastoral land of pythons and kickboxing, think again. Back in June, the Asia Times reported the junta has been siphoning cash from the nation’s shaky economy to give it a North Korean Extreme Makeover, building “a complex network of tunnels, bunkers and other underground installations where they and their military hardware would be hidden against any external aerial attack, including presumably from the United States.” Just what the world needed: another neurotic dictatorship willing to starve its people to buy plutonium from the Pyongyang doomsday superstore.
The U.N. report went on to say North Korea “has continued to provide missiles, components and technology to certain countries, including the Islamic Republic of Iran and the Syrian Arab Republic,” and that North Korea “has proved assistance for a nuclear program in the Syrian Arab Republic.”
The report was actually completed back in May, and submitted to the Security Council sanctions committee, but China blocked its transmission to the full Security Council. This means the world has spent the last six months thinking North Korea was less awful than it actually is. Writing for Reuters, Louis Charbonneau tells us China is still blocking another United Nations panel report concerning violations of the Sudanese arms embargo, meant to choke of the supply of weapons to the Darfur region. Chinese bullets have been recovered at the scene of attacks against U.N. peacekeepers.
China has been using its Security Council clout to protect allied and client states, including Iran, North Korea, Syria, Myanmar, and Zimbabwe. It has blocked attempts to sanction Myanmar for human-rights abuses, and appears unwilling to allow further sanctions against North Korea.
Russian President Dimitry Medvedev said Wednesday, “Naturally it alarms us that North Korea’s nuclear ambitions create military and political tension in Northeast Asia, in direct proximity to Russia’s eastern frontiers,” Medvedev said. “Not to mention that the North Korean nuclear testing ground is located just a little more than a hundred kilometers from our territory.” United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, formerly the Foreign Minister of South Korea, called upon North Korea to return to six-party talks and “cooperate fully in realizing a denuclearized Korean Peninsula.”
Florida Republican representative Ileana Ros-Lehtinen issued a statement warning the U.N. report “should be a wake-up call for the U.S. and other responsible nations.” Those responsible nations must once again wrestle with curing the malignant tumor of North Korea, while China forbids the application of effective treatments, after spending six months suppressing a diagnosis it didn’t like.