Using US advantages over North Korea which is one hundred times less than the Soviets

Michael J. Green and Matthew Kroenig put forward a plan that uses US economic and superior world position to put constant pressure on North Korea.

1. simultaneously refuse to recognize North Korea’s nuclear weapons while still planning for a serious deterrence policy
2. the Soviet Union was a peer competitor, but the United States enjoys clear superiority over North Korea on every dimension of power
3. North Korea will use chaos to extort the world for resources to maintain the regime

The new strategy should combine coercive diplomacy, defense and deterrence, and reassurance of allies with the long-term goal of disarming and reunifying the Peninsula.

The new Sept 21 sanctions will be the first to target all North Korean nationals and the first that delegates to the Treasury Department the authority to go after any foreign bank doing business with North Korea, including banks in China that prop up or finance the regime. It is noteworthy that Beijing began reigning in its banks only after the United States imposed these unilateral sanctions.

Backed by intelligence and diplomatic resources, these new authorities could force every economic entity on Earth to choose between doing business with North Korea and doing business with the United States.

Talking to North Korea now only makes sense if the engagements are designed for clear messaging and intelligence collection and not invested with the expectation of real diplomatic progress. In the coming months and years, tough and consistent sanctions will further cripple North Korea’s economy. This could hasten the collapse of the Kim regime, or force it, fearing this outcome, to come to the table to talk denuclearization in earnest.

The second element of their proposed approach is a serious defense and deterrence strategy to address the threat that exists here and now.

* Deploy and arrange US forces so that they will be ready to hit North Korea.
* Work closely with South Korea and Japan as a unified and coordinated military and economic alliance
* improve strike capabilities and intelligence
* improve defensive systems