Don't Start Another Korean War

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Before the
US House of Representatives, November 30, 2010, on the resolution
condemning North Korea

Mr. Speaker,
I rise in opposition to this saber-rattling resolution that unnecessarily
escalates tensions between North and South Korea and may in fact
put U.S. troops stationed in the area at risk. This resolution portrays
the recent hostilities between the two Koreas as "an unprovoked
military attack” by North Korea, which is untrue. We know that
South Korea was conducting live fire military exercises in the vicinity
of disputed territory and that this action, taken with U.S. military
support and participation, likely led to the exchange of gunfire
between the two sides.

As the resolution
states, the "USS George Washington Carrier Strike Group is
conducting exercises with Republic of Korea naval forces in the
waters west of the Korean Peninsula.” Let us for a moment imagine
the Chinese military holding joint exercises with Venezuela off
the Texas coast. Might that be viewed as provocative by the United
States? This is not to excuse or endorse the actions of the North
Korean military, which are certainly regrettable, but it is important
to accurately portray the events.

This resolution
is long on inaccuracies and hyperbole but it avoids the real issue,
which is why, more than fifty years after the end of the Korean
war, the American taxpayer is still forced to pay for the U.S. military
to defend a modern and wealthy South Korea. The continued presence
of the U.S. military as a "tripwire” to deter North Korea
is ineffective and dangerous. It is designed to deter renewed hostilities
by placing American lives between the two factions. As we have seen
recently, South Korean leaders, emboldened by the U.S. protection,
seek to provoke North Korean reaction rather than to work for a
way to finally end the conflict. The U.S. presence only serves to
prolong the conflict, further drain our empty treasury, and place
our military at risk. I encourage my colleagues to reject this jingoistic
resolution and instead use our Constitutionally-granted authority
to finally end the U.S. military presence in and defense of South
Korea.

See
the Ron Paul File

December
3, 2010

Dr. Ron
Paul is a Republican member of Congress from Texas.

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