UNSC Resolution 1718 Provides US Imperialism
the License to Provoke And Attack DPRK at Anytime
By Prof. Jose Maria Sison
Chairperson, International Coordinating Committee
International League of Peoples' Struggle
16 October 2006
UN Security Council (UNSC) resolution No. 1718 condemning the Democratic People's
Republic of Korea (DPRK) and imposing sanctions on it for carrying out an underground
nuclear bomb test does not stipulate any explicit permission to the US and its cohorts
to launch an immediate military attack on the DPRK but lays down the basis and opens
the way for further sanctions and even aggressive military action.
The sanctions against the DPRK include freezing its economic and financial assets and
transactions abroad, impeding its economic, trade, scientific, technical and other foreign
relations, travel ban on DPRK personnel and other people considered helpful in any way
to the DPRK nuclear and ballistic programs, the interdiction of DPRK means of international
transport and the inspection of all cargo going to and from DPRK under the pretext of
preventing the movement of nuclear weapons and ballistic missiles.
The declared objective of the sanctions is to punish the DPRK and pressure it to return
to the six-party talks. The sanctions are to be lifted only after the DPRK returns to the
nuclear nonproliferation treaty (NPT) and gives up its nuclear and ballistic missile programs
completely, verifiably and irreversibly. As they are, the sanctions are already extremely
severe but can be expanded and intensified in order to attain the objective of the US
and its cohorts.
The resolution completely disregards the fact that the US has reneged on agreements
that it has made with the DPRK in previous negotiations, that the DPRK and the Korean
people have the right to assert and defend their national independence against the hostile
policy of the US and that they have the sovereign right to withdraw from the NPT and
develop their means of self-defense. In this regard, the UN Security Council is acting in a
vicious manner against the DPRK. In contrast, Israel, India and Pakistan have not been
subjected to condemnation and sanctions like the DPRK just because the US regards
them as manageable allies.
Even as the resolution falls short of explicitly allowing aggressive military action against the
DPRK, the biggest gain for the US is that it can use the condemnatory and punitive premise
of the resolution as a license for further sanctions with or without any UNSC resolution and
even for unilateral or multilateral military action against the DPRK in the name of the UN and
It is amply demonstrated in the case of the US aggression against Iraq that resolutions
condemning Iraq and imposing sanctions short of explicitly approving the military invasion
of Iraq became ultimately the license for the US and its "coalition of the willing" to invade
and occupy Iraq in 2003.
Another big gain of the US lies in its success at pressing China and Russia to take a position
of condemning the DPRK and thus in poisoning the relations of the three countries. As a
result, the DPRK is reasonably more than ever wary of the six-party talks or even bilateral
talks with the US within the framework of the six-party talks as an anti-DPRK trap. It is
clear that the US is trying to bind Russia and China inextricably to the US aggressive policy
against the DPRK and to the longstanding US nuclear monopoly in the Korean peninsula.
The US has publicly gloated over the votes of China and Russia for UNSC resolution 1718
in riposte specifically to China's expression of reservation about the boarding of DPRK vessels
and inspection of cargo to and from DPRK. It would seem that China has an afterthought
about the provocative and dangerous prospects of US interdicting the vessels that belong
not only to DPRK but also to other countries known for or suspected of carrying prohibited
goods to and from the DPRK. Any degree of Chinese acquiescence to US hegemony and
US gunboat diplomacy in the Asia-Pacific region poses threats to China itself and other countries.
As it is, the UNSC resolution is aimed at undermining and destabilizing the DPRK, sabotaging
its economy and making life difficult for the Korean people, despite the hypocritical claims of
concern for the Korean people by the signatories of the resolution. The sanctions stipulated
by the resolution are brutal enough and have far reaching adverse consequences to the DPRK.
Worse, the obstructions to and slowing down of DPRK's trade with other countries, including
the disruptions of vital food and fuel supplies would inflict harsh punishment on the Korean
The US and its cohorts expect the DPRK to capitulate to their dictates as a result of the
current UNSC resolution. They want the DPRK and the Korean people to give up their
national independence and their right to defend it, to degrade their self-defense capabilities
and to let the US have a monopoly of nuclear weapons and other weapons of mass destruction
in the Korean peninsula and in the vicinity of DPRK.
The US and its cohorts expect the DPRK to capitulate under the pressure of a tighter US
military blockade and provocations in and out of DPRK territory, severe economic and financial
difficulties, disruptions in its foreign trade or else suffer social degradation and regime change
or possibly cruise missile attacks and other cowardly acts or even a full scale invasion.
But the DPRK is quite different from recent victims of US aggression, like Yugoslavia, Iraq and
Afghanistan. It has nuclear weapons. These are so few in comparison to the huge nuclear
power of the US. But they have a high deterrent value and can be useful for pressing the
denuclearization of the Korean peninsula and advancing towards the cause of seeking the
complete prohibition and thorough destruction of nuclear weapons in the entire world.
The DPRK is vulnerable to US military attacks of any kind. But so are the US military forces
to DPRK counterattack, especially in South Korea and Japan. It is the US and its cohorts
that are irresponsible and are playing with brinkmanship by trying to coerce the DPRK to
return to the six-party talks to be encircled, bullied and humiliated. The US must heed
the calls for restraint and meet the just and reasonable demands of the Korean people
and the DPRK.
It is understandable that the Korean people and the DPRK resolutely and vigorously assert
their national sovereignty and independence, stand up to US imperialism and its cohorts,
resist the longrunning and current unjust impositions of imperialist powers, totally reject
UNSC resolution 1718 and express determination and readiness for both dialogue and
confrontation. All people who fight for national independence, democracy, justice and
peace are in solidarity with the Korean people and the DRPK as they strive under the
principle of self-reliance to cope with and prevail over any adversity. ###