Are The Winter Olympics In Danger? North Korea Is A Real Threat — But Pyeongchang Has A Plan

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Let us also recall that this was the interval in which North Korea—just before carrying out its Jan., 2016 nuclear test—arrested an American tourist in Pyongyang, Otto Warmbier, accusing him of removing a political slogan from a hotel wall. Pyongyang’s regime then inflicted on Warmbier some unknown abuse that reduced him to a vegetative state, held him that way for more than a year with no word to his family, and finally released him in June, 2017, to be flown home to die. The list of atrocities goes on and on, including the assassination with VX nerve agent—a chemical weapon of mass destruction—of Kim Jong Un’s half brother, Kim Jong Nam, in a Malaysian commercial airport. North Korea’s regime found time for many things these past two years, but never got around to registering for the Olympics.

Then, just last week, Kim Jong Un delivered a New Year’s speech in which he wished success to the Olympic games in South Korea, and suggested that as “compatriots of the same blood as south Koreans,” North Korea wished to share their pleasure and “help them.” Part of this profferred “help” entailed an offer “to dispatch our delegation and adopt other necessary measures.”

In that same speech, Kim talked about a lot more than the Olympics. He celebrated North Korea’s nuclear advances, threatened that the entire U.S. mainland was now within North Korea’s nuclear reach, and claimed “the nuclear button is on my office desk all the time.” In that vein, he exhorted his “nuclear weapons research sector and the rocket industry” to “mass-produce nuclear warheads and ballistic missiles… to give a spur to the efforts for deploying them for action.” Kimalso reminded his countrymen that the Worker’s Party, which rules (or, in Pyongyang’s parlance, “guides”) every aspect of their lives, “should never tolerate all shades of heterogeneous ideas,” but should subordinate all undertakings to “single-hearted unity”—by which he was referring to the monolithic ideology that is the monstrous lie at the core of Kim’s rule.

Did South Korea respond by saying: Are you kidding? You want to “help” with the Olympics? Sorry, Kim, but while you were celebrating your warhears and missiles, you missed the Olympic registration deadline. You are a totalitarian dictator exhorting your repressed people to dedicate themselves body and soul, whatever the attendant deprivations, to mass-producing nuclear warheads, and you have just threatened our strongest ally, the U.S., with nuclear strikes. It would send a very bad signal to you, and to the entire world, if we and the International Olympic Committee now hustle and make exceptions just to include your delegation ( including, no doubt, the party minders whose job is to ensure no defections, no deviation from your “single-hearted unity”).

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