Connect with us

Politics

Tulsi Gabbard: US interventions are why North Korea, Kim Jong Un keep nukes

Published

on

Democratic Rep. Tulsi Gabbard expressed doubts about President Donald Trump’s ability to convince North Korean Kim Jong Un to denuclearize despite the summit between the leaders that kicked off Tuesday.

In a series of tweets over the course of Monday and Tuesday, the presidential hopeful pointed to the long history of the US intervening in foreign countries as the primary reason why the North Korean leader will not give up his nuclear weapons.

Trump is currently in Hanoi, Vietnam, to hold a second meeting with Kim about North Korea’s nuclear weapons program after a prior summit with the North Korean leader in Singapore last June.

On Monday, Gabbard tweeted, “In order to de-escalate nuclear crisis with NK, we need to understand why Kim Jong-un is holding on so tightly to their nuclear weapons — it is because he sees them as his only deterrent from the US coming in and trying to topple his regime.”

Read more: Tulsi Gabbard’s foreign policy frustrates centrist Democrats, draws cheers from anti-interventionists, and makes her political identity tough to pigeonhole

Gabbard’s assessment is shared by many nuclear weapons and North Korea experts who’ve said Kim desires nukes as a deterrent to US military action. But Gabbard’s suggestion that the US should dramatically scale back foreign operations in order to secure a deal with Kim goes beyond suggestions made by experts, other Democratic members of Congress, and the US military.

The Hawaii congresswoman in a separate tweet said, “Kim Jong-un sees what the US did to Gaddafi in Libya, Saddam Hussein in Iraq, & efforts to depose Assad in Syria. We must end the long-held US foreign policy of regime-change wars and deposing dictators to be credible when we say we are not interested in toppling the NK regime.”

Gabbard in a later tweet said Kim won’t make the same mistake” as “Libya’s dictator Gaddafi” by trusting the US government in nuke-related negotiations.

In 2003, Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi agreed to give up his country’s nuclear weapons program in exchange for the easing of economic sanctions. Eight years later, he was killed by NATO-backed rebels.

In light of this history, North Korea in May was enraged after Vice President Mike Pence suggested North Korea may “end like Libya” if Kim didn’t cooperate with the US.

Gabbard touched heavily on these themes in her tweets this week.

“Trump’s holding onto our failed regime-change war policies is why NK holds onto nukes. Kim sees what we did in Iraq, Libya, Syria, & fears he’s next,” Gabbard tweeted Tuesday. “Without ending our regime-change war policies, Kim will cling to his nukes as a deterrent.”

In another tweet, she cited Trump’s flirtations with the use of military force in Venezuela as a more recent example of why Kim won’t denuclearize.

The White House did not immediately respond to a request for comment from INSIDER.

Read more: North Korea is not building nuclear weapons to destroy the US — the real reasons are much more surprising

Gabbard, who is one of the only female combat veterans in Congress, has a history of taking incendiary stances on foreign policy. She’s faced ongoing criticism over her stance on the Syria conflict and rhetoric surrounding Syrian leader Bashar al-Assad. Gabbard visited the accused war criminal in early 2017 and has since been referred to an “Assad apologist” after refusing to refer to him as an “enemy” of the US.

But Gabbard has expressed support for the notion of holding dialogue with North Korea, particularly after Hawaii in early 2018 went into panic mode due to a false alert it was being targeted by a ballistic missile.

Gabbard’s campaign did not immediately respond to a request for comment from INSIDER.

Continue Reading
Advertisement Find your dream job

Trending