Drawing on his experience as a veteran intelligence operative, this well-known author is also an astute expert on the North.
“I’ve been dealing from half a deck,” I said. Inspector O looked up for a moment, and then returned to his close study of the chessboard in front of him. “You’re telling me?” “No, I mean, I’ve been trying to figure out what was in your leader’s New Year’s address, and it was pretty frustrating because for most of the day [...]
“Seen any good movies lately?” Inspector O was sitting on a beach chair under a big red and white umbrella, sipping a drink with a slice of pineapple and reading an old copy of Variety, so I figured it was a harmless question. Too late I realized it sounded like a jibe. To my surprise, O merely smiled. “Nice try,” he said. “But [...]
I was out for a stroll in the cool of the morning when across the Avenida da Liberdade I spotted Inspector O shifting uncomfortably in a chair at a sidewalk café that was otherwise empty of patrons. On the table in front of him sat a glass and a small colorful vase containing a few orange and purple flowers, but no evidence of any food. “Of [...]
Here we are, almost at the end of the US-ROK joint military exercise Ulchi Freedom Guardian (UFG), and the situation is eerily calm. DPRK commentary at the start of the exercise last week was relatively restrained, especially in view of the warnings the North had issued over the preceding months. Meanwhile, North Korean reaction to numerous recent [...]
While several other areas in the world have gone completely to hell, Northeast Asia seems only to be rumbling, like Mt. Vesuvius in a long-ago August. The situation now, as then, looks grim, but many people apparently cling to the hope that the little earth tremors and the noxious gas venting from the various fissures will stop in a couple of [...]
On July 1, having studied for all of 24 hours the June 30 DPRK National Defense Commission (NDC) proposal for another go at reducing tensions, Seoul rejected it in categorically and, surely not by accident, somewhat insulting terms. NDC proposals, at least in the view of the North Koreans, are not to be sneezed at, much less abruptly dismissed. [...]