Why Kim Jong-un postponed the war with the South

Why Kim Jong-un postponed the war with the South

A week ago, it seemed that the North Korean leader was very determined. He's probably playing the role of a good COP right now.

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un, amid the recent sharp escalation, decided to postpone the plan of military action presented by the General staff against South Korea “after assessing the situation that has recently developed”.

Last week, North Korea blew up the inter-Korean communications office in Kaesong, after which it announced the return of the military to the demilitarized zone. Recently installed loudspeakers at the border were removed.

Generous leader Kim Jong-un

On June 24, the North Korean Central Telegraph Agency reported that Kim Jong-un had decided to postpone a plan to implement military actions against South Korea. The decision was announced at a preliminary meeting of the Central Military Commission.

“The Chairman of the Central Committee of the CPC, comrade Kim Jong-un ... at a preliminary meeting, gave an assessment of the recent situation and postponed the plan for military action against the South, which was presented by the General staff of the Korean people's army,” KCNA said in a statement.

In addition, during the event, documents that reflect “state measures to further strengthen the country's military deterrence force” were reviewed.

After that, North Korea began dismantling loudspeakers recently installed on the border with South Korea to transmit propaganda materials, Yonhap News Agency reported, citing sources.

According to them, Pyongyang installed about 20 loudspeakers in border areas after threatening to take new actions against Seoul. Materials critical of the South Korean authorities were also removed from North Korean media sites.

Tensions between the two Korean states have increased markedly since the failed summit between Kim Jong-un and US President Donald Trump in February 2019. Since then, negotiations between the US and North Korea on curtailing the DPRK's nuclear program have been at an impasse.

Recently, Pyongyang has been intensifying its confrontation with Seoul. It seemed that North Korea was returning to its usual policy of balancing on the edge of war.

On June 18, North Korea threatened South Korea with a military response “beyond imagination”. The enemies of the North Korean state were predicted a “deafening roar of retribution” that would be beyond the imagination of “those who make noise about possible consequences.”

Before that, Pyongyang warned the South about the upcoming military retaliation for the distribution of propaganda leaflets that offend the authorities of the Republic.

Kim Jong-un with his generals

On June 9, Pyongyang shut down all communication lines with Seoul. Shortly before that, the DPRK issued an order on the final termination of communication through all channels, including the military and a special line between the top leadership of the two countries.

A week later, the DPRK blew up a joint communications hub with South Korea, and the next day, a representative of the General staff of the Korean people's army said that the authorities of the DPRK intend to transfer troops to the border with South Korea, as well as to introduce troops into the demilitarized zone on the border.

The leadership in Pyongyang was outraged that South Korea did not prevent the dropping of propaganda leaflets made by North Korean defectors from its territory.

However, the leaflets are still seen as a reason to raise the stakes in the international dialogue of the North Korean leadership. In recent years, foreign policy, which was supposed to be a triumph for Kim and a demonstration of his openness and ability to negotiate, has not produced the necessary results.

However, even at the stage when Pyongyang went to raise rates, there were doubts in the expert community that the DPRK was set to go to a radical aggravation of the situation since Kim Jong-un had previously resorted to escalating tensions and provocations in order to attract international attention and start bidding.

In the current situation, the North Korean leader may be playing the good COP, since the war was threatened by his sister, Kim Yo-Jong. At the same time, Kim's successor has demonstrated her leadership qualities.

Now Kim Jong-un can play the role of a magnanimous leader who does everything to defuse tensions.

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