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Actually, there is no simple solution to the Korean Crisis. The choice between war and peace requires a means for both to be both credible and actionable. The means to war is for the generals. The means to peace is for the diplomats. But the final common pathway of all diplomatic peace efforts is the signing of a peace treaty guaranteed by credible powers. To reject the very notion of a treaty or negotiations at present to lead to a treaty is the same as to accept war as the only choice, regardless. Nobody wants to sign a peace treaty with North Korea, unless it surrenders first, that is. And no Kim official wants to sign a peace treaty with America, unless it becomes a nuclear power first. Therefore, left to themselves, there is no chance of ever achieving peace, as the means of a treaty toward it, is impossible to achieve.|
What if an affected party wants them to be at peace for the simple reason that its own security and prosperity is threatened by their war?
Suppose two fellows want to have a showdown on Main Street, and the sheriff does not want others to be hurt by them, physically or financially? Ask them to do it elsewere? But they insist on Main Street, both. Do it some other time? But to both, it is now or never. Solve their dispute by some other means? They refuse any other means.
This is a classic Chicken game.
China has enough clout to broker a peace neither wants, but cannot refuse.
China sends each country an offer between each of them and China. In each such contract, China will spell out the terms of what that country gets from the other country, and also what it gets from China. Included, are items of what China gets from it, in return. Naturally, the two contracts will be different, but they will be complementary. As the peace broker, China will provide some benefits to each, and reap benefits from both. This is the way banks issue letters of credit to importers that satisfy the demands of the exporters. And it will be a two-way trade, so two different letters of credit, by one bank, China, who can make whole what each side loses, if their counterparty defaults.
It is simple. But it is hard. Yet, it is the only possible way to achieve peace. The reward is that the ensuing peace will be on the terms that China can accept and will benefit from, in security, in trade, and in reputation. A soft power in effect that governs raw power.