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U.S. terror list more symbolism than substance

17 4 15

As North Korea marches toward nuclear mastery, President Donald Trump slaps the country back on an American blacklist of state sponsors of terrorism. But is it anything more than bluster?

After all, former President George W. Bush removed North Korea from that same list nearly a decade ago, also in an attempt to halt its march toward nuclear mastery.

Aside from a pretty good illustration of just how hopeless the decades-long effort to get North Korea to abandon its nuclear ambitions can seem, the contrasting approaches also show that the list has always been more about symbolism than substance.

The top U.S. diplomat, Rex Tillerson, acknowledged as much — and undercut Trump's declaration that it was part of a "maximum pressure campaign" to isolate North Korea — when he called the decision a "very symbolic move" with limited practical effects.

After months of nuclear and missile tests that put North Korea ever closer to completing a viable long-range nuclear arsenal that can hit the U.S. mainland, the designation has the ring of a counterpunch that's more impressive to look at than painful to feel.

And since North Korea will see it........

© Japan Today