Pyongyang knows how to grab attention even on the bog-standard occasions...
Last week, South Korea and Japan closely watched every detail of North Korean preparations for a military parade to celebrate the 75th founding anniversary of the Workers' Party of Korea, as if it was the country's first one.
The military equipment involved was of particular interest. Observers in Tokyo and Seoul wanted to make sure that North Korea does not abandon its attempts to improve its weapons, namely strategic ones.
Pyongyang has delivered upon its neighbors' expectations, signaling to the world that it perfectly exercises its right to build an effective armed force to protect the country's independence and sovereignty.
According to South Korean military experts, the parade did particularly demonstrate new test pieces of ballistic missiles, as well as heavy and very heavy multiple launch rocket systems (MLRS).
The world has previously known Pukkykson-1, Pukkykson-2 and Pukkykson-3 SLBMs, as well as the KN-23 ballistic missile, but this time the parade featured a new ballistic missile named Pukkykson-4A.
But the South Koreans' particular attention was drawn to a new intercontinental ballistic missile that did not have a name written on it. It was longer than the previously demonstrated Hwasong-15 ICBM. Experts suggest that the launch range of such a missile may exceed 13 thousand kilometers. In other words, it is capable of hitting any target in the United States.
This is sort of a modest gift to the Americans for the upcoming presidential elections.
Although, let have it straight, there is not much excitement about this in Washington. However, US military sources claim that the US is already scrutinizing the North Korean novelties. But at the same time, the US diplomatic department explains that Washington still hinges upon agreements reached at the US-North Korean summit in Singapore and expects Pyongyang to sit down again to discuss complete denuclearization.
Kim Jong-Un's touching concern for the health of Donald Trump has apparently played a positive part in shaping Washington's stand on Pyongyang's unalterable desire to modernize its missile potential.
"I am sending a letter of consolation to you and your family. I wholeheartedly wish you and your wife a speedy and full recovery," Kim wrote to Trump when the American President and his wife were confirmed to have the COVID-19 virus. The North Korean leader was already confident that Trump would "definitely recover."
And the general recent performance of the DPRK supreme leader doesn't fail to amaze everyone.
Thus, he apologized to the South Korean President for the fact that the North Korean military had shot and killed a South Korean citizen who "illegally entered the territorial waters of the DPRK." According to the National Security Office of South Korean President Suh Hoon's administration, the apology letter was received from the Central Committee of the Workers' Party of Korea. The North Korean side assured it would take steps to prevent recurrence of such "disgusting incidents".
An amazing apology, an unprecedented case for the North Korean reality.
And the North Korean Central News Agency reports that the country's leader has also weepingly apologized to his own citizens for not being a reasonable leader.
"Our people have placed trust, as high as the sky and as deep as the sea, in me, but I have failed to always live up to it satisfactorily. I am really sorry for that," Kim Jong-UN said, explaining that "his efforts and sincerity have not been sufficient enough to rid our people of the difficulties in their lives."
He also apologized to the soldiers of the North Korean army, who have to overcome "numerous difficulties" in typhoon-affected territories and when fighting the coronavirus. "I am very sorry, and tonight my heart is bleeding because I can't be with them," Kim Jong-Un admits.
Speaking at a ceremony to mark the 75th anniversary of the Workers' Party of Korea, he suddenly promised that the peoples of both Koreas will join hands, although there has been recently more distrust than cooperation in inter-Korean relations.
All these expressions of sympathy and apologies explicitly indicate that the North Korean leadership has settled for updating the policy image of the Korean Workers' party. It is also obvious that Pyongyang, even in the face of the strongest sanctions pressure from external forces, namely the United States, is seeking to maintain the positive potential accumulated during high-level contacts.
Otherwise, the line remains unchanged: socialism, "strong economy" and self-reliance. Kim Jong-Un declared an 80-day battle to leapfrog ahead to achieve economic and other goals by the end of this year. At a recent meeting of the Political Bureau of the Central Committee of the Workers' Party of Korea (WPK), there was another important issue approached – preparations for the VIII Party Congress scheduled for January 2021.
By that time, the outcome of the US presidential election will be known, and so will prospects for US-North Korean relations. This will be a good place for the WPK and the country's leadership to start as regards their future foreign policy.
Just as important is lack of Pyongyang's reaction to the updated Russian-Chinese course of action for the Korean settlement. As known from South Korean sources, Seoul has found nothing new in the plan.
One shouldn't be silent about the updated Russian-Chinese plan or shy away from it. It is really forward-looking and provides for a slow but steady progress towards a comprehensive solution to the issues of peace and security in Northeast Asia. Any international structure built without Russia or China in this field will be fragile and legally incapable, at the very least.