I was very glad to have a phone conversation with Dan Jasper, Asia Public Education and Advocacy Coordinator for the American Friends Service Committee (AFSC). I have written some about his work before. He spoke of how alarming it is that the little positive interactions between North Korea and the United States are the few and fragile bridges represented by humanitarian efforts, mainly by a few faith organizations, including AFSC and the Mennonite Central Committee.
He mentioned working with the Scarsdale Friends Meeting in New York City, just 20 miles from the United Nations headquarters. North Koreans need a special visa to travel more than 25 miles from the U.N. So there might be a possibility that the North Korean Ambassador to the United Nations might be able to visit the Scarsdale Meeting.
Linda Lewis (AFSC) is in North Korea now. Dan will discuss the possibility of another North Korean visit to Iowa with her when she returns. We hope one of them will be able to meet with Iowa Friends to discuss what we might do next to make that happen.
In the meantime, please contact your Congressional representatives to support the bills below to require congressional authorization for military action against North Korea.
War with North Korea would be a strategic disaster for the United States and its regional allies. Congress urgently needs to seize control of this situation and stop the dangerous, escalating rhetoric on both sides from sparking a global catastrophe.
Support H.R. 4140/S. 2016 and S. 2047 to keep President Trump from starting a war with North Korea without congressional authorization
The No Unconstitutional Strike Against North Korea Act (H.R. 4140/S. 2016) and S. 2047, A bill to restrict the use of funds for kinetic military operations in North Korea, would bar the use of funds for President Trump to start a war with North Korea without congressional authorization or absent an attack on the U.S. or allies.
The North Korean challenge is urgent, but the United States has successfully used dialogue and diplomacy in the past to avoid both war and capitulation.
Sanctions, missile defenses, threats, and pressure on other countries cannot be relied on as stand-alone solutions to stop further North Korean nuclear and missile advances or to avoid catastrophic misunderstandings and miscalculations.
Avoiding war and reducing tensions should be key objectives of U.S. strategy and diplomacy alongside denuclearization, nonproliferation, and human rights.
FCNL Contact: Anthony Wier, Anthony@fcnl.org