Change camouflage to business suit: How economic instruments of deoccupation work

Author : Oleksiy Kushch

Source : 112 Ukraine

From the point of view of different models of demilitarization and reintegration, the situation with the Korean conflict is indeed a unique base for analyzing and forecasting interstate conflicts of any complexity. And since Ukraine now stands, one might say, at the root of such a conflict, we should be more interested in preparing and adapting to our conditions any international analogues.
22:56, 19 June 2018

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A historic meeting between the leaders of two hostile countries - the United States and North Korea took place In Singapore. It ended with the signing an agreement, which would result in the refusal of the "northerners" from nuclear weapons in exchange for security guarantees for the power elite, the lifting of Western sanctions and the possible flow of investment, mainly from the south. Even literally a few months ago, the clock's arrow, symbolizing the approach of the world to a nuclear catastrophe, froze almost at midnight, while opponents threatened to incinerate each other. But at the meeting, they strolled in the corridors and could scare the world only with their hairdos.

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The conflict between the DPRK and South Korea, as well as the participation of the US and China in it, clearly shows us that in the 21st century, economic instruments of influence are gradually supplanting any ideology with global politics to the periphery. Well, why Kim Jong-un needs Juche ideology of his beloved grandfather, if he cannot travel freely to distant Disneyland, which he dreamed about being a teenager ....

Literally a few years later, North Korea may become a kind of synthesis of South Korea and China, where along with the dominant ideology, market clusters will develop economic growth, abundantly flavored with Chinese, southern and American investments. Given the specifics of the Koreans, a positive result will not take long. But let’s note that in an outburst of deep love for the "white father from Washington" our native leaders in 2016 canceled the visa-free regime with the DPRK, which operated since the USSR and was inherited by us in the order of succession.

From the point of view of rolling around different models of demilitarization and reintegration, the situation with the Korean conflict is indeed a unique base for analyzing and forecasting interstate conflicts of any complexity. And since Ukraine now stands, one might say, at the root of such a conflict, we should be more interested in preparing and adapting to our conditions of any international analogs. This will allow us to reach the "mouth" of the conflict not in decades, but much earlier. In addition, it is extremely important for Ukraine to understand how in the conditions of a military conflict it is possible to successfully develop political institutions and economy. As South Korea's experience shows, the threat of an invasion from the north did not prevent southerners from entering the twenty most developed countries of the world and come close to the more ambitious goal of joining the top ten states in terms of basic evaluation criteria. Today, the economy of South Korea was one of the first to approach the creation of an innovative model. Most likely, South Korea practically simultaneously with Japan in the foreseeable future will pass to a new technological way - NBIC-convergence. It's about the sixth technological order, when the results of nano-, bio-, information and cognitive technologies (hence the name) will be combined.

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At the same time, today on the roads leading to Seoul, you can observe giant concrete blocks hanging over the road with places for bombs: in the event of a breakthrough of North Korean tanks, these concrete structures must be blown up to complicate the advancement of the enemy's armored columns. In addition, the north has proved that it is able to create not only nuclear warheads but also launch vehicles, so the danger of a nuclear strike on the cities of the south of the peninsula was not so far-fetched. Nevertheless, this for some reason did not stop foreign investors in their desire to invest hundreds of billions of dollars in South Korea. Because when mentioning South Korea at investment forums, the first thing that came to mind was innovation, the rule of law, the quality of the entrepreneurial environment. Only the lovers of history know about the military conflict with the north - this risk is not the key for an investment appraisal of business projects in a given country. But at the mention of our country, the European mind is limited only by the following categories: mess, corruption, lawlessness, war. As we see, the threat of a military conflict is not always considered a basic risk (proved by Israel, South Korea, Cyprus).

Initially, the conflict between the two Koreas was caused by a tectonic fracture in their ideology: the northerners were accused of being puppets of the Kremlin and Beijing, and southerners - in vassal dependence on the White House. Behind the north stood China and the USSR, behind the south - the United States. Each side had its own fundamental ideology: the north - a kind of communism (the Juche system), the south - the most undisguised capitalism. Both sides are still in a state of war, they share not the border, but the demarcation line. Each participant in the conflict massively applied the most sophisticated methods of state propaganda, and any contacts with the enemy were branded with shame even at the level of family relationships. "Traitor of the North", "Corrupt southerner" - such word combinations became stable lexical units of everyday speech.

During the conflict, hundreds of thousands of people were killed on both sides, with Chinese volunteers and Soviet pilots on the side of the northerners, and American soldiers on the Southside. Permanent conflicts erupted even in our time, and quite bloody. There was also the downed "Boeing". Sometimes people saw bloody curiosities. Recall, for example, "an incident with an ax murder" or "tree trimming incident" when a group of American and South Korean soldiers in August 1976 was attacked by northerners armed with axes and cudgels. The fact is that the officers of the US Army decided to trim the poplar branches on the line of demarcation, and the poplar was planted by Kim Il Sung himself. Foliage hindered the review. North Koreans could not tolerate such sacrilege, because for them such a poplar – is like an unbroken bush for Christians in the Sinai, and rushed to attack with improvised means. As a result, two American officers were killed and nine wounded. In the future, the US special forces with the support of aviation cut down the hated tree, leaving only a six-meter stump for abuse. Apparently, as a symbol of the humiliation of the enemy.

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You can recall the explosion of the Boeing 707 over the Andaman Sea in 1987, which killed 115 people (passengers and crew members) flying along the Baghdad-Seoul route. In this crime, the North Korean special services were accused, because the purpose of the terrorist attack was the disruption of the Summer Olympics in Seoul. One of the perpetrators committed suicide during the arrest, and his partner Kim Hyun Hee was arrested and then acquitted as a blind implement in the hands of the North Korean regime. By the way, according to some sources, the initiator of the explosion was the father of the present Kim. Later the terrorist successfully married her bodyguard and gave birth to two children. The story was covered with heart-rending films and books with names like "Tears of my soul".

There were also bloody incidents aimed at disrupting the World Cup in football, which took place in South Korea, artillery shelling, sea battles and even the destruction of a corvette of southerners torpedoed by a submarine of the northerners. And all this was literally a few years ago.

Now it is already possible to say with certainty that the first and the key bridge that started the reconciliation of the two Koreas was the Kaesong Industrial Park, launched in 2004. It was here that the northerners could see the advantages of cluster development. And for this, it was not necessary at all to go "into faith" of the southerners. The Kaesong Industrial Park is located on the territory of the DPRK, 10 kilometers north of the demilitarized zone. Currently, 120 South Korean small and medium-sized companies and 15 large corporations operate in the territory of the industrial park. The trade turnover of the zone averages $ 2 billion a year, more than 50,000 people are employed in production (mainly from North Korea).

Ukraine can also successfully use economic instruments of deoccupation. For example, the use in the uncontrolled territories of Donetsk and Luhansk regions of an effective model, such as demilitarized free economic territories (DeFET).

Taking into account a number of factors, at the moment the most realistic creation of DeFET is in Alchevsk industrial area, Enakievo-Makiivka agglomeration, Khartsyzsk, and also in coal mining sites: Anthracite, Rovenki, Sverdlovsk. The creation of the DeFET can become a new innovative form of de-occupation of uncontrolled territories, a transitional stage for their full integration into the economic and political space of Ukraine.

The advantages of DeFET are that as a result of their functioning, local leaders gradually replace camouflage with business suits, and currency earnings contribute their portion of cognitive dissonance when supporters of the "Russian world" or "Juche world" begin to understand that the economy is still primary, and politics and state ideology are just tools to consolidate this "primacy" in the international arena, sometimes at the expense of those who do not understand this simple truth.

And for us it is also an obvious lesson that the state of permanent conflict can either stimulate the innovative development of the country, as it encourages the search for non-standard solutions in a crisis situation (Israel, Cyprus, South Korea), or vice versa - to marginalize local elites who, in attempts to keep in power gradually begin to use the military conflict as the basis for the formation of internal destructive state ideology and an occasion for the constant solicitation of foreign aid and credits.

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