North Korea is in a cold war with the United States and South Korea. Despite Pyongyang’s nuclear saber-rattling and the failure of diplomacy for over two decades, we have restricted ourselves to two options: economic sanctions and military means, such as deterrence, missile defense and threats of preemptive strikes. But there is another option: to eliminate the North Korean threat by means of the same cold war techniques that worked against the Soviet Union.
Pyongyang’s actions come straight from the communist Cold War playbook: nuclear intimidation, arms agreement violations, weapons proliferation, assassination, counterfeiting, espionage, cyber aggression, subversion, deception and propaganda, including psychological disarmament propaganda associated with détente policies. But we have not responded in kind.