I think this also fits the pattern regarding expending resources. Mobilization is expensive and depletes resources and given the desires for returning to Kaesong and reunion talks and tourism at Kumgangsan, I think this adds additional possible evidence that the most important near term objective is access to more cash for the regime.
But the one thing I would caution is to look at the history before the Korean War in the spring of 1950 when the north ceased all anti-south propaganda, called for north-South talks and then attacked on June 25th (knowing full well most all Korean military officers would be at the grand opening of the ROK Army Officers Club on the night of June 24th). I am not saying that we should expect a second attack but we do need to be cautious about thinking that the regime actually has good intentions when it ceases its rhetoric.
|North Takes Soft Line on Domestic UFG Response|
North Korea has not yet ordered any meaningful civilian or military mobilization in response to combined U.S-South Korea “Ulchi Freedom Guardian” military drills, which began today.
An inside source in Jagang Province told Daily NK on the 19th, “Unlike last year, there has been no order to hold civilian defense drills and everything is as normal. There are normally civil defense drills in August, but this year there hasn’t been a word on it.”
“Some people are a little uncomfortable about that,” he added, before going on to explain, “Jagang Province is now putting its strength into realizing the General’s onsite guidance at the tractor factory. There is no training of either reserve forces or the Worker and Peasant Red Guard, which is made up of laborers.”
“Mind you, the people are already stressed by the call to fulfill their economic tasks, and if they did have to do civil defense training as well then that might be the end of them,” he mused.
(Continued at the link below)