Wednesday, August 30, 2006

North Korea

"Before a journalist starts to cover foreign policy issues, he or she should first be required to report on car accidents."

John Feffer, Co-Director, Foreign Policy In Focus and Director, Global Affairs, International Relations Center

Most journalists in the U.S. are simply mouthpieces for the foreign policy of whatever administration happens to be in office at the time. The notion that there exists an opposing view must strike them as utterly alien. It must be nice to get paid not to think. This is blatant when it comes to North Korea. We, the mentally retarded U.S. public, are told that the leaders of North Korea are a bunch of irrational lunatics just aching to shower us with nuclear weapons. Never mind that North Korea has had large stockpiles of chemical weapons for decades, and perhaps biological weapons as well, but has never used them. And never mind that the country has maintained its sovereignty for over 50 years! They're just a bunch of psychopaths. We're also fed a big juicy line on how our leaders just want to spread Democracy and Freedom to North Korea! Pardon me while I go somewhere private to vomit. Let's think about some of the great things the U.S. has done for Korea since World War II:

August 6 and 9, 1945 -- The U.S. drops nuclear weapons on the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki ultimately killing hundreds of thousands of people including at least 60,000 Koreans mostly brought to Japan forcibly as laborers.

August 15, 1945 -- The U.S. authorities in the South support reactionaries who collaborated with the Japanese. These men formed the kernel of the government of South Korea which would eventually include military dictators like Park Jung Hee who used techniques to suppress dissent that they had learned from their Japanese masters before liberation.

Korean War -- U.S. forces, likely as a result of General MacArthur's view of all Koreans as "defeated enemies" as well as the knowledge that the North enjoyed widespread support among the people, are under orders to view any unidentified person on the battlefield as hostile.

Korean War -- The U.S. uses chemical weapons, especially napalm, extensively during the conflict.

July, 1950 -- Elements of the Second Battalion, U.S. Seventh Cavalry Regiment, massacre hundreds of civilians (mostly women and children) at No Gun Ri.

May 1980 -- The U.S. government approves the use of force against pro-Democracy demonstrators in the city of Kwangju and commits to direct intervention if the situation gets out of hand. A massacre ensues, the notorious Kwangju Massacre, that results in the deaths of between 500 and 2000 (the final death toll is still unknown because the military dumped bodies in mass graves and lakes) civilian demonstrators at the hands of the U.S.-backed South Korean military.

Now let's add that to all the other fucked-up shit the U.S. has done and continues to do all over the world and let's wonder why on earth the government of North Korea, which the President included in his "axis of evil" speech, would want to acquire nuclear weapons!

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