North Korea

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NDPP

North & South Korea Agree To Reopen Military Hotline

https://on.rt.com/8wh2

"North and South Korea have agreed to reopen their military hotline, a S Korean government official told reporters. Much anticipated intra-Korean talks, the first in two years, have been underway..."

Pyongyang & Seoul Hold 'Serious and Sincere' High Level Talks

https://youtu.be/ssok11WZuSg

WWWTT

Good news!

NDPP

China Says Not All The Main Parties Of the Conflict In Korea Will Be In Vancouver And So It Won't Attend.

https://www.newcoldwar.org/news-analysis-headlines-week-jan-8-2018/

"A gang up against the Democratic People's Republic of North Korea will take place in Vancouver, Canada on January 16, 2018 in the form of a conference hosted by Canada's foreign minister and the US Secretary of state. North Korea is not invited, nor is Russia. China and Russia are the only two countries to share a border with the DPRK..."

NDPP

Finding The Answer To A Riddle Shrouded In A Mystery  -   by Pepe Escobar

http://www.informationclearinghouse.info/48558.htm

"The art of the non-deal might be the only way out of the stand-off between the US and North Korea..."

cco

NDPP wrote:

"China and Russia are the only two countries to share a border with the DPRK..."

I could've sworn there was one more.

Bec.De.Corbin Bec.De.Corbin's picture

cco wrote:
NDPP wrote:

"China and Russia are the only two countries to share a border with the DPRK..."

I could've sworn there was one more.

South Korea dosn't count in his book.

Rev Pesky

From 

Bec.De.Corbin:

South Korea dosn't count in his book.

There is a question as to whether it's one country or not. After all, the border between North and South Korea was not one made by the Koreans, it was made by Truman and Stalin.

Perhaps someday it will be a single country again.

voice of the damned

Rev Pesky wrote:

From 

Bec.De.Corbin:

South Korea dosn't count in his book.

There is a question as to whether it's one country or not. After all, the border between North and South Korea was not one made by the Koreans, it was made by Truman and Stalin.

Perhaps someday it will be a single country again.

But the original article said "...border the DPRK", not "border Korea". I'm willing to give the benefit of the doubt, and assume the writer meant "border the DPRK on the north".

Constitutionally, I believe that the ROK considers itself and what is known as the DPRK to be one nation, and I'm guessing the North has a similar provision in its constitution. Not sure how much difference that makes in practice, though I think it might obligate the South to take in North Korean refugees.

Rev Pesky

from voice of the damned:

But the original article said "...border the DPRK", not "border Korea".

Fair enough. If the writer was treating North Korea as a distinct country, then logically South Korea would have a border with it.

​The broader point perhaps is that the USA has no business there. I believe most people realize the USA would not pull out militarily at the request of South Korea.

Noops

Rev Pesky wrote:

​The broader point perhaps is that the USA has no business there.

Figuratively perhaps, but not literally. Their MIC is doing very well thank you very much!

It's all about the business. The business of war.

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
I believe most people realize the USA would not pull out militarily at the request of South Korea.

Has South Korea actually asked them to?

cco

Rather the opposite. Carter tried to withdraw all American ground troops from SK in the 70s, but South Korean dictator-du-jour Park (father of the recently deposed SK president) threw a shitfit and Carter was eventually forced to back down. Given Trump's "South Korea and Japan should pay us more for protection" attitude, my guess is that if SK asked the US to leave, American troops would be gone in about a month. Uzbekistan kicked American troops out back in 2005 without much of a whimper.

Rev Pesky

From cco, and also replying to Mr. magoo:

...my guess is that if SK asked the US to leave, American troops would be gone in about a month.

The Korean peninsula is very important to the USA's strategic interests. I will continue to believe the wishes of the South Koreans are immaterial to the USA.

NDPP

CrossTalk: On North Korea - Olympic Truce 

https://www.rt.com/shows/crosstalk/415697-south-korea-olympic-games/

"It is being called the Olympic Truce. Is this a serious diplomatic opening or merely a ploy? South Korea appears to welcome this step. Does the same apply to Washington?"

 

Russia, China Shut Out Of The Canadian Conference On Korea - Value of Meeting Questioned

http://ottawacitizen.com/news/national/defence-watch/russia-china-shut-o...

"China believes the Canadian meeting will only 'harm joint-efforts to improve the situation on the peninsula' and reflects 'Cold War' thinking..."

 

voice of the damned

cco wrote:

Rather the opposite. Carter tried to withdraw all American ground troops from SK in the 70s, but South Korean dictator-du-jour Park (father of the recently deposed SK president) threw a shitfit and Carter was eventually forced to back down.

That's true, though it wasn't just Park throwing the shit-fit, it was Carter's whole team, who for the duration of that policy, had to work to implement it with as little enthusiasm as possible. As I think I mentioned earlier, Carter himself eventually backed down, after being shown photos(which he now claims were doctored) proving NK's troop stength had been previously understimated.

General Park's stance, however, does somewhat complicate the idea that the South Korean dictators were mere "puppets" doing the bidding of Washington, since if that were the case, Park should have just said "Well, if Carter wants the troops gone, then that's what's gonna happen", and not made any issue of it.

(It's also the case that, under the supposed "puppet" generals, South Korea pursued trade-policies that were more protectionist and less amenable to American interests than what were pursued by the left-leaning presidents in the late 90s and early 2000s, which leads me to think that geopolitical alignment only goes so far in explaining the behaviour of a government).

I don't think Trump now has any particular inclination to withdraw the troops(to the degree that we can acsertain his real views on anything); he likely got the "Carter" treatment from the generals pretty quickly, without even having to be shown some suggestive photos.

Rev Pesky

Statement from President Carter re: Troop withdrawals from South Korea (July '79):

Last February it was announced that withdrawals of U.S. ground combat forces from Korea would be held in abeyance pending the completion of a reassessment of North Korea's military strength and the implications of recent political developments in the region.

These decisions have been shaped by the following considerations:

—First, recent studies by the intelligence community have confirmed that the size of North Korea's ground forces, armor, firepower, and mobility are larger than previously estimated...

—Second, during the recent visit to Seoul, President Park and President Carter jointly announced their desire to explore possibilities for reducing tensions in Korea with representatives of North Korea...It is the judgment of the United States that further reductions of our combat elements in Korea should await credible indications that a satisfactory military balance has been restored and a reduction in tension is underway.

—Third, in recent months we have normalized relations with China and deepened defense cooperation with Japan.

...Under these circumstances, it is believed that these adjustments in our Korean withdrawal plan...will serve wider U.S. strategic security interests by reassuring our principal allies of our steadiness and our resolve.

Over time we will continue to adjust the detailed features of our contribution to the security of the Republic of Korea to reflect growing ROK economic and military strength and changes in the international situation. At present, however, these modifications in our withdrawal plans will best assure... a favorable U.S. strategic position in East Asia.

Same old same old...

 

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
Same old same old...

I know, right??

How many more times can the U.S. try to withdraw troops before we say "enough is enough!"?

Err... or did you mean this is just another case of a state wishing they wouldn't leave?

NDPP

Canada And Allies Weigh Naval Crackdown on North Korea

https://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2018/01/11/canada-and-allies-weigh-n...

"If Canada and its allies decide to take this step, it could see the deployment of Canadian warships to the front lines of this global hot-spot. Yet North Korea has already warned that it would view such actions as a serious provocation, warning through its state media last December that naval interdictions would constitute an 'act of war.'"

Canada Should Play Conscientious Role in Korea (and podcast)

https://soundcloud.com/unusualsources/canada-should-play-conscientious-r...

"Lawyer Chris Black and Prof Graeme MacQueen are helping build a revitalized peace movement. We discuss their recent op-ed article in the Toronto Star, and the less-known reality of Korea, and the US as a stopping-block to peace."

 

 

Rev Pesky

From Mr. Magoo:

I know, right??

How many more times can the U.S. try to withdraw troops before we say "enough is enough!"?

Err... or did you mean this is just another case of a state wishing they wouldn't leave?

If you read the posted statement, you would see that the push for not withdrawing from South Korea had almost nothing to do with the wishes of South Korea, but the 'strategic interests' of the the USA.

​But perhaps you didn't read it...

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
If you read the posted statement, you would see that the push for not withdrawing from South Korea had almost nothing to do with the wishes of South Korea, but the 'strategic interests' of the the USA.

OK. 

But I still feel like the U.S. intending to leave their garrisons, but being urged back with allegedly doctored intel, isn't really business as usual.  Acting in their own interest is, but don't we expect that of our governments, too?  Do we actually want our government to go on some altruism crusade?

If you're just shocked that the U.S. would take its own interests into account, there's a thread on babble in which it's been lauded that a head of state would remind the military to "be ready for battle" -- duh!  That's literally their job.

And another in which the same head of state said a remarkable thing when he wished his people a "better, happier life" -- double duh!  Should he wish them misery, to build character?

And now we hear that the U.S. acted in its own interests?  What kind of topsy-turvy, upside down anti-world are we living in???

NDPP

'This Is Not OK America...'

https://twitter.com/Osman-Marwa1/status/952267437562580993

"BALLISTIC MISSILE THREAT INBOUND TO HAWAII. SEEK IMMEDIATE SHELTER. THIS IS NOT A DRILL..."

Regarding Hawai'i's Missile Attack

http://www.moonofalabama.org/2018/01/weekly-review-and-open-thread-2018-...

Comment #36

"The best treat today is to listen to all those that experienced yesterday's 'nuclear attack'...The cop told me (both of his windows were rolled down): 'The guy in North Korea has fired 3 missiles at us. You should go home and stay with your family..."

Bec.De.Corbin Bec.De.Corbin's picture

You folks here do realize the South Korean people just recently rose up, peacefully (for the most part), protested in mass while the national police (those are the Darth Vader looking riot police) and military stood by and removed the last government (via their supreme court system in the end) when it become obvious she was corrupt and was apparently under the influence of a cult. They elected a new government through their constitution and they are now in the process of putting many from the previous government in jail for corruption.

Or haven’t you been paying attention to that?

They are not under a dictatorship anymore; they are past that, they are under their own constitutional rule now... unfortunately because the current situation with NK and their nuclear weapons program they are forced to be dependent on the USA for protection against such weapons.

For now...  

voice of the damned

re: "Choi Soon-sil gate", indeed. In some wryly amusing historical context, it is the case that since the assassination of Park Chung Hee, almost every major president(IOW, not including caretakers) has either gone to jail, or had their closest relatives sent to jail, for crimes ranging from mass murder to influence peddling. I think the only exception was Roh Moo Hyun, who killed himself, thus halting an ongoing investigation. (And Moon has managed to stay out of trouble so far.)

Elections here are basically as open and fair as anywhere else, though the range of what a party can advocate is somewhat more limited than in, say, Canada, the US, or western Europe. Specifically, you can't run on an outright pro-North Korea platform, though you can advocate things like pursuing a more conciliatory policy.

There was a late-revealed scandal about the National Intelligence Agency interfering in the 2012 election on behalf of Park, via the spamming of message-boards with an anti-Moon smear campaign.

https://tinyurl.com/y8nx9s7k

The Guadian uses the phrase "tried to rig", but I think that's probably inaccurate, both on the "tried"(they did succeed in spamming), and the "rigged"(which I think normally implies irregularities in casting and/or counting ballots). "Successfully swayed" would probably be more appropriate, assuming the spam had enough of an effect on how people voted.

 

Rev Pesky

From Mr. Magoo:

If you're just shocked that the U.S. would take its own interests into account,

Nope, not shocked at all. In fact I posted originally to point out that the USA always takes its own interests into account. Certainly more than they take anyone else's interest into account. The point being the USA wouldn't withdraw their military from South Korea just because the South Koreans told them to.

NDPP

Canada's Navy Has 'Capability' To Help Enforce North Korea Sanctions: Vance

https://www.theglobeandmail.com/news/politics/canadas-navy-has-capabilit...

"Canada's top general says the Royal Canadian Navy has the 'capability' to help enforce UN sanctions against North Korea if asked to do so at Tuesday's foreign ministers summit in Vancouver..."

 

Trudeau Defends Excluding Russia, China From Vancouver Summit

https://www.theglobeandmail.com/canada/video-trudeau-defends-excluding-r...

"Justin Trudeau says China and Russia will be integral in securing peace with North Korea, despite excluding them from Tuesday's meeting in Vancouver..."

NDPP

China Opposes Vancouver Meeting On Korea Peninsula Issue

http://www.xinhuanet.com/english/2018-01/16/c_136900336.htm

"Since this meeting does not have legitimacy or representatitiveness, China has opposed the meeting from the very beginning."

'Small Potatoes' just became even smaller...

Mobo2000

This summit in Vancouver, with Tillerson, is revealing both for how craven and deferential our government is to the US right now, and how adroit Trudeau is getting at saying one thing while doing the opposite.    Here's CBC coverage:

http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/north-korea-meeting-1.4485445

Rex Tillerson as the voice of moderation (!) in the Trump administration:

"There is also a distinction to be made between "our common objective of a secure and stable Korean peninsula," as Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland described the conference's purpose, and giving her American counterpart, U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, covering fire as he tries to keep President Donald Trump away from his "big" nuclear button."

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
Through that lens, if it wasn't obvious already, the presence of the submarine HMCS Chicoutimi in waters off Japan looks a whole lot different.

It also makes the absence of China and Russia — major players in any potential peaceful resolution of the North Korean crisis — more understandable and possibly chilling.

Allow me to point out that this is the CBC talking.  You know, the biased and compliant mouthpiece of our perpetual right wing governments.

voice of the damned

Mobo wrote:

Rex Tillerson as the voice of moderation (!) in the Trump administration

I suspect we're seeing Tillerson's influence in Trump's announcement in favour of the joint Olympics banner.

NDPP

'Korean War' Talks (and vid)

https://www.rt.com/shows/news/416154-january-17-12msk/

"Canada hosts Western allies of the 1950s Korean War to discuss the current crisis on the peninsula..."

 

US & Canada-Led Summit Wants More Sanctions On North Korea Beyond the UN's (and vid)

https://on.rt.com/8x3j

"Twenty US-allied states are considering imposing their own sanctions on N. Korea. The group also places 'special responsibility' on China and Russia - whom they 'forgot' to invite to the summit - to find a way out of the crisis. Participants 'agree to consider and take steps to improve unilateral sanctions and further diplomatic actions that go beyond those required by UN Security Council resolutions,' a joint statement issued at the end of the summit reads..."

'On behalf of the United States, I do want to thank Minister Freeland and the Government and People of Canada...The United States is grateful as always, that we can rely on our friend and neighbour Canada...'  - Rex Tillerson

NDPP

Not Much Wiggle Room For Canada To Introduce New Sanctions Against North Korea (and vid)

http://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/north-korea-vancouver-summit-sanctions-1...

"Vancouver Summit countries promise to consider new unilateral measures against Kim Jong-un's regime. Canada announced it would be spending more than $3 million to support an American program that trains local officials in the region on sanctions enforcement. Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland and her co-chair US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, used the Vancouver gathering to offer a blunt assessment of the threat at hand. Freeland echoed Tillerson's concerns about the emerging threat, saying 'we cannot stand by as this threat persists and worsens..."

WWWTT

Yep Canada’s “back!”  Straight back to kissing Uncle Sam’s ass at every opportunity! What a freekin disappointment the liberals are. I guess NAFTA talks were going south real fast and The spineless Justin and the rest of his sack of hammers better known as the liberal caucus put Canadian corporate interests ahead of real world peace.  The real shame is coming because I won’t doubt it that China and some other countries will now pass on bombardier and other Canadian exports. 

Pogo Pogo's picture

I am trying to figure out the value of this meeting. It has largely been a flop.  No new solutions. One sided to the point of ridicule. 

The only positive result I can see is that Canada is now a little farther away from getting on the Security Council in that Canada is showing to be an just a pathetic echo of US policy (with a pretend reluctance). On the international stage, Trudeau indeed puts Harper in a positive light - at least with him there was less disconnect between what he said and what he did.

Bec.De.Corbin Bec.De.Corbin's picture

kropotkin1951 wrote:

I think the people of Korea should decide amongst themselves and all their "friends" should back off and agree to abide by whatever deal is negotiated.

That's all nice and stuff if the North Korean population really had a voice in it, for the most part they don't (of course you'd disagree with that).

The South Korean population on the other hand can very much influence what their government brings to the table and is willing to agree on... including obtaining an indigenous nuclear deterrent in the end if everything else fails.

voice of the damned

Women's ice hockey roster announced amid public outcry against South-North team

https://tinyurl.com/ydd2ll5s

I gather the final decision will be made by Olympic officials this weekend. The government probably hasn't done itself any favours by putting forth an argument that basically amounts to "Well, it doesn't really matter, since we're gonna lose anyway."

 

voice of the damned

IOC president Thomas Bach gave that approval Saturday, announcing that 22 athletes had been cleared to compete in three sports and a total of five disciplines. 
 

Those include figure skating, short-track speed skating, cross-country skiing and Alpine skiing, as well as hockey, with the IOC having approved the entry of the joint team, despite concerns voiced by some hockey federations over fairness.   

https://tinyurl.com/yazpthhj

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
That's all nice and stuff if the North Korean population really had a voice in it

The people of DPRK speak with one voice, Bec.  Our own puny "leaders" only WISH they could have that kind of support.

NDPP

"A Special Thank You To Kalkalilh (Deanna Lewis) From Squamish Nation for welcoming the Foreign Ministers' Meeting on Security and Stability on the Korean Peninsula to your unceded territory."

https://twitter.com/cafreeland/status/953389230096601088

NDPP

South Korea Slips Off the US Leash

https://www.counterpunch.org/2018/01/23/south-korea-slips-off-the-us-leash/

"What we're really seeing is South Korean President Moon Jae-in making a bold move to assert South Korea's independence from the US..."

voice of the damned

The situation in Korea is unprecedented at this point. The Democratic Peoples Republic of Korea (the North) now has as many as 20 nuclear weapons, including hydrogen bombs, that can probably reach the US mainland on North Korean missiles. Meanwhile, the Republic of Korea in the south is showing signs of shaking off at least some of the control the US has long exercised over its relations with the North.

The situation isn't as unprecedented as the writer might think, at least as far as North/South relations go. There was a greater degree of politcal and especially economic rapprochment during the liberal administrations of Kim Dae jung and Roh Moo hyun in the early 2000s, an era the writer neglects to mention. This was the era of the Sunshine Policy, with enhanced diplomatic ties(most notably the visit of Kim Dae jung to North Korea in 2000), and joint economic ventures(most notably the now-shuttered Kaesong industrial complex, but a number of others as well). And that "unification flag" that you now see discussed for the Olympic athletes was in relatively wide use at the time, too. (Though apparently it dates all the way to 1991.) I don't think the Yanks were particularly happy about any of that, either.

The Sunshine Policy more-or-less came to an end in 2007, when Chung Dong young, almost certainly the most pro-detente candidate ever to run for the presidency, garnered 26% of the vote(the even more pro-North Korea Democratic Labour Party got 3%),  with Lee Myung bak, who had promised a return to hardline policies and closer ties with the US(even bizarrely bragging about how he had arranged a meeting with the fairly unpopular GW Bush even before getting elected) taking 48% and the presidency.

And I guess it wouldn't be Counterpunch without the usual kinda-sorta-maybe apologetics for a certain Manhattan real-estate broker...

under President Trump, behind all the bluster the US is pulling back from its prior efforts to behave as the world’s “lone superpower,” and is being forced by a resurgent Russia and a China that is both a dominant economic and an increasingly potent military rival, to recognize the limits of US military and economic power

This is kinda like saying in the early 1950s that "under Churchill, the UK is pulling back from its prior effort to behave as if the Sun Never Sets On The British Empire". As if that was all resulting from the clear-sighted wisdom of the man who had previosuly wished for Gandhi to starve to death.

 

 

 

 

 

 

NDPP

TRNN: Trump, Pence Rain on Koreas' Olympic Unity Parade (and vid)

http://therealnews.com/t2/story:21112:Trump%2C-Pence-Rain-on-Koreas%27-O...

"In a show of unity, athletes from North and South Korea marched at the Winter Olympics' Opening Ceremony under the same flag. But the Trump administration is doing its best to thwart hopes for peace on the peninsula, says Christine Ahn of Women Cross DMZ. 

'One child per day in North Korea will die because of the effect of these sanctions, and UNICEF just issued a report last month that said that 60,000 North Korean children could starve as a result of these sanctions...'

NDPP

The Obnoxious Pence Shows Why Korea Must End US Occupation

https://www.counterpunch.org/2018/02/16/the-obnoxious-pence-shows-why-ko...

"Is it any wonder that Pyongyang thinks it needs nuclear weapons to defend itself?"

NDPP

Abby Martin - Empire Files:

https://youtu.be/QDJlNQlRbIA

War with North Korea

NDPP

US War With North Korea 'Worth It' - Lindsey Graham

http://on.rt.com/90cv

"The damage caused by a US war with North Korea would be 'worth it,' Senator Lindsey Graham said. The comments further fuel speculation that the US is gearing up for action against Pyongyang. 'All the damage that would come from a war would be worth it, in terms of long-term stability,' the Republican senator from South Carolina told CNN..."

 

US Media Airs Pretext For Preemptive Attack on North Korea

http://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2018/03/03/nkor-m03.html

"...The article obviously has one intended audience in particular. An entire layer of ex-liberals and ex-lefts, who in 2003 voiced opposition to the US invasion of Iraq, are today at the forefront of demanding that Washington step up its military operations to overthrow the Syrian government. By linking North Korea to lurid claims of atrocities by the Syrian regime, the objective is to secure the complicity and support of this milieu for war against Pyongyang as well. A war crime of historic dimensions is being prepared...'

NDPP

Trump Agrees To Meet Kim But Says 'Sanctions Will Remain' Until Denuclearization Deal is Reached (and vid)

https://on.rt.com/90pq

"Following the latest round of successful negotiations between the two Koreas this week in Pyongyang, Kim Jong-un sent a personal invitation to the American leader to discuss improving bilateral ties. Announcing the monumental breakthrough in the Korean stalemate, Chung Eui-yong noted that Kim Jong-un is now 'committed to denuclearization', and has 'pledged' to refrain from any further nuclear or missile tests until talks with Trump take place..."

NDPP

It's North Korea's Kim Jung-un, Not Trump, Who Forced the US to the Negotiating Table

https://www.counterpunch.org/2018/03/12/its-north-koreas-kim-jong-un-not...

"...Now, suddenly, faced with a real offer of head-of-state face-to-face negotiations and a reported offer by Kim to get rid of the country's nuclear weapons if the US gives a guarantee not to attempt to overthrow the North Korean government, the US has been forced to accept. That's the real story here."

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

Quote:
Now, suddenly, faced with a real offer of head-of-state face-to-face negotiations and a reported offer by Kim to get rid of the country's nuclear weapons if the US gives a guarantee not to attempt to overthrow the North Korean government, the US has been forced to accept. That's the real story here.

I hope that IS the real story.  Sounds like a happy ending all 'round. 

DPRK can still wake up at dawn to do calesthenics to the catchy beat of "The Leader Holds You In His Heart Forever" and folk in Washington state don't have to dig a bomb shelter.

And if the part about how Un "forced" them to the table is just an attempt to let him save face, allow me to nod approvingly.  His wisdom gave us this happy ending!  That's fine.

NDPP

"All reactionaries are paper tigers..." Mao

Mr. Magoo Mr. Magoo's picture

He has much to teach us.

NDPP

The Jimmy Dore Show

https://youtu.be/T3pee17wOzk

"Rachel Maddow slams peace talks with North Korea."

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