Tuesday, 29 January 2013

Nuclear Facejobs


So, North Korea has announced plans for further rocket launches and a nuclear test as ‘New phase of the anti-US struggle.’ The official communiqué could not make it any clearer;

We do not hide the fact that a variety of satellites and long-range rockets will be launched by the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea one after another, and a nuclear test of a higher level which will be carried out by it in the upcoming all-out action will target against the US, the sworn enemy of the Korean people. Settling accounts with the US needs to be done with force, not with words. The world will clearly see how the army and people of the DPKK punishes all kinds of hostile forces and emerge as the final victor while following the just road of defending its sovereignty.

I know, I know; the prose is not very elegant, but surely it creates a mood of dread? The hermit state really does seem intent on settling accounts with America but, contrary to assertion, not with missiles but with a lethal barrage of...words. Yes, let’s bore the hostile forces to death with intercontinental verbal incontinence. Quick; take to the shelters; here comes a dirty bomb of nouns and verbs!

Do not be too concerned by the latest petulance from Pyongyang. As far as real intercontinental capability is concerned, it’s almost certain that the country lacks the capacity. Of course it can still do a lot of damage with short range weapons aimed at South Korea and Japan. Still, look at the facts. Regimes that plan aggressive actions do not generally announce their intentions in advance. Look out, America; here we come: the Imperial Japanese fleet is on its way to Pearl Harbor.

It’s getting just a bit boring, this pseudo-nation behaving like a petulant child. We’ve been here before, in 2006 and again in 2009, nuclear tests that provoked international outrage. But there was no advance publicity with these past travesties, no bluster, no suggestion that the regime was set to punish ‘all kinds of hostile forces.’

The truth is Kim Jong Un, the Fat Leader, and his military chiefs are a bit like a collection of mafia dons, making an offer you can’t refuse. No test, no missile, and no words, just as long as the price is right. After all, this is a country that can build weapons but can’t feed its own people.

The biggest threat North Korea presents is not its weapons arsenal but itself, and the greatest threat is not to the US but to China, its ostensible ally. The Chinese, infinitely patient, are beginning to lose patience. They have had enough of their blustering and adolescent neighbour. But there is only so far they can go in expressing disapproval, least the baby starts howling and throwing his toys out of his pram.

Beijing said naughty, naughty after the last nuclear test, punishing baby with a series of sanctions that were not sanctions. The latest hot air is a cause of renewed embarrassment. But China can’t go too far in reigning in the Fat Leader. His ultimate threat is not the explosion of his nuclear arsenal but the implosion of his own benighted nation, causing millions to flee over the border, the stuff of Chinese nightmares.

Meanwhile the reports that the Fat Leader has been having plastic surgery to look more like the Great Leader, his dead grandfather, are entirely wrong. This falsehood is a hideous criminal act that the party, state, army and people can never tolerate;

Those hurting the dignity of the supreme leadership of the nation should not expect any mercy or leniency. Time will clearly show what dear price the human scum and media in the service of traitors of South Korea, slaves of capital, will have to pay.

Would it, I wonder be as high as the price for a nose job? Oh, well; I can’t say I haven’t been warned. Even as I write a severe incontinent reprimand is winging its way in my general direction.

22 comments:

  1. I am immediately reminded of one of the "specimens" quoted by George Orwell in Politics and the English Language:

    4. All the "best people" from the gentlemen's clubs, and all the frantic fascist captains, united in common hatred of Socialism and bestial horror at the rising tide of the mass revolutionary movement, have turned to acts of provocation, to foul incendiarism, to medieval legends of poisoned wells, to legalize their own destruction of proletarian organizations, and rouse the agitated petty-bourgeoise to chauvinistic fervor on behalf of the fight against the revolutionary way out of the crisis.(Communist pamphlet)"

    How can anyone take this kind of tosh seriously? Well, perhaps we should. If I were a North Korean strategist, I wouldn't be thinking of hitting the USA with a nuclear-armed missile. I'd be thinking more along the lines of [censored, in case someone from the "Democratic" People’s Republic is a fan of your blog Ana]. Nuclear chicken is a dangerous game, and like all games, there is never a way to guarantee that you will win.

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    1. Very true, Dennis. The problem is that the DPNK has nukes but no chickens. :-)

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  2. Yes, watch out, Ana! I can't do parody and provocation as well as you, so will stick to a soberer (and safer!) style.

    Odd, isn't it, that this relic of the cold war persists so long after the demise of the USSR and the Eastern bloc, and China's rejection of communism. Maybe they are keeping the faith in the hope that capitalism will fail and that conservative factions will take charge again in China and turn back the clock.

    It's doubly surprising because the Koreans are such a gifted and resourceful people. (You would have thought that the example of the reunification of Germany in particular would have inspired some effective action.)

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    1. Mark, have you ever heard of a concept known as juche? If not - though I suspect you have - it's a North Korean version of the old fascist dreams of autarky. NK, sorry make that DPNK, is a sort of ideological museum, almost completely cut off from the rest of the world, even from its closest neighbours. It's doubtful if most North Koreans, beyond the elite, even know about German reunification.

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  3. May I recommend a book by Theodore Dalrymple?

    The Wilder Shores of Marx.

    The piece on his visit to Department Store Number 1 in Pyongyang is fantastic.

    Unfortunately it's not cheap.
    http://www.amazon.com/The-Wilder-Shores-Marx-Vanishing/product-reviews/009174153X/ref=dp_top_cm_cr_acr_txt?ie=UTF8&showViewpoints=1

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    1. Wow, Damo, the cheapest version on AmazonUK is over £103, that's about $160! It must be a helluva book. :-) The university library is bound to have a copy.

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    2. Here's the excerpt, for free:
      http://blog.skepticaldoctor.com/2010/01/15/classic-dalrymple-the-wilder-shores-of-marx-excerpt-1991.aspx

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    3. That's great. Thanks, Seymour. :-)

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  4. If he and his country were atypical it would be something to be smirked at and ignored. Unfortunately he is not there are too many leaders and countries that use the same rhetoric and have military capabilities to be more than a nuisance. Iran is a glaring example there are many more rhetoric wise at least such as the likes of Argentina. A large part of the world is populated with peoples and leaders who have intellects not much above the adolescent level and feel that they have been treated unjustly by the West. They of course are perfectly correct in that assertion although to what degree differs from country to country and region to region. This poses a dilemma because if the West does not hold the moral high ground why should we hold any ground at all. I suppose the simple answer must be if we don't stand firm they will do far more unto us than we ever did unto them. Apart from which gown ups know that is the way of world; those who have the ability exploit that ability those who do not bide their time build up their ability and do likewise. The abilities of these adolescent states have not yet reached a level that affords a serious threat but I believe that time is not that far off and we ignore that at our peril and do unto them before they do unto us.

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    1. Alas, I think we have long since lost the high ground. In some ways the reaction of our benighted leaders - and here I have to single out Barry O - is just as cowardly and supine as those of the 1930s, though they faced a far greater threat.

      So far as Iran is concerned, Antisthenes, you might like to cast your eye over a piece I wrote for the online paper Broowaha. It's called An Open Letter to President Obama. (Sorry, I can't seem to get the direct link to work!)

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    2. I have just read your open letter you paint a very disturbing picture far worse than I was aware of. As for B.O. no amount of deodorant will mask the smell that emanates from him a stink that will linger long after he has left the room.

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  5. The North Koreans have a habit of using a missile launch or two to get foreign-aid concessions from the West; they must be low on rice.

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  6. SE Asia is a pressure-cooker. While NATO plays peek-a-boo with barbaric goat-fuckers from Africa to Afghanistan, dangerous, clever, ruthless forces are getting ready to explode in ways that are unpredictable. It's not all about us. These peoples have plenty of historic reasons to start fighting each other for territory and resources again. One really scary aspect of possible conflict around the China Sea is just how much of our military silicon comes from Taiwan, China, South Korea, and Japan. We might have a big enough stockpile to last for a short conflict, but who knows what undiscovered 'features' these manufacturers have built into the chips that control our aircraft, ships, missiles, and communications? American politicians have been butt-kissing the Chinese since the Clintons started accepting bribes in the early '90s. There is a web of corruption throughout the region that predates WW2. Our understanding of SE Asia is paltry. We don't know if we have any friends there at all.

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    1. Calvin, do you get much news from the region? The present tensions between China and Japan are more explosive - the operative word - at any time since the 1930s. I'll try and write an article over the weekend highlighting the issues. What on earth is Barry O doing? Does America have an effective foreign policy anymore?

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    2. Yea, what a coup that was!

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    3. I doubt I get any more news than you about the region, Ana. My usual practice is to look for blank spots in the field of information, and assume that where they are, people are up to no good!

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