Wednesday, April 3, 2013

Explaining North Korea


Explaining North Korea by Justin Raimondo, April 03, 2013

If you are being bombarded by media claims that North Korea is a threat, and that the US is facing a major military crisis, then you should read Mr. Raimondo's article linked above.  But, here's the part that really captured my attention ....

North Korea’s “military first” policy, which puts military procurement ahead of economic development, has been costly: there are reports of a looming famine this month. As economic conditions worsen, the stability of the regime may be put at risk, in which case Kim Jong Un will need the military to back him up.

Doesn't that sound familiar?  Certainly, the US budget policy for over a decade now has been 'military first'.  The military budget has been guaranteed to rise every year. And right now, there are howls coming from the generals and admirals because finally, after four years of worsening economic conditions in the United States, there is actually talk of minor cuts in military spending.

Massively overspending on the military always puts a hurt on the economy.  Money is being taken away from the citizens and the civilian economy to pay for such excess.  That has to have an impact.  My description of the cause of the United States having the worse economic downturn since the Great Depression from 2008 to the present is that simply too much money has been stolen.   The bankers, the con-artists and the military have all had their hands deep in the pockets of ordinary Americans, and combined they have taken too much out of the economy to line their own pockets.

The inevitable result was an eventual economic collapse. And the reason why we can't seem to get out of our economic crisis has been an unwillingness to do anything to stop the thefts.  The bankers still run the economy, and with the Fed are manipulating the economy to pour billions of dollars every month into covering their bad debts.  And amazingly, military spending has continued to rise every year despite the lack of any real threat.

At the head of an empire, decisions are not made based on what some minor players in a little country like North Korea are doing.  Decisions are made based on the needs of the people who hold great power at the pinacle of the the empire.  Does it seem purely coincidental to you that a supposedly major military crisis happens to arise at the same time that for the first time in over a decade our nation is considering minor and sensible cuts in military spending?

Read Mr. Raimondo's article, and you'll find that this is all pretty normal on the Korean penisular.

The rhetorical hysteria coming out of North Korea is par for the course: this is, after all, the country’s chief (and only) export. Washington knows full well Pyongyang has neither the means nor the intention to attack the United States, in spite of the comic-opera threats – and yet we’re acting as if the threat is real.
And certainly, our ally on the penisula, whom we are supposedly protecting, realizes this.

In Seoul, they are so used to North Korean bellicosity that the response was practically soporific. A South China Post story headlined “Seoul Shrugs Off War Rhetoric from North Korea” reported:
“In Seoul, the Unification Ministry insisted the war threat was ‘not really new.’ The Defense Ministry vowed to ‘retaliate thoroughly’ to any provocation. The United States said it took the announcement seriously, but noted it followed a familiar pattern.”
A familiar pattern indeed: endless bombast, followed by … nothing of much consequence.
 Yet, the United States seems to have been doing everything possible to make the threat as serious as possible and to escalate the tensions and the crisis whenever possible.  The United States flew a flight of B-2 bombers right up to and along the North Korean border.  These are planes that are not only 'nuclear-capable', but who's only real purpose and reason for existing is to attack with nuclear weapons.

After weeks, or even years of threatening and bellicose rhetoric from the United States, what do you think the North Koreans were thinking while we did this.  Those are the sorts of situations that lead to the accidental starting of wars, when someone makes a bad decision.  Today, we can thank our lucky stars that the North Korean military didn't make such a bad decision, and that the only reaction from North Korea was more ridiculous bombast about starting a war.

North Korea knows they would lose such a war.  Not only does South Korea regularly fund the US arms industry by purchasing the equipment for one of the largest militaries in the world, they are of course backed up by America.  North Korea couldn't possibly win such a war, and they surely know this.

This means, the only way a war would really start on the Korean peninsula would be if the North Korea felt pushed back into such an inescapable corner that they felt that war was their only option.  And the United States seems to be doing everything possible to do exactly that.  This is a crisis that could easily be descalated.  But, the Obama administration has consistently been doing just the opposite.

Remember, the most important battle the United States military battle fights every year is the budget battle in Washington DC.  Hundreds of billions of dollars are at stake.  The military battles the rest of the country and the economy to claim more and more and more of our tax dollars every year.  And the branches of the military battle each other every year to put more money into their separate budgets at the expense of the other branches.

The 'Asian pivot' has always been about this.  The Terror Wars have been good for the ground soldiers.  But expensive ships and planes are of course useless when you are fighting a 4th generation foe who doesn't have an air force nor a navy.  The Asian pivot is the counter-attack of the Navy and the Air Force in the Budget Wars.  Oh my gawd, we have a crisis in the Pacific where we just happen to need to have a powerful Navy and Air Force to respond.  And of course they'll need lots of new and expensive ships and planes to counter this new crisis.  And of course, you, the American citizen and tax payer will have to pay for this.  Your taxes can't go down, and they quite likely will go up.  And you can't retire.  You can't have decent medical care when you grow older.  No way, we have to pay for new and expensive ships and planes.

The military first economic policy of the United States is one of the major causes of the current economic crisis.  The military first policy is facing its first real challenge in over a decade.  And in response, there is magically a seemingly major military crisis.  Its no surprise that it appears to be the United States that keeps escalating the crisis.  They are trying to hang on to billions of dollars of your money.  Your money that could be used to build mass transit and provide health care and improve schools.  All of which would not only improve your life, but which would also provide jobs here at home.  But, none of that can happen if we continue our military first policy. That's the war that's heating up right now.  The crisis on the Korean peninsula is just theater being created as a part of that bigger war.


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