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Old Obama Hands on Korea Policy Could Pose New Problems for Peace

Originally published at http://www.commondreams.org/views/2020/12/06/old-obama-hands-korea-policy-could-pose-new-problems-peace

Government and their military leaders should take lessons from the animal kingdom. Animals including humans sometimes act irrationally in attempts to defend themselves when threatened. Both N and S Korea and Iran have no intention of giving up their sovereign state and succumb to any state and therefor will continue to focus on military might.
War is a waste of human lives and wealth of societies.


Always a pleasure to read Tim’s knowledgeable analysis. The Democrats have painted themselves into a corner by associating any peace process with NK with Trump and mocking the mutual nuclear disarmament path.

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The hypocrisy of nuclear weapons is those that have the most, want no others to join their exclusive dominance. How about the U.S. showing good intentions by cutting their arsenal in half. Double talk pervades - Disarm others as our military budget increases to appalling levels.

Russia - 6,375 nuclear warheads
United State of America - 5,800 nuclear warheads
France 290 - nuclear warheads
China - 320 nuclear warheads
United Kingdom - 215 nuclear warheads
Pakistan - 160 nuclear warheads
India 135 - nuclear warheads
Israel - 90 nuclear warheads
North Korea - 30-40 nuclear warheads


How many people working as government advisors have actually been in a war?
And too, why does any nation think that bombing other nations or creating killer sanctions–will bring peace?
Or, is this all just a farce and a nation grows mighty by producing killer, bombs, planes and nefarious weapons? In reading of the debacle of Vietnam----the long term horror is that bombs from the 70s’ continue to be found, but sadly, they blow up and add poison from munitions which continue long after the battles. Weirdly, the burning of plastics in Iraq killed the soldiers—isn’t that how Biden’s son died?
Then worst of all, in Iraq, all the children born–yet soon to die, were born with their internal organs on the outside of their bodies. Creating a war that maimes children in the womb------nothing about any of the above has ever made America GREAT—not ever!

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I haven’t read much on this (I see ~https://taskandpurpose.com/news/joe-biden-burn-pits-toxic-exposure/ mentions burn pits), but I have heard Danny Sjursen comment on it (likely on a Scheer Intelligence podcast). They burned a lot of stuff in those pits including dead batteries. If you actually use a very high temperature modern incinerator, you can get the toxic production down very low, but a burn pit is nothing like that. Cancers and tumors are probability events and don’t leave a record of what triggered them so there is is no way to know for sure for a given individual. But certainly war induced chemical exposure has killed many many on both sides in many countries.


Agent Orange is still killing Vietnamese and American vets to this day.


US Destroyed Korea… one must remember that the US destroyed Korea… the only effective deterrent against the US Authoritarian Empire are Nuclear Weapons… Look to Korea and Iran…until the US Rogue government is demilitarized all citizens of planet Earth are in great peril… with Biden’s cabinet emerging looks like the minute hands of The Clock will move ever closer to midnight…or mournnight…

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Hi dara:
Still we do have to wonder what could cause babies to be born with their internal organs on the outside of their bodies. AMERICA’S evil is brought to the front, by a single photograph—of bombs imploding upon a city—and the headline words emblazoned over the photograph SHOCK AND AWE.
When I see that awful photograph—I wonder how many died in the city that day, because a man named George Bush ( who walked away from the Texas National Guard-- and with no consequences -----) that man on a quiet morning in Iraq killed people in the morning and crowed about it for 2 long terms as a presidential idiot. : (

The U.S. congress destroyed Korea by calling the Korean war " a police action" and in my view committed CONSTITUTIONAL TREASON by abdicating their constitutional responsibility to declare war and failing to have to vote before sending the American military into combat. That precedent is why America ever since… has had one illegal war after another with no end in sight.

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If Kim Jong Un is taken out those below him will fight among themselves for power and likely during that time their will be cells that arise in the populace around lesser natural authoritarians. Those cells may just fight among themselves. Is that what the US wants? To further bully those people who have been subjugated for generations? North Korea is best solved by letting it trade with the rest of the world so its people do not starve. Ideas of other ways of life will slowly seep instead of with balloons of propaganda floating from the south. Remember that Kim has a Western education yet clings to an oriental form of absolute authoritarianism. The pageantry of the NK parades is mind boggling, such a waste of energy. Put that energy toward production and trade and let the country slowly integrate peacefully into the world. Make the 38th Parallel porous, not mined.

Biden wants the US to lead the world? How would he know that the world wants to be led by the US?

Did every country of the world vote on that?

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I read the book (The Orphan Master’s Son) and it was a poorly written, hit piece. Speaking from personal experience in North Korea and having lived in South Korea for ten years, I can tell you unequivocally that U.S. foreign policy with regards to North Korea is completely motivated by corporate profits, particularly U.S. arms sales to South Korea and Japan. Neither the Democrats or the Republicans have any serious knowledge about the Korean Peninsula and instead they all take their marching orders from a handful of lunatics on K Street.
The logical approach is unifying the Korean Peninsula, something that is quite agreeable to Kim Jong Un provided that he has security guarantees from incredibly ignorant and mentally unstable American politicians crying for his execution. South Koreans also want to unify the peninsula as most people don’t buy into the mainstream propaganda for the last three generations that their brothers and sisters in the North are evil people with horns in their heads and are as brainwashed as supporters at a MAGA rally. The key to peace in the region is for the U.S. to close all of their bases in Asia and “Support the Troops” by bringing them home. Stay out of any 'Peace negotiations" and let neutral, third party’s like Norway and Cuba for example, to work with both sides to create a unified Korea in our lifetime.


Sometimes yes, sometimes no.

On an individual case (like Biden’s son) it may be hard to pin down the cause with a definitive conclusion - was it man-made chemical exposure from war? was it exposure to a man made chemical before he got there? was it a naturally caused event which has less probability in a given population but is not impossible? was it another exposure like radiation from depleted uranium? I looked at an intercept article (~https://theintercept.com/2019/11/25/iraq-children-birth-defects-military/) to see if I could find some numbers and they mentioned that the found correlation of birth defects with an objective measurement on a particular case (in this case the amount of thorium detected). That could add some definitiveness, but I’m not aware of an autopsy on Biden’s son that was an attempt to nail down the cause.

On a population, I think it is a lot easier to be definitive. There is going to be historic data on birth defects in various Iraqi cities - when those go up a lot and there is only one real change (say a whole bunch of DU exposure), I would say it is reasonable to pin it on the DU overall. I’m still trying to find a real definitive case increase to show this, but haven’t found a good one yet. I found this (~https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3492088/) which goes over a lot of possible different factors to explain the increase of birth defects in certain cites in Iraq. Some cities saw an increase of 4x of certain types, but there is still not an easy way to say what the dominant cause is. Check it out if you want to get an idea of the complexity of the problem. Even a secondary effect like war causing more malnutrition of pregnant mothers can be a participating factor.

Of course I’m for being much more prudent with any war activities and would support banning many types of weapons including DU, land mines, cluster bombs, nuclear weapons and more. And on top of that, I don’t view a single military activity by my country since WWII as being justified. But that doesn’t prevent me from taking an objective look like a scientist (I’m an engineer, not a scientist, but I can relate) to cause and effect.

Carol: What right do we have to meddle in North Korean affairs? It’s a larger question that people seldom ask. So, you don’t like its leader, so what? Syria, Venezuela, Iran, Russia, same question.

It has nothing to do with the leader.

They won’t “Bend the Knee,” plain and simple. That’s what is all about.

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A lot works well in this article, but a missing factor is that the US is not seeking peace, but working to hamstring the BRICS, particularly the less controllable Russia and China, the better to float the international tribute system based around the dollar.

Rather than usher the post-colonial states towards representative democracy, the US has renovated and reworked the old system of European empire. Rather than work against the obvious and likely inevitable blowback from this aggression, the US government and its coterie of investors work to extend hegemony, to make it global and absolute.

A Biden renewal of the worst Obama policies, something that is now probably inevitable, will cause problems. But it cannot cause problems for any particular American peace project, exactly, because that is not a living project in the halls of government.

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my experience as an intel analysis in Korea mirrors this to an extent.

the best policy is to let the two koreas hammer out something between them without external threats hanging over either head.

for starters, the US needs to sign a peace treaty with the DPRK, which would be a pre-condition for the Korea’s to engage in a systematic rapprochement.

of course, with the mega-base now largely constructed (Camp Holy Cow this Thing’s Huge!), we’ve signalled our intention to not be going anywhere, regardless of the will of the Korean people. It’s about China now, and the Koreans know full well we’re viewing them as essentially a forward base to make war against China.


Hi dara:
Thank you for all the details work. Would information from 3 Three Mile Island help add to the picture? Chernobyl certainly added some strange things-----but then the 9/11 debacle certainly added a new level of awful ways to die too. How about old buildings and asbestos?
I had just never heard of babies being born with internal organs on the outside of their bodies either.
But I also read that so much of what America brought to Iraq was disposed of in burn pits, and that made me wonder if different poisons came together and created new poisons from that!
It truly does seem that wars bring poisons that can kill for generations. : (

I imagine every single birth defect noticed today anywhere in the world has happened before, it just may have happened at lower rates when the environment is more pristine. In the case of organs growing outside of the body - it’s disturbing to be sure but it isn’t an unheard of thing before. See ~https://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/birthdefects/omphalocele.html. In the USA, the rates are a bit less than 1/4 per thousand. I saw some much higher numbers for other kind of birth defects in Iraq bit I don’t know how many of this type. Some babies can survive with surgery but is of course sad no matter what. As I said I’m against our activities in Iraq which have certainly made the environment much less pristine. TMI was much less exposure to anyone in the US is my understanding.

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