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Discussion in 'History' started by yimmy, Nov 28, 2010.
continued from here
interesting in the wikileaks they mention how NK gave Iran long range missles. also interesting that China thinks of NK as some violent 5 year old kid that they are tired of lol.
a lot of the stuff said in it though is predictable. not like the worlds gonna collapse and allies gonna turn on each other. nothing too juicy ive found yet anyway.
In this group, the stuff pretty much all falls into the "Thank you Captain Obvious" category -- either things known or gleaned.
The real issue is whether the US government can keep a secret -- namely, how a PFC managed to get his hands on military and diplomatic secrets, download them all, and send them off to a foreign country. The result is embarrassment.
I am disappointed that so many people's lives are put at greater risk to the benefit of one of the most brutal and inhumane groups known in recent history and nothing is being done because the people behind it are White people who live in European countries.
If Wikileaks was run by brown people in a basement in the Philippines, they would have gotten Task Force 121ed a LONG time ago.
If they leaked only illegal activity I'd say they would have a justification but to leak everything is just criminal.
As for security measures ... not surprised. The US Army is very sloppy.
Mudang wrote in the other thread:
"ROK gov't should probably fund people to distribute leaflets in NK stating all the regime's crimes and gaffes.
Starving it's own people
Killing innocent SK's
Giving away half of Baekdu to China
etc, etc, etc."
The South has defectors and other right-wing activists who have funded, crafted, and sent out balloons to the North. These balloons have contained leaflefts with $1 bills and 10-Yuan bills. The leaflets denounce Kim Jong-Il and describe details of his sordid private life. Here's a sample:
In the North, the police and army collect these and warn civilians not to touch them, and the North has angrily demanded the South stop sending these. If my memory serves me right, the South stated this is the work of private citizens acting freely as they are entitled to in a democratic state.
The first nuclear carrier is the USS Enterprise, which was launched in 1960.
I had a miniature model of it when I was a kid.
I don't know how to quote things from previous threads, and I have been busy over the weekend, and missed replying to some great posts. I apologize for not replying sooner. I have printed out the responses, and here is to Hodori, Lionel Richie, and bobjones2.
I agree that for the North Korea (the state) liberalizing the economy is best for its long term interests. I also agree re: your points about the deteriorating NK economy and how similar it is to the PRC and that the elite could implement similar politics. (I apologize again for summarizing, in an incompetant manner, your analysis)
However, I still cannot think of a situation, as of today, where the elite would ever let it be nor that it would be in our best interests. (Your question re: willingly ceding control and diluting the Ju-Che ideology and your points re: stability of the North, see above apology again.) The size of the North Korean economy is so small that I think that South Korea, on her own, if it wanted to, could keep/support it at the status quo (i.e. deteriorating state). I think that it would be in our best interests to let the North deteriorate while making sure that the elite hold on to power in as much a stable manner as possible. Of course, this invites the question of how to do so, without looking like (using a more recent Korean term here) a "rice/oil/bread shuttle."
Finally, your point and theory re: economic zones do have two test cases, i.e. Kaesung zone & Baekdu tourism, so it would be interesting to see if they do have any effect on the North Koreans working there.
Cool, maybe we could grab some soju (my treat) and talk about the many things we Koreans talk about while drinking (and much more drunk)? I agree with your points that everyone wants whats best for Korea and having a strong response was necessary, but (as some poster have stated) firing a missile at one of JI's mansions, would I believe escalate the matter too much...
First, I apologize for making the statement re: the place of residence, as I stated in the post it was an unfair question, and not "good form" for open debate.
I think that you do make valid points regarding the how politics and public opinion affect our stance towards the North. I think the former actually has more effect than the latter (which I am assuming is what you are thinking?)
After the Democratic party took power, there were many people promoted within the bureaucracy that were more in tuned to their ideology, e.g. the textbook department of the Education Ministry, and the new technology department at the Science and Technology Ministry. (It is worthwhile to note that the two ministries most in tune with the Democratic Party have been consolidated into one after the change in power.)
I believe it was the same in the military as well. The people that wanted a softer stance towards NK were promoted instead of the hardliners. (This is of course has and is about to change drastically.) It is interesting to note that out of the 6 K-9 batteries only 4 fired back... (I saw a report re: this fact please let me know if I am mistaken.) This of course would jail the officer & soldiers that were responsible... This is also indicative of our defense readiness.
Previous post by Mudang
That is the sadest video I've ever seen.
The girl is around my age. Its just shocking how we live in 2 completely different worlds.
Members with good reputation can quote things from other threads. J/k, any member can do this.
I think it was just one person who said anything about firing a missile to there. But South Korea shouldn't just sit till while North Korea attacks. That would send the wrong message to NK.
You talked as if most of us didn't have any credibility in what we said.
Mixing politics with soju gives me a headache. How about during a lunch break since we work in the same area? I'm just wary because a few of the posters have been quite offensive and I hope this isn't you're second account.
I'm beginning to think NK is more fcuked up than Liberia.
What I fail to understand is how some SK citizens think a shared ethnicity would spare them from attack when everyone already knows how NK treats it's own citizens. It's not the proverbial rocket science to conclude that the NK leadership doesn't give a rat's ass about citizens North or South. Not to mention 50~60 years ago NK attacked the south.
Did we forget this already?
I think most people (myself included) were naive to think this. Personally I think it's just a means for denial, "of course they won't attack us, we're Korean too." Of course, if the Pyongyang Kims don't care about the little kids starving to death on their own streets they sure as hell aren't going to care about unsuspecting SK islanders or sailors.
It'd be helpful for SK to stop thinking of NK as Korean because that's what has always shot them in the foot. Let the Korean brotherly hunky dory stuff come in after the regime collapses. The regime doesn't look out for the interests of N or S Koreans, just themselves.
I think people like wolf misunderstand us. All of us in this forum were against attacks at North Korean territory unless it was for self defence. Of course we mean defend to the point in which South Korea could avoid a total war if it's possible to avoid one. Now that North Korea has levelled a South Korean town, it has become clear that South Korea was right not to sit still this time. Wolf should notice that the retaliatory artillery firing didn't provoke North Korea to fire at Seoul and the surrounding area. The government and the military are supposed to protect their citizens.
As South Korea shed itself of military dictatorship and became a democracy, there was a gradual liberalization in its society. As recently as in 1988, people would stare at someone wearing tank-tops or at women wearing miniskirts. It is difficult to grasp that today in 2010 given that Lee Hyo-ri looks virtually like a stripper in some of her videos, but that gives you an idea of how much Korea has changed in such a short time. Even around the mid-late 1990s, Korea was already far more liberal than it had been in the 1980s.
This change also took place with education.
A South Korean university student in the early 1990s would have been told that virtually everything he/she had learned in the school system since early childhood - in other words, the staunchly anti-DPRK, 반공교육 - was trash. These included views by revisionist historians (one of them is Bruce Cumings) who questioned the responsibility North Korea bore for starting the Korean War and who blamed the South for it.
This is a major reason that even today many South Koreans in their 20s and 30s do not believe 평양 sank the 천한함. This is why many of them today (and Footballchic is a prime example of this mentality) claim that their own country is to blame for last week's attack - that South Korea provoked the North into attacking and is therefore the culprit. Even the mayor of 인천 said this. And this is why so many of them hit the streets in 2002, right after the World Cup ended, to burn US flags and to display what is today a strong and deep undercurrent of anti-Americanism (and pro-DPRK sympathies). This is why so many of them quickly joined in the ludicrous anti-US beef protests in the summer of 2008 - protests against a food product which was never unsafe to begin with; protests which traitorous Fifth Column elements within South Korea (groups allied with and even allegedly taking orders from the DPRK) initiated to bring down the democratically elected president of the ROK, 이명박.
Contrast this with the fewer and smaller pro-US demonstrations in the past 8 years. It's almost always exclusively Koreans in their 60s and 70s who wave US flags, who hold up signs saying "WE WANT THE US MILITARY," and who gladly welcomed both Presidents Bush and Obama with signs in Korean that declared, "KOREA WELCOMES OUR GREAT BENEFACTOR." It's precisely because these individuals are old enough to remember what North Koreans do when they are in charge that they do not fall for the lies that their much younger fellow South Koreans have naively swallowed.
And this is why these people - people who persecute North Korean defectors in the South who try to tell the ROK what the DPRK is about (the leftist persecutors accuse defectors of being traitors to a greater pan-Korean ideal) - blame not the DPRK but the ROK. This mentality is rampant in South Korea, and the only ones laughing are the men who hold power north of the DMZ.
Disclaimer: I own Cumings' two-volume work "The Origins of the Korean War" and while newly published documents from the Soviet archives filled in information gaps which solved questions Cumings was exploring in that volume, I still recommend his work because of the vast data it contains and the insight it offers. Cumings deserves credit: an American scholar fluent in Korean who's read sources in the original Korean (these are sources from the Japanese occupation, the 1945-1950 period, and Korean War era documents, including captured DPRK documents).
Which is why it is time to get out. The Koreans no longer want us there. Let South Korea defend South Korea. Our troops are at this point destabilizing.
The United States will not leave South Korea for a few reasons.
1. The United States still retains joint operation command authority in case of war. This means that in a new war, ROK forces would be under the ultimate command of a US general.
2. I can get more details about this, but there was talk of pushing the date for a transfer of wartime command to the ROK side, but the transfer hasn't become official yet.
3. South Korean taxpayers - even those who hate American, gladly burn the US flag, and verbally or physically assault white foreigners in Seoul's subways thinking they're all American - will pay a larger percentage of their country's defense budget from their after-taxes earnings in the wake of a US military withdrawal. The US being there subsidizes part of the South Korean taxpayers' contributions to national defense. I have never received a logical and rational counter-argument to this fact when I discussed this issue with expatriate Koreans who adamantly wanted the United States to withdraw its military presence.
4. Geostrategic objectives - The US keeps its forces in Korea not only to help the South against the North in case of war, but to provide a balance against the growing presence of China. Some call it now a proxy conflict between China and the United States. This may well be why the recently leaked cables by Wikileaks showed that the ROK was considering giving China commercial inducements to assuage its worries concerning a post-unification scenario where Seoul ruled the peninsula and the US retained troops in Korea.
5. South Korea benefits greatly from the alliance with the United States, and if the alliance were formally and officially terminated and US troops left, the ROK would have to adjust to a new lack of data and satellite technology it enjoys from the United States' presence. The average South Korean, IMO, has not really thought out the realistic consequences of what would happen if the US left, and this is because he/she doesn't grasp/know exactly what kind of losses the ROK would face with a US military departure. I speculate that only the most irrational and brainwashed pro-DPRK South Koreans would insist on a US military withdrawal if he/she were presented with sufficient facts.
EDIT: I'm extremely selfish for what I'm going to say, but I am honest. My only relatives are in Pusan, so if there was a new war, they could quickly evacuate to Japan. So to me, personally, it wouldn't matter. But what's funny is that many ROK expatriates whom I've talked to about this complain about the US and want US troops out - so when I say, "fine; South Korea can fight alone." They suddenly stop and realize what they're saying and say, "but if the North attacks?"
Thanks for your prior post, I pretty much knew the answer but still incredulous especially how deeply ingrained it seems to be especially with the younger generation. The spies and traitors have done their job well.
We've gone through this several times and the points you make and anybody else makes has no bearing. He's certainly free to form his own opinion.
This post may displease some, so I'll use careful language.
South Korea may be modern, wealthy, technologically advanced, and some who live there may view us Korean-Americans as the 촌놈들. However, it remains my view that but for those few who through foreign education have gained expertise in foreign languages AND follow these issues closely with other than just Korean sources, people in South Korea are still very insulated. They don't know what's outside South Korea and they don't know how foreigners think. They don't read US sources (and I don't even refer to the mainstream media) and they are often very gullible and naive (again, the US beef nonsense).
And, it also remains my view that (although this is changing) the legacy of an educational system which favored rote memorization and conformity rather than individual freethought and critical analysis is partly behind this. Of course, I've never lived in South Korea (and I don't care to at this point of my life), so I could be wrong. But these are my guesses.
If only those "liberals" realize what impression their past actions have made on the Americans. I understand the Americans like Anthony who want the US soldiers to return home. The news only show certain parts and it would look like every Korean hates Americans.
Now I notice a big change in those "liberals'" views, at least from the people I know of. People who used to question North Korea's involvement in the Cheonan sinking can't deny what happened in Yeonpyeong Island. Now they know what a North Korean soldier would do to them if their leader commands them to do it. They certainly know how KJI thinks of them. They'd certainly be upset if they realize that a lot of the Americans want their soldiers to leave Korea. I guess there are some like wolf who will accuse us of being warmongers just because we demanded better retaliation by the South Korean army. They should take note that South Korea's artillery retaliation didn't provoke a North Korean invasion on the rest of South Korea. One of us demanded a missile attack on KJI's places and I understand although I'm not too sure about it at this point because KJI could do the same to South Korea. Nevertheless, much more South Koreans demand better retaliation now. The recent one was handicapped by artilleries that didn't work. It's ridiculous the state our army is in.
I went to Korean school only from the 4th grade to middle school and this was before they started to do that pro-North Korean education. So I really don't know how it had an effect in detail either. I think you have a point about rote memorization and conformity. Another thing I'd add is that they had a tendency to conclude everything towards one direction. They jumped on the bandwagon. They should be more neutral in how they judge countries.
This is another factor at work in South Korea. A lot of the people there tend to be very short-sighted. They most probably thought they were being patriotic when they fought police officers and demonstrated against US beef and the US-ROK FTA; they probably saw themselves as courageous patriots standing up to the bullying Americans. But they failed to see how their actions embarrassed South Korea. I had to endure a few wisecracks at work that summer when this was shown on the news.
At the very least, if a South Korean is going to be anti-American, then go out all-out: be affiliated with or agree with the radical ideas of 한총련 or 민조노동당 or Reverend Han Sang Ryol. Don't openly hate Americans but desire them to stay to defend you. This is what Korean politicians do - they exploit the USFK to please their electorates but they'll be damned if they'd ever call for a USFK withdrawal.
Again, I must phrase my post carefully, and it's got to do with the bandwagon mentality you mention, IMO.
A lot of times when I discussed these issues with expatriates from South Korea, I was met with incredulity if not anger and ridicule, and I was often challenged to present evidence to back up my views (the standard phrase is "how do you know?"/어떻게 알어). I would do so, and while some would silently digest the facts I presented (which were new to them), some nonetheless refused to believe what I said. Those who refuse the facts, I believe, do so because their mind are already made up and even considering those new facts would challenge beliefs they've held all their lives - beliefs which are "correct" beliefs for Koreans to have.
Likewise, I think a lot of people in South Korea simply refused to believe these facts even when presented with them. They thought 정 and the same race meant cold, hard facts were of lesser importance. But now I hope they've seen enough. They killed a tourist. They sank a ship. They attacked their island. The North Korean government may be made up of ethnic Koreans, but they are... the enemy.
Agreed. But as long as Koreans have a propensity to follow a pack mentality, the bandwagon thing won't end.
Thanks for the response. It's always nice to engage in intellectual dialogue and learn from each other. Especially when it's a problem that affects us all on so many levels.
As to your point re: keeping NK elites in power, here're my concerns. If NK and the state apparatus can prevent a mass uprising from occuring even during the worst famine in their history, I have little faith that a mass uprising will occur in the future.
However, I do fear that the elites (once Kim Jung Il dies) will have an internecine struggle even with the dauphin Kim Jung Un placed as the titular head of state. It's the internal struggle among the elite factions whether they be in the Inmingun or the Workers' party that worries me. As the economic pie shrinks, relative gains might become more important for them. And an internal struggle can spill out into an attack and war on us or an economic collapse and total deterioration of the state in NK.
[But it's hard to quantify or predict as you noted earlier whether or not a sudden economic collapse might occur even if an internecine fight for power occurs even among the elites]
Although we can feed them, and keep them on life support, it's impossible to absorb their economy into ours w/o damaging our bond ratings and bankrupting ourselves. There's so much social services and public works projects that need to be done up there. A sudden collapse is disasterous from a financial prospective. The only other option is to subjugate the citizens in NK and keep tight reigns on their movement across borders until they recover economically or allow China to fill in that power/economic vacuum, which are both unpalatable options. The US is not going to help at all w/ reconsctruction efforts. They simply can't afford it.
As for the economic free trade sectors, I read in a working paper awhile back that KJI's eldest son (the one in Macau) fell out of favour and in the running for succession when he pushed for more PRC-like market reforms by establishing these sectors. I think Kaesung and Kumgansan/Baekdusan sectors are more or less dead since trade w/ us will be curtailed until they give up their nuclear option. It'll be interesting what they'll do in the future if they decide to implement them for trade w/ China.
This is human nature. German and Japanese in WWII for example.
Any investing bubble be it in tulips in Holland during the 17th century, Wall street stock market crash of 1929, or the more recent tech stock and housing crash of the early 2000's. Human beings generally have a herd mentality.
Normally it serves us well...
Whether or not it is human nature was not the point. It happens in Korea and there is actually a term for it - 군중심리. Korean culture has always prized uniformity, and there is heavy social pressure against "heretics."
It'll take a monumental societal shift for this to change. Some cultures obviously favor conformity more than others.
Journalist Michael Yon has a tendency to turn up in places where some action takes place -- Iraq, Afghanistan, Thailand.
He just turned up in Korea.