Archive | June 22nd, 2018

Trump Regime Plans New Concentration Camps for Unwanted Aliens

NOVANEWS

Hundreds of thousands of unwanted immigrants, refugees and asylum seekers are arrested and detained under horrific conditions in America annually.

Trump escalated what he predecessors began. 

Mistreatment of unwanted aliens intensified after the Department of Homeland Security’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement arm (ICE) was established in 2003.

It conducts warrantless raids, targeting unwanted aliens for their nationality, ethnicity, race and/or religion – operating along America’s southern border, along with raiding neighborhoods, workplaces and other locations.

Operations are largely extrajudicial, targeted subjects confronted with shotguns and automatic weapons – terrorizing families, traumatizing children, pulling aliens from bed, rousting them from workplaces without explanation, horrifically treating them like criminals.

Unlawful warrantless searches and seizures are standard practice, homes stormed violently, many innocent victims harmed, constitutional protections violated.

US immigration courts hear dozens of cases simultaneously, ruling on them collectively, due process and judicial fairness denied.

Under Bush/Cheney and Obama, unwanted aliens were held under horrific conditions, with little access to legal council and no concern for their rights – in ICE processing centers, privately run facilities, and Intergovernmental Service Agreement Facilities – mostly state or county jails plus a small number in US Bureau of Prisons or other facilities.

According to the National Immigration Law Center (NILC)

“the nation’s immigrant detention system is broken to its core (and) reveals pervasive and extreme violations of the government’s own detention standards as well as fundamental violations of basic human rights and notions of dignity.”

Trump regime immigration policies exceed the harshness  of his predecessors.

On June 22, Time magazine reported a new horror story, saying

“(t)he US Navy is preparing plans to construct sprawling detention centers for tens of thousands of immigrants on remote bases in California, Alabama and Arizona, escalating the military’s task in implementing President Donald Trump’s ‘zero tolerance’ policy for people caught crossing the Southern border, according to a copy of a draft memo obtained by TIME.”

So-called detention centers for unwanted immigrants, refugees and asylum seekers are concentration camps by another name, detainees horrifically mistreated, children as brutally as adults.

America’s military is increasingly being used as an instrument of unwanted alien oppression – desperate people fleeing war zones or homeland repression treated like criminals.

The US navy intends building “temporary and austere” tent cities for around 120,000 unwanted aliens – in Alabama, California, Arizona, and elsewhere.

Trump’s new executive order calls for America’s war secretary to “take all legally available measures to provide (the Homeland Security secretary), upon request, any existing facilities available for the housing and care of alien families, and shall construct such facilities if necessary and consistent with law.”

“The Secretary, to the extent permitted by law, shall be responsible for reimbursement for the use of these facilities.”

The Pentagon is jointly involved with the HHS Office of Refugee Resettlement.

The Obama regime interned thousands of unwanted aliens under horrific conditions at military bases in California, Oklahoma and Texas.

Hardliners infesting the Trump regime apparently intend escalating what began years earlier.

ACLU attorney Carl Takei compared Trump’s internment camp policy to how Japanese American citizens were mistreated during WW II, calling the practice a “moral horror.”

He’s a Japanese American. His family members were incarcerated oppressively in a federal “internment camp” while his grandfather fought against Nazism in a US artillery unit in Europe, saying:

“(W)hile Kuichi (his grandfather) fought for the allies in Europe, my grandmother Bette waited for him in an American version of a concentration camp.”

Oppressive US history is again repeating!

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Chinese-Owned Company Forges Ahead with US Lithium Mine in Former Supervolcano

A Canadian company, whose major shareholder is a Chinese firm, plans to move ahead with plans for a huge mine in Nevada to produce lithium for electric batteries. Sputnik looks at the significance of the Thacker Pass project.

The demand for lithium is rising rapidly as the demand for electric and hybrid vehicles, cellphones, tablets and other battery-powered devices grows exponentially.

Most of the raw material used to make the lithium-ion batteries currently comes from mines in Australia and Chile.

Lithium has been discovered in Bolivia and Russia has expressed an interest in exploiting it but the discovery in northern Nevada would be the first major discovery in North America.

Announcement Welcomed on Wall Street

Lithium Americas Corporation’s announcement of the discovery at Thacker Pass was considered so significant that the company’s chairman, George Ireland, was given the honor of ring the closing bell at the New York Stock Exchange on Thursday, June 21.

Tests carried out by a Chinese company suggest the Thacker Pass mine in northern Nevada could produce 60,000 tonnes a year  of battery-grade lithium carbonate.

View image on Twitter

Tom Benson@thomasrbenson

An epic day celebrating the Thacker Pass PFS announcement and the ringing of the closing bell on Wall Street. Future, here we come!

But getting it out of the ground will not be easy.

Lithium Americas Corporation, which is based in Vancouver, said a new extraction technique would be used to filter the lithium out of the clay in which it sits.

Its biggest shareholder is Ganfeng Lithium, which said it had invented a process which creates battery-grade lithium from the extracted material within 24 hours.

Mehrdad Yousefi@MY21_Oracle

Thacker Pass lithium project is 100% owned my Lithium Nevada Corp., a wholly owned subsidiary of Lithium Americas, demonstrates a design capacity of 60,000 tpa of battery grade lithium carbonate with initial production capacity of 30,000 tpa and increasing to 60,000 tpa

Lithium Americas says over the projected 46 year life of the mine it estimated 509 million tonnes of material would be dug up, 179 million of which would be lithium ore, which would be delivered to a factory where it will be processed.

The firm said the US$1.7 billion project would create 800 well-paid construction jobs and the open-cast mine would employ 292 people.

Globe Being Scoured For Lithium

Scientists and industrialists are scouring the globe searching for new sources of lithium.

Supervolcanoes can produce massive eruptions of hundreds to thousands of cubic kilometers of magma — 10,000 times more than a normal volcano. They produce vast quantities of volcanic ash and pumice which is spread over wide areas.

The former supervolcano leaves a tell-tale crater, known as a caldera. One of the best examples is Crater Lake in Oregon.

But what was not known until now is that these calderas are also home to vast quantities of lithium.

View image on Twitter

Bob Googli@googli_bob

Today we celebrate with Lithium Americas Corp. as they launch the Thacker Pass Project in Nevada http://dlvr.it/QY658L 

While researching his PhD on the Yellowstone “hotspot”, Tom Benson mapped the entire geological area and realized there were large amounts of lithium in the McDermitt caldera, on the border of Nevada and Oregon.

Thacker Pass is located in the McDermitt caldera, only 20 miles from the Oregon border.

“With the experience of our team and leveraging our strong partner relationships, we plan to rapidly advance this scalable project to become the leading source of lithium production in the USA,” said Alexi Zawadzki, Lithium Americas’ President of North American Operations.

“Thacker Pass is an important complement to our Cauchari-Olaroz lithium joint venture currently under construction in Jujuy, Argentina,” said Tom Hodgson, CEO of Lithium Americas.

“As a large US-based lithium project with strong economics, we expect Thacker Pass to attract significant strategic partnership opportunities to accelerate the path to production,” he added.

*

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The Persistent Myth of US Precision Bombing

In my recent report on the death toll in America’s post-9/11 wars, I estimated that about 2.4 million Iraqis have been killed as a result of the U.S. invasion and hostile military occupation of their country. But opinion polls in the United States and the United Kingdom have found that a majority of the public in both countries believe that no more than 10,000 Iraqis have been killed.

An important factor in the public’s failure to grasp the scale of the death toll in America’s post-9/11 wars is that the U.S. military has worked hard to convince the public that its weapons are now so “precise” that they can kill terrorists and other enemies without harming innocent civilians. A U.S. military spokesperson recently described the bombing of Raqqa in Syria as “one of the most precise air campaigns in military history,” even as journalists and human rights groups documented the total destruction of the city.

The dreadful paradox of “precision weapons” is that the more the media and the public are wrongly persuaded of the near-magical qualities of these weapons, the easier it is for U.S. military and civilian leaders to justify using them to destroy entire villages, towns and cities in country after country: Fallujah, Ramadi, and Mosul in Iraq; Sangin and Musa Qala in Afghanistan; Sirte in Libya; Kobane, and Raqqa in Syria.

An Imprecise History

The skillful use of disinformation about “precision” bombing has been essential to the development of aerial bombardment as a strategic weapon. In a World War II propaganda pamphlet titled the “Ultimate Weapon of Victory”, the US government hailed the B-17 bomber as “… the mightiest bomber ever built… equipped with the incredibly accurate Norden bomb sight, which hits a 25-foot circle from 20,000 feet.“

In reality, the U.K.’s 1941 Butt Report found that only five percent of British bombers were dropping their bombs within five miles of their targets, and that 49 percent of their bombs were falling in “open country.”

In the “Dehousing Paper,” the UK government’s chief scientific adviser argued that mass aerial bombardment of German cities to “dehouse” and break the morale of the civilian population would be more effective than “precision” bombing aimed at military targets. British leaders agreed, and adopted this new approach: “area” or “carpet” bombing, with the explicit strategic purpose of “dehousing” Germany’s civilian population.

The US soon adopted the same strategy against both Germany and Japan, and a US airman quoted in the postwar US Strategic Bombing Survey lampooned efforts at “precision” bombing as a “major assault on German agriculture.”

The destruction of North Korea by U.S.-led bombing and shelling in the Korean War was so total that US military leaders estimated that they’d killed20 percent of its population.

In the American bombing of Vietnam, Laos and Cambodia, the US dropped more bombs than all sides combined in the Second World War, with full scale use of horrific napalm and cluster bombs. The whole world recoiled from this mass slaughter, and even the US was chastened into scaling back its military ambitions for at least a decade.

The American War in Vietnam saw the introduction of the “laser-guided smart bomb,” but the Vietnamese soon learned that the smoke from a small fire or a burning tire was enough to confuse its guidance system.

“They’d go up, down, sideways, all over the place,” a GI told Douglas Valentine, the author of The Phoenix Program. “And people would smile and say, ‘There goes another smart bomb!’ So smart a gook with a match and an old tire can fuck it up.”

Kicking the Vietnam Syndrome

President Bush Senior hailed the First Gulf War as the moment that America “kicked the Vietnam syndrome once and for all.” Deceptive information about “precision” bombing played a critical role in revitalizing US militarism after defeat in Vietnam.

The US and its allies ruthlessly carpet-bombed Iraq, reducing it from what a UN report later called “a rather highly urbanized and mechanized society” to “a pre-industrial age nation.” But the Western media enthusiastically swallowed Pentagon briefings and broadcast round-the-clock bombsight footage of a handful of successful “precision” strikes as if they were representative of the entire campaign. Later reports revealed that only seven percent of the 88,500 tons of bombs and missiles devastating Iraq were “precision” weapons.

The US turned the bombing of Iraq into a marketing exercise for the US war industry, dispatching pilots and planes straight from Kuwait to the Paris Air Show. The next three years saw record US weapons exports, offsetting small reductions in US arms procurement after the end of the Cold War.

The myth of “precision” bombing that helped Bush and the Pentagon “kick the Vietnam syndrome” was so successful that it has become a template for the Pentagon’s management of news in subsequent US bombing campaigns. It also gave us the disturbing euphemism “collateral damage” to indicate civilians killed by errant bombs.

The grotesque idea that dropping tens of thousands of bombs and missiles on another country can fulfill the “responsibility to protect” its people, or serve as a “humanitarian intervention” to save people from a dictator, has become an unquestioned premise of America’s illegal and interventionist foreign policy. In reality, the intractable violence and chaos unleashed by U.S.-backed wars nearly always dwarfs the smaller-scale violence used to justify them.

‘Shock and Awe’

Image on the right: At the start of the U.S. invasion of Iraq in 2003, President George W. Bush ordered the U.S. military to conduct a devastating aerial assault on Baghdad, known as “shock and awe.” (Source: Consortiumnews)

As the US and UK launched their “Shock and Awe” attack on Iraq in 2003, Rob Hewson, the editor of Jane’s Air-Launched Weaponsestimated about 20-25 percent of the US and UK’s “precision” weapons were missing their targets in Iraq, noting that this was a significant improvement over the 1999 bombing of Yugoslavia, when 30-40 percent were off-target. “There’s a significant gap between 100 percent and reality,” Hewson said. “And the more you drop, the greater your chances of a catastrophic failure.”

Since World War II, the US Air Force has loosened its definition of “accuracy” from 25 feet to 10 meters (39 feet), but that is still less than the blast radius of even its smallest 500 lb. bombs. So the impression that these weapons can be used to surgically “zap” a single house or small building in an urban area without inflicting casualties and deaths throughout the surrounding area is certainly contrived.

“Precision” weapons comprised about two thirds of the 29,200 weapons aimed at the armed forces, people and infrastructure of Iraq in 2003. But the combination of 10,000 “dumb” bombs and 4,000 to 5,000 “smart” bombs and missiles missing their targets meant that about half of “Shock and Awe’s” weapons were as indiscriminate as the carpet bombing of previous wars. Saudi Arabia and Turkey asked the US to stop firing cruise missiles through their territory after some went so far off-target that they struck their territory. Three also hit Iran.

“In a war that’s being fought for the benefit of the Iraqi people, you can’t afford to kill any of them,” a puzzled Hewson said. “But you can’t drop bombs and not kill people. There’s a real dichotomy in all of this.”

‘Precision’ Bombing Today

Since Barack Obama started the bombing of Iraq and Syria in 2014 more than 107,000 bombs and missiles have been launched. US officials claim only a few hundred civilians have been killed. The British government persists in the utterly fantastic claim that none of its 3,700 bombs have killed any civilians at all.

Former Iraqi Foreign Minister Hoshyar Zebari, a Kurd from Mosul, told Patrick Cockburn of Britain’s Independent newspaper that he’d seen Kurdish military intelligence reports that US airstrikes and US, French and Iraqi artillery had killed at least 40,000 civilians in his hometown, with many more bodies still buried in the rubble. Almost a year later, this remains the only remotely realistic official estimate of the civilian death toll in Mosul. But no other mainstream Western media have followed up on it.

The reality of our wars is hidden in plain sight, in endless photos and videos of what the weapons our tax dollars pay for really do to people and their homes in America’s war zones. The Pentagon and the corporate media may suppress the evidence, but the mass death and destruction of aerial bombardment are real, as the millions of people living through it or reliving it in their nightmares know only too well.

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The World Transformed and No One in America Noticed

The world transformed and nobody in the West noticed. India and Pakistan have joined the Shanghai Cooperation Organization. The 17 year-old body since its founding on June 15, 2001 has quietly established itself as the main alliance and grouping of nations across Eurasia. Now it has expanded from six nations to eight, and the two new members are the giant nuclear-armed regional powers of South Asia, India, with a population of 1.324 billion and Pakistan, with 193.2 million people (both in 2016).

In other words, the combined population of the SCO powers or already well over 1.5 billion has virtually doubled at a single stroke.

The long-term global consequences of this development are enormous. It is likely to prove the single most important factor insuring peace and removing the threat of nuclear war over South Asia and from 20 percent of the human race. It now raises the total population of the world in the eight SCO nations to 40 percent, including one of the two most powerful thermonuclear armed nations (Russia) and three other nuclear powers (China, India and Pakistan).

This development is a diplomatic triumph especially for Moscow. Russia has been seeking for decades to ease its longtime close strategic ally India into the SCO umbrella. This vision was clearly articulated by one of Russia’s greatest strategic minds of the 20th century, former Premier and Foreign Minister Yevgeny Primakov, who died in 2015. In the past China quietly but steadfastly blocked the India’s accession, but with Pakistan, China’s ally joining at the same time, the influence of Beijing and Moscow is harmonized.

The move can only boost Russia’s already leading role in the diplomacy and national security of the Asian continent. For both Beijing and Delhi, the road for good relations with each other and the resolution of issues such as sharing the water resources of the Himalayas and investing in the economic development of Africa now runs through Moscow. President Vladimir Putin is ideally placed to be the regular interlocutor between the two giant nations of Asia.

The move also must be seen as a most significant reaction by India to the increasing volatility and unpredictability of the United States in the global arena. In Washington and Western Europe, it is fashionable and indeed reflexively inevitable that this is entirely blamed on President Donald Trump.

But in reality this alarming trend goes back at least to the bombing of Kosovo by the United States and its NATO allies in 1998, defying the lack of sanction in international law for any such action at the time because other key members of the United Nations Security Council opposed it.

Since then, under four successive presidents, the US appetite for unpredictable military interventions around the world – usually bungled and open-ended – has inflicted suffering and instability on a wide range of nations, primarily in the Middle East (Iraq, Syria, Libya and Yemen) but also in Eurasia (Ukraine) and South Asia (Afghanistan).

The accession of both India and Pakistan to the SCO is also a stunning repudiation of the United States.

The US has been Pakistan’s main strategic ally and protector over the past more than 70 years since it achieved independence (Dean Acheson, secretary of state through the 1949-53 Truman administration was notorious for his racist contempt for all Indians, as well as for his anti-Semitism and hatred of the Irish).

US-Pakistan relations have steadily deteriorated even since the United States charged into Afghanistan in November 2001, but through it all, US policymakers have always taken for granted that Islamabad at the end of the day would “stay on the reservation” and ultimately dance to their tune.

The United States has courted India for 17 years since President Bill Clinton’s state visit in 2000, which I covered in his press party. Current Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi addressed a Joint Session of Congress in 2016, the ultimate accolade of approval by the US political establishment for any foreign leader.

US policymakers and pundits have endlessly pontificated that India, as an English speaking democracy would become America‘s ideological and strategic partner in opposing the inevitable rise of China on the world stage. It turned out to be a fantasy.

During the era of the Cold War, the “loss” of any nation of the size and standing of India or Pakistan to a rival or just independent ideological camp and security grouping would have provoked waves of shock, hurt, rage and even openly expressed fear in the US media.

However, what we have seen following this latest epochal development is far more extraordinary. The decisions by Delhi and Islamabad have not been praised, condemned or even acknowledged in the mainstream of US political and strategic debate. They have just been entirely ignored. To see the leaders and opinion-shapers of a major superpower that still imagines it is the dominant hyper-power conduct its affairs in this way is potentially worrying and alarming.

The reality is that we live in a multipolar world – and that we have clearly done so at least since 2001. However, this obvious truth will continue to be denied in Washington, London and Paris in flat defiance of the abundantly clear facts.

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The Kim-Trump Summit: Why Now? Why Not Before? Why Not Later?

NOVANEWS

Early in the morning of June 12, 2018, the world watched Kim Jong-un, supreme leader of North Korea and Donald Trump, president of the United States shaking hands in front of the main entrance of Hotel Capella in Singapore.

It was a hand-shake of the century. 

And the world was puzzled. 

After all, only a few months ago, they were exchanging not-so- friendly remarks on each other and, now, they shook hands as if they were friends who met again after long separation.

How is this possible? 

We must remember that the global cold war between the U.S.-led world and the Soviet-led part of the world lasted for forty years from 1950 to 1990, while the bilateral cold war between North Korea and the U.S.- South Korea alliance lasted already 28 years and may last longer. Why?

This paper argues that the duration of the cold war on the Korean peninsula could depend on two factors: the logical behaviour of the players and unexpected historical opportunities. 

Logical Behaviour of Pyongyang, Seoul and Washington

There are three players directly involved in the dynamics of the Korean nuclear crisis, namely North Korea, the U.S. and South Korea. 

The duration of the cold war depends on each player’s evaluation of the net benefits (benefit over cost) of the cold war. 

If the given player thinks that the cold war brings net benefit, it would want to prolong the cold war. On the other hand, if the cold war brings net loss, the player would try to end it. 

However, the actual duration of the cold war depends essentially on the net benefit of the dominating player. And the dominating player is obviously Washington, although the conservative government of South Korea has played the role of supporting Washington’s game.

So, I am saying that the cold war in the Korean peninsula which lasted 28 years is due to the fact it had been beneficial to Washington and the conservatives in South Korea.

This paper makes two arguments. 

First, the cold war lasted so long, because it has been beneficial to Washington and South Korean conservatives.  

Second, the success of the Singapore Agreement depends on how Washington and the South Korean conservatives evaluate the peace in the Korean peninsula in terms of cost-benefit deriving from the Agreement.

North Korea

As far as North Korea is concerned, the cold war has been a nightmare. More than 20 % of its population, all its factories, dwellings, roads, bridges and all other infrastructure facilities were destroyed by American B-29 bombers during the Korean war.(Professor Michel Chossudovsky: North Korea and Danger of Nuclear War. The Demilitarization of the Korean Peninsula, Toward Peace Agenda, Global Research, April 17, 2018)

During the global cold war period, 1950-1990, North Korea was under constant American nuclear threat, but during this period, it could rely on the Soviet Union for its security.

But, after the collapse of the Soviet Union in1989, Pyongyang stood alone to face the American nuclear attack threats supported by the South Korean army. This has forced North Korea to try to develop nuclear weapons to defend itself from the attack.

In the mean time, from 1990 to 2018, Pyongyang had to live under fear, insecurity and poverty because of annual U.S.-South Korean military exercises and, in particular, economic, financial and personal sanctions.

In short, the cold war, whether it was the global or bilateral, has been and is unbearable cost imposed on Pyongyang

If there were any benefits at all of the cold war for North Korea, they could be the strong social solidarity and lasting bond between the leader and the people, which resulted from the natural instinct of uniting to cope with the major common danger.

Thus, the cold war has been nothing but pure suffering and cost as far as North Korea is concerned.

In one word, because of this high cost, North Korea has been longing for dialogues and peace with Seoul-Washington; it has been dreaming for becoming a “normal nation” where the ordinary people can lead “normal life”..

North Korean efforts to find peace with Washington and Seoul produced the Frame Agreement in 1994 and the September 19 Agreement of 2005, but both ended up as being an illusion; Washington did not fully cooperate.

Having lost the chances of dialogue with Washington, Pyongyang has found it necessary to go for nuclear deterrent. 

North Korea has made clear that the development of nuclear program was for purely defensive purpose and not for offensive intention.

The dying message of Kim Il-sung, founder of North Korea, to his son, Kim Jong-il was to avoid nuclear program.

Kim Jong-il told Japanese Prime Minister Koizumi during a meeting in Pyongyang on May 22, 2004 that North Korea was forced to have nuclear weapons to defend against American threat.

“Nobody can keep silent, if threatened by someone with a stick. We come to have nuclear weapons for the sake of the right of existence. If our existence is secured, nuclear weapons will not be necessary any more”.

The North Korean foreign minister made the same statement on October 11, 2006, two days after Pyongyang’s first nuclear test.

“The nuclear test was entirely attributable to U.S. nuclear threat, sanctions and pressure. North Korea was compelled to substantially improve its possession of nuclear arms to protect its sovereignty”.

Kim Jong-un has been repeating the same appeal in his recent new-year speeches.

The Conservatives of South Korea

The bilateral cold war was very beneficial to the conservatives of South Korea

The conservatives ruled South Korea for 60years (1947-1987 and 2008-2017) out of its 70-year post-Pacific War era. (Professor Joseph H. Chung: Denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula: A Blessing for South Korean People, Global Research June 5, 2018)

The conservatives in South Korea benefited from the cold war in two main ways. 

First, they won major elections including presidential elections owing to the environment of fear of North Korean attacks often artificially fabricated for election purposes. In South Korea, this phenomenon is known as “the power of Northern Wind”. 

Second, the North-South friction created by the cold war has meant huge amounts of imports of American military equipment; Seoul spends lately almost US $10 billion a year. It is a well know fact that the transaction of military equipment can easily generate bribes, illegal kickbacks and other means of corruption because of the legal secrecy of military spending. 

The liberal progressive government of Moon Jae-in is now investigating so called the “Corruption of National Defence Industry” (bang-san-bi-ri)

President Donald J. Trump and North Korean leader Kim Jong Un sign a joint statement | June 12, 2018 (Official White House Photo by Joyce N. Boghosian)

As far as the conservatives of South Korea are concerned, the cold war has been very beneficial. Hence, they would not welcome the current peace process; it is possible that they would not welcome the Singapore Statement signed by Kim Jong-un and Donald Trump.

The U.S.

The bilateral cold war in the Korean peninsula has been even more beneficial to the U.S. than what it has been for the South Korean conservatives. 

The U.S. has been enjoying the following types of benefits: provision of means of China surveillance and containment strategy, sale of expensive American military equipment and even possible benefits coming from corruption related to the export of American weapons to South Korea. 

Washington keeps no less than 27,500 GIs in South Korea. Washington argues that it is necessary to deploy them in South Korea in order to protect South Korea from attacks from the North. 

True, this argument could have some sense during the global cold war, but since the 1990s, North Korea had neither the intention of making total war with the South nor the capacity to do so.

Besides, South Korea can protect itself from the North Korean aggression as long as Pyongyang does not use nuclear weapons. And Pyongyang would never use such dirty bombs, because if it does so, it will be its funeral.

Furthermore, we should remember one thing; South Korea spends each year no less than US $40 billion for national defence as against US $ 4 billion by North Korea. And, this gap has been cumulating for decades.

The more important reason for deploying the impressive number of American soldiers with awesome fire power in South Korea is the surveillance and the containment of China. 

One of the most persistent elements of Washington’s foreign policy has been the prevention of the emergence of countries capable of challenging the absolute supremacy of the U.S. 

Washington’s vision of world order has been always the uni-polar order; it has never accepted a multi-polar order. 

One thing certain is that the cold war in the Korean peninsula has provided important benefit of strengthening Washington’s capacity to prevent China from becoming equal to the U.S. This is, perhaps, the most important benefit as far as Uncle Sam is concerned.

The cold war in the Korean peninsula has surely provided good reasons to inflate the national defence budget of the U.S.

It is not easy to know how bad the corruption related to the transactions of weapons is in Washington, but, in the case of South Korea, it could generate billions of dollars through corrupted weapon transactions.

The corrupted money is shared by members of the oligarchy composed of politicians, financiers, military leaders, weapon producers and even research institutes

It is quite possible that a similar situation is found in the United States.

In short, the Korean cold war could has given triple benefits to Washington including the strategic means of anti-China policy, the expansion of the national defence budget and enrichment of the oligarchy.

On the other hand, the cold war involves some cost which Washington must pay; the cost includes the cost of keeping GIs in South Korea and that of annual joint military drills.

However, one thing certain is that the benefit which the U.S. gets from the Korean cold war must be greater than the cost, much greater, perhaps.

The implication is obvious; hardliners in Washington have no interest to end the cold war.

In fact, Washington’s North Korean policy has been one of maintaining the cold war. In other words, the logical North Korean policy of Washington would be one of intensifying the North-South tension.

Now, the North-South tension has been kept and intensified through the following means.

First, North Korea is demonized through various means including the accusation for the violation of human right, government’s failure of feeding its people, lack of freedom of speech and much publicized open execution of political dissidents. 

Second, annual Washington-Seoul joint military drills forced Pyongyang to arms itself; it is a sure way of aggravating the North-South friction and animosity

Third, the U.S. often cancelled agreements already signed with North Korea. 

This happened in 1994 and 2005. 

In 1994, the U.S. led-KEDO (Korean Peninsula Energy Development Organization) failed to provide aid for the construction of Light Water reactors; the U.S. failed to supply promised oil in return of Pyongyang’s abandoning its nuclear programs. 

In 2005, alleged money laundry of US$25 million deposited by Pyongyang at the Banco Delta Asia in Macao was one of the excuses to kill the agreement of September 19 of 2005.

This tactic has gravely reduced Pyongyang’s trust in Washington’s integrity and North Korea felt the need to develop effective means to defend itself. 

Fourth, the series of UN sanctions, in addition to Washington’s own, against North Korea have been the most severe punishment of a sovereign people. 

In fact, it is hard to understand how North Korean people have survived under such suffering; it is a mystery.

These sanctions have dangerously intensified the cold war in the Korean peninsula.

Fifth, another regular menu of Washington’s anti-North Korea propaganda is the theory that North Korea is a threat to the U.S. and the East Asian region.

There is something wrong in this doctrine.

No country in the East Asia region has reported being threatened by North Korea. 

What is more important is that North Korea never says that it would attack the U.S. territory; it says that it would attack the U.S., if, only if the U.S. attacks North Korea first. 

In other words, it would be the American attack against North Korea that would make Pyongyang to attack the American territory. 

Thus, the real threat against the American territory comes from Washington not from Pyongyang.

Let us assume for the sake of argument that North Korea attacks the U.S. territory. 

But, let us be honest about it. The U.S. surely has the capacity to destroy Kim Jong-un’s ICBMs carrying nuclear warhead, before they hit the U.S. territory. 

If not, we have to ask what happened to US$700 billion allocated each tear to national defence. 

All these tactics and strategies have one objective; it is to perpetuate the cold war in the Korean peninsula so that the presence of U.S troops in South Korea can be justified and the oligarchy can continue to have their benefits.

The Kim-Trump Summit: Unexpected Historical Opportunities

The ultimate objective of this summit is to denuclearize the Korean peninsula and install lasting peace in the Korean peninsula.

But, this is against the traditional Washington’s North Korean policy!

If it is so, how does the Singapore summit become possible?

I think that the following factors are responsible for it.

First, for Washington, the value of U.S. friendly North Korea could be greater than hostile North Korea. Here, Trump might have thought that, as the Beijing-Washington rivalry is getting worse, Washington-friendly North Korea can be used as an element of the anti-China policy.

Second, Washington had been telling American people for so long about the danger of North Korea; the launching of Hwasung-15 on November 29, 2018 might have really scared them so much so that Trump had to do something; he had to choose between war and peace. Trump has wisely chosen peace, so it seems.

Third, the impeachment of Park Geun-hye and the birth of the liberal progressive government of Moon Jae-in in South Korea made it more difficult for the hawks in Washington to think of attacking Pyongyang. 

Moon said unequivocally that he would never tolerate another war in the Korean peninsula. U.S. attack of North Korea could mean the end of Seoul-Washington alliance and this would weaken the efficiency of Uncle Sam’s anti-China policy.

If Park Geun-hye were sitting in the Blue House at the time of the launching of Hwasung-15, Washington – Seoul could have made the Pyongyang’s nose bleed.

Fourth, three strong global leaders made simultaneous historic appearance. They are Kim Jong-un, Moon Jae-in and Donald Trump. These leaders have shared the same vision of peace for the Korean peninsula, may be, for different reasons

Fifth, the PyungChang Olympics and other events have provided a extraordinary diplomatic stages where the three leaders could play their given role.  

Let me say something about the character of the three leaders and their performance on the timely political and diplomatic stages.

Kim Jong-un was born into the royal family of Kim dynasty, but owing to his mother’s wisdom, he was educated as an ordinary child. During his stay in Swiss, he was presented as the son of a diplomat and treated as such. 

This has led him to see the world through the eyes of ordinary people and identify himself to the values cherished by the ordinary people including freedom, justice and equality. This might have led him to undertake the transformation of the North Korean society into a “normal society”. 

This is why he wanted to go from “Byungjin” (simultaneous development of nuclear defence and economic development) to the priority given to economic development.

It goes without saying that, to do so, North Korea must be open to the outside world and try dialogues with Washington.

Coming to Trump, he is very different from other American presidents. 

First, he is not a trained politician; he may have different perception of the success or the failure of government policies. He may value more visible and tangible benefits of American foreign policies rather than Washington’s international influence or prestige

It is possible that he has little political debt; he is relatively free to conceive and apply policies without being constrained by established vested interest groups.

This may have allowed him to envisage even foreign policy which is very different from previous ones.

Second, the success of denuclearization of the Korean peninsula may allow him to improve his image as bold American president.

Third, if the peace process is successful, he can be proud himself as being someone who has written the last pages of the cold war

Finally, he is a very autonomous man; he decides and he goes “My Way”. This might have allowed him to go against Bolton-Pence doctrine of Libya solution of Korean nuclear crisis.

Moon Jae-in is one of the rare breeds of South Korean politicians. 

He has been always a fighter for social justice; he has a very strong root in North Korea; he is one of the most convincing nationalist.

He believes that the reunification of the two Koreas is the unique way of ensuring the survival and sustained development of the Korean peninsula in the Sino-U.S. Thucydides trap. 

Above all, Kim Jong-un trusts Moon, who was the chief of cabinet for President Rho Moo-hyun‘s government during the period, 2003-2008. 

President Rho is the most popular South Korean political leader in North Korea.

It just happened that these three stars emerged almost simultaneously as key leaders who could play decisive role for the solution of the 28-year-old Korean cold war.

The PyungChang Olympics came and provided a political and diplomatic stage on which the three stars could play their respective role.

The performance of the three stars on the stage has produced the following results. 

First, Trump made it clear, through his vice-president, that a complete denuclearization is the ultimate bottom line of peace talk. 

This might have calmed the hardliners in the U.S. and American people.

Second, Kim Jong-un was successful in showing- through the remarkable performance of his singers and dancers- that North Koreans were not all demons; they were humans like all of us. 

This might have given the world the impression that one can have logical and sensible conversation with North Koreans.

Third, Moon Jae-in worked very hard to prove that he could speak both Pyongyang language and Washington language. 

This might have facilitated the Washington-Pyongyang dialogue.

Another event came along. 

On the 27th of April 2018, Kim and Moon shook hands; this handshake shook the world.

Kim’s trust in Moon would have made Kim to promise complete denuclearization of North Korea, of course, under some conditions.

One more event came along. On May 26, 2018, Moon Jae-in met with Kim Jong-un in Panmunjom to confirm once again Pyongyang’s commitment to complete denuclearization.

Moon might have told Trump, before the Singapore summit, about Kim’s firm commitment to complete denuclearization.

This could have led Trump to change his mind and go to Singapore. 

Remember that Trump cancelled the Singapore summit on June 24. 

Thus, the way to the Singapore summit was open.

So, Kim and Trump shook hands early in the morning of June 12, 2018 and, in the afternoon, the two signed a joint statement; Trump said the meeting was big success.  

And each of the three stars did get rewards.

Trump might have done something nobody has ever done. He may have closed the last pages of the cold war history. The world hopes so

He may get the Peace Nobel along with Kim Jong-un and Moon Jae-in; he may get even some good results at the mid-term election in coming November.

Kim Jong-un, became a respectable global leaderhe made it sure that North Korea could become a peaceful country; the summit might have tightened his position as absolute leader in Pyongyang.

Above all, he has become a respectable and reliable global leader and diplomat partly owing to Trump’s very positive remarks about him.

As for Moon Jae-in, the Singapore drama made him a very tall man; he got precious praise from Bill Clinton, former president of the U.S., as respectable world leader (Yonhap News, June 8). 

He made both Kim and Trump to rely on him for honest and trustworthy communication between Pyongyang and Washington; this is vital for the successful denuclearization and the assurance of a bright future for the people living in north of the DMZ. 

He surely increased the probability of the reunification of Koreas.

Here we are. We are all excited about the outcome of the Singapore handshake. 

But will the peace process be successful?

Already, experts not only in the U.S. but also, especially, the conservative experts in South Korea are critical of the Kim-Trump summit in general and their joint statement, in particular. 

The most widespread beef is about the absence of CVID (complete verifiable irreversible denuclearization) in the joint statement. But this criticism is irresponsible. 

To begin with, this is a concept invented in the 1990s by a hardliner in Washington and has not been internationally accepted; it is just too abstract to apply. 

Now, the part “I” standing for “irreversible” could mean anything. The most troubling implication is the period of irreversibility. Is it for the life of the country? Would there be any sensible country which accepts such impossible condition?

Those who sell this idea of CVID could be those who are against denuclearization and peace in the Korean peninsula.

In other words, this is the argument of warmongering hardliners in Washington and some conservatives in Seoul; they seem to prefer the continuation of the cold war.

If “I” means that Kim Jing-un cannot come back to nuclear business which has been once abandoned, it could happen when the basic infrastructure of the whole nuclear program will be dismantled; at this point, it will be too costly to come back. 

This may be what Trump had in mind when he mentioned 20%; it may mean that when the 20% of the denuclearization process is attained, the “irreversibility” applies.

The third item of the Joint Statement says this.

“Reaffirming the April 27, 2018 Panmunjom Declaration, the DPRK commits to work toward complete denuclearization of the Korean peninsula”. 

Here, “Complete” can include both “V” and “I”. To complete denuclearization, one must go through verification (V) and once the process of denuclearization hits a certain level, it becomes just too costly to resume (I) the nuclear program.

So, what is relevant is CD (complete denuclearization) as mentioned in the Kim-Moon Joint Declaration-4.27.

In short, the Singapore Joint Statement has provided the workable general framework of the peace process.

It is possible that the joint statement is not perfect. But it has provided a framework wide enough to allow flexible and effective negotiations.

But, let us not forget one thing; it is the first get-together of two individuals representing two nations that have been enemies for seventy years.

The final success of the peace process depends essentially on the width and the depth of the coming negotiations and the timing of execution of the agreements.

Above all, the mutual trust is a must; both Pyongyang and Washington should believe what the other side says as facts, otherwise, agreements would become near impossible.

North Korea has already shown its commitment and sincere desire to realize denuclearization. 

Kim Jong-un has already dismantled the five nuclear test sites; he will soon dismantle some of missile launch site.

Washington has shown the first sign of its good will; it announced the suspension of the Unlchi-Freedom Guardian Joint military drill which had originally been scheduled for coming August.

All these happenings seem to suggest then that the peace process might go well, but there could be many hurdles to go over before peace smiles in the Korea peninsula and North Korea becomes a “normal country”.

To conclude, I may say this.

The Washington-Pyongyang Summit could have happened before, if the U.S wanted to do so. 

Now, the Singapore Summit could fail because of the deliberate and effective objections, intrigues and lies by the hardliners in Washington and elsewhere; in this case, we may need another Singapore Summit later

Professor Michel Chossudovsky warns about the possibility of failure of the peace process based on the Singapore summit agreements. (Aftermath of the Trump-Kim Summit, Unilateral, Denuclearization, Continued Military Threat, Economic Sanctions, Global Research, June 17, 2018)

What the world needs is to be vigilant and be united in its concerted efforts to end, once for all, the ugly cold war. 

Posted in USA, North KoreaComments Off on The Kim-Trump Summit: Why Now? Why Not Before? Why Not Later?

The Douma Gas Attack: A False Flag Operation

NOVANEWS

Political analyst Mark Taliano says that there is no evidence of a chemical attack in Douma and the alleged gas attack was only a false flag operation by the White Helmets.

Speaking in an exclusive interview with FNA, Taliano said that there was no justification for the US and its allies to bomb Syria after the theatrical incident in Syria’s Douma.

Commenting on the so-called White Helmets and their operations in Syria, the analyst told FNA that the members of the group are “al Qaeda auxiliaries” who support the terrorist groups and carry out false flag operations in Syria.

Mark Taliano is an author and political analyst who has recently visited Syria. In his new book titled “Voices from Syria”, he combines years of research with on-the-ground observations to present an informed and well-documented analysis that refutes mainstream media narratives about the war on Syria.

FNA has conducted an interview with Mark Taliano about the war on Syria and the most recent developments surrounding the issue.

Below you will find the full text of the interview.

***

Q: Multiple places in Syria came under attack by the United States and its allies, namely Britain and France, several months ago based on a video footage of an alleged gas attack in Syria’s Douma released by the White Helmets. Who are the White Helmets? How can their unverified video be presented as justification for a large scale attack on Syria?

Mark Taliano: The White Helmets are a Western propaganda construct. They are not the legitimate Syrian Civil Defence, nor are they affiliated with the International Civil Defence Organization.

They are essentially al Qaeda auxiliaries. They support the terrorists in Syria, and their membership is largely comprised of terrorists.

One of their important roles is to set up and conduct false flag terrorism operations in which crimes are falsely attributed to the legitimate Syrian government with a view to engineering consent for the West to commit Supreme International Crimes against Syria, an independent, sovereign state, and a founding member of the United Nations.

The so-called chemical weapons attack at Douma was one such false flag operation. No chemical weapon attack occurred, and yet the Syrian government was blamed for the theatrical incident, yet again, with no evidence.

Even if there was such an incident (and neither the Syrian government nor the Syrian army would in any way benefit from such an attack), it would not justify the commission of the Supreme International Crimes which France, the UK and the US committed in response to the (theatrical) event, by bombing Syria.

Unfortunately, the West has been committing war crimes against Syria for seven years now, all beneath an umbrella of false pretexts and big lies.

Q: We have seen the Israeli regime and the so-called US-led coalition targeting the Syrian Arab Army (SAA) and its allied forces many times. What do you think is the reason for such moves?

MT: Apartheid Israel and its allies, including NATO, Wahhabi Saudi Arabia, and Qatar, commit war crimes as policy against Syria. US-led NATO seeks to destroy non-compliant nations, including Syria, with a view to expanding its control, and its operations of looting and plundering prey nations. Apartheid Israel’s goals fit nicely into the West’s neo-con, criminal megalomania. Israel seeks to expand its territories and to demolish any opposition to its Oded Yinon-inspired plans. Needless to say, the sectarian, misogynist, anti-Christian, anti-democratic terrorists, including al Qaeda and ISIS, serve as excellent proxies for both Israel and the US Empire.

Q: Since the beginning of the crisis in Syria, Saudi Arabia has been actively supporting terrorists in the country. These terrorists are now losing ground every day. What do you think would be the implications of such failure for the Saudi foreign policy?

MT: Terrorists are proxies for all of the countries invading Syria, including Saudi Arabia. Fortunately, Syria and it allies are defeating these terrorists. Remaining terrorists are being relocated and/or rebranded. It is the same game that has been repeated throughout the war. Moderate rebels never existed. Saudi Arabia and its allies will redirect funds towards alternate terrorist mercenaries with a view to supporting the illegal US occupation of Syria’s rich oil fields. The failure will be disguised as a victory.

Q: The so-called Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) have received tremendous amount of arms and support from the United States, initially with the stated aim to fight Daesh (ISIL or ISIS). But apparently, the US is now preparing the ground to establish an independent Kurdish state in Syria. What do you think the US is seeking to achieve by disintegrating Syria?

MT: The anti-democratic, ethnic-cleansing SDF are simply more of the same – rebranded mercenary terrorists. The establishment of a so-called “Kurdish state” will serve Empire’s goal of partitioning and destroying Syria, but it will not serve Kurdish interests at all. Empire’s proxies, including ISIS, are expendable. As I explain in “Voices from Syria”, Empire uses its proxies as “place-setters” to hold territory, to conquer territory, and to create false perceptions that conquerors are “liberators”. The whole process serves Empire’s goals of destroying and looting Syria, but the proxies are expendable.

Q: The US announcement of its plans to recognize a Kurdish state in Syria has seemingly provoked Turkish invasion on the Kurdish areas. What are Turkey’s objectives in its military intervention and how do you think this recent development would affect the process of reaching peace in Syria?

MT: I believe the US gave NATO member Turkey the green light to invade. Turkey seeks to expand and to eradicate terrorist threats at its borders, while at the same time, all of the fighting creates chaos and destabilization, which is what the US seeks. The US and its allies do not want peace. The only solution to the externally orchestrated and perpetrated disaster in Syria is for Syria to regain its sovereignty and territorial integrity as per international law. The terrorist threat, which is an imperial threat, will only be eradicated when the imperialists are gone.

Posted in SyriaComments Off on The Douma Gas Attack: A False Flag Operation

Yemen War: Iranian Navy Dispatches Warships to Gulf of Aden

NOVANEWS

On June 21, the Iranian Navy dispatched two warships to the Gulf of Aden, where a fierce battle is ongoing between the Ansar Allah movement (also known as the Houthis) and the Saudi-led coalition for the port city of al-Hudaydah.

According to Iran’s Tasnim News Agency, Iran sent a helicopter-carrier and a naval destroyer. The deployment of Iranian warships in the area will likely further complicate relations between Riyadh and Teheran. However, two warships will not be enough to lift a naval blockade from al-Hudaydah.

Meanwhile, the Houthis repelled another attempt by the Saudi-led coalition and its proxies to capture the al-Hudaydah airport in western Yemen recapturing most of the positions, which they had lost previously.

A few dozens of Houthi fighters were killed or injured as result of attacks by the coalition and strikes by its air power. The coalition and its proxies lost at least 6 vehicles.

The Houthis are currently building fortifications south and east of al-Hudaydah. In turn, pro-Saudi and pro-UAE sources claim that the coalition is posed to capture the port city by any means. Massive strikes of the Saudi Air Force on targets inside the city signs that these claims are true.

Clashes also continued far south of al-Hudaydah, along supply lines of the coalition heading from southern Yemen. The Houthis carried out at least 5 hit and run attacks on the coalition’s supply lines over the past two days.

So far, the Houthis have been able to counter the coalition’s efforts to capture the al-Hudaydah airport and to isolate the city. However, they suffer from a lack military equipment and supplies. The situation remains tense.

Posted in YemenComments Off on Yemen War: Iranian Navy Dispatches Warships to Gulf of Aden

Big Oil, Brexit, North Korea, China

NOVANEWS

Ex-Mossad Chief: Best Part of My Job Was Having ‘a License to Crime’

By Richard Silverstein, June 19, 2018

When asked about what issue took the lion’s share of his attention as Mossad chief, he answers that Iran took up 80% of the agency’s operational agenda.  For those of us who’ve long criticized Israel’s obsession with Iran and suspected it was a pressure valve exploited by Israeli leaders who sought to avoid issues like Palestine, Pardo’s admission makes one realize how much time the Mossad wasted on chimeras like this.

The Problem with Lamenting “Acceptance” of Kim Jong-un

By Hugh Gusterson, June 19, 2018

As one might expect of any event starring Donald Trump, reaction to the Trump-Kim summit in Singapore has been polarized. Republicans—the same people who condemned Barack Obama for visiting Cuba and John Kerry for meeting with Iranian leaders—defended Trump’s meeting with Kim Jong-un.

Are the Hard Brexiteers – Jumping Ship?

By True Publica, June 19, 2018

A couple of months ago, the driving force behind Ukip Nigel Faragewas forced into confirming that two of his children possess British and German passports, meaning they will maintain their free movement rights in the European Union after Brexit. Before that, the Independent reported that last year, Mr Farage was forced to deny he was applying for German citizenship himself after he was spotted queueing at the German embassy.

North Korea: What Price Peace?

By Askiah Adam, June 19, 2018

Indeed the Singapore Declaration was much anticipated and is well received. But there is, too, much pessimism. The recent unilateral abandonment of the Iran nuclear agreement, formally known as the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) by the United States is one. Iran, naturally, advised Kim to be wary.

Oil Giants Shell and Eni Face Trial in Milan Over Bribery Allegations in Biggest Corruption Case Facing Sector in Years

By Chloe Farand, June 19, 2018

They allege that Shell and Eni paid $1.1 billion into an account for the Nigeria government of which $800 million was later transferred to Malabu Oil and Gas, a company secretly owned by former Nigerian petroleum minister and convicted money launderer Dan Etete, to be distributed as payoffs.

China: The Largest Cheap Labor Factory in the World

By Prof Michel Chossudovsky, June 19, 2018

The factory price of a commodity produced in China is of the order of 10% of the retail price in Western countries. Consequently, the largest share of the earnings of  China’s cheap labor economy accrue to distributors and retailers in Western countries.

In recent developments, Trump has duly instructed his administration to impose tariffs on about $50 billion worth of Chinese imports.

Posted in China, North KoreaComments Off on Big Oil, Brexit, North Korea, China

The Decline of the US Empire

NOVANEWS

 

Consider Making a Donation to Global Research

When the Lie becomes the Truth, there is no turning backwards. 

Support Global Research.

*     *     *

Kim’s Resolve to “Put The Past Behind Us”, Trump’s Commitment to Stop the War Games? What Next?

By Carla Stea, June 20, 2018

Though it is much too early to predict the course or outcome of the Singapore summit, in a  powerful gesture of reconciliation, following his supremely diplomatic meeting with DPRK Chairman Kim Jong-un, (diplomacy during which Trump respectfully saluted a North Korean general, who had already saluted him,) President Trump unexpectedly announced his decision to halt the war games routinely held between the US and the ROK, which President Trump described as tremendously costly and “provocative.” 

 

Children’s Images: 1943 and 2018

By Roy Morrison, June 20, 2018

The children are criminal aliens, deserving of what the Nazis called “special treatment” or Sonderbehandlung which often meant execution. Donald Trumpand Stephen Miller, Jeff Sessions, John Kelly call it “zero tolerance” to repel the “infestation” of brown skinned immigrants.

Leaving the UN Human Rights Council: Crimes against Humanity. Washington Endorses The State of Israel

By Dr. Binoy Kampmark, June 20, 2018

Accordingly, Haley announced that the United States would be withdrawing from “an organisation that is not worthy of its name”, peopled, as it were, by representatives from such states as China, Cuba, Venezuela and the Democratic Republic of Congo.

The Rallying Cry of a Nationwide Movement: “Chinga la Migra” (F*ck Border Patrol)

By Michelle Chen, June 20, 2018

The parents of migrant children are set to endure a separate nightmare in the coming months, fanned out across the country to detention centers where they will await legal judgement. Far from the border, the crisis bled into the Pacific Northwest in early June as scores of new detainees were funneled into the federal immigrant detention center at SeaTac, a city on the outskirts of Seattle.

From Nazi Germany to Japanese Internment Camps: Here’s the Disgusting History Behind Trump’s ‘Infest’

By Elizabeth Preza, June 20, 2018

Critics were quick to jump on Trump’s use of the word “infest,” which typically refers to insects or animals and immediately conjures images of disease and death. And with good reason; using such dehumanizing language to describe living, actual human beings has precursors in Nazi Germany and World War II Japanese Internment Camps, among other instances of human rights abuses.

Posted in USAComments Off on The Decline of the US Empire

Strategizing in the Wake of the Singapore Summit: The Kim-Xi Meeting in Beijing. Crisis in Beijing-Washington Relations

NOVANEWS

Trip takes place just one week after historic summit in Singapore

Chairman Kim Jong un of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) and his wife Ri Sol Ju paid yet another visit to the People’s Republic of China President Xi Jinping on June 19. 

This is the third time in as many months that the head of the Worker’s Party of Korea (WPK) has held face-to-face talks with his counterpart Xi Jinping and his wife Peng Liyuan of the Communist Party of China (CPC) in Beijing. 

The two Asian heads-of-state held discussions on the recent developments involving the ongoing dialogue between the Republic of Korea (south) and the DPRK over issues of normalizing relations and potential unification.  These important questions along with the summit meeting held with United States President Donald Trump on June 12 in Singapore have created tremendous interests throughout the international community. 

Just in a matter of months there have been momentous events which are reshaping the character of inter-Asian relations as well as exposing the fallacy of Washington’s decades-long foreign policy towards both the DPRK and the PRC. Trump’s statement in the aftermath of the Singapore Summit that the Pentagon would suspend the annual war games in South Korea during August, sent shock waves throughout the military-industrial-complex in the U.S.

In a statement issued by Noh Kyu-duk of the South Korean Foreign Ministry, the official said:

“The governments of South Korea and China share the same strategic goal of completely denuclearizing the Korean peninsula. Also, our government hopes China will play a constructive role in resolving this problem. We hope Chairman Kim Jong Un’s visit will contribute to that.” (Global China Television Network, June 19, article by Jessica Stone)

Whether or not the dominant imperialist state extends this suspension beyond 2018, it illustrates the futility of Washington’s posture toward the Korean Peninsula. Both China and the DPRK have been the principal focus of successive U.S. administrations as it relates to their attempts to maintain imperialist interests in the Asia-Pacific region.

A united approach from Beijing and Pyongyang will signal to Washington that their maneuvers in the region will not divide the major players as far as regional security and anti-imperialism is concerned. Nevertheless, the overall objectives of the U.S. and its allies remain the same: to further contain China and marginalize those interests which are steadfast in maintaining the national and regional independence of the various states.

DPRK leader and Chinese counterpart with their wives in Beijing on June 19, 2018

Both leaders pledged in the June 19 meeting to strengthen and deepen relations in the coming period to ensure the continuing forward progress towards peace and development in the region. Beijing has been acting as a mediator between Pyongyang and Washington after the escalation of tensions during 2017 brought the two states to the brink of a full-blown military conflict.

There has never been a comprehensive peace agreement since the armistice of June 1953 after three years of war which resulted in the deaths of millions of Korean and tens of thousands of imperialist troops led by the U.S. and Britain under the banner of the United Nations. Annual military exercises held jointly by Seoul and Washington in April and August involve 17,000 ROK troops along with over 50,000 Pentagon soldiers.   

In exchange the DPRK has agreed to suspend testing and upgrades in its nuclear weapons program. The socialist state has developed long-range Intercontinental Ballistic Missiles (ICBM) weaponized with nuclear technology. 

These military options created by the DPRK are for exclusively defensive purposes in light of the persistent decades-long threats from Washington and Tokyo. Japan had occupied the Korean Peninsula after a 1905 treaty which led to an occupation extending from 1910-1945. 

After the defeat of Japan in World War II, an alliance of patriotic forces led by the communist party founded the DPRK in 1948. The three year war and ongoing occupation of the south has hampered the unification of the Peninsula.

Significance of the Singapore Summit

The June 12 meeting which brought together Trump and Kim came on the heels of a contentious Group of 7 (G7) meeting in Quebec. Relations among the imperialist states have been strained due to the trade war initiated by the Trump administration which has imposed tariffs on Canada along with European Union (EU) nations.

These events have prompted a high degree of volatility in the U.S. and world financial markets where a precipitous decline occurred on June 19. Most economic analysts attribute the drop in values to the trade policies of Washington. 

China is also a major target of Trump’s efforts to mislead the public in the U.S. suggesting that the imposition of tariffs will result in job creation and salary increases for working families who are still suffering from the fallout of the Great Recession of 2007-2011. A large portion of employment growth in the U.S. is through low-wage labor in the service sectors. Income has remained stagnate while real wages have been on the decline for several decades.

There were four points of agreement which emerged from the Singapore Summit. A joint statement issued by the two leaders said:

1) The United States and the DPRK commit to establish new U.S.-DPRK relations in accordance with the desire of the peoples of the two countries for peace and prosperity;

2) The United States and the DPRK will join their efforts to build a lasting and stable peace regime on the Korean Peninsula;

3) Reaffirming the April 27, 2018 Panmunjom Declaration, the DPRK commits to work toward complete denuclearization of the Korean Peninsula; and 

4) The United States and the DPRK commit to recovering POW/MIA remains, including the immediate repatriation of those already identified.“

The suspension of war games and nuclear testing was not written down as a point of agreement although Trump’s post-summit press conference affirmed these decisions. Trump asserted that the joint Pentagon-ROK exercises are far too expensive and should be curtailed.

Underlying Crises in Beijing-Washington Relations

Nonetheless, these discussions cannot conceal the continuing provocations by Washington against the PRC. In addition to the trade war which is destabilizing markets around the world, the Pentagon is still seeking to militarily intimidate Beijing in the Asia-Pacific region.

China has responded to repeated military incursions by the Pentagon surrounding the South Seas which Washington contends are not the sovereign territory of Beijing. The U.S. is accusing China of militarizing the South China Sea which has prompted the Defense Department to withdraw an invitation for China to join an international naval exercise the U.S. is sponsoring over the next few weeks. 

The Pentagon claims that China has deployed anti-ship missiles, surface-to-air missile systems and electronic jammers to areas in the Spratly Islands. Washington has demanded that China withdraw these defense systems. 

An article published during late May by the India Times emphasized that:

“China says it dispatched warships to identify and warn off a pair of U.S. Navy vessels sailing near one of its island claims in the South China Sea. A statement on the Chinese Defense Ministry’s website said the Arleigh Burke class guided-missile destroyer USS Higgins and Ticonderoga class guided-missile cruiser USS Antietam entered waters China claims in the Paracel island group ‘without the permission of the Chinese government.’ It said the Chinese military ‘immediately dispatched warships to identify and inspect the American ships according to law, and warned them to depart.’”

These military efforts by the U.S. have continued through successive administrations. China’s growing economy and military capability are viewed as a major threat to the imperialist hegemony of Washington and Wall Street. 

Tensions could rise to the level of a direct military conflict whose outcome would be long term in its political and economic impact. The burgeoning trade war and military posturing will undoubtedly result in global uncertainty and instability throughout various continents.   

Posted in China, North KoreaComments Off on Strategizing in the Wake of the Singapore Summit: The Kim-Xi Meeting in Beijing. Crisis in Beijing-Washington Relations


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