In almost every US aligned Gulf State, you can find an autocratic monarch who rules over a small, oil-rich corner of the world via an outdated, pre-democratic legal system that grants him absolute authority. King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia, an absolute monarch with dictatorial powers, was married to 30 different women, by whom he has fathered a total of 35 children. The recently deceased King Abdullah, now replaced by Salman, was a serial human rights violating autocrat who routinely beheaded people for “insulting” him, and he was certainly not alone.
If investigative journalists in the Western press bothered to dig, they could most certainly find out the shocking details about the wealthy aristocracies of Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Abu Dhabi, Dubai, and Jordan. The US-backed oil monarchies of the Middle East are known to have rooms full of trafficked sexual slaves from around the world, and to preside over populations with no human rights or freedoms.
Due to the fact that the decadent and oppressive Gulf state monarchs are allies of the United States, sell oil to Wall Street and buy weapons from the Pentagon, Western media mostly ignores their undisputed and well documented scandals and atrocities.
However, when reporting on the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK), Western media reports every rumor and unsubstantiated claim as undisputed truth. Everything said by defectors from the northern part of the Korean peninsula is believed and uncritically repeated. Western media has embarrassed itself more than a few times in the past years, by repeating allegations that are so obviously false and easily disproven, that they must be quietly retracted.
The claim that women in the DPRK are forbidden from riding bicycles was ripped to shreds with video from inside the country. The Korean Workers Party actually prides itself on its advancement of women, with women winning Olympic gold medals and playing a prominent role in the military. The outrageous claim that the DPRK executes people by “feeding them to wild dogs” was traced to a satirical Chinese publication.
Unlike the US-aligned autocracies in the Middle East, the DPRK has a constitution and elections. Even though the Korean Worker,rty promotes dialectical materialism and atheism, there are freely practicing Christian churches all throughout the northern half of the Korean peninsula. Even the DPRK’s harshest critics admit that the country has “universal housing” (no homelessness), and that it has completely wiped out illiteracy. These facts alone show that the DPRK, regardless of its flaws, is a much more humane and human rights-respecting society than Saudi Arabia, Qatar, Oman, Bahrain, Kuwait, and many other US aligned regimes.
The special, obsessive demonization of the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea in Western media, rightly called “Kim-Phobia” is not just an insult to journalistic integrity. Kim-phobia could have catastrophic consequences, not only for the Korean peninsula, but for the entire human race. US media has selected the “North Koreans” for demonization and isolation for special, strategic reasons.
“Human Rights” Testimony Given Under Duress
If mainstream US media were to start slandering Vladimir Putin or Xi Jinping by saying they were cannibals or child molesters, it’s not guaranteed that many people would automatically believe it. The governments of both Russia and China have enough respect and credibility, as well as economic ties to the United States, that such false claims would be widely dismissed and refuted. While some rightists and non-thinking war-hawks are tempted to believe whatever slanderous allegation is made, a very large percentage of the western populace would question such claims.
Likewise, wild and extreme claims against Raul Castro and the leadership of Cuba would face similar scrutiny. While the Tea Party and many Cuban exiles in Miami may accept any anti-Cuban propaganda, with many Americans visiting Cuba and prominent celebrities praising its healthcare system, not all anti-Cuban allegations are merely accepted as fact.
However, the outrageous statements and accusations against Kim Jong-Un and the Korean Workers Party can be routinely passed on without any scrutiny or filter. Why?
With tens of thousands of US troops on its border and under an economic blockade, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea is focused on military defense, not the information war. Very few Westerners visit the northern part of the Korean peninsula. The country has made a point of strategically cutting itself off from the Western press and the Internet for military purposes. Because of these unique circumstances, Wolf Blitzer and Don Lemon can pretty much say anything about Kim Jong-Un and the Korean people without anyone fact-checking them.
The bombardment of anti-DPRK propaganda has become very effective. For example, the United Nations held hearings about “Human Rights” in the DPRK in Seoul. At these hearings, person after person stood up and accused the government in the North of horrific atrocities. What the media ignored while reporting on the human rights hearings was that this testimony was given under duress.
The government in southern Korea has its infamous “National Security Laws” which have been condemned by Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International, and other bodies. Under the National Security Laws, anyone who says or writes anything that could be interpreted as supporting or speaking positively of the DPRK can be imprisoned for decades.
These laws are not symbolic, but routinely enforced against anyone who dares utter a positive word about Kim Il Sung, Communism, Socialism, or US atrocities during the Korean war. For example, Park Geun-Jung was sentenced to 10 months in prison for activity on social media. Park is not a Communist, and was obviously being sarcastic with his tweets about his northern countryfolk, but this did not prevent him from being locked up.
The United Nations Human Rights hearings in Seoul were a violation of the UN’s own procedures. The UN received what was essentially coerced testimony from people who knew they would be imprisoned and possibly tortured if they said anything other than “North Korea is hell on earth.”
THAAD and War Danger
The United States is now installing a huge missile system in the southern part of the Korean peninsula. This is the latest measure in the “Asian Pivot” of the US military. The Terminal High Altitude Area Defense (THAAD) system’s installment has garnered objections, and not only from the DPRK. China and Russia have also raised deep concerns.
Why would China and Russia be concerned about the THAAD system? Essentially, this system gives US forces in South Korea the ability to strike both Russia and China, and to deflect any retaliatory measure.
Southern Korea can be used as a base, not just to attack the north, but also Russia and China. The THAAD system shields US missile launchers from any response, and would allow the US to continue unloading its missiles onto Russia and China.
China and Russia both now have hypersonic gliders, which could probably penetrate the THAAD system. However, it is very disturbing that the United States is looking to make south Korea, where tens of thousands of US troops are stationed, immune from Russian or Chinese retaliation. If the United States and the “Republic of Korea” are not planning an attack on Russia, China, or the DPRK, why prepare southern Korea for such a thing?
The excuse of the United States and the south Korean regime for this highly provocative move against the two largest countries in the world is “Crazy Kim made us do it.”
US audiences have been psyched up by “The Interview”, “Red Dawn”, and “Olympus Has Fallen”, along with press reports saying bizarre, unsubstantiated things like “Kim Jong Il Claims to have invented the Hamburger” into believing that they DPRK is somehow bent on world conquest. In reality, all the DPRK asks for is the peaceful democratic re-unification of the peninsula.
The anti-Kim obsession of the western press is serving to justify US preparations for war in Asia. US weapons and military personnel are pouring, not just into southern Korea, but also into the Philippines, Indonesia, and other parts of the world.
Meanwhile, US troops and military equipment are being deployed into Eastern Europe. Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, and Romania, all of which have been gutted by neoliberalism since the collapse of the USSR, are now having their homelands turned into launch pads for a third world war. ()
The United States is surrounding Russia and China with troops, and continuing to describe any defensive move by the two countries as “aggression.”
In such a context, hostilities on the Korean peninsula, with the USA supporting the south and Russia and China supporting the north, could easily spin way out of control. With the DPRK as such an easily demonized target, a single spark could easily light up the entire world.
The “Kim-Phobia” of the US media is very strategic. Hipster journalism about “crazy Kim” has very important public relations value for the Pentagon as it escalates its presence in Asia.
Progressive minded human beings should see how dangerous this is. “Kim-Phobia” could be setting the stage for World War Three, as more and more weapons and US military personnel pour into the region.