It's easy to ridicule North Korea and it's leaders, especially based on bourgeois commercial mass media reports.
I would just remind people how skewed, exaggerated, bogus, and absolutely false such reports tend to be, especially when they are deliberately trying to smear anyone who dares to challenge monopoly capital.
True, even independent alternative media and much of the left decry what do seem to be genuinely problematic aspects of North Korean policy and practice.
I'm not seeking to defend, apologize for, or dismiss such issues...but...
I'm just saying...
Let's get real, about what could be a very dangerous situation.
Consideration of the situation with North Korea cannot be meaningful without consideration of the history, especially including the US attempts to destroy, or failing that, to cripple, the development of socialism, anywhere.
As with virtually every other military conflict the US has engaged in (besides WW1 and WW2), the (undeclared, and thus unconstitutional) "war" against a fledgling independent nation that had declared autonomy from US monopoly capital's proclivity for aggressive imperialist plunder was seen as "necessary", "on principle".
It is "necessary" to prevent any possibility of competition from the emerging socialist notion that the resources of a country belong to that country, for it's own socio-economic development, and not to the US corporations and a few local compradore warlords bribed by the CIA to suppress or sabotage, "by any means necessary", the emergence of a popular democratic revolution for genuine independence.
From these contradictions arise the entire basis for present tensions and conditions in Korea, and anywhere else this strategy has been brought to bear.
It's just a tad bit disingenuous to encircle, infiltrate, militarily attack, strangle with boycotts and embargos, and to generally do everything conceivably possible, short of nuking them, to destroy or retard the development of a country, and then to point to the inevitable results of that strategy as "proof" that socialism "doesn't work" and is thus undesirable.
Such conditions are not conducive to optimal social, economic, or democratic development. Being forced into a defensive military posture and martial law just to survive, especially in a context of prolonged international war and/or civil war that have, for the most part, destroyed any prior colonial or native infrastructure, can only make it all that much harder for any country to succeed in establishing a prosperous liberal democracy, which is why "we" impose such harsh conditions on them in the first place.
Is it any wonder that seemingly hostile, paranoid, and corrupt governments tend to emerge under such conditions?
Monopoly capital simply cannot countenance any competition, especially from democracy, which is anathema to the very existence of monopoly capital.
Because they were subjected to that strategy themselves, Russia, China, Cuba, Venezuela, etc., tend to be sympathetic toward Korea, even if they may wish that nation's leaders would be a little less provocative.
I don't know a lot of the details about Korea, past or present. But one thing I do know is that you can't trust commercial mass media to give you anywhere near an accurate picture.
I also know that the US government is, on principle, as a very aggressive capitalist country, rarely reasonable in it's demands, propaganda or actions toward socialist countries.
I would also point out that alot of the dealing with Korea occurs on back channels and during informal encounters at the UN, and other indirect economic venues, which are unlikely to reach (or to be accurately represented by) the mass media, and that when "we" do speak directly to or about North Korea, it is always filtered through a virulent and hostile anti-communist perspective.
The commercial mass media image of Korea getting all insulted and hostile and belligerent out of the blue, for no reason at all, or just because they are crazy whack commies, just seems very...suspicious, to me.
I think it's obvious that the US is deliberately and dupliciously provoking and tweaking Korea, to create a useful propaganda "crisis" that "we" can then seek to exploit to our own benefit, including starting another bogus, unconstitutional "war" that will make huge profits for a few people who are already so rich it should be a crime, and will, incidentally, kill millions of people, including hundreds of thousands of our own youth.
Respect, instead of hyped up, contrived fear and loathing, real cooperation instead of vicious sabotage, and a willingness to learn from, and even emulate the more positive aspects of socialism, while helping those nations to put behind them the more negative developments that have resulted from years of US intrigue and interference, would go a long way toward resolving much international crisis.
Virtually all such conflicts are fundamentally based on, rooted in the contradictions between international monopoly capital and the just and legitimate rights and needs of any nation to assert their independence and to use their own national resources for the development of their own society, rather than to be robbed blind and manipulated by brutal neo-colonial puppet governments set up by the CIA for the profit of monopoly capital.
It's time to move forward, into the 21st century, and to quit looking backward, to the "cold" war.
It's time to reverse US foreign (and domestic) policy, from the present rabid, irrational, psychopathic monopoly capitalist anti-communist perspective that "justifies" support for extreme right wing reactionary conservative fundamentalist forces all over the world to suppress and murder anyone who calls for democracy, civil rights, human rights, labor rights, environmental protection, and national sovereignty, as "damn commies".
It's time that we began supporting instead those popular democratic elements in each country whom we are now paying the reactionaries to viciously suppress.
It's a simple as that.
But that is not going to happen with the present Blue Dog Congress.
It's actually kind of foolish to rant on and on about the outrageous shortcomings of the present administration and Congress. Nothing we say or do now, around all of the many issues, is going to change the present harsh reality that a long legacy of low voter turnout has created our own unfavorable conditions for real democracy, justice or peace.
The situation we have now is a direct result of low voter turnout, which is the only way that the Republicans and the Blue Dogs manage, by hook and by crook, to "win" anything.
This is NOT a "center-right" nation, it's far more liberal and progressive, in terms of popular opinion, than the Blue Dogs, the Republicans, or the MSM are willing to admit.
The more people who vote, historically, the more progressive the outcome.
That's why the right has done everything in it's considerable power to suppress voter turnout, any way they can, including infiltration of movement groups on the left to inject "radical" rhetoric about electoral boycott, and to encourage "alternative" guaranteed loser candidates, to split the vote (eg: big money to Nader....go figure).
As long as the more progressive caucuses in Congress are an isolated minority due to low voter turnout, it will be all they can do, through onerous concessions, to keep us from going backward. It will continue to be two steps backward, or sideways, for every step forward.
Instead of focusing so much on the past, and even the present, we should be looking more to the future.
I'm not saying suspend all criticism, but let's get real, here, and focus...
2010 and 2012 will be pivotal, in terms of gaining sufficient progressive plurality in Congress, and on down the ladders of power, even to the local city council and board of supervisors, to fundamentally change the present socio-economic paradigm in the US, from one of irrational monopoly capital, against the public interest, to one of genuine democracy, for justice and peace, to save the planet.
Call it whatever you want...but to me, it's all about real democracy.
Nobody anywhere on earth has ever achieved it, yet. But that doesn't mean it's impossible, or undesirable. It just means that the anti-democratic opposition tends to be very ruthless, rich, and powerful.
If anyone can achieve real democracy without a civil war, or with just a brief, quickly suppressed civil war (historically, it's always the right wing reactionary conservatives who bring the civil war, anywhere, in their treasonous resistance to democracy), I think the US might be able to do it.
We should at least try, and hope for the best, even as we prepare for the worst.
Si Se Puede!
All out for 2010 and 2012!
All Power to the People!