Two Western Narratives on North Korea; Both Cannot be True

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Friday night’s failed missile launch by North Korea has exposed a kind of cognitive dissonance in the western mainstream media and also some alt-media sources.

On the one hand, North Korea is an evil state whose nuclear weapons and advanced delivery systems are capable of setting hell-fire upon East Asia and even parts of the western United States.

At the same time, some of these same sources are promulgating an antithetical narrative that North Korea is little more than an ineffective dictatorship whose weapons delivery systems cannot get off the ground and whose conventional weapons are so lacking that during parades, fake weapons are on display.

The fact that this second narrative has captured  hearts and minds across the spectrum is best illustrated by the fact that maverick conservative alt-media figure Milo Yiannopoulos has posted a story about just how poorly North Korea is armed, citing, NBC news, Fox news, and the left-wing UK tabloid Daily Mirror.

So which is it? Is North Korea a kind of bite sized ‘evil empire’ ready and willing to destroy much of the world at a moment’s notice, or is it a comical commie monarchy whose weapons are just for show?

Donald Trump expressed his own unique brand of  cognitive dissonance on the matter, Tweeting: "North Korea disrespected the wishes of China & its highly respected President when it launched, though unsuccessfully, a missile today. Bad!"

This is the same Donald Trump who in 2013 said of China, "China is not our friend. They are not our ally. They want to overtake us, and if we don’t get smart and tough soon, they will."

Donald Trump seems to think that he and Chinese President Xi Jinping bonded over  ‘the most beautiful piece of chocolate cake you’ve ever seen’, but the reality is that China and also Russia have been totally consistent over North Korea. It is western leaders and the western media that cannot seem to choose a narrative and stick with it.

China opposes nuclear weapons on the Korean peninsula and has many disagreements with the North Korean government, but China also fervently disagrees with American military escalation in the region. Russia likewise offers plenty of condemnation for the behaviour of both North Korea and American war-hawks.

READ MORE: Furious China hits back at US on North Korea during UN Security Council Session

The truth of the matter is that the fire-power of North Korea is probably grossly exaggerated by both North Korea and by the same people in the US who lied about the nature of Yugoslavia in the 1990s, lied about weapons of mass destruction in Iraq in 2003, lied about Libya in 2011 and are lying about chemical weapons in Syria now.

Both North Korea and the US have strangely similar goals which underpin their need to exaggerate the true strength of North Korea’s military. Pyongyang wants to look mighty on the world states and the US wants to look both mighty and mighty angry over a real threat. It wouldn’t be very convincing if the US was threatening war over ‘fake weapons’. Then again many in the US want a new Cold War with Russia over, fake news.

That being said, North Korea does have nuclear weapons and even if North Korean delivery systems are as inadequate as they seem, they still could find some way to deliver the weapons to nearby countries, most prominently South Korea.

There is no good reason to inflame a situation that was more or less a sleeping issue. If China and Russia which both border North Korea are not frightened of Kim Jong-Un, a country on the other side of the Pacific, the United States, ought to adopt a similar approach.

Donald Trump should listen to his words and not show ‘disrespect’ to the Chinese President.

Reprinted with permission from The Duran.

President Trump: You Can’t Fight the Whole World

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Maybe the president believes he’s won a great victory over the wicked Syrians by lobbing cruise missiles at one of their underused air bases. Maybe Trump believes that he’s scared the evil Russians and the too big for their sampans Chinese into obedience.

His 22,000 lb MOAB terror bomb on Afghanistan should keep those pesky Taliban quiet for a while even though the Pentagon claimed the intended target was a group – Khorosan – that may not actually exist.

Those major malefactors, the crazy North Koreans, could be about to feel America’s full military might if they so much as twitch.

Not content with nearly stirring up a new war with North Korea, President Donald Trump is now waving the big stick at another of Washington’s favorite bogeymen, Iran. For the Trumps, Iran is poison.

In recent days, President Trump has threatened to renounce the six-power nuclear agreement to freeze or shrink Iran’s nuclear infrastructure. This sensible pact was signed during the Obama administration by the great powers: US, Britain, France, Russia, Germany and China. Trump appears willing to abrogate the treaty and outrage the other great powers just because he hates Iran for some reason and, it appears, Muslims in general.

The Trump administration seems increasingly influenced by Israel’s far right Netanyahu government. In fact, PM Netanyahu often appears the most moderate member of his rightist coalition which is dominated by militant West Bank settlers.

Trump has surrounded himself with ardent supporters of Israel’s right. One of his major bankrollers is casino mogul Sheldon Adelson who is a key supporter of Jewish expansion on the illegally occupied West Bank.

Israel’s right has made a hate fetish of Iran and incessantly calls for war against the Islamic Republic. However, the mighty US Israel lobby twice failed to push the Obama administration to attack Iran. The US Congress, by contrast, is totally under the thumb of Israel’s American lobby and pays more respect to PM Netanyahu than the president. He who pays the piper….

In fact, Congress sought to block sales of Boeing civilian airliners to Iran worth $16.6 billion even though it would have cost thousands of American jobs. Congress has been trying to sabotage the Iran nuclear deal ever since it was signed, putting American national interests on a collision course with those of Israel’s right.

But now President Trump says he’s found a new reason to sabotage the six-power deal: Iran, insists Trump, supports "terrorism" and has bad intentions. This charge has been around for decades, cited by Israel as a compelling reason to attack Iran because Tehran supports the "terrorist" Lebanese movement Hezbollah and the Palestinian movement Hamas.

The "terrorist" label is slapped onto all enemies of Israel and the United States. It’s a handy, meaningless sobriquet that automatically denies those so named political or moral justice.

I was with the Israel army when it invaded Lebanon in 1982 and saw first-hand how its arrogance turned formerly pro-Israel Shia Lebanese in the south into anti-Israel fighters. Israel actually encouraged and may have secretly financed the growth of Hezbollah and Hamas hoping they would drain support from the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) and Lebanon’s Amal militia.

Israel hates Hamas and Hezbollah and is determined to eradicate them. The principal supporter of Hamas and Hezbollah has long been Syria. Large parts of Syria have now been destroyed by a US-engineered uprising and bands of Saudi-financed mercenaries. That has left Iran as the main supporter of Hamas and Hezbollah, and a principal backer of Syria’s Assad government. The PLO has become a puppet of Israel and the US.

So Israel is now determined to destroy Hezbollah in its strongholds in Lebanon and then crush Hamas with Trump’s blessing, so ending any dreams of a Palestinian state. Iran is now being blamed for all Washington’s problems in the Mideast. So war fever against Iran is again mounting.

Interestingly, Iran, which has 79.1 million people, is not cowering before this threat. Like North Korea, Iran’s air force and navy are sitting ducks. But Iran has strong infantry, some 500,000 men including Revolutionary Guards. They are armed with outdated weapons but showed redoubtable fighting spirit in the Iran-Iraq War. Any US invasion would be met by fierce resistance.

An Iranian commander told me, "let the Americans come and invade. They will break their teeth on Iran. Then we will drive them out of the Mideast.”

Boastful, yes, but not impossible. Iran could prove more than the US can handle. President Trump does not know this yet and is still having fun with his new military toys. Problem is, he just can’t decide where to attack first.

Reprinted with permission from EricMargolis.com.

An Old Man saying “Goodbye” to the Love Of His Life at a Graveside in a late Autumnal Rain…

The memory of you smiling sweetly
as you shyly said ‘I Do’
chokes my frowning face
into something obscene
and forever lost to torment.
I deserve the rain!
How dare I take one more breath
or heavy footstep
without you by my aching side?
I am but a lost ‘Message’
without a ‘Destination’
This emptiness is not killing me…
No, it is racking my tortured, emotion bones
into unbending shapes,
soul-splitting shifts
and grotesque absurdities.
All I now do is roAR inside,
the fire in my poor heart and veins
is soaring and raging
like dynamite embracing
a, once again, falling phoenix.
My eyes are thunderous pools
of sinking nothing.
Every chance I ever had,
now completely lost,
of clasping your calming hand…
haunts me…
and tastes like concrete inside a mouth,
which yearns to say
‘I Miss You So Very Much, I’m Sorry’

Fault line

When we were children
We used to stare
While the static screen
And the national air
Ended the day
Where seeing far
Still could not spy
The Plain of Jars
Awaiting strained
The solar glare
We missed Mekong
Bombs
Bursting in air
Sucking out lungs
Searing smiles
forests of chimneys
Peasantless farms
Long-noses vile
Hermits once their kingdom
Denied
Hudson Harbor tested
Their slant-eyes to fry.
Oh memory dear
Oh memory dear
Save us from our vicious
Selves
Save us with our drunken stupor
Save us with our bloated wives
Save us who worship death by day
Save us please, oh CIA
With war unending
And to date
Our will unbending
And irate
Give us this day our drug
Of choice
Give them who rule
Their nth Rolls Royce
So we may still forget this day
All those whom for our drugs
We slay
Those drugs
That bless
That grease our hate
Whilst we slither
‘Cross our Teutonic plate.

Assumption: Eternity

Life is an entangled duet
An unending cosmic yoga
A rosy borewell digging-art
A big-bang wisdom, a divine-nirvana,
An ache, a gain and an eternal embrace …

So, in the end,
only one thing
matters …

because,
we are not living
in Heaven or Hell
but in this planet

and, Earth is the breeding ground
of harmless and harmful
altruistic-doves and egoistic-vultures
straight-genes and truth-twisters

believe me that
the Sunlight is not the heat or frost of your heartbreak …
because, the ever growing
and the caring Universe will tell you that

Sunlight is the Guru of the gurus
Sunlight is the poet-(par-excellence)-painter
Sunlight is the Life-composer
Sunlight is the Path-composer
Sunlight is the Time-composer
Sunlight is the Love-composer
Sunlight is the Season-composer
Sunlight is the living and the dying
Heroic Promethean rebel-lion.

what revolution without Sunlight?
ah, revolution of the blind-bats, whoresons and dramatic-frogs?

Sunlight is the truest revolution of the revolutions!
time is ‘NOW’
because your Life, Record and Light
are here on Earth, now.

what matters to you?
light-age? or fallen-age?

what are you waiting for?
open the eyes of your heart
hear me that the time is always ‘NOW’
to think, to feel and to realize
the everlasting worth of your soul or spirit!

listen, in order for you not to lose
good, harmless, altruistic and straightforward
things and beings in life

just remove forever,
evil, harmful, egoistic and deliberately delusional
things and beings

we don’t need them in the heart
of our blissfully growing cosmic-mansion
of the Eternity!

of Life
of Love
and
of Soul.

because, Love
is not an anticipatory bail or a psychological jail
but infinite harmony and ecstasy and freedom
an astral journey, an otherworldly fusion
a heavenly bridge to our Epithalamium!

Angel Parra, listen to this song

Music has become still.
Words are suddenly empty shells.
Eyes, red and dry, as in a long mourning.
Heart—aching and tender.

The ruggedly-handsome man
No longer hums and strums his guitar.
An exit and then the hush!

The rich soul is merged with the
Twinkling stars, its final home.

I wander alone on the heath and plain
In search of an artist that can sing songs
Of resistance, hope and resilience
And articulate the sad state
Of a community/nation oppressed.

The One that popularized the New Chilean Song
And turned it into a
Universal anthem of the suppressed.
Angel Parra, dear comrade!
You roamed Europe, Australia and North America
And taught the Chilean Diaspora and other fans
The joy of telling the truth that can stir a people and
Make the dictators, the junta, tremble through the committed music.

Angel Parra—now gone forever physically
But part of the universe of the counter-culture and
Emerging undergrounds in every nation.

You continue to live
In your songs that will never fade
like the market-driven pop lyrics that
make us numb.

Tormented Era

The death of a child
by brutal hand
of father, uncle, boyfriend,
has become normal
since we’ve forgotten
simple values.
Too many agitate
for personal gain
while the government decays,
privileged officials
consume the public trust,
collaborating with the wealthy
to do away with unions,
reduce the middle class,
remove all groups
willing to resist
those devouring our resources.
The extravagance of few
while many suffer
has become normal
until we no longer know
how to prevent the aristos
from eroding our future.

Guillotine Flags

dirty green paper scattered
licking up crimson moisture
as shoe-less walkers lie silent
broken bodies live streaming
down London Bridge’s fallen

watch each lone drop sailing
raise the guillotine flag flying
colors past kings and queens
seeds sprout even in darkness
only what’s sown can you reap

local television media madness: a social commentary

i have a closed mind about closures

and i do not care when closures will be back open

i am passed hearing about those who have passed

let’s put that in the past and simply say they died

broadcast news personalities
keep reaching out
but they never hear back

their upper middle class concerns
are of no interest to me

cell phone videos far from our viewing area are boring

most news is worth ignoring

superficial reports
spread out as teasers over thirty minutes are the norm

so
just read the news
tell it like it is
and
improve your grammar and usage

have the courage to ignore
advertising,
viewer polls, and marketing abuse-age