North Korea renounces 1953 truce

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  • Sat, May 30, 2009 - 11:41pm

    #92
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    Re: North Korea renounces 1953 truce

[quote=Ray Tomes]

Patrick Brown wrote:

 

Ray, we both agree Russia’s only motivation in calling for disarmament was because they were broke and could not afford the arms race anymore.  Why then, do you only accuse the US of having ulterior motives when it is clear the Russians weren’t interested in peace – only in us letting them play catch-up for a while?

 

Patrick, I did also state that Russia and China invade other countries with reckless abandon. However USA is the worst offender I think.[/quote]

Does that mean you no longer believe that Russia did not have ulterior motives when, according to you, it [quote]

I seem to remember a Russian offer to have everyone reduce their nuclear weapons that was declined by USA (not sure of the details).[/quote]

A simple yes or no (not I sort of remember thinking and also said that…) will suffice.

[quote=Ray Tomes]

I did mention that we do know that USA did support Saddam Hussein and encouraged an attack on Iran. Therefore I believe it is wise to have suspicions about whether they also emncouraged an attack on Kuwait, even though no evidence has come out about that.[/quote]

Since you are so liberal with conjecture, I assume you were fully on board with Bush’s march to war against Iraq in the name of weapons of mass destrcution.  After all, since Sadam had them and used them before, and admitted to be constantly trying to build them, shouldn’t we have been, in the same spirit that you suspect the US ecouraged Iraq to invade Kuwait, suspicious that Sadam might be trying to do what he said he was doing and had previosuly proven he would and could do?  Conjecture is a dangerous road my friend.  If you give yourself a license to base beliefs on it, you will be in no place to blame others for doing the same.

[quote=Ray Tomes]When other journalists came in such as Al Jazeera and even unapproved western journalists, the USA forces deliberately shot and killed them,[/quote]

Cite you source Ray.  Forgive me for being suspicious of your claims.

As for deaths caused by war and the argument of whether they are indirect or direct, would you then agree to acknowledge that by not going to war, the US, as the only country capable of launching such a conflict, would be responsible for whatever deaths came at the hands of Sadam Hussein, absent our involvement?  Because it seems to me that you can have it one way or the other, but not both.  Either you subtract the deaths Sadam could have caused from all the ones you attribute to the US, and then decide whether it was a net good or net bad, or you only count the deaths directly attributable to US forces.  

As for controlling the media in a war zone, there is nothing wrong with that.  There is no free speech in a war zone, it’s war, each side does whatever it can to win, and controlling the media is one part of psychological and information warfare.  Remember Sadam’s "Minister of Media" or whatever he was called, who stood in front of Bagdad TV HQ everyday proclaiming how they were defeating the great enemy, even as US forces were driving down the boulevard?  Was he violating the 1st ammendment, Ray?

[quote=Ray Tomes]

"Foreign powers, including the United States, were at first supportive of the Taliban in hopes it would serve as a force to restore order in Afghanistan after years of division into corrupt, lawless warlord fiefdoms. The U.S. government, for example, made no comment when the Taliban captured Herat in 1995 and expelled thousands of girls from schools.[82] These hopes faded as it began to be engaged in warlord practices of rocketing unarmed civilians, targeting ethnic groups (primarily Hazaras) and restricting the rights of women.[83] In late 1997, American Secretary of State Madeleine Albright began to distance the U.S. from the Taliban and the next year the American-based Unocal, previously having implicitly supported the Taliban in order to build a pipeline south from Central Asia, the oil company withdrew from a major deal with the Taliban regime concerning an oil pipeline."

Note that this also supports the resources argument. As regards drugs, can you explain to me why, if USA has control of Afghanistan, its drug production is higher than ever if the CIA do not actually want the drugd produced? They certainly have the means to destroy the crops.

[/quote]

As I explained previously, the withdrawal of Russian forces from Afghanistan left a power vacuum.  Ignorant US politicians, drunk with joy at having dealt the Russians their own "Vietnam", just assumed it didn’t matter who took over afterwards.  Afterall, in their thinking, what could possibly go wrong – the Russians were gone. 

Very little was known about the Taliban.  They were seen, mistakenly, as a stabilizing force in the beginning because in the beginning, they just seemed like an organized, albeit highly religious organization.  The thought of order, organization, and centralization seemed like a good thing. 

As the Wiki article you cite further points out, once the nature of these extremists began to be revealed, the US began withdrawing support, and finally withdrew all recognition.  Unocal, which is mentioned here, had been trying to get a pipeline through Afghanistan even since when the Russians were there.  They most certainly had CIA help in some of their negotiations with some of the Afghan tribal leaders – that much has been documented.  However, this article only serves to exhonerate the US and Unocal.  What is basically says is, once they realized who they were dealing with, they said "sayonara". 

Now as for opium, I really think the CIA and the US military has quite a bit more to worry about than whether Afghans are growing Opium or not.  Right now, if they are not shooting at us, I highly doubt anyone cares what they are doing.  If growing Opium keeps them from murdering themselves and our forces, that’s fine with me and I would imagine with most people involved.

 

 

  • Sun, May 31, 2009 - 12:17am

    #93
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    “Only The Winners Write The History”

Journalism and the War in Iraq

Tariq Ayoub: Setting an Example

Mourners carry the coffin of Tariq Ayoub
Mourners carry the coffin of Tariq Ayoub, a reporter for the Jordan Times, Al-Ra’i, and Al-Jazeera killed by a U.S. bomb in Baghdad, at his funeral in Amman (Photo: Han Chuanhao/AFP).

The killing of our colleague, Jordanian journalist Tariq Ayoub, who worked for the Jordan Times, Al-Ra’i, and the Al-Jazeera network in Baghdad, sends a clear message, and it reveals the changes that are taking place in the Arab media, best represented by energetic Arab news agencies such as Al-Jazeera and the Abu Dhabi network. The work of these news organizations is a sign that the Arab media have shaken off the fear and impotence of previous Arab networks. They have persevered while other networks, embedded with U.S. forces, have been characterized by an absence of duty and by lack of journalistic professionalism that has made their reporting so compromised that it was drowned out by the thunder of mortar cannons. Al-Jazeera has revealed truths that furnished proof of the complicity of American media in obliterating facts and events pertaining to the U.S. military.

 

The blood of Tariq was fair game, as was the blood of other journalists working for Al-Jazeera and the Abu Dhabi network; both were bombed at the same time—followed by an attack on journalists in the Palestine Hotel, an attack that occurred probably because of its name. The message we take from Tariq’s killing makes CENTCOM spokesman Vincent Brooks’ statement seem quite ironic: “We bomb locations with precision, and we pay attention to locations where journalists are present.” In reality, Tariq’s killing demonstrates that the U.S. military preferred that Tariq and journalists like him ride on the back of an American tank, follow the troops around, eat and drink with them, and write in line with U.S. military desires. His death is a message directed to the remaining journalists and reporters who are still in the field, who are giving alternate perspectives on what is propagated by Bush, Rumsfeld, and others from the U.S. administration. Obviously, the U.S. government wants to establish the para-meters of its military campaign, the extent of the media coverage, and the psychological warfare on Iraq. Someone like Tariq exposed them—and was killed. [It makes] us wonder about the truth of the idea that “All who aren’t with us are against us,” which is the attitude of the Bush administration and its military forces. Regardless, Tariq died by U.S. bombs, like a martyr sealed in the blood of his writings and his message. His death should signify the seriousness of the current situation and the guilt of most other media, which still falsify and slant news in favor of, and orchestrated by, powerful interests.

Tariq Ayoub was a journalist who prevented the warmongers from completely narrating the story, and he strayed from the official Arab script dictated to Arab news agencies. He did so using no methods other than those of a real journalist: professionalism, independence, and being a witness on the ground.

  • Sun, May 31, 2009 - 12:27am

    #94
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    Re: North Korea renounces 1953 truce

Vanity, journalists die in every war.  If you are trying to prove US forces did this deliberately, you have a long way to go.

  • Sun, May 31, 2009 - 12:28am

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    Re: North Korea renounces 1953 truce

Ray,

[quote]It makes no difference who’s guns killed someone. If a war is wrongly started by USA then all the deaths are attributable to them IMO. You cannot blame people for trying to defend their countray against an invader. Uisng words like "insurgents" when they are really "freedom fighters" does not alter the fact.[/quote]

We couldn’t disagree more on this.

This is tantamount to saying If a car crashes on the interstate, everyone who hits them is absolved from blame, because they didn’t cause the initial collision.

The truth is, in both this idiom and in the Iraq war, there are reckless, unhinged people doing things that they shouldn’t be, and the wreck is an opportunity to illuminate those things.
In one instance, it illuminates that everyone is driving poorly.
In the other, that there are many insurgent groups that basically amount to criminal factors bent on pushing an agenda through violence. This is commonly refered to as "terroism", but I believe this is too hyperbolic and prefer to think of these insurgents as common criminals.

The US caused the initial collision – but these groups have been seething and doing violence against one another for longer than the USA has existed. The violence in the middle east absolutely cannot be "blamed" on the US, as it’s cultural history is barbarism from the word "go".

In my opinion, placing blame with such a broad sweep (You started it – you’re responsible for it) is no different than catagorically dismissing all persons of an ethinic group as inferior because one member held up a liquor store. That is to say, it’s really just a form of prejudical bias with not rationale behind it.

If you look through to the endemic problems of the middle east, you’ll see that violence there is nothing new.
Not to say America didn’t have a hand in it, because we did, but the lions share of guilt and blame falls on the folks who can’t stop killing one another over religious affiliation.

Cheers,

Aaron

  • Sun, May 31, 2009 - 12:35am

    #96
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    Re: North Korea renounces 1953 truce

[quote=Aaron Moyer]

Did miss the statistics posted by Pat or the personal experiences recounted by DIAP?

There is fact swirling around here, but when we turn to beliefs and opinions, it’s important to take note that the "blame" you place on empires through the ages has been cumulative, with each new power amalgamating both good and bad characteristics of the previous schools of thought.

With regards to Islam and Arabia (which is more specifically the issue), I see that they’ve contributed nothing but violence since they invented the Arabic Numeral… some… 2500 years ago? Might not be worth while blaming them for anything. As soon as the oil runs dry, they’ll be back to their proper place – killing one another for no apparent reason other than because it’s written in their holiest of books that "my religion can beat up your religion". Funny how much that sounds like the Nazi regime before them.

History repeating itself? Nahhhh.

Aaron

[/quote]

 

Here are some facts for you, Aaron. Islam is a growing force in South Korea, but pretty much non existent in North Korea. What if South Korea becomes an Islamic nation? Islam is the religion of choice among the growing impoverished masses and South Korea is going to become poorer, so it’s a possibility. Would you support Kim’s efforts to blow them to kingdom come (literally) if this should occur? Or would you deny Kim first strike potential against dangerous Islamofascists?

Just a fyi–the Arabs were largely responsible for the European renaissance. Their mathematical skills were second to none. They are certainly not the complete zeroes you describe, though they were the first to use the zero.

  • Sun, May 31, 2009 - 12:36am

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    Afganistan Watch

http://www.afghanistanwatch.org/2007/06/most-opium-now-.html

June 26, 2007

New drug stats out; Most opium now processed within Afghanistan

UnodcworlddrugreportThe UN World Drug Report 2007 (an annual study by the UNODC) was released today, and its most significant finding is that an estimated 90 percent of the Afghanistan’s opium is now processed within the country’s borders (mostly in the south and the east). That is a striking change from a couple years ago, when that proportion was reversed.

The development of a mature processing industry means that today druglords in Afghanistan keep a far greater share of their profits (which in years past were captured by lab operators in Tajikistan and Pakistan.) It also means that a concerted campaign directed at shutting down these labs (most of which are barely hidden) could hit traffickers where it hurts…Other interesting statistics below…

Other statistics from the report:

  • Afghanistan’s opium cultivation is increasingly concentrated in the South (and especially Helmand.)
     
  • About one million Afghans–approximately 4 percent of the population–are considered "addicted" to narcotics (unfortunately this can be misleading since this category includes not only heroin and opium but also hashish.)
  • 80 percent of these addicts live in rural areas where there is a huge scarcity of drug addiction treatment facilities.
  • Despite a 49 percent increase in Afghan opium production in 2006, opium prices actually fell by just 17 percent in the country. The report notes that "This could suggest that there is substantial stockpiling, but there is little evidence as to where and how it is occurring."
  • With the increased supply, the farm-gate prices received by farmers for dry opium declined to $125/kg in December 2006 from $150/kg a year earlier (but significant regional differences exist.)
  • "In 2006, out of all opiates that left Afghanistan, 53 percent went via Iran, 33 per cent via Pakistan and 15 percent via Central Asia (mainly Tajikistan). If only heroin and morphine are considered, the bulk is estimated to have left Afghanistan via Pakistan (48%), followed byIran (31%) and Central Asia (21%)."
  • Afghanistan’s comparatively low seizure ratio "leaves open the possibility that large shipments are occurring under the protection of corruption, and that seizures merely reflect the small-fry who attempt to operate without this protection."
  • "Helmand province is on the verge of becoming the world’s biggest drug supplier, with the dubious distinction of cultivating more drugs than entire countries such as Myanmar, Morocco or even Colombia."
  • In the first eight months of 2006, 248 heroin labs were dismantled in Afghanistan.
     

Most opium now processed inside Afghanistan: UN : KABUL,June 25 (AFP): Sophisticated laboratories inside Afghanistan are now converting 90 percent of the country’s opium into heroin and morphine before smuggling it around the world, the United Nations said. Afghanistan, the world’s biggest producer of opium, had until two years ago exported the illicit drug almost exclusively in its raw form, said the United Nations Office for Drugs and Crime (UNODC).

"A couple of years ago, most of the drugs that were trafficked out of this country was opium," Oguz said.

"Now more and more of the opium is being processed into morphine and into heroin. And this indicates sophistication that we didn’t have in this country before," she added.

War-shattered Afghanistan accounts for 92 percent of the world’s heroin supply despite vast internationally-backed efforts to eradicate its opium poppy fields.

Oguz said the annual income from the drugs trade — more than three billion US dollars — helps finance the Taliban-led insurgency plaguing mainly southern and eastern Afghanistan.

"The drugs have to be fought together with the insurgency," she said.

Afghanistan produced a record 6,000 tonnes of opium last year and officials fear that with a surge in opium cultivation in the southern provinces, this year’s harvest could top even that.

"I fear we’ll be faced with at least the same amount as the last year, perhaps even more," Oguz said, adding that good weather conditions had also contributed to the increase.

Oguz also downplayed international efforts to eradicate poppy crops, saying that it was more important to provide cash-strapped opium farmers with alternative livelihoods. 

  • Sun, May 31, 2009 - 12:38am

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    Re: North Korea renounces 1953 truce

Patrick,

… your guess is as good as mine …

Paul

  • Sun, May 31, 2009 - 01:04am

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    Re: North Korea renounces 1953 truce

[quote=agitating prop]Just a fyi–the Arabs were largely responsible for the European renaissance. Their mathematical skills were second to none. They are certainly not the complete zeroes you describe, though they were the first to use the zero.[/quote]

Don’t confuse ancient Arabian achievments with modern Islam.  The term "Arabia" is used to describe the area of land composed of the Arabian peninsula of course, and also areas north of it, and during some periods of history, parts of Egypt as well. The area, even to this day, is home to Muslims, Christians, Jews, and Budhists. 

Islam however, was not founded until the 8th century.  The "zero" was invented long before that.  Mohammed, the founder of Islam, murdered all who stood against him and used trade routes he controlled to cut off tribes that did not support him, until he eventually controlled most of modern-day Saudi Arabia.  Even Muslim scholars admit that.  Not exactly the message of brotherly love and peace promoted by founders of most other religions. 

Their achievements are few, and the ones that are mistakenly ascribed to them are from a by-gone era, before Islam was founded.  The main reason for their lack of achievment is due to the murderous internal feuds the religion itself has seeded.  Shiites and Suni hate each other perhaps more than they hate westerners, all because of a conflict that arose in the 9th century, having to do with the rightful succesor.  The Muslim capital has moved all over the place, at times having two due to power being difused and consolidated by warring leaders. 

I have nothing against anyone’s personal choice in religion, but there is nothing I can see in Islam’s history that would lead me to believe it has benefited its followers.

 

  • Sun, May 31, 2009 - 01:07am

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    Re: North Korea renounces 1953 truce

[quote=Aaron Moyer]

 

With regards to Islam and Arabia (which is more specifically the issue), I see that they’ve contributed nothing but violence since they invented the Arabic Numeral… some… 2500 years ago? Might not be worth while blaming them for anything. As soon as the oil runs dry, they’ll be back to their proper place – killing one another for no apparent reason other than because it’s written in their holiest of books that "my religion can beat up your religion". Funny how much that sounds like the Nazi regime before them.

History repeating itself? Nahhhh.

Aaron

[/quote]

 

[Ed. note: Removed comment]

  • Sun, May 31, 2009 - 01:15am

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    Re: North Korea renounces 1953 truce

Agitating Prop,

I’ve got weeds in my back yard, but I’m not giving the berry bushes nukes to keep them out.

CIA World Fact Book: South Korea; https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/ks.html

Religions:
Definition Field info displayed for all countries in alpha order
Christian 26.3% (Protestant 19.7%, Roman Catholic 6.6%), Buddhist 23.2%, other or unknown 1.3%, none 49.3%
South Korea religiosity
religion     percent  
No religion
  
46.5%
Christianity
  
29.3%
Buddhism
  
22.8%
Islam
  
0.4%
Other religions
  
0.4%
Won Buddhism
  
0.3%
Confucianism
  
0.2%
Cheondoism
  
0.1%

Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Religion_in_South_Korea

Whoa! Watch out for those big numbers!!!

Once more – I suggest you rein yourself in. Dont’ tell me about "facts", provide none, and then wander off on some ambigious pseudo-intellectual ramblings about situations that are unlikely to occur to make me look like I’m just not "getting it".

Muslim conquest of Europe is no secret. Their plan has been repeated time and time again by their religious leadership: simply outpopulate the Europeans.

I hope your tender thoughts towards them help you when it’s time to submit or face the blade. I’m sure they’ll really enjoy your snide wit and attitude. See, one thing that the Moslems and I have in common is we both believe in treating people with respect.
For me, as well as them, it’s limited by the subjects actions.
…And I’m not even asking your to join a cult.

Russia gave us some of the most beautiful music I’ve ever heard – but the gulags killed some 20 million, and some 30 million more were sumarially executed for dissidence. I’m sure both Arabia and N. Korea have the potential to do the same, but I will not hide my contempt for their disgusting tolerance of oppression, mutilation, torture and rule through terror.

Cheers.

Aaron

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