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Thursday, November 25, 2010

Dishonest Amanpour's take on the Korean Crisis

Since I spent most of yesterday with my diary on the North Korean attack on Yeonpyeong Island, I was very interested to hear "This Week" anchor Christiane Amanpour's take on the crisis on today's Good Morning America. What I heard was a traitorous piece of dishonest journalism that speaks volumes about the MSM take on this crisis and calls into question the integrity of ABC News in particular. What she said was this:
In terms of what North Korea wants, and that's everybody's question. you heard Adm. Mullen, Joint Chiefs of Staff, nobody quite knows. Is it because they are constantly in this dance of provocation for rewards? Is it because they want to be taken seriously as a nuclear power? Is it because of the succession struggle now in North Korea, because he wants to rack up some victories for his son? The Whiethouse is saying they are going to break this cycle of North Korean provocation in turn for rewards.

If you read my dairy yesterday, then you already know that what the North Koreans say is at the heart of the dispute is the UN imposed North Limit Line. This "water border" rather than continuing out into ocean straight where North and South Korea meet, as the North Koreans would have it, goes north and so closely follows the North Korean coastline that Yeonpyeong Island, which is only 7 miles off the coast of North Korea (and 60 miles from South Korea) is on the South Korean side of this "water border." It is as though the water border between the United States and Mexico hugged so closely to the California coast that Catalina was considered to be on the Mexican side. Christiane Amanpour never mentions, never even alludes to, this aspect of the dispute.

At it's heart, this particular border dispute is economic. [surprise! surprise!] The disputed waters are a very rich fishing area. From Wikipedia:
Yeonpyeong Island is renowned for its kumouuri, a specialty spiced crab unavailable elsewhere in South Korea.
The NLL has been used to keep the North Koreans from fishing it. As we all have been told many times, people are starving in North Korean. They are demanding the right to fish in the waters off their coast and we are denying them that. From Wikipedia:
As North Korea does not recognize the line, its fishing boats work close to or over the limit line, escorted by North Korean naval boats
That right, information about the true nature of this crisis and the very real complaints that North Koreans have been voicing is available on Wikipedia. It is also on the official North Korean government website, which for your information, I have copied below.

I found this stuff out after a couple of days of Googling. Christiane Amanpour also knows this stuff or ABC News has no business putting her forward as their news expert in this area. Adm. Mullen and President Obama damn sure know about the NLL and the beef the North Koreans have with it. It is fundamentally dishonesst and corrupt for Christiane Amanpour and ABC News to report the story this way. "In terms of what North Korea wants, and that's everybody's question." North Korea has made that quite clear. The beef about the NNL may not be the whole story, but it is a big part of it, and that and many other parts of this story are being kept from the American people by the unity and corruption of a "free press" that censors the news we need to make life and death decisions. This is no small matter, with 25,000 American soldiers on the frontlines in South Korea, the America people deserve the truth about the issues at stake and the real policies they may be asked to fight and die for!

I wrote this dairy on Thanksgiving, not because I think this one little issue is so important. I wrote it because I think it is symptomatic of the censored and filtered news we get, not just from Christiane Amanpour on Korea, but from all of the MSM on all questions up and down the line, and that is important.

Happy Thanksgiving!

NEWS FLASH! NEWS FLASH! NEWS FLASH! NEWS FLASH! NEWS FLASH! NEWS FLASH!
As we know, every story has at least two sides, in what maybe an American media first, I am using the box below to give you the unfiltered North Korean side of the story as told on DPRK website:

The DPRK (North Korean side) warned ROK (South Korea) against the “Hoguk” exercise to be staged by the US imperialist aggressor forces and the south Korean puppet fascist armed forces many times.
Map from North Korean Government website
The map above shows the “Northern Limit Line” (NLL). The line was unilaterally set by the US led United Nations military forces on August 30, 1953. It is not officially recognized by DPRK (North Korea). In particular, it is not included into the Armistice Agreement of 1953. The line was originally drawn to prevent southern incursions into the north – however its role has since transformed to prevent DPRK ships heading south.

On 23nd of November at 1300 local time the South Korean fired shots inside the Northern Limit Line, towards DPRK. At 1434 upon receiving the order from the Supreme Command of the Korean People’s Army, we returned fire against the South Korean attackers based in the military camp of Yongpyong.

The answer against the South Korean provocation shows that DPRK honour its promise as stated before and announced in KCNA that any aggression against the North will be met with material response.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Stop Internet Blacklist Bill Now!

"If this bill had been law five or 10 years ago, there's a good chance that YouTube would no longer be around."

Peter Eckersley, senior staff technologist at the EFF
It's back! A Judiciary Committee vote on the Combating Online Infringement and Counterfeits Act this letter from 87 leading Internet Engineers outlining why this is a very bad idea. Now the midterms are over and the protests have died down, so they are trying to slip it by us in the lull.

You must act now to stop this Internet takeover! Call your Senators and sign the Demand Progress petition here.

This bill is being promote as one that is necessary to defend the Intellectual Property [IP] of American creators and one that will protect U.S. jobs. In reality it is designed to protect the profits of a handful of corporations and will cost the U.S. jobs.

Senator Patrick Leahy introduced this bill and has had it on a fast track for passage. Massive opposition put a stop to the dreams of quick passage before the mid terms. Now Leahy has been re-elected with the help of fat contributions from Time Warner, Walt Disney Co, Microsoft and Vivendi, and he has a debt to repay. It looks like it is back on the fast track and may come up for a vote as early as Thursday.

While it is promoted in the name of the artist and writer, it is designed to serve the corporations. The language of the bill is very carefully crafted to make sure corporations are considered IP rights holders. The copyright protections of this country have already been bent from the maximum 28 years set by the founding fathers to 125 years in the case of a corporation, 30 years longer than for a human being. Now that they have so stolen our public domain and locked up culture with the help of corrupt politicians on the take, they aim to use this bill to lock down the Internet. And the means that they want to use to lock down the Internet are so draconian in their intent and will be so damaging in their effect, that not only will it drive more and more Internet businesses and innovators overseas, thus costing American jobs, if carried through to full effect, is likely to precipitate a split in the Internet [then we really will be able to speak of the 'Internets'] that will cost the U.S. it's leading role in world communications and technology.

This bill doesn't really create any new forms of infringing activity, everything it covers is already illegal and the corporations and other copyright holders already have legal remedies to use against pirates and those who give them safe harbor. What this bill does is provide a lot of public resources for the likes of Nike, McDonald's, and MGM in their pursuit of profits. The law will create two blacklists of websites, one list of addresses that must be blocked, and an immunity list of websites the Justice Department would like to shutdown, a sort of 'bonus points' list. Of course the now, out-of-business website owner can appeal in court, provided they have the time and money. I have a friend who spent $50K 'winning' a fair-use copy right infringement suit. This law is first of all designed to shift the burden of copyright enforcement from the corporations to the government and the ISPs. Many times the judge's gavel is the hammer of money on the head of the poor.

But it is the method of enforcement that makes his bill particularly dangerous. It mandates that a new feature be added to the Internet in the United States that doesn't exist now, the ability to selectively filter and block Internet traffic. I should also tell you that this 'feature' will not be cheap to implement and since we know that ISPs will have the government's blessing in shifting those costs downstream, we know who, ultimately, will pay for our new controlled Internet.

Nor should anyone think that this is merely about "Infringement" as the bill advertises. Once the mechanisms of blacklist and censorship are put into place, they will be applied to a wider and wider array of "illegitimate" Internet traffic. Obviously "terrorist websites" (as defined by the DoJ) will be blocked, ditto sites that spread government or corporate secrets like WikiLeaks.

If you understand how the Internet works you will also understand that for the U.S. government to accomplish its intent in this bill and Obama's Internet spying bill, it will have to seize control of the root domain name servers from the international NGOs that currently run them. This is why I call it an Internet coupe d'etat and why the 87 Internet Engineers, among others, have warned that it could split the Internet.

The bottom line is this: As we move forward into a period of continuing economic crisis, this will promote increasing social protest and mass organization. Under these conditions, the gov't and its corporate masters realize that control of communications and the media is extremely important. When it comes to all of the traditional media, they have everything pretty well locked down. But when it comes to the Internet, that is a different story. There, not only do they not have that type of control, because the Internet in run by international NGOs, they aren't even in the drivers seat.

This COICA, together with an Internet eavesdropping bill to be put forward by the Obama administration amount to a attempted American coupe d'etat on the World Wide Web.

Here is a recap of my other DKos diaries on this subject:
Sweet Victory on Internet Censorship: Senate Backs Off!
Internet Engineers tell the Senate to Back Off!
Why is Net Neutrality advocate Free Press MIA?
Obama's Internet Coup d'├ętat
Julian Assange on Threat to Internet Freedom
FCC Net Neutrality's Trojan Horse
Free Press: Country Codes for the Internet?
The Mountain comes to Mohammad
Keith Olbermann's Deception
Court rules -> Google Must Be Evil & Maximize Profits
EFF on the Google\Verizon Net Neutrality Proposal
Google-Verizon: What is the Free Press Agenda?
End of the Internet As We Know It!
Free Press would make this Illegal!
Google Verizon Announce Terms of Deal

# FCC Net Neutrality Trojan Horse

Things Even Keith Olbermann Won't Cover - UPDATE: VICTORY!!!

UPDATE: The Internet Blacklist Bill has been stopped this morning. See end of diary for details:

Part 1: The Internet Coup d'etat

The "Combating Online Infringement and Counterfeits Act" (COICA) , also known as the Internet Blacklist Bill, was passed out of Judiciary yesterday by unanimous vote and near unanimous silence in the major media including Keith Olbermannand Rachel Maddow on MSNBC, which frankly should surprise no one because major corporate copyright holders Microsoft and NBC are big supporters of the bill and the bottom line is that Keith and Rachel work for MSNBC.

I won't repeat my arguments about why this bill really could mean the end of the Internet as we know it. I have already done that in my earlier diaries on this subject. However, I would ask anyone that is still has doubt about the radical attack on the Internet that is this bill to read the protest letter of 87 Internet fathers to the Senate. Here are a few excerpts:

this legislation will risk fragmenting the Internet's global domain name system (DNS), create an environment of tremendous fear and uncertainty for technological innovation, and seriously harm the credibility of the United States in its role as a steward of key Internet infrastructure.

All censorship schemes impact speech beyond the category they were intended to restrict, but this bill will be particularly egregious in that regard because it causes entire domains to vanish from the Web, not just infringing pages or files. Worse, an incredible range of useful, law-abiding sites can be blacklisted under this bill.

Senators, we believe the Internet is too important and too valuable to be endangered in this way, and implore you to put this bill aside.
So don't be negative. Don't think of it as the end of the Internet as we know it. Think of it as the Internet as we know it in China.

So where is Keith Olbermann on this story? We know it's part of his beat because he was all over the Google/Verizon Net Neutrality panic of August. Then he was raising the alarm about "the Google-Verizon deal with the devil to throw out net neutrality for the sake of their profits." A few shows later, when it became clear there was no Google Verizon "deal", only a proposal for legislation, he was still highly critical "because Google and Verizon have proposed a framework whereby the FCC would not regulate the wireless Internet"

But the bottom-line is that it was just a proposal by two very big companies for a limited view of network neutrality. It did not include blacklists. Even if the very worst of the anti Google claims were true, and I have already shown they are bunk, but even if they were, it was claimed that access to the DailyKos could be greatly slowed down as others paid for preferential treatment. That was a proposal, this is a bill that is headed for passage if not opposed strongly now, that could remove the DailyKos from the web entirely.

So where is Keith Olbermann and all those other brave defenders of the Internet that were so loud in August because Google dared to make a proposal they found wanting? Why are they so silent in the face of this brazen attack?

One thing is certain, all Industry eyes will be on Google if this thing passes. They refused to play ball with the Bush administration's intrusions into our Internet privacy when they denied them data on our searches. Data which AOL, Yahoo and MS were happy to turn over, and they have opposed this sort of thing in China. What will they do with the COICA demands? I hope they have not been deterred from fighting this by the preemptive strikes launched against them recently.

Also yesterday Sarah Palin gave us an idea of how some that aspire to power view fair use and the copyright law, when she tweeted "The publishing world is leaking out-of-context excerpts of my book w/out my permission? Isn't that illegal?" Think what this law will mean in the hands of people like her.

But not to worry. Even if COICA passes the House and Senate and is signed into law by Obama, the DailyKos won't be affected. Not at first. It will be a death of a thousand cuts. First they will come for thepiratesbay.org because it's such an obvious target, and we can blog about that. Then they will come for WikiLeak, which is hosted by thepiratesbay servers, because not only are they disseminating materials in violation on copyright, they are threat to national security, and we can blog about that. By the time your bookmark for the DailyKos returns, "Server Not Found", they'll be no place left to blog.

UPDATE: VICTORY for now!!!!

I just receive this update from Aaron Swartz of DemandProgress.org:

Clay -- big news! Yesterday the Senate Judiciary Committee voted unanimously to send the Internet blacklist bill to the full Senate, but it was quickly stopped by Sen. Ron Wyden (D-OR) who denounced it as "a bunker-buster cluster bomb" aimed at the Internet and pledged to "do everything I can to take the necessary steps to stop it from passing the U.S. Senate."

Wyden's opposition practically guarantees the bill is dead this year -- and next year the new Congress will have to reintroduce the bill and start all over again. But even that might not happen: Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Hollywood's own senator, told the committee that even she was uncomfortable with the Internet censorship portion of the bill and hoped it could be removed when they took it up again next year!

This is incredible -- and all thanks to you. Just a month ago, the Senate was planning to pass this bill unanimously; now even the senator from Hollywood is backing away from it. But this fight is far from over -- next year, there's going to be hearings, negotiations, and even more crucial votes. We need to be there, continuing to fight.

Here is a recap of my other DKos diaries on this subject:
Sweet Victory on Internet Censorship: Senate Backs Off!
Internet Engineers tell the Senate to Back Off!
Why is Net Neutrality advocate Free Press MIA?
Obama's Internet Coup d'├ętat
Julian Assange on Threat to Internet Freedom
FCC Net Neutrality's Trojan Horse
Free Press: Country Codes for the Internet?
The Mountain comes to Mohammad
Keith Olbermann's Deception
Court rules -> Google Must Be Evil & Maximize Profits
EFF on the Google\Verizon Net Neutrality Proposal
Google-Verizon: What is the Free Press Agenda?
End of the Internet As We Know It!
Free Press would make this Illegal!
Google Verizon Announce Terms of Deal

Things Even Keith Olbermann Won't Cover: US Terrorism & Mass Murder

So now we are sending the M1A1 Abrams Battle tanks to Afghanistan for the first time. Pentagon spokesman Dave Lapan told reporters "that sending tanks to Afghanistan does not represent an escalation of the conflict." Escalation is so Vietnam. We don't have 'escalations' anymore, today we have 'surges'.

The long range artillery on those tanks are good for two things, destroying other tanks, which the Taliban don't have, and mass murder. Long range artillery, even in 2010, is not a precision weapon. The targets of those 120-mm main guns will be homes, not fortifications.

And how easily we kill today. Tuesday's headline from the region read:

20 Suspected Militants Killed

20 alleged militants were killed in a drone strike in North Waziristan, which would seem to make the question of whether they actually were militants, mute. Apparently not. One news report goes on:
At least four missiles were fired, two at the mud-brick house and two at the vehicle. Four of the slain were in the vehicle while at least 16 died in the flattened home. The identity of the dead was not known, and agents were trying to get more details, said the officials.
The phrase "Shoot first, ask questions later" comes to mind.

Notice this was a "home" that was flattened, not a barracks. Soldiers live in barracks, families live in homes. So, now I feel compelled to ask, as I always do after hearing another one of these reports: "How many of those 'suspected militants' were under the age of five?" And then another question, just because I am curious, "How do you sleep at night?" I live with myself by working for peace everyday.
Child Kill by USChild Kill by US

These are two of the 17 children killed on Dec. 20, 2009 in a drone strike in Yemen, five days before the underwear bomber tried his stunt. Let them stand in for the thousands of children we have murdered in Yemen, Somalia, Iraq, Afghanistan and Pakistan in our bloody War on Terrorism between last Christmas and this one. Do you get the picture? If not click here to see children from that same raid that were burned to a crisp. Click here, to see the bodies of high school students murdered in a mid-night Special Forces raid in Afghanistan. Click here, to see the truly grotesque pictures of the victims of our white phosphorous in Iraq. There may not have been chemical weapons in Iraq when we invaded, but there sure as hell are now!

Do you think that there is any amount of expensive technology or TSA abuse that can protect us from just retribution?

Frankly, the terminology they are using really troubles me because for more than 40 years now, I have considered myself a militant. Words are my weapons, although I did participate in my share of sit-ins and building takeover in protest of the Vietnam War, and I wish I was with the twenty thousand people protesting the School of Americas (i.e. "Schools of Assassins") in front of Ft. Benning, GA this weekend. Now, with nothing like due process, we are killing people who are suspected of being what I have been for most of my life. Killing them and their families. [BTW This annual SOAW mass protest is something else Keith won't cover, nor will anyone else in MSM outside of the Atlanta area.]

We killed between 3 and 5 million people in Vietnam, our Agent Orange and unfound ordinances are killing them still. We have yet to come to terms with that little bit of mass murder, nor the minimum 8 million people we have killed in total, including Korea, Cambodia, Laos, Iran, El Salvador, Panama, and so on since WWII. As I have pointed out earlier in my diary, the U.S. economy has required massive military spending just to stay afloat ever since the first great depression. These are the people that have paid the price.

This week the NY Times reports that we are systematically destroying thousand of homes in Afghanistan. The UN or somebody should stop this criminal activity.

In Arghandab District, for instance, every one of the 40 homes in the village of Khosrow was flattened by a salvo of 25 missiles, according to the district governor, Shah Muhammed Ahmadi, who estimated that 120 to 130 houses had been demolished in his district.
American troops are using an impressive array of tools not only to demolish homes, but also to eliminate tree lines where insurgents could hide, blow up outbuildings, flatten agricultural walls, and carve new “military roads,” because existing ones are so heavily mined, according to journalists embedded in the area recently.
One of the most fearsome tools is the Miclic, the M58 Mine-Clearing Line Charge, a chain of explosives tied to a rocket, which upon impact destroys everything in a swath 30 feet wide and 325 feet long. The Himars missile system, a pod of 13-foot rockets carrying 200-pound warheads, has also been used frequently for demolition work.
Often, new military roads go right through farms and compounds, cutting a route that will keep soldiers safe from roadside bombs.

It is claimed that these houses are abandoned and the demolitions are very orderly with the owners being compensated and all but I don't believe it. Not with these tools and not with the U.S. military track record for honest reporting. From the Gulf of Tonkin to the WikiLeaks revelations, they have shown that they will lie at the drop of a bomb.

Which is also why I don't believe the only people opposing our occupation in that fiercely independent tribal country are 'Taliban". I believe that anyone who dares to exercise their right of self defense against us is called "Taliban." A quick review of the Vietnam experience will tell you how the U.S. military sees things. From my film, Vietnam: American Holocaust:

Dennis Caldwell, 1st Aviation Brigade
I was a helicopter Cobra gunship pilot. I worked with another aircraft at all times in what is called a hunter-killer team. I was told by the other pilots in the unit how to tell a VC from a civilian--if they were running, they were VC. If they were standing there, they were well-disciplined VC, shoot 'em anyhow.
Scott Camil, 1st Marines
Another time I had a friend of mind killed and I was very upset and I asked this Vietnamese for his ID card and he says "cum beck" which means 'I don't understand' in Vietnamese and he just pissed me off so I pulled out my knife and I killed him and it didn't bother me at all. I just called it in and I said "One VC killed." and they said "How do you know he's a VC" and I said "because he's dead" and they laughed and said "okay"
BTW Scott Camil received two Purple Hearts, Combat Action Ribbon, two Presidential Unit Citations, Good Conduct Medal, National Defense Service Medal, Vietnam Service Medal with three stars, Vietnam Cross of Gallantry with Silver Star, Vietnam Cross of Gallantry with Palm Leaf, and Vietnam Campaign Medal during two tours in Vietnam. He will be the first tell you what a farce those metal were. He returned most of them at a Senate garden party in 1971, and is now the chapter president for Veterans for Peace in Gainsville, FL.

I only found out myself a few years ago that the term "Viet Cong" was itself a creation of a U.S. Army PsyOps officer in Siagon in 1958. It was designed to denigrate our enemy. In point of fact, the National Liberation Front fighters never did call themselves the Viet Cong or VC. Given that history, I don't know who they mean when they say they are only destroying "Taliban " houses.

And not only houses, but whole villages have been destroyed. In justifying this wholesale destruction, Shah Muhammed Ahmadi, Kandahar district governor, told the NY Times “We had to destroy them to make them safe.” Was he channeling Major Booris? He made one of the most famous quotes of the Vietnam War when he told AP reporter Peter Arnett on Feburary 7, 1968 "It became necessary to destroy the town to save it."

I wish we had Peter Arnett or someone like him to tell us the truth about our wars today. He is badly missed. When it comes to our present wars, Keith Olbermann and the whole damn crowd are good at keeping secrets.

The World Changed 47 Years Ago Today

At a NSC meeting on November 15, 1963 President John F. Kennedy is said to have taken substantially the same position he had taken with New York Times columnist Arthur Krock a month earlier when he said that the U.S. shouldn't intervene in a "civil disturbance caused by guerrillas". Also on November 15th, Defence Secretary McNamara predicted that the U.S. military role in Vietnam would end by the end of 1965 and the U.S. government announced that the first 1000 of the 15,000 U.S. soldiers then in Vietnam would be home before Christmas 1963. This policy shift is now clearly documented in the recently declassified National Security Action Memorandum # 263 [dated Oct. 11, 1963]

On November 22, 1963 those orders were cancelled.


This reversal of Kennedy's policy was to ultimately cause millions of Vietnamese deaths together with more than 58,000 Americans. It was announced by President Lyndon B. Johnson on November 24, 1963. This reversal is outlined in the recently declassified National Security Action Memorandum Number 273 dated November 21, 1963. It was written and dated the day before Kennedy was assassinated!

It wasn't written by John F Kennedy and it wasn't written by Lee Harvey Oswald either but I don't think those that wrote it thought that Kennedy would ever see it

Ghosts of Presidents Past

A Little Korean Truth: Thank You Keith Olbermann

Tuesday morning we all awoke to the news that the crazy North Koreans had made a surprise attack on South Korea, but as the facts are gathered, it would appear that they are doing exactly what the Obama military leaders want. We've all heard the news but facts have been in short supply. That's why I was happy to hear Keith Olbermann throw a little light on the subject last night:
The accounting of this that NBC News has gotten is that South Korea did, indeed, fire first in this live fire training exercise with the artillery pointing south, away from the North Korean border and North Korean territory, and then North Korea responded four hours later, shelling the South Korean positions and the two soldiers were killed. And South Korea claims there are even more casualties after they returned to fire.
I want to thank Mr. Olbermann for injecting a few facts into the war hysteria that the MSM has been promoting since the first reports about this newest incident in the Korean War surfaced in the early morning news Tuesday. If the keys facts that we know already were as widely reported as the story, the narrative that the U.S. government, the South Korean government and the MSM are trying to build of "another crazy North Korean provocation" falls flat on the facts.

The South Koreans did indeed fire first and they fired last, claiming to have caused "massive causalities" in North Korea with it's salvo of more than 90 shells.. Their first shelling was part of a military exercise that they were conducting around the island of Yeonpyeong. This island is claimed by South Korea, and with U.S. military support, it and the rich surrounding fishing waters, is controlled by South Korea, but it is disputed territory. One look at the map should be enough to tell you why. It is only 7 miles from the coast of North Korea and 60 miles from the South Korean mainland. It is as though Mexico was still claiming Catalina Island off the California coast!

Korean Incident Map

NEWS FLASH! NEWS FLASH! NEWS FLASH! NEWS FLASH! NEWS FLASH! NEWS FLASH!

As we know, every story has at least two sides, in what maybe an American media first, I am using the box below to give you the unfiltered North Korean side of the story as told on DPRK website:

The DPRK (North Korean side) warned ROK (South Korea) against the “Hoguk” exercise to be staged by the US imperialist aggressor forces and the south Korean puppet fascist armed forces many times.
Map from North Korean Government website
The map above shows the “Northern Limit Line” (NLL). The line was unilaterally set by the US led United Nations military forces on August 30, 1953. It is not officially recognized by DPRK (North Korea). In particular, it is not included into the Armistice Agreement of 1953. The line was originally drawn to prevent southern incursions into the north – however its role has since transformed to prevent DPRK ships heading south.

On 23nd of November at 1300 local time the South Korean fired shots inside the Northern Limit Line, towards DPRK. At 1434 upon receiving the order from the Supreme Command of the Korean People’s Army, we returned fire against the South Korean attackers based in the military camp of Yongpyong.

The answer against the South Korean provocation shows that DPRK honour its promise as stated before and announced in KCNA that any aggression against the North will be met with material response.

Keith Olbermann's guest, Wendy Sherman, a Clinton era Korean hand said, "South Korea was performing a drill. The North Koreans knew the drill was taking place. It was not a provocative act."

She should have also said that the North Koreans objected strongly and warned that if the South went forward with its plans there would be bloodshed. Had she done that, she would have put the lie to everybody's 'surprise' at the North Korean response, and the talking heads like Richard Haas on Morning Joe that explained the North Korean attack by saying "they're unpredictable, they're crazy." The South said we plan to conduct military exercises just off your coast. The North said, if you do we will regard it as a hostile action and respond with force. The South when ahead anyway and the North did what it said it would do. The narrative that "they're unpredictable" only works if the whole story isn't known.

And it most certainly was a provocative act, like over flying a U.S. aircraft craft carrier. The skies above the oceans belong to no nation, and you may have the right fly anywhere you like. But if you fly over an American carrier group, you can't claim that it's not a provocative act. [Remember Top Gun] And if the fighters warn you off and you persist, don't be 'shocked' if you are fired upon. Holding military exercises in disputed territories almost always is provocative, especially if the two parties are still technically at war. You want to see Pakistan or India carrying out competing military exercises in Cashmere? Holding any kind of military exercise near a hostile border should be considered provocative given just how often such 'exercises' have been used to prepare an invasion.

Take for example, the conduct of the U.S. military off the coast of Vietnam in the summer of 1964. The official story is that U.S. destroyers Turner Joy and Maddox were minding their own business in international waters when they were wantonly attacked [without provocation] in the Gulf of Tonkin on August 4, 1964. This incident enabled President Johnson to get what amounted to a Declaration of War against North Vietnam. We now know that the claimed North Vietnamese attack never happened and far from being innocent sailors in international waters, the two U.S. ships were supporting CIA operations against North Vietnam. The latest information, well documented in my film, Vietnam: American Holocaust, strongly indicated that the whole Gulf of Tonkin Incident, as it came to be known, was hatched in the Whitehouse.

There is a history to this current incident also. Joint U.S. - South Korean exercises in the Yellow Sea, where Yeonyeong is located, had been planned for October. The American super carrier U.S.S. George Washington was to be a part of those exercises. Then not only did North Korea strongly protest, China did too and they canceled a planned first ever visit to Hong Kong by the U.S.S. George Washington. Under the pressure that was brought to bear and in view of the coming G20 summit in South Korea, those plans were put on hold.

The top brass railed. Adm. Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, told a media roundtable in Melbourn, Australia on November 8th "The only thing I'd answer is those are international waters and they aren't owned by China. They aren't owned by Korea. They're international waters in which we have and many other countries have sailed forever. My expectation is we'll continue to do that." Secretary of Defense Robert Gates echoed him "we will assert freedom of navigation, as we have for a long time."

Pentagon spokesman Geoff Morrell was more adamant “We didn’t cancel any exercise,” the said at the Pentagon regular briefing on Nov. 5th, “This notion of canceled, I think, is just hyperbolic. We’ve been trying to work out the next appropriate date for us to jointly exercise in the Yellow Sea with the U.S.S. George Washington." He then twice more promised that the U.S.S. George Washington would soon be back:

We are still working on that date, but rest assured, we will do so with that aircraft carrier in the Yellow Sea,” Morrell said.

It is difficult to get all those parts together and assembled and full agreement on when to proceed with this,” Morrell said. “But we will do so. We will be back in the Yellow Sea. We will be there with the George Washington, so stay tuned.

So now President Obama has found cause to send the U.S.S. George Washington into the Yellow Sea off the coast of North Korea. This should surprise no one.

BTW. Any understanding of the attitude of Koreans, both North and South towards the United States should be informed by the fact that we killed millions of Koreans, mostly women and child and did it in a very mean way. The No Gun Ri Massacre, in which over 300 South Korean civilians where slaughtered by U.S. soldiers, is just the tip of the iceberg. It was covered up for 50 years. It is only one of more than 60 such incidents that the South Korean government has requested the U.S. investigate. The U.S. has refused.

Anyone still suffering under the illusion that we were the 'good guys' in the Korean War needs to see the BBC documentary Kill Them All about "the hidden story of the American army's attack on South Korean refugees during the Korean War in 1950." For your education, I have posted it on Google Video here. I would also recommend Carl Boggs' The Crimes of Empire. In it he documents the U.S. use of Biological Weapons in Korea, including plague, anthrax, scarlet fever and encephalitis. Yes there is a reason why the Korean War has become the "Forgotten War" and it is not a pretty one.